How To Successfully Shop Amazon Prime Day

by Alexa Tucker

Cyber Monday in July is almost here — except it's on a Tuesday, and it's called Amazon Prime Day. It's one of the biggest (and newest) annual online shopping days, and since it's not placed around the holidays, it's a great way to snag the items you've been eyeing in the middle of the year (no need to wait till November or December). And while it's often noted for crazy tech deals, fashion and beauty Prime Day finds on July 11 will be on offer, too.

If you find yourself spending a good chunk of your hard-earned dollars on beauty products, clothes, and accessories, Prime Day can be a great way to save some cash on the items you buy frequently (or just fun trends you've been wanting to try). Whether it's your favorite mascara, a new hair heat styling tool, or a simple going-out clutch, there's pretty much nothing you can't find. (I buy all of my sticky boobs on Amazon Prime, so, just sayin'.)

But if you're serious about scoring those Prime Day deals, just winging it doesn't cut it. It technically starts on July 10 at 6 p.m. PT and goes through Tuesday (though there are whispers it might last longer), but getting prepared ahead of time is absolutely essential for successful Prime Day shopping.

RetailMeNot shopping and trends editor Sara Skirboll shares some tips on how to make out like a bandit on Prime Day with beauty and fashion deals. Here's what you need to know to score big.

1. Log On When The Festivities Begin (& Keep Checking Back For New Waves Of Deals)

When the deals drop at 6 p.m. PT on July 10, make sure you're there to score that pair of heels or lipstick. "I recommend having your browser open and ready to go then to catch the deals before product runs out," says Skirboll. While Amazon hasn't revealed any items that will be on sale yet, the best way to know is to be there when it all goes down — and to keep looking back to see if anything new has popped up. "Amazon does typically release more deals throughout the day, so keep checking," says Skirboll.

2. Put Your "Wish List" In Your Cart Beforehand

This is a handy hack for any fashion or beauty items you always buy on Amazon. "If there are particular products you've been eyeing, go ahead and add them to your cart now and once the sales begin, go to your cart and see if it is on sale. That way you don't have to spend time scouring the site and you can simply hit check out," says Skirboll.

3. Think About Any Beauty Or Fashion Tech Items You're After

Amazon Prime Day is known for its tech deals, says Skirboll, and even though we don't know what tech deals will be happening, this trend may apply to beauty and fashion devices as well. If you're dying for a pricy Dyson hair dryer or a new clothing steamer, it might be worth adding those to your cart to see if they do go on sale.

4. Take Inventory Of The Things You Really Want Or Need

Amazon is going to be overflowing with sales on July 11, and it can feel overwhelming. To avoid over-spending and getting distracted, make a list of the things you need (or just really, really want, first). This is where adding to that shopping cart comes in handy, too. "[Adding things to your wish list] will save you time browsing on the 11th and save you money because you won’t be aimlessly scrolling through products that you might not otherwise need, but feel pressured into buying because they’re so heavily discounted," says Skirboll.

So if a new pair of block heels would make your heart happy, put your blinders on when you come across shoes you're less desperate for (even if they're majorly discounted). And if you've already got eight shades of red lipstick, don't be lured in by a ninth that you'll regret. "While the deal is strong, you always have to catch yourself and ask 'Do I really need this?'," says Skirboll.

5. If What You're Looking For Isn't On Sale, Peek Other Retailers

Other retailers have caught on to the Prime Day phenomenon, so there might be other sites competing for your dollars by offering similar sales, says Skirboll. "Look out for sales at other retailers besides Amazon as others are getting in on this 'Black Friday in July' bandwagon and offering their own special sales and offers," she says. "Expect to see deals from retailers like Home Depot, Wal-Mart, Macy's and Sears, both online and in-store."

Got all that? Action items: Make your wish list, put items in your cart, and mentally prepare for Prime Day. May the odds be ever in your favor.