Best Deals in October 2021 (and What to Avoid!)

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October is a high point of the year for many of us, with its colorful leaves, sweater-worthy days, and Halloween fun. And from a shopping perspective, we’ll start to see fall clearance sales, Halloween-related deals, and opportunities to donate to Breast Cancer Awareness by shopping your favorite brands. 

Breast Cancer Awareness

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and brands of all kinds pledge a portion of proceeds to this important cause. In addition to donating, several brands are extending savings to you, making it easier than ever to support research and patient care.

AnaOno: AnaOno was founded by Dana Donofree after overcoming a breast cancer diagnosis at the age of 27. The collection includes comfortable, sexy, and inclusive lingerie and loungewear for all women; whether they be plus-size, breast cancer survivors, women with no breasts, natural breasts, one breast, and more. Throughout October, AnaOno will be donating 10 percent of sales to Living Beyond Breast Cancer, as well as their ongoing initiative with the Pink Warrior Advocates where you can make any donation, from rounding up the change of your purchase, to $1, $5 or more when shopping at AnaOno. Customers can also take 50 percent off panties (over $10 in savings) when you build a matching set with code BOGOPANTY at checkout.

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Colleen Rothschild Beauty “Breast” Friend Self-Exam Butter: Born out of the founder’s personal experience finding a lump during a self-exam, this rich pink butter contains Murumuru and Bacuri and five exotic oils, which provide moisture to facilitate self-exams. From October 1-4 and 28-31, Buy One Get One Free to share with your “breast” friend (regularly $42). Furthermore, 100 percent of retail sales will be donated to The Pink Fund, which provides financial support to help meet basic needs, decrease stress levels, and allow breast cancer patients in treatment to focus on healing.  

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Free Reign: This sustainable apparel brand is known for its supportive Everyday Tank (originally $74), which is designed to last through many of life’s changes. From October 9-11, save 15 percent off with discount code TT15. And throughout October, Free Reign will be donating 10 percent of sales to Living Beyond Breast Cancer, a national nonprofit organization. 

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Handful: This brand creates comfortable and versatile activewear (originally $12 and up) made to “flatter, not flatten,” empowering women to feel confident and supported. Handful donates 12.5 percent of revenue from their Battle Cry Pink bra sales year-round to the Young Survival Coalition in honor of the 12.5 percent of women who will be diagnosed with breast cancer in the US. For the month of October, save 15 percent off all activewear with the code FUcancer. 

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ili New York: This leather products brand is known for its stunning aesthetic and practical functionality. Their on-trend bags, wallets, and accessories ($8.50 and up) provide organization and function. Breast Cancer Awareness is a personal and passionate cause for the brand, and from October 1-31, they will be donating 10 percent of the proceeds of its Pink Collection to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. In addition, all pieces of the collection are on sale starting at 50 percent off. 

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Isabelle Grace Jewelry: This sustainably made jewelry brand treats each piece as a work of art. Their Breast Cancer Awareness Collection (originally $22 and up) supports survivors and those afflicted through inspirational and motivational designs. The brand also donates a portion of proceeds to breast cancer. From October 1-31, save 20 percent off with code BCA20. 

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Skinnytees: This collection of one-size-fits-most basics ($15 and up) is made to fit and flatter all women. From October 1-31, the brand is hosting their annual Breast Sale Ever where select items will be 30 percent off with code BSE30. In addition, the brand will be donating a portion of proceeds from the sale to Alexis Butcher, a woman who was diagnosed with breast cancer this year while in her second trimester. For the past 6 years, Skinnytees has selected one woman to support with the goal of making a large impact in her life. URL will be live October 1.

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Fall Clearance 

Fall officially began on September 22, but fall merchandise has been available for weeks now. Before you know it, we’ll be seeing holiday decorations in-store, so retailers need to move this season’s merchandise to clear space. Expect discounts in the 25 percent and up range, particularly on apparel and footwear. Discounts will be popping up all month but will be concentrated around Columbus Day/Indigenous People’s Day on the 11th. 

Academy Sports + Outdoors: From October 4-24, this chain of sporting goods and outdoor stores is hosting a variety of sales, including:

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bella dahl: These thoughtfully curated, timeless silhouettes are made with the brand’s signature soft, innovative fabrics (originally $84 and up). During their fall clearance sale, which begins October 8, save up to 40 percent off.

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BOODY: This line of eco-friendly, sustainable apparel for men and women is made using bamboo viscose. The brand specializes in everyday basics, relaxed essentials, and activewear. From October 6-10, save 30 percent off all tops (originally $19.99 and up). 

