Style

Anniversary Sale: My Best Picks for Early Access

Today is a big day: The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale.  Access to this year’s sale is staggered — cardholders with the highest access level are being let in today, all cardholders have access on August 13th, public access begins on August 19th.

This isn’t my favorite thing Nordstrom has ever done.  I understand they’re trying to encourage customers to buy and use the store credit and debit cards, but with interest in the #NSale waning over the past few years, I’m not sure it’s a smart move.  Regardless, I wanted to make sure that my best picks were available for the first day of access.

I’ve broken up this post into five sections: 1) Six Things In My Cart, 2) My Best Work Picks, 3) Best Picks Under-$50, 4) Best Beauty Picks and 5) Best Plus-size Picks.

I’ll post an update on the 13th and again on the 19th, so I can show picks based on what is still available.  But until then: Let’s do this thing.

Six Things In My Cart

 True & Co. Triangle Convertible Bra // Honeydew Intimates Pajamas // Spanx The Perfect Black Pant // Halogen City Trench Coat // Topshop Cable Sleeve Cardigan // Lafayette 148 Delancey Dress (pricey, but worth it)

My Best Work Picks

L’Agence Chamberlain Blazer // Vince Camuto Polka Dot Blouse // Boss Jesulea Business Suit Jacket, Pants, Skirt, Dress // Boss Faly Short Sleeve Sweater // Halogen Fringe Jacket

Best Picks Under-$50

Parcell Balloon Sleeve Lace Blouse // Topshop Faux Leather Biker Jacket // Quay Sweet Dreams Sunglasses // Wit & Wisdom Absolution Skinny Jeans // Wit & Wisdom Itty Bitty Bootcut Jeans

*I don’t know what planet I was on when I posted the AllSaints Kita backpack in the under-$50 section, but I obviously wasn’t thinking clearly.  I blame COVID.  If you’re looking for a cool leather backpack for under-$60, this one caught my eye.

Best Beauty Picks

Olaplex Jumbo Bond Maintenance // Neulash NeuBrow Eyebrow Serum // Kiehl’s Creme de Corps Lotion // Murdock Black Tea Body Wash // NuFace Fix Mini Toning Device Kit // WellBe Set of 7 Washable Cosmetic Cloths // MAC Haute Gossip Lipstick Kit

Best Plus-Size Picks

Treasure & Bond Striped Linen Top // Madewell Texture & Thread Sweater // Bernardo Hooded Puffer // Lafayette 148 New York Floral Blouse // Lafayette 148 Wynona Finesse Crepe Dress

{this post contains affiliate links that may generate commission for the author}

Leave a Reply to CeeCee · cancel comment

    24 comments

  1. J B says:

    Any chance you’d do a best “comfortable home” category? I’m sure I’m not the only one who is home for the rest of 2020 and wouldn’t mind recommendations down a more put-together-athleisure fall wardrobe path.

    I mean, I love your blog and realize you get 10,000 requests

    August 4, 2020/Reply
    • Belle says:

      I could run a category like that in the update. Sure.

      August 4, 2020/Reply
  2. Jess says:

    I’m interested in why you think the sale is waning. It seems that this is all people talk about whenever the next sale roles around. Personally, I didn’t see that much to excite me this year, but I don’t know if that means that interest is overall waning.

    August 4, 2020/Reply
    • ClAre says:

      Speaking as someone who used to loooooove the anniversary sale and practically bought most of my wardrobe there each year once upon a time,, the last several years have been a complete disappointment. The inventory is stale. A lot of the clothing is getting completely overtaken by athleisure (and the same styles over and over again of that) and the regular casual and work items have been trending toward ugly/unflattering. The shoes have seemed to be more or less the same overplayed styles for the last few seasons as well. There are only so many leggings, barefoot dreams sweaters, oversized boyfriend cardis, poorly made prairie dresses, pleather moto jackets, or low heeled booties I can own, thanks. It’s like time has stopped for the past five plus years. What happened to beautiful coats, well made tailored work items, or colorful shoes and handbags? (Yep, handbag section is a complete bore this year too.) The cherry on top this year as abra points out is the new tiered card member early access instead of blanket early access for card holders. What? How does alienating most of your card holders who can’t shop early for the few items they might still be interested in make any sense when overall sakes have declined. 2020 was a bad year to roll this plan out.

      August 4, 2020/Reply
      • Jess says:

        I 100% agree with the athleisure comment. Nothing drives me crazier than athleisure as people’s main clothing.

        August 4, 2020/Reply
        • Belle says:

          It’s just that they always want to act like everyone is wearing Athleisure all the time. And outside of COVID, I’m definitely not in that boat and most people with careers aren’t either.

