You either love Black Friday or you hate it. There are those eager to get out there, save tons of money and get in on the killer deals, or the thought of the crowds, early mornings and shoving has you running in the opposite direction.
If you are one of the brave ones who is planning on venturing out to the sales this year, make sure you have a game plan to utilize this day to the maximum and get the most bang for your buck. To help us prepare for Black Friday, we hit the streets and talked to some serious shoppers who gave us a few tips on how to make the most out of the doorbusters.
Here are the eight best things that we learned:
1. Get Your Z's
Some sales start at midnight, others at 4am, and just about every time in between. Make sure you are sufficiently rested to handle the masses that will be out and about trying to score a deal.
2. Make A List, Check It Twice
When you stumble into a department store and see racks and racks of clothing, it's hard to figure out where to start. If you've made a list ahead of time of the items you're after, you'll know which direction to go as soon as you walk through the door.
3. The Buddy System
Make sure you bring a friend when you go shopping (divide and conquer people!). Not only can this friend hold your spot in line when you need to use the restroom, but they can also offer an honest opinion. Maybe that $5 polyester dress isn't the most flattering.
4. Measure Up
To avoid carrying three different sizes of the same item while you roam around a store, hit your favorite spot ahead of time and try on a few pieces. Knowing your size going in will streamline the buying process.
5. The Early Bird Gets The Worm
If you want the best deals and the most selection, get up early. You can handle it, Black Friday is only once a year.
6. Ditch The Credit Cards
When prices are slashed, it's easy to convince yourself you need a fourth pair of winter boots. If you only travel with cash , you will only spend exactly how much you have budgeted for. This year, make it a guilt-free Black Friday.
7. Light Layers Are Key
Avoid chunky sweaters, heavy knits and superflous accessories. Try wearing a form-fitting tank so you can slip sweaters and T-shirts over your outfit (this will save you time lining up for a change room). You also may want to leave the bulky jacket at home -- after all your arms are going to be full carrying your new purchases.
8. Fluids, Fluids, Fluids
Make sure you bring a bottle of water with you and a few light snacks. Hours on your feet, pushing your way through crowds can leave you exhausted and dehydrated -- and no one wants to be the person who fainted in the shoe aisle.
Check out the retailers who are offering awesome discounts this Black Friday.
The Details: One day only Friday 11/23 What You Get: 60% Everything excluding fragrances and beauty Shop Online <a href="http://www.aeropostale.com/shop/index.jsp?categoryId=3534619">HERE</a>
The Details: Deals starting now. Subscribe to get their daily deals emails. What You Get: Kenneth Kole men's Herringbone jacket for $89 and Anne Klein women's 2-pack of socks for $20 Shop Online <a href="http://www.amazon.com/gp/b/ref=pe_306660_26631030_pe_supersubjectlink/?&node=384082011">HERE</a>
Bath & Body Works
The Details: Starting 11/19 fans can log on to Bath & Body Works' Black Friday Facebook page and peruse holiday promotions. What You Get: A giveaway of 30 $100-value VIP bags leading up to Black Friday. The bags will also be available at Bath & Body Works locations after Thanksgiving for $20 with any $40 in-store purchase Shop Online <a href="http://www.bathandbodyworks.com/home/index.jsp">HERE</a>
Burlington Coat Factory
The Details: Friday 11/23 6AM-10PM, 11/24, and 11/25 What You Get: Ladies boots for $24.99, sweaters for $12.99, and suits for $29.99 Shop Online <a href="http://www.burlingtoncoatfactory.com/burlingtoncoatfactory/Default.aspx" target="_hplink">HERE</a>
The Details: Pre-Black Friday sale starts Wednesday 11/14 until 11/20 online. Cyber Monday online on 11/26 only. What You Get: $30 off your $75 purchase, $50 off your $150 purchase, $90 off your $250 purchase. On Cyber Monday 40% off every single item plus free shipping. Shop Online <a href="http://www.express.com/content.jsp?pageName=express_black_friday_deals">HERE</a>
The Details: Pre-Black Friday deals starting 11/19 through 11/21. And more deals on Friday 11/23 starting at 12PM. What You Get: Before Black Friday deals starting at $7 and on 11/23 clothing items for $5! Shop Online <a href="http://www.hm.com/us/">HERE</a>