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MIA Shoes: This footwear brand provides a balance between fashion and comfort in vegan-friendly materials ($69 and up). This fall, MIA Shoes has a range of boot styles in the season’s go-to fabrics. Through the end of November, save 25 percent off all fall styles, excluding clogs.  

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Western Chief: This brand of classic water-resistant footwear for the whole family is offering two sales: 

  • From October 1-13, save 10 percent off Rain Gear sets, which are already a savings of 15 percent starting at $91. 
  • From October 29-31, save $10 off orders of $75 or more.  
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YogaClub: This premium athleisure subscription box provides curated 3-piece outfits valued at $200+ for just $79/month. Styles are provided based on a personalized quiz. From October 1-12, received $20 off with code CDS21. 

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Halloween

Halloween 2021 will hopefully be more festive than last year, so that’s something to celebrate! No matter your plans, there is a slew of deals on kid’s items, sweet and savory foods, and even wine. 

Doughp: Instead of snacking on the same chocolates and candies year after year, try something new to satisfy your sweet tooth! Doughp’s delicious cookie dough can be eaten raw or baked, and right now, you can save 25 percent off 2-packs and 4-packs of select limited-edition flavors (originally $39 and $59 respectively), including Holy Crepe, which is Nutella and banana, and Dough from Ipanema, which is chocolate fudge.

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Firstleaf: This wine subscription service, which is a favorite of mine, provides affordable, award-winning wines sourced from 5 continents and 12 countries. You can buy wine for yourself, or take advantage of their holiday bundles and gift cards for holiday gifting. From October 29-31, Firstleaf members can purchase red wines for $11 a bottle (typically $13). If you’re not a member yet, use my referral link for $40 off! 

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Gerber Childrenswear: Kids can cuddle up to the spooky season with new pajamas. Choose between fit-footed and two-piece options in some of the season’s cutest designs for the babies and toddlers in your family. Through October 31, save 20 percent off $15.99. 

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GHOSTED from Big G Creative: This classic “whodunnit” murder mystery game has a supernatural twist – players must solve their own demise from the great beyond. Identify which suspect had it in for you, what wacky weapon they used, and why they wanted you out of the picture. The first to solve the mystery of their passing wins! Perfect for family and adult game nights. From October 24-31, save 20 percent off $19.99 at Target. 

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Little GF Chefs: Looking to make it a saucy Halloween? With Little GF Chefs’ gluten-free, allergen-friendly pizza kit, you can make your own delicious Jack-o’-lantern pizza this Halloween. From October 1-31, save 15 percent off $35 with code pizzaparty15.  

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Red & Olive Co.: This fair trade doll brand hand-knits fashionable dolls ($78 and up) made from natural materials by artisans in Peru. Your child and their doll will have a matching head accessory for them to wear, sparking imaginative play. Through October 31, get a free Halloween sweater ($24.99 value) with each purchase of a doll set, and save 15 percent off with the code HALLOWEEN15

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Shipt: This same-day delivery service allows users to order from a range of stores including, Target, Kroger, Publix, Petco, Costco, and CVS. An annual Shipt membership is $99 per year and includes free delivery on all orders over $35. For non-members, there is a $10 delivery fee associated with orders. From October 19-31, Shipt is offering $5 off of orders of $25 or more on Mars Wrigley products.  

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Spooktacular Creations: Whether you’re planning to party, parade around the house, or pop up on a Zoom call, Spooktacular Creations has affordable costumes for everyone from babies to adults to pets as well as wigs, makeup, and props (originally $19.99 and up). Through October 24, save 15 percent off with TRUESPOOK15 (one use per customer).

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What Not to Buy (or what probably won’t be on sale)

Electronics

The upcoming Black Friday/Cyber Monday timeframe is the best time to buy electronics, like TVs, laptops, smartwatches, and tablets. It’s right around the corner if you can wait!

Toys

If the kids are asking for a toy that has appeared on more than a few hot toys lists, it might make sense to buy it now. It’s not likely to be on sale, but we are expecting some delays and stock issues later in the season. However, if the kids are asking for a classic toy or something more general, wait until December when you’ll find the best pricing on toys. 

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Smart Shopping Expert

Trae Bodge is an accomplished lifestyle journalist, TV presenter, spokesperson, and educator, specializing in beauty, tech, apps, toys, gift guides, and smart shopping. She has appeared as an expert on dozens of TV shows and radio networks, including Today, Rachael Ray Show, Inside Edition, CNN, Reuters, CNBC.com, Sirius Radio, and numerous FOX, ABC, CBS and NBC affiliates. Trae has been featured as a beauty tastemaker in Elle, Redbook, InStyle, and Essence, and her work has appeared on Yahoo Finance, Marketwatch, USNews.com, Credit.com, CBSNews.com, Time.com.

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