my money saving phoenix fashion secret

If you live in Arizona, there's a chance that you've probably heard of Last Chance. It's a store in Phoenix that sells final-clearance, returns and overstock from Nordstrom stores. It's basically the ultimate treasure hunt where you'll either have amazing luck or no luck at all. 
To be sure, it's not the loveliest shopping experience, but the feeling of getting a really great deal makes it all worth it! 
I mean, I got a $180 pair of Kork-Ease shoes for $22.98. I felt very accomplished. 

last chance finds

So, here are my top tips for shopping at Last Chance!

1. Go early and on a weekday.
This store gets crazy. They re-stock throughout the day, but I feel like the earlier you go, the better. My top tip would be to try and avoid going after 3 p.m. Those times mostly attract those that are getting off of school and work and it tends to get most busy at that time. The weekends are another time I'd advise you not to go. I haven't experienced it myself, but through word-of-mouth I've learned that the weekends can be quite crazy.

2. Try things on and inspect every inch.
Keep in mind that there are no returns or exchanges at Last Chance. If you're going to purchase something, make sure it fits! Another thing that's important to do is to check over everything that you plan on purchasing. Odds are, it's probably there for a reason beyond it not fitting or something like that. When I've gone, I've seen lots of stains and tears so you really just have to be on the lookout for those types of things and determine if they are something you can fix or not.

3. Stay hydrated and fueled.
You can't have food or drink inside, but shopping at Last Chance can be exhausting. Eat before you go rather than after so you have a more enjoyable shopping experience.

4. Be wary, cell reception is bad.
It is literally a bargain basement down there, as in the fact that it is almost literally a basement. I can't speak for others, but with Verizon I hardly have any service down there! So, you're kind of on your own for deciding if you need something or not, by way of checking if your friends like it. So, bring along a friend to offer opinion!

5. Find your focus.
It's really overwhelming to go through everything in the store looking for anything. I mainly focus on shoes and bags. Clothing, especially being plus sized, is pretty hard to go through. There was a rack that had some nice plus sized coats, but that was about all I saw that tickled my fancy. So, I personally focus, like I said, on shoes and bags. Just find what works best for you!

If you go in well-armed, you can find some really great deals. Just don't be discouraged if your first time isn't fruitful! 

packing for a weekend trip

Winter is always a time for weekend trips for me. I'm either out of the house all of the time, or making short trips to visit friends and loved ones!
This weekend, I'm headed to Tucson, Arizona to visit my friend Alyssa and it really got me thinking of what I like to pack for my weekend trips! I think weekend trips can be hard, because you never really know what to expect, so let's get thinking and make the most of our weekend trips!

weekend trip must haves

1. Don't Skimp on Your Beauty Products.
Whenever I'm packing for trips, I try to cut down on my beauty products. The only problem with that is that your skin and hair can go south in that short amount of time. The solution? Purchase minis of your favorite products or purchase bottles to transfer a small bit of product to. As much as I'd love to cut down my face routine on a weekend trip, I know I shouldn't. So, I either make room for my full sizes or get some minis! Another idea is to pack those small samples you get from Birchbox or Sephora or ipsy or wherever. That way you can try out your new products and don't have to redistribute your faves.

2. Stick to Shoes and Clothing You Know Are Comfy.
There's nothing worse than being stuck somewhere with uncomfortable shoes. You can pretty much buy anything else, but breaking in shoes takes time! Weekend trips (or any trips, really) are not the best time to be trying out new shoes. So, pack your classic faves! This weekend, I'm bringing my favorite Sam Edelman Boots,  my trusty Birkenstocks and a comfy pair of Superga tennis shoes.
Clothing-wise, I would always stick to classics and a color palette that works together. I usually pack jeans, two shirts, a skirt, a dress and a jacket. That's for a two-day, casual trip. That way I have some options without packing too much.

3. Don't forget your power.
When you're really busy on vacation, you can sometimes forget about charging your phone. This is problematic because it's not great to be lost in an unknown city without a map (although, it can end in a fun adventure). So, I like to always have a portable battery and an extra charging cord on hand.

4. Stay hydrated and fueled.
Again, when you're so busy, it's important to keep fueled and hydrated. I like to bring a refillable water bottle and a couple protein bars just in case I miss a meal! Especially in the mornings, it's easy to forget breakfast, so it's nice to have a bar on hand.

5. Have a good weekender bag and makeup case.
I have definitely done a weekend trip with reusable grocery bags. Not even kidding. Let me tell you, though, having a weekender bag is life altering. Another need for me is a makeup case. I got mine from Nordstrom Rack, but I love the ones that Target has too. It usually has two zipper sides (I use one for makeup and the other for skincare and hair) and then a small zip section and/or brush holder in the center. It's so great because insides are clear and you don't have to shuffle through your makeup bag just to find your mascara!