The ITG Black Friday Game Plan

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Hello and welcome to the internet equivalent of a voicemail. What you are reading was most certainly not written today. Be The Gloss is on [sings in the key of Oprah] breaaaaaak. But for only a day—the crew will return from our respective corners of the country on Monday. Too long, right? To tide you over, each of us doubled down earlier this week to deliver something to you today. Mini postcards! Wherein we mapped out our Black Friday plans. There’s a chance we may have veered off course by the time this goes live, but we can confidently say these are our best approximations. Emily will be at the outlets. Ashley will be doing a whole bunch of sitting. Anna will be shopping for vintage denim in LA. All over the country physically, but in spirit right here. Hope you’re reading from some place cozy and warm.

Happy National Rest Your Butt On A Couch Day! My folks are in town, and by the time Black Friday shows up, I’ll have hosted my first Thanksgiving dinner. I’m not a big Black Friday shopper—I’m usually ogling one, two sales max. My true passion is shepherding my family to various titles on Netflix and HBO. Every year I leave them with a new delicious program to binge (hello Making a Murderer, Orange Is The New Black, Homeland). This year I’m going to hook them on My Brilliant Friend. We’ll start watching around brunch time, probably, after eating a balanced Midwestern dish of hash browns and bacon strips. I’ll be outfitted in the only thing appropriate to wear after a national holiday of gluttony—sweatpants. The fireplace will be lit and I’ll maybe do one of Dr. Jart’s foot masks (they are amazing and are the tactile equivalent of a Solange album). All on my couch, of course. ‘Tis the season and them’s the rules.
—Ashley Weatherford, Senior Editor

AAARREEE YOUUUU READY TO RUMMMMBLE!. Today is the day. The running of the bulls. Except this time, Pamplona is the outlet mall, and my mom and I are the bulls, chasing down deals and other shoppers, trampling a few under our hooves (hey, they KNEW the risks). Ashley may want to take this one sitting down—and I encourage her and anyone else to do the same. Means I’ve got fewer people to wack at with my purse. Don’t get me wrong: Experience has taught me that the late 2010s are no longer the era of the doorbuster. I’ve already got that 60’ 4K ULTRA HDTV that I like anyway. No, Black Friday is for discounts on your discounts. Finding in-season, relatively fresh merch on sale is the stuff of Post-Christmas dreams. You can carbo-load for that race later. Now is the time to find the things that no one wanted at Barneys three years ago, and buy those things today for $20. If you’re ready to level up from there, you can dual-path the shopping experience by using your phone to price check. There’s no right way to shop for deals, which is why I shop all the ways so I cannot possibly fail.
—Emily Ferber, Editorial Director

There’s nothing more festive than spending the holidays in a state with no discernible seasons. Yeah—I don't believe that either. But I am celebrating Thanksgiving home in Florida, where we have our own traditions: Palm trees wrapped in Christmas lights, those little pilgrim salt and pepper shakers you bought at Publix, and a vibrant political debate sponsored by red wine. I plan on recovering with the Official Breakfast of Black Friday (leftover apple pie and coffee) and staying away from places where it’s possible I’ll be mistaken for a beached whale. My parents have the best bed in the house, so that’s where I’ll be—flanked by my potato of a French bulldog on one side and my mom on the other. We are wearing matching snowflake onesie pajamas but I am shopping for jeans. Does the Ziip fix ‘I put so much salt on my mac and cheese and it tasted amazing but now I look like a balloon’ face? I’ve made it my charge to find out.
—Ali Oshinsky, Editorial Intern

Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday. I’m spending it in Los Angeles, away from home for the first time. But the weather’s predicted to remain in the mid-sixties, so I have absolutely nothing to complain about. I’ll be sitting on a couch in full Juicy Couture velvet with four small dogs (but missing my cat), watching every Harry Potter movie, eating various types of bread. But I’ve packed all my sweaters and fall things I bought prematurely rather than on sale. So, this Black Friday I’ll be stocking up on half-off (!) t-shirts at Liana, looking for deals on vinyl, and buying a year’s worth of La Roche-Posay Medicated Gel Cleanser at 30-percent off. And then I’ll be in the LA suburbs looking for cheap vintage denim, because there is no place better to find it. The best holiday starts now, bye!
—Anna Jube, Editorial Assistant

I’m up! It’s early, but not early enough—I can already hear my younger cousins bumping around as I lay in a twin-sized bed in Atlanta. While it’s a nice, slightly overheated change of pace from my Bushwick apartment, I know at any moment the little ones will crack open my door, ask a very timid, “Utibe, are you awake yet?” then make me play SSB Ultimate for three hours straight. I’m not good at video games! And they love that. So before they declare ownership over my room and opposable thumbs, I’ll be “asleep,” under my blanket, phone in hand.

First I check the home team, bethegloss.com, for Black Friday recs. (I know. But we made a verrryy good list this year, OK?) I’ve already peeped Bite Beauty's Lip Care set as an easy gift for a couple of my lip-afflicted friends. And then I’ll check all the carts I’ve filled over the last few months with the items I wish to have (my wish-carts), to see if any zeros have been knocked off the price. And then there’s Shark Sauce. It’ll be a perfect time to get that baby bottle serum I’ve been eyeing. Worst comes to worst, I’ll peruse the Urban Outfitters’ sale section, just for fun! How I yearn for the times where a pretty penny could you get you a peace sign keychain and a bedroom tapestry that alluded to Johnny and Ponyboy's ground-shaking friendship. Stay Gold UO.

At this point, I’m sure I’ll be ready to emerge from my self-made cocoon. I’ll also be more than ready for jollof rice and pumpkin pie for breakfast. See you guys later!
—Utibe Mbagwu, Content Coordinator

Photo via ITG