Gang, we’ve been looking forward to the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale for months. And now we can really get excited — we just learned the actual dates! The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale opens August 19 for the public sale, while Early Access shopping begins August 4 (more on that below). Prices go up August 31. We know it will look different. Changes to the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale — our Christmas In July (Christmas in August?) and the huge event that gets us all super-hype for fall fashion— were released last month. In addition to being held in August for 2020, the Anni Sale will feature about 50 percent if its normal stock. Nordstrom will offer wardrobe pieces that we’ve already been focused on since #QuarantineLife began: cozy loungewear, home decor and accent pieces, beauty and self-care (read our full post here). Also, leaning into our new pandemic-era world means anticipating changes to how we shop — which will be with us for awhile. Social distancing and healthy habits will be in place — read about the details in our Nordstrom reopening post here — and along with Nordstrom, we hope to prepare you for the sale as best we can.
We’ve got the answers to all your questions here, so keep scrolling. We have the most recent Nordstrom sales posts, followed by a glimpse into what the 2020 Nordstrom Anniversary will look like, plus our guide on how to shop. Then, if you’re new here, or you just want a bit of nostalgia for Nordstrom Anniversary Sales past, you can find that coverage below. (And no matter how far you scroll, stick with us).
NORDSTROM ANNIVERSARY SALE
Um…What Is The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale?
The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is a bit unique. Unlike other sales, which typically discount in-season or post-season merchandise that didn’t previously sell, the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale offers deep discounts on pre-season items. Which means that all of the boots, bags, jeans and sweaters that you’ll be investing in this fall can be had — at a really discounted price — for a few weeks in July and August. Once the sale is over, the merchandise goes back up to it’s retail price. It’s a genius concept, really. One that I wish more retailers would copy. The sale will be a bit different this year, so keep reading.
On a personal note….I’ve been shopping this sale for years. And I’ve found, really and truly, even on the years where everything sells out, or the years that everyone complains that it ‘wasn’t as good as last year’ and even on those years when they’re right….I still ended up with pieces I really and truly do wear for years to come. The Anniversary Sale is worth the time invested.
How To Shop The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale
There’s a lot we don’t know about how the 2020 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale will actually be executed this year. The biggest changes we anticipate will be in-store and/or curbside. We know it will involve social distancing, face masks and hand sanitizer (in-store). We imagine that you may patiently wait at home for your ginormous online order to arrive via the United Postal Service, or that you’ll pull up curbside or through a pick-up drive-thru at your local Nordstrom (or the one closest, maybe with the most stock from which you wanted to order), and donning your cute face mask (we’ll be Face Mask Style Pros by then), you might either send a text indicating your arrival and a sales clerk will meet you at your vehicle, or you’ll go through a pick-up drive-thru, or you’ll line up, 6 to 10 feet away from the person behind or in front of you, and wait in line to retrieve your packages. For those of us who can shop in-store, keep in mind that it will be a very different shopping experience (read more about that here). We’ll likely encounter a bevy of hand sanitizer stations, store ambassadors wearing face masks (and maybe gloves), well-spaced clothing racks, and frequent reminders of social distancing and “healthy habits”. We may see signs imploring us to only touch items if we really intend to buy them. And we have no idea what that big dressing haul is gonna look like (it may be a more limited “haul”, and it will definitely include frequently cleaned dressing rooms and less of them) — but we’re going for it if we can.
And oh, hey — it also looks like we’ll have more time to shop this year! Nordstrom’s providing a preview to all shoppers beginning July 24, and it looks like each shopping period for Early Access, cardholders and Nordy club members lasts longer (more on that below). We can anticipate that with additional safety measures in place for both employees and customers, in-store and for online delivery, this might be a more intentional and mindful shopping experience than the frenzy we’re used to. We’ll see…
1. When Is The 2020 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale?
Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Dates: Roughly July 24 to August 31, 2020, with active shopping starting August 4. The public sale begins August 19, while Nordy Club members/Nordstrom credit card holders get to shop first during Early Access, beginning August 4. Below is a rough timeline for when Nordy Club members and the public get to shop the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale.
July 24: Preview (Digital. Replaces The Catalog. Open For All)
August 4: Nordy Club Icons Shop Early Access
August 7: Nordy Club Ambassadors Shop Early Access
August 10: Nordy Club Influencers Shop Early Access
August 13: Nordy Club Insiders Shop Early Access
August 19: Public Sale Begins
August 30: Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Ends
2. Get A Nordstrom Card, Get Early Access
You don’t need a Nordstrom Card (a credit card, formerly called the Nordstrom Rewards Card) to shop this sale. But you do need a Nordstrom Card to shop during that first critical week of the sale — Nordstrom Anniversary Sale Early Access. If there’s one thing we’ve learned over the years, it’s that the best stuff typically sells out during this first “Early Access” week. (More on that, below.) If you haven’t already, sign up for a Nordstrom Card, here. Secondly, if you are really opposed to signing up for a Nordstrom Card (and we’re not able to persuade you otherwise…) there is some value in signing up for The Nordy Club. This is basically Nordstrom’s rebranding (hello, Millennials!) of their Nordstrom Rewards program. There are benefits to using your Nordy Club Card (like an extra $60 bonus note if you sign up before right before the sale or an extra $40 bonus note good through the beginning of the Anniversary Sale, if you already have a credit card (meaning you’ll be able to use it for Anniversary Sale Early Access). You can still enroll in The Nordy Club and earn rewards points, even if you don’t get a card. You’ll earn rewards at Nordstrom, Nordstrom.com, Rack, and HauteLook…but you won’t be able to shop Early Access without a Nordstrom Card.
