Thursday 11 January 2018

How to Shop in Primark: Bagging a Bargain and Surviving!

My friends know me as the "Queen of Primark", with over 90% of my wardrobe consisting of bargains I've found in the nation's favourite budget store, I've got myself a bit of a reputation for knowing how to bag the best Primark bargains and survive hours in store without even breaking a sweat.

So if your 2018 resolution is to save more money then allow me to introduce you to the weird and wonderful world of bagging a bargain in Primark, and surviving!

Shop in Primark: Bagging a Bargain and Surviving!

No matter how many times I tell myself it might be time to grow up and fill my closet with better quality fashion I just can't help but stroll into Primark and before I know it I'm staggering out with massive paper bags.

So I thought it was about time I shared a few tips and tricks for getting the most out of your Primark visits - how to shop the store successfully, where to find the bargains and how to survive what some consider to be a rather chaotic shopping experience.

 Primark: Bagging a Bargain and Surviving!


Primark is very trend lead and their more popular items sell out fast. Recent crazes have included dupes for the Jo Malone fragrances (you'll be lucky if you find a stand in Primark that hasn't been cleared!) and Beauty and the Beast Chip teacups.  If you are interested in getting your hands on the latest "must have" from Primark it pays to follow the right accounts on Instagram so you can be there first.

Bargain Dupes

Even if you're not fussed by the latest craze it's good to have a look through Instagram pre Primark and save your favourite looks in your phone.  Primark have very fast turnaround of fantastic dupes and you can put together a designer outfit that you love for a tiny price. If you love fast fashion and current trends Primark is a great place to head.

 Primark: Bagging a Bargain and Surviving - Coat

Dress for Success

Shopping in Primark is definitely best enjoyed in comfortable clothes. If you can leave any bulky warm coats at home and dress in a nice cool outfit it's a good idea! If you're planning on trying lots on make sure your outfit is easy to get out of - shoes with laces and shirts with buttons aren't the best idea.  Also, it's kinda a good idea to leave your friends/husband/girlfriend at home - solo trips to Primark tend to be the most productive!

Arrive Early

I hate dragging myself out of bed on a Saturday morning as much as the next person but when it comes to planning a Primark visit it pays to get into store as soon as it opens and for many Primark stores that means before 9:00 am! Our store in Newcastle opens at 8:00 am and I do my best to get there for doors open. Dragging yourself up and out early guarantees a lovely quiet store and you can get at least 2 hours of shopping time before the crowds descend.

 Primark: Bagging a Bargain

Know your store

It pays to know the layout of your local Primark store as it can seriously reduce the amount of aimless wandering that you'll do during your trip. I know where to find all of my favourite things in the Newcastle store and so always follow the same route round the store, tackling each of my favourite sections one at a time.

Pick a Store

Unfortunately some Primark stores are badly laid out or very small with limited stock and these types of stores tend to result in unsuccessful shopping trips. I've visited Primark stores all over the country and my favourites are definitely Newcastle, Manchester and Bristol for the best bargains.

 Primark: Bagging a Bargain - Shorts

Try Before You Buy

It's always best to try before you buy in Primark as sizes can really vary. Most Primark stores allow a maximum of 8 items in the changing room and I always take advantage and go in fully loaded. It pays to try things on in a few sizes and I usually take in a variety as I can be anything from a size 8 to a size 14. Sizing in Primark really is just a meaningless label so is best ignored.

Go Wild!

Shopping in Primark offers you the  perfect way to try styles and trends that you may not have tried before. The cheap price tags tend to make me go crazy and I've been known to try all sorts. The dungarees you thought would never suit you, bright bold colours and killer heels - if you want to experiment with fashion Primark is a great place to do it.

 Primark: Bagging a Bargain - Flamingo Jacket

Check Quality

The quality of the clothes in Primark has improved so much and if you look after your purchases they will stand the test of time, I have many Primark dresses that I've had for years and still look as good as new. It is worth remembering though that Primark is a budget store so check the quality of your picks before you head to the till.  I'm always sure to check over my jumpers for any holes, ensure all zips work without sticking and check that nothing feels to cheap or static.

