How I Finished All My Holiday Shopping Before December


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If shopping is a sport, the fall months leading up to the holidays should be considered training camp ahead of the season’s biggest game. And like any other sporting endeavor, the best way to prep involves conditioning, strategizing, and practicing smart plays.


As someone who shops in an unofficially official capacity (when you write about fashion and style, shopping is kind of part of the job), I thought I had pretty much mastered the art of scouring the internet for the best stuff and was destined for the shopping hall of fame. Then I met Klarna—the all-in-one payment and shopping service that took my game (and holiday shopping) to a whole new level. What makes it so great? Let me break it down.

First off, the entire shopping experience is ultra “smoooth”

I’ve always done the majority of my holiday shopping online while doing my best to ignore some of the more annoying pitfalls (like getting lost between a dozen different browser tabs or completely forgetting where I’d made an unexpected find). The Klarna app solves both of those predicaments by putting all the stores the internet has to offer in one easy, user-friendly place. On the Klarna app, you can shop from anywhere online without ever having to open a new tab ever again.

My search for cozy-but-quirky faux fur slippers that I knew a friend would love delivered lots of great options. Rather than opening tab after tab and then manically flipping around, I clicked on options that intrigued me for more details and saved them to my favorites (more on that in a sec). When I was ready to make a final decision a few days later, I opened up the app, compared everything at a glance, and picked my favorite in an instant. One gift down!

The pay-in-four feature makes it easy to shop smart

My friends and family don’t expect over-the-top, indulgent gifts for the holidays. But as we’ve all gotten older, giving gifts on the pricier side have started to make more sense. No one needs more stuff, and most adults on my list already buy themselves the under $50 things that catch their eye. Sometimes getting a gift that you know they’ll love and treasure means spending a little extra.

Still, it’s hard to swipe my card for a couple of hundred bucks on a gift (sorry, fam!). When the holiday season comes around, it can be a big strain on the wallet, too. Enter the Klarna option to Pay in Four interest-free payments. Suddenly, those big spends are way more palatable. I can plan out my purchases and budget for all my holiday shopping without going bust or settling for something sub-par.

My sisters have the most discerning taste on my shopping list, so usually they’re the luckiest beneficiaries of my holiday gift giving. I’ve already purchased the presents I knew they both wanted with Pay in Four, and because both of their gifts came from retailers that are Klarna partners—Saks Fifth Avenue and Sephora—the option to use the service was a no-brainer. That’s two more gifts off my list.

You get to discover only the really good stuff

During the holidays, I inevitably find myself running out to grab a last-minute present for a white elephant office party or making a mad dash to get something for a dinner-party gift exchange. I find that kooky, off-the-wall, cute-but-maybe-functionless stuff works well here… but by definition, those are the kind of gifts you just pray you’ll stumble on somewhere. Instead of wishing and hoping, I let Klarna’s superbly edited feed do the work for me.

On the app, I recently stumbled upon a collection page titled “Shop Like a Tokyo Trendsetter,” and found a super cute, retro-looking Instax camera that I ended up saving to my own “stocking stuffer” collection. In a London-themed roundup, I found a ceramic mug and curvy candlestick holder that felt like the kind of stuff you’d only find exploring some wonderfully British high street (these are destined to be winners for a gift exchange I do with my colleagues). My LA-based friend recently sent me a collection of her favorite things on Klarna, and I found a cocktail tree that lets you stick accouterments on like leaves. It’ll be the perfect surprise host gift when I visit her over the holidays.

Klarna’s “collections” feature is one of the best parts of the app. I can’t tell you the number of times I’ve ripped out the pages of a magazine or screen-shotted a cool idea I saw on Insta, completely intent on ordering whatever delightfully random thing I came across, only to forget about it when the time came to purchase. Being able to keep all the great things I find in one easy-to-find place is a dream. Consider all my random gift-giving covered.

And they don’t forget about the gift recipient who matters the most

Yourself! (I kid! I…kid?) Even if things for me aren’t technically part of my holiday gift shopping needs, they’re still part and parcel of the season. There are work parties and friend drinks where breaking out a new dress or little bag can feel joyous, plus, shouldn’t we be celebrating ourselves every once in a while?

I find it impossible to not keep an eye on things I’d like while I browse for someone else. With Klarna’s collections, I can save it and forget it, staying focused on the gift-finding task at hand. Also, I’m taking full advantage of the app’s price-drop notification feature. As soon as that cute little party dress I’ve been watching goes on sale, I’ll be ready to spring into action before my size sells out. Shopping with their Vibe rewards club also means I’m going to be able to get perks I can put towards another gift. Guilt-free holiday shopping for me? Done.

And voilà!

Just like that, my daunting holiday shopping is pretty much taken care of. I’m giving the Klarna app high marks on design, curation, and the payment break-out option (how was I missing that in my life??). But most importantly, I’m giving it a big shiny winner’s trophy for letting me sort all my holiday shopping way before the middle of December. It turns out anyone can become a better shopper after all.

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