11 Tips and Tricks for Shopping the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

11 Tips and Tricks for Shopping the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

IT’S FINALLY HERE! I can’t tell you all how long I’ve waited and how excited I’ve been for this sale to start. Last year, I was a Nordstrom Anniversary Sale “newbie”, and just didn’t really understand the magic. I didn’t have early access, I had hardly shopped in the store previously, and I was new to blogging. So much has changed in a year! Nordstrom quickly became one of my favorite department stores, and I ended up getting the debit card so I could rack up points and shop the sale early. However, before we get into the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale tips I want to share with you first on why this sale is so important. Especially for those of you who may be unfamiliar!

Why Should I be Excited for the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale?

The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is unique from other sales because it’s a time when you can get all the staples you need for Fall….before Fall. You know how summer clothes are on super sale right now because summer is almost over? It’s the opposite of that. GENIUS. Also, Nordstrom has everything from clothes, shoes, designer, jewelry, makeup, accessories, etc., so there’s always something for everyone and you always find something you need. It’s like your one stop shop to shop all of your favorite brands in one convenient place. While Nordstrom is known as an upscale department store, I like it better from stores like Neiman Marcus, because you can actually find lots of affordable brands. I think there is this misconception that Nordstrom only has designer or expensive brands. Not true! If you have never given Nordstrom a chance, you should!

When Does the Sale Begin and How Long Does it Run?

  • Early access (card holders only) begins at 2AM CST on July 12th
  • Last day of early access is July 19th
  • Sale opens to public on July 20st
  • Last day of sale is August 5th
  • Prices go up August 6th

Having early access is really nice because you kind of get first pick of everything. Items may still sell out, but Nordstrom does a great job of constantly restocking products throughout early access and the public sale.

Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Tips and Tricks

1. Get the Debit/Credit card

Like I said, I missed out on a lot of items I really wanted last year because I didn’t have the debit or credit card. I personally don’t like having several credit cards, so the debit card option is really nice because it automatically comes out of checking account when I swipe it. Other benefits that you get from having the card is the ability to earn 2 points per dollar when you shop. These points turn into $20 notes (coupons) when you reach 2,000 points. The more money you spend, the higher level your card is which can also unlock other special offers like free alterations and triple point days. My next point will elaborate a little more on these!

2. Use Your Triple Points Day and any Notes you Have

If you are a cardholder you automatically get 1 triple point day. I decided to save mine for the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale because I plan on making a large purchase. Getting notes is also easier when you use your triple point day.  For example, if you spend $350 on your triple points day, you automatically get a $20 note (coupon) because you’ll get 2100 points from that purchase and you get a note for every 2000 points you accumulate. Making sense? I suggest saving up your notes throughout the year and using them during the Anniversary Sale!

3. Don’t Worry About Returns

Something I love so much about Nordstrom is that they have free returns, WITH NO EXPIRATION DATE. That’s literally so unheard of, but super thankful that they do that! Nordstrom also has free shipping all the time, with no minimum amount. You can also return something you ordered online in store, which is a really nice perk because I hate the hassle of sending something back! Chances are though, you won’t be sending anything back. 😉

4. Shop Online

The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is online and in-store. However, shopping in store is really tough because not every Nordstrom is going to have all the items that are on sale. The brands each Nordstrom carries are unique to that store. Plus, it’s so chaotic during the sale in store (I’ve read that at least) that it’s much more enjoyable to shop online at home, in your pajamas, drinking. 🙂 Shopping at Nordstrom during the Anniversary Sale is kind of like going into Forever 21 on a Saturday, just don’t do it.

5. Set a Budget

Grrr, I hate it when the boyfriend rubs off on me! Nathan is a strict budgeter and it’s lame sometimes, but I understand now why he does it! He’s so good about staying on top of finances and plans ahead of time if he plans on making a large purchase. That way it hurts the bank account much less! Last year I had no plan going into the sale. I just went in head first and spent way more than I should have, and on things I didn’t really need or want. At the time I was in college too, so bouncing back from a massive shopping spree wasn’t easy. Aka: No Chipotle or Starbucks runs for a while.

6. Think of Your Most Worn Fall Items #thestaples

I am alllll about the staples. Luckily, so is the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. You’ll find everything from coats, to jeans, booties, jackets, and neutrals galore! Before you shop, write down your most worn Fall items. Maybe it’s a great pair of jeans or a jacket you were able to style several ways. Think of those staples so that you can look for similar items during the sale. You’ll get a great deal and you’ll feel good about it because you’ll wear it so much.

7. Think of the Items you NEED (like actually need)

I know we all think everything we want is a “need”, when in reality it’s not (so guilty). Growing up I remember my grandpa always preaching to me the difference between wants and needs. When I was younger I didn’t really get the significance, but now that I’m older, I think about that difference a lot more. You want the top, but what you really need is a new pair of jeans. Go through your Fall wardrobe and write down what’s getting old or what you’re missing. For me, I desperately need a new pair of jeans. I’m used to buying Old Navy ones, but I’m ready to upgrade to a nicer pair that will last a long time. Also on my list are a pair of booties, mine are all so cheap and falling apart, a jacket, a coat, and a new purse. Possibly a few other things here and there. 😉

8. Think of What You Missed Last Year

If you are a frequent shopper of the sale, think of what you missed out on last year! If it’s something you’re still heartbroken over, aka me and the Tory Burch Riding Boots, make sure you don’t miss out on them again this year. Nordstrom usually does a lot of similar items and repeats every year, so chances are they will have it again this year.

