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Warning: Finding a discount on this site is so easy, it may lead to addiction. You can find discounts from about 20,000 retailers on this site. But don't be overwhelmed -- we promise it's easy to navigate. You can search by retailer (we went with Coldwater Creek and Estee Lauder) or you can search by category -- "fashion," "beauty," "clothing," and so on. The coupon listings are well updated, so you don't waste time searching through expired offers, and user ratings show the real-time success rates for savings with specific coupons.
Bonus feature: Use Firefox to browse the Web? You can download an add-on that will automatically notify you when coupon codes are available for the site that you're looking at.
To find the best prices on your favorite designers, check out their sister site, BeatMyPrice.com.
This is the most thorough directory of coupon code listings we found. You can search by brand (Gap, Wal-Mart, Seven for all Mankind) or for specific new deals, printable coupons, and expiring deals in all categories. If you know exactly what you want, we recommend searching for coupons by category. In "Health & Beauty," for example, you'll find discount codes for Prescriptives, Bloomingdale's, and Kiehl's products. In "Apparel," you'll find codes for stores like Banana Republic and Lord & Taylor. But be careful: you might get lost amidst so many categories (everything from apparel to video games). It's good if you're shopping for a gift, bad if you have limited time.
Bonus feature: Their Consumer Resources page links to information on Internet scams, recalls, and help tracking online orders.
Zen is the first thing that comes to mind when on this site. It's broken down into three parts: Featured Stores, New Coupons, and Popular Coupons. Victoria's Secret, Clarins, and Macy's are just some of the retailers you'll find here. Though the expiration dates are mostly listed as "unknown," the great thing about becoming a member is their Pays-2-Share program. For every person who uses a coupon you post, Coupon Chief gives you 2 percent of the sale. So not only can you find discounts, you'll also get paid to post them.
Bonus feature: How It Works video walks you through saving money online -- what you should know and how to save the most money possible.
Fashion and beauty junkies will go crazy over the free samples, promo codes, and coupons on these blogs. Visiting the sites is like listening to a friend who knows it all in a helpful rather than annoying way. Not only will you get the latest discounts from online retailers like Beauty.com, but you'll also get new product descriptions, and you can e-mail a friend the same discount (sharing is caring). If you're not in the browsing mood, you can search for discounts in categories like stretch marks, anti-aging, and brows. (Just keep in mind that you'll need to subscribe for the most updated coupons.)
Listen to Kathryn Finney. She's a major style horse on a minor budget. She's been writing this blog for trendy, money-savvy women for six years now. Oh, and she wrote the book How to Be a Budget Fashionista -- The Ultimate Guide to Looking Fabulous for Less (Random House/Ballantine Books), which also helps. You'll find the latest coupons, promo codes, and deals on fashions and cosmetics, plus you'll get up-to-date industry news and shopping tips like "How to Shop at Forever 21" (good to know when your teenage daughter drags you in) and "Six Great Online Swap Sites." Love Barney's? TBF will let you know when there are sample sales at your favorite stores. We're in love.
Bonus feature: On the Fashion Podcast you can watch interviews featuring a mix of experts like Kathy Hilton (hey, she has a beauty line) and Iman.
Coupon Cactus practically pays you for signing up. All you have to do is create your own Coupon Cactus page, and any time someone clicks on a coupon you've posted, you get a commission. Some users have even inserted links in their e-mail signatures to drum up easy money. You can also get cash back just for using coupons on this site. For the easiest searching experience (there are over 2,000 coupons), go to the Coupons by Category link. Under Women's Apparel we found coupons for high-end retailers like Brooks Brothers and more affordable vendors like Ann Taylor Loft (2 percent member cash back). We also found deals on Shu Uemura and Clinique in the beauty category. Not sure if it's worth your time? The commission rates for each retailer are standard and listed on the site.
Bonus: Refer new members to the site and earn a 25 percent commission on all cash back and every commission that they earn.
It's not really shopping for free, but pretty close. There are a ton of beauty and fashion coupons to choose from on this site. You can narrow your search by categories like plus-size, handbags, or shoes. In addition to coupons, there's also information on free samples and sweepstakes. The site is easy to navigate, lists the expiration dates of coupons, and offers information on the hottest products for each company (just in case you're not sure what to buy).
Bonus: The Style Files blog keeps you up to date on the newest products on the market and any relevant discounts.
This blog dedicates itself to "delicious deals." Discounts on designer goods are updated daily. You'll get a product description of the featured items along with where to get them at the best price and their coupon codes. If you're not up for reading through different kinds of bargains, the Walk-in-Closet section allows you to search the blog by price point (below $150, for example), coupons only, sales, and contests. Subscribe to their e-mail and the discounts will come to you.
Bonus: Their Indie Coupons section offers discounts on lesser known retailers, but quality fashions nonetheless.
Bloomingdale's, SAKS, Lord & Taylor, and Origins are just a sampling of the stores that She Finds has coupons for (you'll also find Home Depot and 1-800-Flowers, but the more the merrier, right?). What gives this site credence is its founder and shopping expert, Michelle Madhok. You can trust that like an online personal shopper, she scoured the Web so you didn't have to.
Bonus: Sister site, shefinds.com, gives you the inside scoop on the latest fashion and beauty deals that don't compromise on chic.
The unique thing about this site is that the coupons actually look like coupons. You can easily scan through the new offerings on the homepage, or you can search by offer (discount, sale, and free shipping), by category, or alphabetically. If you're looking to buy for him or the kids, there are also coupons for that.
Bonus: Sign up for their Sweet Bakery weekly newsletter and stay in the loop about the hottest deals.
Originally published on LHJ.com, March 2009.