The Price is Right

With plenty of bargains to find it can be too easy to take piles of clothes to the counter without looking at the price tags. I've definitely been shocked at my total a few times! It's worth noting that whilst most items are very cheap the price of some clothes in Primark has definitely gone up in recent times. Items like coats, jackets and shoes can have a slightly higher price tag so check before you buy!

 Primark: Bagging a Bargain - Sandals

Does anyone else love a good Primark shop?  I'd love to hear if you have any tips and tricks of your own.

For plenty of Primark outfit inspiration be sure to follow New Girl in Toon on Instagram.


  1. Chloe, you really are the queen of Primark and I love this post!
    I love a good Primark shop and agree fully with everything you've mentioned.
    I recently started popping into the Leeds store when I've been visiting and it's three floors and always crazy! Where as I normally visit the York one, on two levels and on a week day after school drop off, so much less stressful!
    I definitely love your tip about keeping an eye on Insta and saving looks. I'll be doing this for my next visit!


    1. Oooh I'm not sure if i've ever been to the York store!

  2. Did you know I used to work in Primark? I was the Saturday and Sunday cash office girl responsible for counting all of the money, balancing the tills and banking it all! I was like Scrooge McDuck! haha!

    I must say Primark isn't my favourite store for bargains as I find George at Asda or Tu at Sainsburys more convenient for me and the same price but I do like Primark for one of those shopping sprees every season where you just chuck everything in your basket and don't care about the price! haha

    1. I did not know this! How did I not know this? Love that fact! I think the thing I love most about Primark is how there's a huge load of cheap stuff in one massive store!

  3. Some really good tips here! I always see exciting Primark finds on YouTube haul type videos, on blogs or on Instagram, but whenever I go I never find anything a) decent or b) anything in my size. You have some amazing luck though! You have a really good store near you! x

    1. I definitely think that having a good store helps, I really didn't like Primark when I lived in Norwich because the store was so tiny with hardly any good stock!

  4. Yesss I loved this and wholeheartedly agree with your tips! The value of getting there early seriously cant be underestimated can it - I like 8am on a weekday, since I work really close to the Norwich Primark and can get an hour in there before work when it's tidy and relatively empty. You're right though, the price has definitely gone up in recent years, especially on coats and jackets. Can't believe I bought a £35 coat from there this winter...I love it, but THIRTY FIVE POUNDS in PRIMARK. Luckily it shows no signs of getting worn out quickly! xxx

    Sophie | Sophar So Good

    1. Wow £35 really is loads, I think my record so far has been £25!

  5. I totally agree that Primark is getting more expensive and the quality is going down, in fact I wrote about that very thing a while ago. I find it hit and miss, sometimes it has some amazing ranges and sometimes if just seems full or tat. That said it it my go to place for bikinis and ballet pumps as they always seem to be en pointe!

    1. It is THE best place for holiday shopping for sure ... just this evening I almost convinced myself to buy a straw hat with a lemon on it!

  6. I always find Primark a bit hit and miss on style and quality but I always get my holiday basics from there, it's great for vests, beachwear and accessories. I never try things on in the store though, can never be arsed. The handy thing about taking stuff back is that the queue at customer services is usually quiet short and you can buy any new purchases at the same time. Oh, I love Primark for wrapping paper too!

    1. I think I've got a good knack now of finding the good quality stuff, I can usually spot it a mile off!

  7. I love a good Primark shop!! I also love that you're there at 8am as the doors open :-) If that isn't dedication, I don't know what is. Haha! Awesome post, you've made me want to head down to my nearest store!
    Claire |

  8. Great post I have a love hate relationship with Primark, it’s hell to shop in, the quality isn’t that great but they have great on trend clothing. Fast fashion Lucy x

    1. I find it so bizarre because I used to really really hate it but I think it's because my local store was tiny and always felt like a jumble sale!


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