          August 4, 2020/Reply
          • J B says:

            I keep hoping that COVID refreshes the athleisure trend. Like, I don’t need to go into an office now, so I want to be comfortable… but I also don’t want to be a slob.
            I’d love to see some ‘new’ things that don’t feel unnecessarily stuffy but also don’t feel like the same legging/tunic looks we’ve seen for years.

            August 5, 2020/Reply
    • Belle says:

      The workwear has gotten stale. The shoes aren’t what they used to be. And I used to look forward to the outerwear and the beauty exclusives, but they’re not as exciting as they used to be. The Nordy Sale used to get a lot of pieces made just for that sale, and that seems to be going away. I just feel like every year I’m looking at oversized, cheap-looking sweaters, a few trend pieces that aren’t well-made and really expensive coats.

      August 4, 2020/Reply
    • Katie says:

      I have an example. Maybe six or seven years ago, I noticed the sale would Always have a 100% merino wool cardigan by Halogen. I bought one every year in a new color. I still have a few because they held up so well. Then, maybe three years ago, it turned into a merino/polyester blend. Not as good. I bought one but it wore out fast so I didn’t buy another. This year, they’re not even selling the cardigan at all, only the long boyfriend style.

      August 4, 2020/Reply
      • Anne says:

        Those Halogen merino cardigans were amazing. I bought 5 colors in the sale in ’08 or ’09 and wore them almost a decade. In subsequent years, the ones on offer definitely had diminished quality and I never made another bulk purchase like that.

        August 5, 2020/Reply
  3. Cait says:

    I also don’t feel like I’ve seen quite as much Anniversary Sale hype this year. Maybe I got inured to sales since it seems like every bankrupt retailer is pushing discounts lately? But even the bloggers who in the past have treated the anniversary sale like a month long Black Friday are quieter this year.

    August 4, 2020/Reply
  4. Eleni says:

    I wish that AllSaints backpack was under $50!!

    August 4, 2020/Reply
    • KS says:

      I was just coming on to say this! It’s beautiful but 4x the price

      August 4, 2020/Reply
    • Belle says:

      You couldn’t make that bag at that price. It’s really an incredibly piece. You might be able to find a dupe for under-$100, but I’ve never seen one.

      August 4, 2020/Reply
      • Eleni says:

        You have it listed under your Best picks under $50!

        August 4, 2020/Reply
        • Belle says:

          OH LORD. I’m an idiot. I’ll fix it.

          August 4, 2020/Reply
  5. Jessica says:

    Has anyone used the Murdock Black Tea body wash? I looked for a smaller size to try, and while I did find one, it seems to be presented specifically for men. Does anyone have any experience with the strength / masculinity of the scent?

    August 4, 2020/Reply
    • Belle says:

      It’s an earthy scent. I don’t find it to be masculine though.

      August 4, 2020/Reply
  6. CeeCee says:

    I used to LOVE this sale. But, the last couple years us “regular” cardholders have to wait so long for access all of the best items are sold out…very disappointing!!

    August 4, 2020/Reply
    • Belle says:

      I really don’t know what Nordy’s is thinking here. I know they want people to have and use the card, but it’s just ruining the sale and creating bad feelings.

      August 4, 2020/Reply
  7. SC says:

    I remember as a pre-teen going with my mom and sister on a 6-hour round trip (with about 35 other women) on a bus to shop the sale at the closest store. It was a thing every year and we went MAD with Mom’s Nordstrom card to get school clothes and new shoes. This was over 25 years ago and I sadly haven’t bought much from the sale in past years. Happy memories of those shopping trips with Mom though!

    August 4, 2020/Reply
    • Merrell says:

      I have the same memories with my mom! Waiting outside for the doors to open at 7am on the first day of the sale, along with 50 other women at each entrance! Definitely a time before online shopping. I also agree that the sale has gone downhill in the past few years. I’ve even bought a few items, then noticed them for a better price on “sale” about 5 weeks after the anniversary sale was over. I was so bummed and confused as the Nordstrom I grew up with never did that!

      August 6, 2020/Reply
  8. Sara says:

    I mostly agree with most of the comments here. I will add that this year’s inventory (as of when I was peeking through the lookbook, not sure if I’ll be able to say the same when I ~finally~ get access as an Insider) is much better than the past couple years, particularly since I AM wearing more athleisure than I was this time last year.
    I do recall distinctly from 2018 and 2019 that the quality of their Anniversary items of in-house brands has been DEPLORABLE – I ordered a pair of flats and they fell apart after a few wears. Despite Nordstrom’s generous return policy, that shouldn’t be the case.

    August 4, 2020/Reply
  9. Kate says:

    Agree about the quality and diversity of the sale.

    August 5, 2020/Reply