6 Items You Should Never Buy Online

It goes without saying that drunk online shopping can get you in all kinds of trouble ranging from the ha-ha kind to the way serious variety. But it’s not just when you buy, but what you purchase. While e-commerce has made all of our lives a hell of a lot easier–anyone miss the mall? didn’t think so–it can be a territory fraught with danger. And man, having to pack something up and return it by mail is a total drag. Ladies, don’t make the same mistakes that I did. After the jump, six ways things can go very wrong.

  1. Jeans: When designer denim is deeply discounted online, your first instinct may be to order away. What a good deal, right? Not so fast! Consider the last time you went into an actual store to buy new jeans. Did you just waltz in, grab a pair, and go on your merry way? If so, then you are surely blessed, because the majority of us spend many agonizing, precious hours trying on pair after pair until we find the mystical combination that fits lengthwise, width-wise and makes our asses look good. If you think you can bypass this painful process by clicking a button online, you may find yourself trying to shimmy into a pair of jeans that won’t go on past your knees, which is so sad and needlessly humiliating.
  2. Shoes: I suppose, like jeans, if you see a pair of cute shoes in a brand you’re familiar with and you know their size 7 always fits you, then go for it. But shoes are tricky. One size 7 is another brand’s 7 1/2, and while the difference may seem minute, anyone who’s endured the torture that is a slightly too big (blisters) or small (pinching) fit knows a subtle half an inch can be crucial. It’s fun to get a shiny box of gorgeous heels in the mail; not so great when they sit in your closet because wearing them feels like walking on nails.
  3. Mega-Clearance Items: When I see an item discounted at oh, say, 50 or 75 percent off, the rational side of my brain turns off and I revert to my teenage self. Why, I made enough to buy that in one babysitting job! Don’t fall for it. Look closely at that crazy cheap item. Why is it so inexpensive anyway? Is it, say, a screaming yellow jumpsuit? A floral babydoll dress? Often, the biggest discounts on the site are items the buyer of the store took a chance on and no one wanted because it was way too weird, and now they have too many of them so they’re basically giving them away. This is how I ended up with a pair of too-small skinny designer jeans in a fetching shade of kelly green, breaking two of my own rules in one fell swoop.
  4. Makeup On eBay: Now, I really shouldn’t even have to cover this one, and I haven’t even gone there myself, but there are so many used cosmetics for sale on the site that I felt I should address it in this post. If it’s unsealed, well, you know that person has tried it and didn’t like it or whatever and their cooties are all up in it. Gross. If it’s unsealed, where did they get it that they couldn’t return it? Sketchy.
  5. Tricky Trends: Interested in kooky current crazes like harem pants? Humongous cocoon wraps? You should really try these types of items on in real time to get a more accurate sense of just how unflattering they will inevitably look. There is a whole section of my closet reserved for these unfortunate purchases and it is called Clothes Hell.
  6. Designer Knockoffs: The internet is rife with them. And while you may be stoked that you’re getting a pair of faux Christian Louboutins for $200 or a non-Louis Vuitton Louis Vuitton bag that could totally pass for the real thing, congratulations! You’re also contributing to child labor, drug trafficking, and possibly murder. Yay!