Today I’m prepping you for one of the biggest and best sales of the year – the Nordstrom Anniversary sale. This will be my FIFTH year shopping this sale on my blog. So I can confidently say, I’m a professional at this 😉
Many of you have followed along with my Nordstrom Anniversary Sale coverage for years. But if you are new around here, or new to the sale, this post is for you! Each year at the start of the sale, Elle Apparel is the place to be for a breakdown of all of the best items from the sale.
If you were to just dive into the morning of the sale, it can be very overwhelming. I shop the sale in person first thing during the first morning of the early access portion of the sale. Then I go home and my team and I usually pull an all nighter. We comb through every inch of the sale to find the very best items to share here. So if you start your Nordstrom Anniversary Sale shopping here, you can save a ton of legwork trying to comb through all of the items by yourself. Plus I am an easy access for any questions on sizing, fit, or restocks.
The Anniversary Sale is famous for having the hottest items on sale before anyone else. It’s also notorious for how quickly good items sell out. Here are SIX insider tips to get the best deals on hot items before they’re gone. Plus, see how to be entered to win one of THREE $100 Nordstrom Gift cards to use during the sale!


6 insider tips for shopping the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale.


The Nordstrom Anniversary sale is different than most of the big sales because instead of marking down clothing items that have been available for a while or are from past seasons, all of the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale items are brand new for the upcoming Fall season! This is your first look at the upcoming trends, and a rare chance to get brand new seasonal items at a deeply discounted rate. Once the sale is over, the items that are not sold out remain available. However the prices all increase to their normal price.
*2018 UPDATE:

In previous sales, many of the hot sale items are restocked once the prices go up. But my prediction is that this year, they will not restock very many of the popular sale items! I noticed this trend a little in 2016 and there were very few restocks during and after the sale last year! What does this mean for you and how can you avoid missing out on an item?

My suggestion is to shop the sale first thing during their Early Access portion of the sale (you must be a Nordstrom card holder to shop the sale- you can grab yours here– it’s free and you get $40 to spend at the sale for signing up!). If you see something you like, buy it online asap. You can always return it for free if you end up changing your mind. So you don’t have to worry about missing out on a hot item.



Nordstrom card holders get access to this sale first. It’s called the ‘Early Access’ portions of the sale, and it runs from July 12th-19th (get your own Nordstrom card + $40 to spend on the sale here)  The sale opens to everyone from July 20th- August 5th.

*2018 UPDATE:

In previous years they only have a $20 Nordstrom note for signing up for the card, so this is double the amount as last year! If you don’t already have the card, this is a no brainer!

It opens up to the general public July 21st-Aug 6th. The sale ends, and prices go up, August 7th.



The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale preview catalog was just released yesterday and you can view it here. It’s a great way to do some pre-mental shopping to get a feel for the styles and prices you might want to take advantage of.

In order to get the sale price during the early access from July 12th-19th, you have to have a Nordstom card.

You can sign up for one online here. Get first dibs on the sale by applying for a Nordstrom debit or credit card and receive a $40 Nordstrom Note to use during the sale.

Is it worth it to get a Nordstrom card just for this sale? YES! The pieces with the best discounts usually are sold out by the third day of the Early Access portion of the sale. That means that if you don’t have a Nordstrom card, you won’t even get the chance to purchase the item before it sells out.

A few years ago I didn’t have a Nordstrom card, so I had to wait until the sale opened to the public to shop. I was so disappointed to find that a lot of the items on my wish list were sold out or out of my size. It’s absolutely crazy how fast some of the items go.



Make sure you check out my Nordstrom Sale Roundup Post here, the morning of July 12th. I will be giving away THREE $100 NORDSTROM GIFT CARDS to use during the sale! In order to enter, you must leave a comment on my upcoming Nordstrom Sale Roundup post on July 12th before 7pm PST. I will announce the winners on that sale post between 7-8pm so make sure you check back later that day. I will be sending over the giftcards that night so that you can use them right away on the sale before anything sells out!

My Nordstrom sale round-up includes all of the best items from the sale as well.

You can see the ones I did for 201720162015 and 2014.  I pour through pages and pages of sale items (so you don’t have to) and only pick out the good stuff. Throughout the sale, I post about all my favorite buys (and why they are my favorites), I give dressing room peaks of multiple items and talk about the fit/style of each one, and I give fall styling tips to get your mind working on how you will want to style your sale buys.

The first post I do on the sale is all my favorite women’s fall items (coats, boots, jeans, tops, shoes, etc). Then I round up of all of the best BEAUTY SALE PRODUCTS, , ACTIVEWEAR, MENS, and KIDS & BABY sale items to make sure you are covered for every part of the sale.



