Shopper claims she 'saves' £1,200 a year by returning clothes AFTER wearing them

YOU may not have done it but we bet you know someone who has.

Shoppers who spend hundreds of pounds on clothing only to return the items once worn – and pocket the cash.

Stacey Bridge, 24, from Staffordshire claims to ''save'' £1,200 a year by doing just that.

The PR assistant for cashback website TopCashback says she has enjoyed loads of nights out in soon-to-be-refunded threads, or “borrowed outfits” as she likes to refer to it.

She told The Sun: ''I call it borrowing. When I discovered you can have a night out without having to wear the same dress twice – or paying – I was sold.

''You have to keep the tags on though. It depends on the kind of tag it is, sometimes you can reattach them but yeah I do keep the tag on a lot of the time,'' she explained.

Satcey, who spends £200 a month on clothes and returns HALF, claims not to have favourite shops. She said: ''I do tend do use New Look a lot but I don't have any specific shops, I just pick up a dress I really like and go with that.”

“I would never spend more than I could afford. The way I see it is, worst comes to worst, I keep it and I've bought the dress.”

But there are catches to watch out for.

Stacey added: “I always check their refund policy first as some places only do a credit note, so I tend to use larger chains.''

And the 24-year-old says she does worry about getting the clothes dirty.

She said: ''Sometimes it can put you a little on edge but I try not to get too worried about it.

''I tend to never really buy white because it's just too much stress to keep that pristine.''

While most of us wouldn't consider this a way to save money, Stacey has been doing it since she graduated from The University of West London in 2016.

And she's not alone.

A whopping 40 per cent of all online clothing purchases are eventually returned, according to research by Barclaycard.

It also found that 30 per cent of us deliberately buy with returning the clothes in mind.

Despite the general high return rate, Stacey – who goes out in the ''borrowed'' dresses twice a month – confessed that she still constantly gets told she's wrong for her ways.

''So many people tell me I'm wrong and ask me to stop or keep the clothes I buy – who knows? I may do one day.''

''But why would I keep a dress I'm only going to wear once anyway? Now I've got more money I'm able to do it less but I have not stopped completely.''


HERE are your rights to help get your money back if a company is refusing to give you a refund…

What are you entitled to? You're entitled to a refund to an item if its faulty or not described but NOT if you change your mind, according to the law.

But wait, what about return policies? Most shops offer return policies if you do change your mind, although they don't have to give your money back.

Check the date. Most shops offer between 25 to 30 days to return items but these vary massively, so double check.



Editor in chief Hannah Maundrell said the process of returning is actually getting more difficult now shops have cottoned on to the practice.

She told The Sun: "High street retailers could be doing more to prevent this behaviour by placing large labels on the front of clothing, forcing shoppers to remove them before wearing.

She added: ''As tempting as it is for fancy occasions like a wedding, although the practice isn’t technically illegal, stores have a right to refuse a refund if they suspect you’ve worn the item."

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''Morally it's wrong and if everyone did it clothes shops wouldn’t be able to make a profit and therefore you’re potentially putting people’s jobs at risk,'' she concluded.

Some of the UK's most frugal mothers use similar tricks to save money, including returning clothes to get free hangers.

But who bags the best policy for online returns? We look into why it's now easier than ever to send back unwanted items but just how long do you have to wait for your money?

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