3. Schedule Your Triple Points Day For The First Day of The Sale
One of the smartest things you can do is schedule your Personal Triple Points Day during the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale. Just check that baby online during checkout at Nordstrom.com. You’ll earn a $20 Note for every $334 you spend on your Personal Triple Points Day (and these tend to add up pretty quickly during the sale).
4. Follow The Mom Edit For The Best of The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale
Year after year, our approach to the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale is to try and make it easier for you guys to shop. We narrow it down to only the best stuff — the stuff you really will wear and use all year long, the stuff we’ve personally tested for comfort. We get into the dressing room on the very first day of Early Access, and cover this sale…pretty much everywhere (we’re all over social media) so the best way to get our recommendations is to follow us on your favorite social media channels, and subscribe to our daily newsletter. We typically send one newsletter per day (and never share your email), but for the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale, we’ll be sending out a special edition you don’t want to miss.
5. Get the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale 2020 Catalog
As soon as the 2020 Nordstrom Anniversary Sale catalog drops, we’ll be spending some quality time with it, and pulling together a list of our favorites (catalog only!!) for you early-bird shoppers. You can see our 2019 Anniversary Sale catalog picks here to get the gist. Of course I’ll be doing my usual #DressingRoomSelfies thing, and we’ll update this page with more comprehensive picks once the sale opens…but these things take time (genius can’t be rushed, haha). My goal, as always, is to get the #DressingRoomSelfies article out on the first day of the sale. May the force be with us.
6. Go For Early Access To Shop The Sale As Soon As Possible
I cannot state this enough: The best pieces — the stuff we really want, really will wear — typically sell out during that first week. Highly anticipated re-stocks have been few and far between. A few readers have gotten lucky waiting for returns to come back into stock…but most have not. Your best bet is to shop the sale as early as possible.
Once again, this means shopping (with your Nordstrom Card) during the first week of the sale.
7. The Best Way To Shop The Anniversary Sale Online
If you’ve ever wandered into a Nordstrom during the Early Access sale…it’s a zoo. Historically, even when pieces are theoretically in stock in-store, chances are they’re stuck in someone else’s dressing room (or this year, possibly being quarantined for a short period of time). Despite the gaggle of helpful staff Nordstrom has on hand during the sale, it’s a grueling shopping experience. That said, 2020 is a different year, and the Anniversary Sale likely will be a very different shopping experience. The good news is that Nordstrom’s online inventory is completely synched up with their in-store inventory, so if the website says that it’s sold out online….it is, in fact, sold out everywhere. Again, we don’t know what an in-store shopping experience will really look like in 2020 during the pandemic. As soon as we do, we can better predict the advantages/disadvantages of shopping online vs. in-store vs. curbside/drive-thru pick-up. BUT, shopping online means taking advantage of free shipping, one of the best perks of shopping at Nordstrom. If you don’t love the idea of packages sitting on your doorstep while you’re at work (hey, Philly)— or uh….playing camp counselor all day— you can pick up online orders in-store or drive-thru/curbside! Another perk (again, we don’t know how this plays out in 2020): if the items you’re crushing on are in-stock at your local store, Nordstrom will deliver them to you SAME DAY for only $15 ($20 in NYC) — historically. Check to see if same-day delivery is available for your local Nordstrom store here.
8. Buy Sale Items With Huge Sell-Out Risk First.
Seems obvious, right? But how does one know which items are at risk of selling out? Well. I’ve been doing this blogging thing for 10 years now (crazy, right??), and after 10 years of covering this sale, I do have some thoughts on this subject. As soon as the catalog hits, I’ll be rounding up my favorites (as well as making a few predictions), but for now, here’s what I know:
- Don’t worry about kids’ or men’s. The sell-out risk pales in comparison to Women’s.
- If you like brands like VINCE, rag & bone and Nike…you really need to shop that first week. These pieces almost always sell out.
- Statement athletic wear (like the really cute leggings from Alo, for example, and that matching sweatshirt) rarely last past that first week. Snap ’em up!
- Nordstrom brands (Treasure & Bond, Halogen) tend to be better stocked than non-Nordstrom brands…the exception being Nordstrom Signature Collection. If there’s a cute cashmere sweater in the actual sale, don’t hesitate. In years’ past, they’ve been some of the best cashmere sweaters I’ve owned.
9. Don’t Rely On Re-Stocks
In years’ past, Nordstrom would reserve a decent amount of merchandise for the public sale. Which meant that even if something sold out during the Early Access week, there was still a chance to score it during the public sale.
This is no longer true. Don’t bet on a restock, even for public sale.
However, this also means that if there’s something you can’t live without…buy it in multiple sizes, just in case. It’s much better to send back what you don’t want than to totally miss out. (But do the rest of us a favor, and send it back before the sale ends, OK?)
10. Avoid Being Overwhelmed (We Can Help)
That’s (hopefully) why you come here. We Do. Alllllll. The. Research. All the #DressingRoomSelfies. All the “Best of” lists. All the “Best of what’s left” lists.
We do it all…for the entire length of the sale, with contributors literally from coast to coast. We try stuff on, wear it around, make sure it actually works for our everyday lives, and blog the heck out of it.