The Details: Starts in store on Friday 11/23 from 6AM-11PM What You Get: Women’s boots, over 50 styles $25, Liz Claiborne and Nicole Miller purses $15 to $20, and select Women's coats $40 Shop Online <a href="http://www.jcpenney.com/dotcom/index.jsp">HERE</a>
The Details: Starts online on Thursday 11/22 at 5AM until 1PM Friday and in-store on Thursday 11/22 at 6AM until 4PM Thursday. Then in-store again 11/22 8PM until 3AM and Friday 5AM until 11AM. What You Get: Up to 80% off all fine jewelry, hooded henleys for $5, puffer jackets for $15, and up to 50% off womens and plus size apparel. Shop Online <a href="http://www.kmart.com/shc/s/dap_10151_10104_DAP_KM+Black+Friday?adcell=promo1previewdoorbuster">HERE</a>
The Details: In-store starting at 12PM on Thursday 11/22 until 12PM Friday 11/23. And again on Saturday 11/24 6AM until 12PM What You Get: 60-70% off women's outerwear, women's sweater for $9.99, and 50-60% all cold weather and fashion accessories Shop Online <a href="http://kohls.shoplocal.com/Kohls/Entry/LandingContent?storeid=2490945&sneakpeek=N&listingid=0">HERE</a>
The Details: Begins 11/21 at 5AM until 11/26 What You Get: Fleece half zips for $15, down vests for $25 and moc turtlenecks for $8 Shop Online <a href="http://www.landsend.com/" target="_hplink">HERE</a>
The Details: 25% off purchases online now, select stores will be open at 12PM 12/22, all will be open at 6AM 11/23 What You Get: 40% off the entire store until 10AM Shop Online <a href="http://www.loehmanns.com/" target="_hplink">HERE</a>
The Details: Friday 11/23 both online and at the MAC Times Square location What You Get: A dark silvery-y lipstick and nail polish duo only available on Black Friday & from 12PM to 4AM at MAC Cosmetics Macy's counters MAC will be previewing its new Taste Temptation collection. Shop Online <a href="http://www.maccosmetics.com/index.tmpl">HERE</a>
The Details: Shop online Thursday 11/22 - Saturday 11/24 OR In store starting 1PM Friday 11/23 What You Get: 25-50% off women's sportswear, more than half off women's coats, and 40% off handbags Shop Online <a href="http://www1.macys.com/m/black-friday/womens-deals?cm_sp=blackfriday-_-staticpages-_-black%20friday%20women's%20deals">HERE</a>
New York & Company
The Details: The Black Friday Coupon Book has deals starting 11/19, 50% to 70% off everything starts Wednesday 11/21, and Black Friday doorbusters start from Thanksgiving Day until 2:00 pm on Black Friday. What You Get: Peacoats for $39.99, V-Neck Sweaters for $14.99 and Velour Jackets and Pants for $14.99 Shop Online <a href="http://www.nyandcompany.com/nyco/" target="_hplink">HERE</a>
The Details: Doors open in-store on Friday 11/23 at 12PM and sales continue on Saturday 11/24 What You Get: Fleece half-zips for the family for $15, jeans $15, and women's boots $12 Shop Online <a href="http://www.oldnavy.com/products/black-friday.jsp">HERE</a>
The Details: Starts 8PM Thursday 11/22 all night and Friday 11/23 at 4AM. Some selected sales start as early as 11/21. What You Get: 60% handbags and slippers, $19.99 for women's boots, and 75% off and an extra 20% on selected jewelry. Shop Online <a href="http://www.sears.com/black-friday-deals/dap-120000000299794">HERE</a>
The Details: Sale starts Thursday 11/22 at 9AM and ends Saturday 11/24 What You Get: Women's tops and jackets for as low as $10, sweaters for $15, and Furgora bérets and infinity scarves for $8 Shop Online <a href="http://www.target.com/c/target-black-friday/-/N-5q0f2">HERE</a>
The Details: In-store Friday 11/23 What You Get: 40% off the entire store plus 25% off purchase of $200 or more before 10AM Shop Online <a href="http://usa.tommy.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/en/thb2cus">HERE</a>
The Details: Friday 11/23 and Saturday 11/24 in-store and online What You Get: ULTA Artist Palettes for $16.99, ULTA Holiday Bath Set for $7.99 and Smashbox Studio Steal Brush Collection for $19 Shop Online <a href="http://www.ulta.com/">HERE</a>
The Details: In-store Friday 11/23 What You Get: A free limited edition tote goes to shoppers that spend at least $65. The bag is filled with "Beauty Must-Haves." (Last year the bag from Victoria's Secret had a $70 value) Shop Online <a href="http://www.victoriassecret.com/">HERE</a>
The Details: Starting Thanksgiving Day 11/22 at 8PM in store What You Get: 1/4 Carat Diamond Hoop Earrings in Sterling Silver for $38, Casio G-Shock watches for $47, and Danskin pullovers for $6 Shop Online <a href="http://www.walmart.com/cp/black-friday/1076614">HERE</a>