Shopping 101: Top Tips for How to Buy a Bag the Right Way from Senior Buyer, Megan Johnson

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Purses Whether it’s an impulse purchase or a well thought out “investment,” there are a number of factors to keep in mind when buying a new purse.  Here are some great tips from Megan Johnson, lead buyer of - the premier online site where you can bid and win VIP luxury experiences, designer goods, and hot electronics for an average of up to 98% off. Megan, former Senior Buyer at, is a veteran style and savings expert and has been featured in major international publications including Vogue, Teen Vogue, and Lucky.

Here's a list of important tips every girl should keep in mind when deciding what type of purse to purchase.

Durability - No matter how much you plan on spending on a bag, you’re going to want to make sure that the purse is worth what you’re paying. Inspect the material, the seams and the zippers. If there are any signs of wear, tear or weakness in the bag it probably won’t be a bag that will give you much mileage.

Size - Think about the essentials you always keep in your bag and make sure that your purse has enough room to accommodate them. If your purse doesn’t fit the bare essentials it defeats the purpose of carrying around a bag. Depending on whether you’re going to use the bag at work or when going out on the town can help you determine what size makes the most sense for you.

Color - When you buy a purse it’s important to find one that will match well with your wardrobe. If you buy a bag that doesn’t mesh well with your style you’ll find yourself spending more cash on a new wardrobe to match it, or worse yet, hardly using it. Also consider your own clumsiness factor; be sure to veto a light colored bag if you have the tendency to spill.

Functionality - Before buying a purse be sure to take into consideration how secure your belongings will be held inside. If you’re a city gal, or just generally around hoards of people, a zipper or button top is a wise decision to avoid spillage or stolen goods.

Portability - A purse is meant to be carried around and it’s important you consider how you’re most comfortable carrying your purse. Do you prefer carrying your bag on your shoulder or on the crook of your arm? Consider the length of the handles and how they coincide with how you like carrying your bag.

Quality - Although you can get some great deals without breaking the bank, be sure that the quality of the bag is still there. It might be worth spending an extra few dollars to ensure the longevity of your purchase. If you want a bit of a cheat sheet to help you make that decision, one approach is figuring out the “cost per wear” which can be determined by dividing the price of an item by the number of times you think you’ll use it.

Not surprisingly, sometimes the cost per wear for a more expensive purse will be less than an inexpensive purse due to the quality and its durability. Explore your options which might allow you to purchase a higher-quality bag than your budget would usually allow. Check upscale consignment stores, flea markets (beware of fakes!) or websites like which allow bidders to score designer bags for 80-90% off retail value.

Style - If you’re looking for a purse that you’ll be able to use for many seasons, try to avoid any overly-trendy purses that you’ll be content wearing for a few months, but will likely end up in next year’s potential Halloween costume pile. Trendy purses often have more embellishments (fringes, buttons, large hardware) over a more classic, clean style.

Do you have any great examples of how you spend money in order to save it?

I'm a former 7th grade Science teacher turned stay-at-home mom that lives in Houston, Texas. I am married to my college sweetheart and have a beautiful daughter named Riley, who definitely keeps me on my toes! I am also involved in starting a small business which would both manufacture and sell an invention that I've patented, called Toothpaste 2 Go. I love interacting with my readers and hope to learn as much about you as you learn about me!

Melissa @ Mommy Living the Life of Riley!
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