The Ultimate Christmas Clearance Guide: Top 11 Items to Buy + Our Best Shopping Tips!

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Don’t miss out on Christmas clearance deals!

Hobby Lobby Christmas clearance in-store display

The Christmas clearance shopping is basically here! 🤗

Oh, how we love this sweet, little word: CLEARANCE! 😍 The 2023 after-Christmas clearance sales are upon us – and we couldn’t be more excited!

One of the best times to stock up on holiday decor, non-food gifts, paper items, ornaments, and more for next year is after Christmas when items typically go on clearance for 50-90% off! This is a great time to score deep discounts on all things Christmas so you can avoid paying retail prices next year.

Check out this video we created on Instagram:

woman holding a crate full of Hobby Lobby Christmas decor

Usually, retailers like Target, Walmart, Michaels, Hobby Lobby, and other popular stores start marking down their holiday inventory to 50% off on or in some places before December 26th in order to make room for New Year’s, Super Bowl, and Valentine’s Day items.

Then, a few days before New Year’s Day (around December 28th-31st), many stores will mark down their Christmas clearance items to 70-75% off.

Then, after the New Year, things get REALLY exciting…

gift sets with a walmart christmas clearance sign on the shelf

After the New Year is usually when you’ll start seeing up to 80% and even 90% off Christmas clearance at stores like Walgreens, CVS, Michaels, Lowe’s, The Home Depot, Target, AND Hobby Lobby!

While you can’t beat paying only 10% for next year’s holiday items, the selection of items may be picked over, so stock up if you can!

Here are 10 Christmas clearance items to watch for:

1. Gift wrap

American Greeting Holiday Gift Wrap Walmart

Grab these items while you can! Look for wrapping paper, gift bags, tissue paper, gift tags, ribbons, and bows on the cheap and stock up for next year (and boxed greeting cards, too)!

Also, consider buying colors or prints that can be used for other holidays throughout the year (i.e. silver/gold for anniversaries, red for Valentine’s Day, purple/blue for birthday parties, etc).

2. Paper products & storage

holiday paper plates

Stock up on holiday paper plates, cups, napkins, facial tissue, paper towels, cutlery, etc. when they hit rock bottom prices and store them away for next season. You’ll be able to throw next year’s holiday party on the cheap, which will take a little stress off when that time rolls around again.

Also, be sure to watch for discounts on holiday items like Ziploc storage bags & containers, holiday-colored plastic wraps, baking cups, foil pans with lids, and other kitchen essentials you can use all year long!

3. Kitchen & bath items

Another thing to be on the lookout for is holiday kitchen towels, potholders, dishes, storage tins, serving trays, kitchen rugs, bath towels, soap dispensers, and other fun items that would also make great gifts and hold up nicely until next year! I love having fresh, new hand towels to hang up in my kitchen or bathroom every year that I’ve forgotten about—and they make great gifts, too!

Dove holiday treats hand soaps

Also be sure to price-check any holiday household items (like dish soap, hand soap, etc) if they’re not marked down as they may ring up with holiday clearance pricing!

4. Ornaments

In the past, we’ve seen pre-Christmas clearance deals of up to 50% on ornaments from stores like Target. We’re expecting these deals to get even better after 12/25 when you can score ornaments from 75% – 90% off!

5. Holiday Decor

Handmade Holiday Wall Decor at Joann

This is the perfect time to stock up on boxes of lights, ornaments, stockings, tree skirts, throw pillows, and loads of other festive home decor on the cheap. If you’ve been waiting for a deal on a new Christmas tree or an inflatable for the front yard, now is the time to snag one at a huge discount!

Christmas clearance candles on a store shelf

Don’t forget to look for full-size seasonal candles that have been discounted. These would make great holiday gifts the following year so stock your gift closet while the prices are low!

6. Gift sets

Walmart Christmas Gift Sets

Need a belated holiday gift this year? If so, you may want to snatch up a discounted gift basket filled with food, hot beverage mixes, K-Cups, or candies. Otherwise, steer clear of stocking up on pre-packaged gift baskets that have food/candy items in them as the items may not be edible by this time next year.

However, if you don’t care about the gift packaging and are able to score a sweet deal on one, it may be worth breaking apart the gift basket and eating the items separately before they expire.

Clearance holiday gift sets at Walmart

It’s best to look for non-food gift sets, such as body wash duos, beauty sets, cute mugs, stationery sets, ornaments, games, etc. that you can use all year long OR that you can save to use for gifts next year (think teachers, neighbors, co-workers, friends, and family members!).

7. Seasonal food items

Winter Oreo Cookies at Target

Love drinking Peppermint Mocha coffee year-round? Have kiddos who love any type of cookie in their school lunches? Be sure to look for discounted food items and snacks in seasonal flavors that you or your kiddos wouldn’t mind eating soon OR for upcoming parties or events (i.e. Super Bowl).

We can’t get enough of those frosted sugar cookies from the bakery, so I’ll definitely be watching for those to be marked down!

12 Coffees of Christmas gift set

You can also often find flavored coffee and coffee creamers, refrigerated or packaged holiday cookies, various candies, flavored snacks, meat and cheese sets, etc. that will be marked down. But they often go fast, so you’ll want to be quick! Just remember to grab foods that you’ll be able to freeze or eat soon to minimize your chances of having to throw out expired food.

8. Clothing pieces & accessories

Women's Ugly Christmas Sweaters on display at Target

Don’t skip the clothing aisles! If you find any clearance on ugly Christmas sweaters, shirts, socks, pajamas, or other apparel items that would be fun to wear to your next company Christmas party, be sure to grab those while you can. You can always tuck them away in the attic and you’ll have a surprise when you get out the holiday items when next year rolls around!

These clothing items always make fun stocking stuffers and White Elephant gifts, too!

9. Pet toys & treats

display of kong christmas dog toys in petco

Chances are your pet likely won’t care if they’re chewing on a candy-cane-shaped bone in June or playing with a Santa-shaped squeaker toy in February. 😂 Look for clearance deals for your pet and stock up on treats if you think your pet will enjoy the items before they expire.

10. Books & advent calendars

christmas books for kids

Books and coloring books are always great gift ideas, especially if you have kiddos who participate in book exchanges at school. If you see any reading material on sale (especially the popular Elf on the Shelf set), grab them and store them away for next year.

Also, non-food Advent Calendars are another great item to be on the lookout for!

11. Stocking stuffers

A disney princess lip balm gift set on after-Christmas clearance

While you won’t want to purchase candy now to fill next year’s stockings, you can fill up your cart with discounted holiday pencils, plush toys, mugs, mini candles, travel games, crafts or activities, and more! Check out some stocking stuffer ideas here!

See all the latest clearance sales!

About the writer:

Kara is a writer and photographer from the Midwest. Her creative work has appeared in various publications over the past decade. With a background in finance, she loves to be money-savvy.

Join The Discussion

Comments 4

  1. TiffMeow

    I did great this morning at Walmart! Gifts for next year plus, we havenโ€™t had Christmas yet so we made out with 50% off!

    • Jessica (Hip Sidekick)

      Woohoo, TiffMeow! ๐ŸŽ‰ So happy you scored some clearance goodies this morning! ๐Ÿ’—

  2. Amy Bellairs

    Walgreens did not disappoint. I saved $264 at one store and $29 at a second location. My best bargain were the C 3PO stuffies that were regularly 12.99 and I got them for $1.29 each. I bought 19 of them for our Samaritan’s purse Christmas shoeboxes for next year!

    • Jessica (Hip Sidekick)

      WOW! Nice haul, Amy! ๐Ÿ™Œ So awesome to hear the trip was worth it!

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