Trendy for cheap: How to shop online without breaking the bank


In this Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2018, photo, Heather Camacuari, of Charlotte, shops for clothing at a Kohl’s store in Concord, N.C. Many kinds of chains have posted strong sales, both online and at stores. A booming economy, which has shoppers spending more freely, and companies’ own efforts in trying to Amazon-proof their business is driving people’s mood to spend. (AP Photo/Chuck Burton)

Trying to look fashionable on a college student’s budget can be a challenge to even the savviest of shoppers. Between saving money for grad school, financing trips that you want to take or even just paying to have car problems fixed, it may seem like purchasing one new item of clothing will blow your budget. Luckily, with the rise of online shopping, you can find stylish pieces for bargain prices while saving yourself a trip to the mall. Try these five online stores for some new clothes at low prices.

Forever 21

As many college students are aware, Forever 21 is an affordable, trendy retailer with brick-and-mortar stores as well as an easily accessible website. The company offers a very wide selection of items at cheap prices.

Dresses, jumpsuits, and rompers fall into the $25-$40 range, but many of these items are sold at the lower end of that range. Graphic tees are in the $10-$20 range, and some are priced even lower than that. Additionally, jeans from Forever 21 are priced at around $30, which is somewhat lower than average for denim.


This relatively new online store sells cheap yet cute styles that will pair perfectly with pieces that you already own. SheIn features bright prints and fun styles in their designs while keeping their looks modern and bold. Their clothing is similar to Forever 21’s but perhaps a little more unique and fun.

Many of their tops are under $25, but most are under $15. SheIn’s denim is priced relatively similarly to Forever 21’s. Denim shorts and skirts start at $8, and jeans can be found as low as $10 on sale, though jeans in all different styles are affordably priced around $17-$23.

If students register themselves online at Student Beans, an online service that helps companies offer discounts to college students, they can receive a 20 percent discount on their orders.


Fun and playful, Zaful’s clothes give off a casual-yet-cute vibe. Of course, this online store also has tons of other clothes to look through and is affordable on the average college student’s budget.

Since it’s the end of the summer season right now, you can score some flirty rompers as low as $8.30, pretty summer dresses as low as $7.99 and crop tops, T-shirts and tank tops as low as $5.99. Looking towards fall and winter, Zaful has fluffy, furry coats as low as $19.99 when on sale, zip-front jackets around $22 on sale and oversized sweaters and sweatshirts as low as $14.99.

While Zaful has great deals during changing seasons, it actually offers a 14 percent student discount all year round if students register with Student Beans.


This retailer features modern, sleek pieces that work well together or with items already in your wardrobe. Styles here are usually toned-down, so ASOS can be a good place to get something simple.

ASOS does sell many basics like camisoles, bandeau tops, and plain white T-shirts for under $10, but many of their more stylish, colorful, and brand-name tops can be closer to or above $30. The same is true of many of their dresses. Sleek, very minimalist dresses are cheaper than some of the brighter, cuter designs. Jeans do start, however, at $21, and ASOS does offer leggings on the cheaper side.

Additionally, after filling out a form on ASOS’s website, college students can get 10 percent off their ASOS purchases until they graduate.


Try Lulu’s if you’re looking to be comfy but still look polished. This website has many sophisticated and cute tops, as well as a variety of sleek, structured pants and casual, flattering denim. Their dress selection is also huge, and you can search for shift, skater, maxi and formal dresses among the other thirteen dress categories.

Lulu’s clothing does tend to run a little pricier, as they carry more expensive brands like Free People, Billabong and Levi’s. However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t find a good deal by visiting their “On Sale” section.

Stephanie Santillo is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached via email at   

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