The 7 Best Things to Buy in December — and 5 to Avoid

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Even with a longer sales season, Black Friday is still the biggest shopping occasion of the year for many. But the deals don’t stop once Black Friday and Cyber Monday are over!

December carries plenty of worthy deals before and after Christmas. So whether you’re shopping for gifts for others or want to treat yourself, don’t miss out!

Read on for our guide on what to buy in December 2023, but remember that not every deal will be a great one. We tell you what you should wait to buy, as well!

The 7 Best Things to Buy in December

1. Green Monday Sale Items

Green Monday is a huge day for online sales that falls on the second Monday of December. If you aren’t burned out after all the Black Friday and Cyber Monday events, you can take advantage of this big shopping occasion.

In 2023 the holiday is on December 11, and it should offer discounts ranging from 20% to 60% off or even more. Expect categories on sale to include electronics, home improvement, and clothing, among others.

One of the most popular Green Monday sales we saw last year came from B&H Photo Video. The retailer offered savings on Apple products, cameras and lenses, TVs, computers, and other items.

Of course, other stores also participated in the holiday. HP offered up to 66% off laptops, desktops, printers, and monitors, while eBay — the company responsible for Green Monday’s creation — had notable discounts on apparel, tools, electronics, and gifts.

2. Gift Cards

Gift cards are great to buy any time of year, but especially in December. Not only do they make excellent presents when you have no idea what to get someone for the winter holidays, but they often include bonus perks during this month.

Tons of restaurants and retailers offer these holiday gift card deals, and they usually involve purchasing a minimum amount in gift cards. Typically, it’s $25, $50, or $100, though sometimes it’s more. Buy that amount, and you’ll receive a bonus card for between $5 and $25, most likely. Some offers also come with other freebies, like coupons for free meals.

These offers generally run through the holiday shopping season, ending around Christmas or New Year’s Eve. The redemption period for a bonus offer typically doesn’t kick in until after the promotion ends, though, so don’t forget to use the perk at the right time!

3. Holiday Decor During After Christmas Sales

In general, the best time to shop for holiday decor is the day after the holiday itself, and winter holiday items are no different. We can see early deals on these kinds of products around Black Friday and Cyber Monday, but the very best discounts often drop the day after Christmas, or December 26.

So where should you shop during this time to save on decor for next year and beyond? Home improvement stores are one good option.

Right after Christmas last year, Home Depot knocked up to 50% off as part of their Christmas decor clearance. Items such as Christmas trees, outdoor inflatables, and lights went on sale. And within a couple of days, Christmas trees and holiday decor were seeing discounts of up to 75% off there.

Other retailers to check for post-Christmas sales include Amazon, Belk, and Crate & Barrel.

4. Fall Clothing

Black Friday is huge for fall clothing, so we might not see as many deals in December as we did in November. But that doesn’t mean the last month of the year is a wasteland.

In fact, last December we listed more than 1,400 clothing and accessory deals, with roughly 23% being Staff Pick-worthy; that means they were among our “best of the best” offers. Popular offers from December 2022 included the following:

  • Buy one pair, get a second pair of Levi’s free at Macy’s
  • Up to 83% off in the J.Crew End of Season Sale
  • Up to 60% off plus an extra 50% off at adidas’ End of Year Sale on eBay
  • Up to 50% off plus an extra 20% off at Nike

Additionally, watch for December deals like slip-on shoes for $11, athletic pants for $11, dress shirts for $8, quarter-zip fleece sweatshirts for $11, jeans for $11, and sweaters for $14.

5. Tools

If you like gifting tools to friends and family — or even yourself — know that December is a great time to shop for these items.

In November 2022, we saw just under 400 tool and hardware deals, with about 22% being Staff Pick-worthy. But the month after, we saw about a 13% increase in the number of tool deals overall, which provided more opportunities to find great savings before the holidays.

Some of the most popular offers we saw last year included a Ryobi ONE+ 18V cordless handheld electrostatic sprayer for $24, an AmazonCommercial 8×16′ heavy-duty waterproof mesh tarp for $10, a Ryobi 48-piece project set for $10, and a Sun Joe high-volume inflator for $13.

Watch Amazon for December sales, too. Last year, it knocked up to 44% off Black + Decker tools, an extra $25 off $100 purchases of Makita tools, and up to 55% off DeWalt 20V Max tools and accessories.

6. Victoria’s Secret Semi-Annual Sale Items

The well-known lingerie brand Victoria’s Secret offers up a summer and winter semi-annual sale each year, and we expect the latter Victoria’s Secret Semi-Annual Sale for 2023 to begin in late December. It should start right after Christmas and run for a couple of weeks into January, providing plenty of opportunities to save on intimate favorites.

Last year, Victoria’s Secret offered up to 60% off bras, underwear, pajamas, and activewear during its winter sale. Plus, shoppers could bag free shipping on orders of $100.

If you’re a fan of the brand, it’s worth watching throughout December as a whole, too. We saw an excellent offer of 10 pairs of underwear for $35 early in December 2022. So there’s a good chance the deal will return before the Semi-Annual Sale again this year.

7. Seasonal Produce

You might not think of seasonal produce as a great buy in December, but the cold temperatures don’t mean you’re out of luck when it comes to fresh fruits and veggies.

Look for mandarin oranges, Meyer lemons, and kiwi to be at their peak. As for veggies, pick up wild mushrooms, beets, turnips, rutabagas, winter squash, collard greens, kale, kohlrabi, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, and chestnuts to serve in your winter dishes.

And if you want to shop local, check out this seasonal food guide to find out what’s in season in your area.

And 1 Thing to Consider Buying in December

Wedding Dresses

This one isn’t a guarantee, but if you’re in the market for a wedding dress, then December might be a good time to shop. Designers tend to drop new collections in January, which means previous lines see discounts the month before.

However, since engagements are popular around the holidays, some stores may hold off on dropping prices until January.

Given that many future brides don’t shop for dresses immediately after getting engaged, though, this doesn’t mean we’ll see any cheaper deals in a month. If you’re ready to shop, start trying to find deals now.

5 Things NOT to Buy in December


When to buy: January

Why: White sales in January will offer excellent savings on bedding of all kinds, from sheets, to comforters, to pillows.

Exercise Equipment

When to buy: January

Why: Thanks to the influx of health-related resolutions, we see a fair amount of deals on exercise equipment in January, so it’s best to shop then.

Gym Memberships

When to buy: January

Why: Similar to exercise equipment, gyms start offering significant deals in January to appeal to the newly health-conscious crowd.


When to buy: January or February

Why: Great deals on TVs can pop up at any time of year, but in January there will be a bigger push for savings with the Super Bowl on the horizon.

Winter Clothing

When to buy: January or February

Why: Some deals usually pop up around Black Friday, but the best deals tend to come in January or February, when the winter season is well underway.

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