9. Buy Holiday Gifts

If you have money left in your Nordstrom budget, consider purchasing birthday gifts or even Christmas gifts early! Items like Diptyq candle sets can be great for splitting up and giving to multiple people. I’m thinking about buying a few different sets this year so I can split them up and start some Christmas gift baskets. Just your regular Martha Stewart over here!

10. Purchase Beauty Products

I didn’t take advantage of the beauty products on sale last year, but I definitely plan to this year! There will be MAC kip and eye kits, perfume sets, hair care, and more! These items also make great gifts, or if you are needing a little beauty reset. Hair dryers, flat irons, and skin tools are also going to be on sale, which is nice because these things never go on sale!

11. Get the Nordstrom App

You’ll definitely want to get to get the Nordstrom app during the sale! Shop on the go and be able to get updates on when items you want come back in stop. Nordstrom restocks items regularly so it’s a great thing to have just in case you have to fight a little bit to get something you really want!

Whew! Glad we made it through this super long post together, haha. Be on the lookout for more Nordstrom posts heading your way! I’ll be sharing guides with my favorite products, gift ideas,and a special tab on my homepage dedicated to the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale.

Make sure you subscribe to my posts so you don’t miss a thing!
Are you shopping the famous Nordstrom Anniversary Sale?

xo, Rach



  1. July 14, 2017 / 12:37 pm

    Super helpful! I am so excited to start shopping! Thanks girl!

    • The Sass Room
      July 18, 2017 / 6:59 pm

      Good luck, Tabitha! 🙂

      xo, Rachel

    • The Sass Room
      July 18, 2017 / 6:59 pm

      Thank you, Mandy! 🙂

    • The Sass Room
      July 18, 2017 / 7:00 pm

      Thanks so much, Kellie! Glad you found it helpful. 🙂 Happy shopping!

      xo, Rachel

  2. July 14, 2017 / 1:26 pm

    Love all of this. I was the same way, as I was new last year too, and was like, what’s this? And then I saw and this year I was ready to conquer! Hope you scored those boots! <3

    xoxo, Natalie

    • The Sass Room
      July 18, 2017 / 7:02 pm

      I did get the boots and am in love!! Aren’t you so glad we found this sale?!

      xo, Rachel

  3. July 14, 2017 / 2:06 pm

    Thank you for the tips! And I’m loving all of these picks!


    • The Sass Room
      July 18, 2017 / 7:02 pm

      Thanks, Linda! Happy shopping!

      xo, Rachel

    • The Sass Room
      July 18, 2017 / 7:02 pm

      Thanks, Laura! 🙂

      xo, Rachel

  4. July 14, 2017 / 4:43 pm

    This is super helpful! The sale is so good it’s almost overwhelming but I like your tips that help break it down! Thanks for this!

    • The Sass Room
      July 18, 2017 / 7:03 pm

      Thank you so much, Alison! It’s definitely better to go in with a plan or else it can be so overwhelming!

      xo, Rachel

  5. July 14, 2017 / 7:53 pm

    Love all the tips! This is my first year actually shopping the sale. Last year when the early access came out I didn’t have a card and I ended up buying other things from Nordstrom. I definitely should have set a budget before hand, there are so many great items!!!

    -Brandi K

    • The Sass Room
      July 18, 2017 / 7:04 pm

      Brandi, I did the same thing last year! Glad we were better prepared this year, lol.

      xo, Rachel

  6. July 15, 2017 / 6:07 pm

    Those are some great tips. One year I’ll try the sale, but I’m a few months pregnant and have no idea what will fit me in the fall which makes online shopping even harder. Maybe next year I can use your tips 🙂

    Xo Jannine | http://www.happystylishfit.com

    • The Sass Room
      July 18, 2017 / 7:05 pm

      Omg congrats, Jannine! That’s so exciting. I’m sure they have lots of comfortable picks in case you do decide to shop the sale!

      xo, Rachel

  7. July 16, 2017 / 10:43 am

    Your post is so well done! You answered all the questions a girl could have. I haven’t done the anniversary sale in a while, but I love seeing everyone’s cute pics! Also, Nordies is my fave, I’m glad you’ve joined in haha. Every summer when I was little, my mom would take me there to get new sandals, so she basically conditioned me to love it : )

    Meaghan xx

    • The Sass Room
      July 18, 2017 / 7:15 pm

      I need to know your secret on how you resist the Anniversary Sale, haha. That’s so sweet that your mom used to take you there every summer. She’s a good mom!

      xo, Rachel

    • The Sass Room
      July 18, 2017 / 7:15 pm

      Thanks so much, Courtney!

      xo, Rachel

  8. July 17, 2017 / 2:42 pm

    As much as I sometimes want to be upset about this sale being overhyped, it really is MAGICAL. I didn’t know about the un=expiring returns! I love your shoe picks too. Brb, spending allllll my money.

    xx Pia

    • The Sass Room
      July 18, 2017 / 7:16 pm

      Pia, I’m right there with you girl! The sale got the best of me this year that’s for sure.

      xo, Rachel

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