Why I Don’t Do Black Friday (+ My Top Picks For The Holidays)

The last time I participated in Black Friday, the Nintendo GameCube was a thing (and you can still snag one here if you so desire). Yes, I’m old, but that’s not why I’m over the nonsense. Do you know why it’s called “Black Friday” and not just Post-Thanksgiving Shopping Day?

black friday

Think about this: there are several explanations for the origin of the term “Black Friday”, but the one that really stands out for me personally is that it indicates the period during which retailers begin to turn a profit for their fiscal year, or go “in the black.”  For anybody with basic accounting training, this means that a debit on their books, becomes a credit somewhere else… where?  that would be on YOUR books, “in the red.” source

How many of us actually venture out right after a HUGE Thanksgiving meal with a shopping list of items that we actually want to purchase as gifts? I mean, who really needs $1 socks and a third set of pans because they were 75% off? I mean…that is just nuts, y’all.

Inflated Savings

And for those of you who argue that you can get brand new appliances for 51% off…please, read the fine print. In 2015  Sears plastered a Kenmore Elite washer and dryer on the front page of its Black Friday ad, with the promise of 51% off on the pair. But the fine print below the deal revealed that there were approximately only four available per store. What are the odds that you’ll be one of the lucky 4?

Last year, a NerdWallet study found that major department stores inflated the amount of some of their Black Friday discounts to make deals appear better than they actually were. The Keurig K45 Elite Single-Serve Coffee or Tea Brewing System was on sale for $89.99 at Macy’s and Kohl’s during Black Friday 2015 and for $89.98 at Stage. But each of these retailers advertised a different regular retail price: $174.99 for Macy’s, $149.99 for Kohl’s and $119.98 for Stage. If you shopped at Macy’s, it looked like you were saving $85, but at Kohl’s, it appeared you were saving only $60 — despite the fact that the product was on sale for the identical price.

Plus, there’s no price matching. At Target, “Price matching and adjustments will not be allowed for prices from Thanksgiving Day through the end of the following week, whether offered by Target or a competitor. Exclusion dates are November 24 through December 3.”

Why Are We Fighting?

I personally saw people come to fisticuffs over that GameCube (which was $75.00 at the time, a discount of $25.00 off the regular price-yes, I’m old.), and if you do a quick search of The Google for “Black Friday fights”, you’ll find literally find hundreds of videos and new stories.

It’s Not The Only Sale

There’s a common misconception about Black Friday…that it’s the only place to find deals. Y’all. That is simply not true. What about Small Business Saturday? And yes, there’s also Cyber Monday, though it’s nearly as crazy as Black Friday.

And, if you’re an Amazon Prime person (like me), you get great deals literally all year long if you pay attention. I’ve found that if I plan ahead, I actually end up spending less on gifts…and usually I’m done shopping by November 1st.

This year, I’m not going to make that deadline, but I’ll be close. And nothing on my list required me to go out after a huge Thanksgiving meal or brave the Black Friday crowds.

My Top Holiday Picks

…Mom? Please stop reading now. Thanks.

  • The Young Living Premium Starter Kit is a great gift for your more eco-conscious friends, and will not only make you an instant favorite, but you’ll likely have the coolest present under the tree.
  • Diffuser necklaces are all the rage right now, and if you aren’t up for a kit, why not get them some Joy essential oil and a cute diffuser necklace.
  • Beautycounter gift cards and color palettes make great stocking stuffers, and if you’re super close to the recipient, their holiday travel set is awesome (it includes shampoo, conditioner, body wash, moisturizer and their kick-butt charcoal cleansing bar all in a super cute bag…for less than $50).
  • If you know a new mom, the Beautycounter kids set is a great gift, and you know that with the “never” list you don’t have to worry about carcinogens or other nasties in the goodies you use on your babes (or your friend’s baby).
  • An Amazon Prime membership is an awesome gift and includes so much more than free shipping! You get access to movies, music, books…it’s a killer deal and whomever you gift it to is going to love you tons.
  • If you have a cook that you’re shopping for, consider getting them a ThriveLife starter kit, which includes super high quality foods that they can store in their pantry. Heck, if you’ve got a prepper friend, then you need to get them this, too.
  • I’m a huge fan of food in a jar-and quite a few of my friends will be getting some delicious chicken and broccoli alfredo in a jar or street tacos in a jar. All they have to add it water (and it’s super easy to make using ThriveLife foods).
  • Speaking of cooks, everyone needs an Instant Pot in their life. Trust me on this.

I have friends and family who consider Black Friday a tradition. They enjoy getting up at an insane hour and shopping with huge crowds of people…me? Not so much. I would rather do a $10.00 Christmas than be part of the crazy.

So this year, I’m going to be giving healthy makeup, oils, and pantry staples.

What’s on your gift list?

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