Online, online, online. I cannot stress this enough! I always post all of my top picks from the sale by 6 am the morning the sale starts. Then, in order to give you a detailed description of which items are good quality, flattering on, and cuter in person, I always brave the crowds to find the best stuff in person, and I do a dressing room round-up the day after the sale goes live so you can get a good feel for the cut/sizing/fit of the best items. Then I also do a post with all of the full fall looks I end up taking home with me. I do all the legwork for you, so you have all the info you need to get the best items of the sale.

My advice to you is to get yourself a Nordstrom card if you don’t already have one.

Then check out my blog first thing the morning of July 12th. I usually pull an all-nighter the night before the sale, narrowing down the items online, to select the best stuff. Then, place your order online first thing.

If you aren’t sure about sizing, order 2 sizes. Nordstrom’s free shipping/return policy makes shopping so painless. Your order will come with a return label, so if there is anything you don’t want, just stick it on your box and set it outside for the mailman to pick up. You don’t even need to make a separate trip to the Post Office!

Another good smart tip:

If something you love is sold out in your size, buy it in any size you can find. Then hold on to it. Two weeks or even two months later when they restock the sizes and it’s regular priced you just take yours in and do a straight exchange! There is always a small chance it might not be restocked, but since these are all pre-fall items, they almost always restock. (if you are super worried, give them a call and ask, they might be able to tell you if they will be getting more in!)


I always do my research to know which items are hot and will go quickly, and I will make sure to alert you of which items will go the quickest, and of any restocks throughout the sale on Instagram and my Instagram stories. Make sure you check there regularly during the sale. In the past years, the items that sold out the fastest were:


Quick Recap….
  • WHERE DO I SEE A PREVIEW OF WHAT ITEMS WILL BE AVAILABLE?  The online preview catalog of what will be available is LIVE NOW! Just head here to view it.
  • WHEN IS THE NORDSTROM ANNIVERSARY SALE? Early Access is July 12-19th (get your Nordstrom card and $40 to spend during the sale here). The sale opens to the public on July 20th, and runs until August 5th.
  • HOW CAN I BE ENTERED TO WIN ONE OF THREE $100 NORDSTROM GIFTCARDS ON YOU BLOG TO USE DURING THE SALE? Leave a comment on my upcoming Nordstrom Sale Roundup post on July 12th before 7pm PST. Winners will be announced that evening and gift cards will be distributed that day.
  • WHEN WILL YOU BE POSTING THE BEST OF THE SALE?  Here on the blog bright and early on July 12th.


I have been covering the Nordstom Anniversary sale for the past FOUR years.

So here is a little look at some of the past posts with my top picks to get you excited!

Also I always do an outfit “try on” round up, which I think is the most beneficial to you. I try on a bunch of different looks and address the fit/fabric/sizing, etc. That is the perfect time to leave me a comment with any questions you have on sizing. My team and I will be fully tuned in during the sale so we can get to your questions quickly. We’re here to help you make educated purchases quickly so you can snag items before they sell out!


Here are some of my Nordstrom Anniversary Sale wish lists from years past…




The best of the Nordstrom Anniversary Sale.




2015 OUTFIT ROUNDUP POST (I was so pregnant with Eli!)




If you have any questions or have specific items you will be looking for in the sale, just let me know in the comments!





Join the Conversation


  1. I’m looking everywhere and it doesn’t look like Nordstrom offers a debit card anymore… are you finding it somewhere I’m not?

    1. Hi Jill! I researched this and they are not offering a debit card option at this time- only a nordstrom card (where you pay with the card and pay the balance on the card online) or a Nordstrom Visa credit card.

  2. I love the tips. I have to shop on line. They closed our store. I’m so glad you did the leg work ( xoxoxo). You will make this fun for me. I miss the sale every year except this one. Thank you!!

    1. Ahh! Such a bummer they closed your store! Its so much easier shopping it online though..I hope I can help you out with getting some good sale items!

  3. To get the $40 when you sign up, you have to buy something the day you are approved? They said the card would get there in about a week, so I would have to go in person into the store to buy something and they would look up my account. I’m also worried I won’t have the card in time for the first day of the sale! Is there a way to shop online before you get your card in person?

    1. Hi Megan B!

      You should be able to call card customer service number and they can provide you with your card number so you can shop online for the sale!

    2. Hi Megan B!

      You should be able to call the card customer service number and they can provide you with your card number so you can shop online for the sale!

    3. Yes, thank you Chloe! You can sign up for the card now, and they will give you a temporary card number. They can give you one in person in the store early, or just call them and get the number over the phone and you can use online to access the sale!

  4. Hi! Is the only way to see potential sale items through the preview catalog? Thanks!

  5. Hii,
    Am new to this Nordstrom sale and I love all your tips!!!i always had a confused state while shopping online,but I think this time it will be fun and exciting!!!thankyou so much..

  6. Thank you so much for posting this tips! I’m trying to shop now but looks like the website if overloaded!!

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