Buying online is so easy. You can browse options, play with sizes, discover designers that you have never heard of before – there’s so much choice, the biggest decision is not what to buy, but which not to buy right now.
Most of us are well-accustomed to buying online, especially when it comes to clothes. Those with the most experience will even know to always order a couple of sizes, so you can try both to ensure you have the best fit. There is one area of fashion that tends to fall down on this though: jewelry.
For the most part, jewelry is one size. There is some fightback against this, with ‘plus size’ ranges being launched – but for the most part, it fits you, or you’re stuck. This can mean that you spend a lot of money on an item, receive it, and it doesn’t work out for you — potentially saddling you with the return costs.
So is it worth it? As we move from the summer trends into shopping for fall/winter, should you take the risk and buy jewelry online?
Yes… But Also, No
So, that’s cleared that one up then!
Okay, time to be more specific. The truth is that if you’re buying very cheap, costume pieces that you’re only going to wear a couple of times, then it’s probably safe to buy them online. If they don’t fit perfectly, well, that’s fine; you’re wearing them to keep abreast of the trends, not as investment pieces for your future. Just be very aware of the fact that the picture on the website is unlikely to be a true reflection of what the item actually looks like. That’s always true online, of course, but all the more with cheap jewelry — which has usually been artificially enhanced in PhotoShop to make it brighter, clearer, and sharper than it might otherwise be.
So you can buy jewelry online, but there’s a point where it ceases to be a great idea. If you’re trying to buy something truly spectacular, something with a high price point, or something you want to use again and again… then offline is always going to win. The fact it offers you the chance to touch, feel, and try on yourself is an undeniable benefit.
The Necessity and Practicality Of Offline Viewing
Jewelry, despite its billing, is not ‘one size fits all’. Additionally, it’s definitely not ‘this will suit everyone’. What looks good on a webpage might, on your skin tone, look absolutely terrible. If you’re going to be investing in a piece of jewelry you want to use more than a few times, then you need to see it in person before you hand over your credit card.
There’s plenty of ways to do this, so don’t worry too much on that score. Many online retailers will also take part in offline demonstrations and stalls, such as the Costco roadshow. This gives you a chance to see pieces from retailers who don’t have full-time physical stores. If you have one near you, then it’s well worth going along and ensuring you’re happy before you pay.
If You Do Buy Online…
If you do make the decision to buy online, then always check the returns policy before you click ‘order’. This is especially true for earrings, which can have hygiene clauses that mean they can’t be returned under any circumstances. So take your time, visit a roadshow if possible, and always buy with your eyes wide open.