10 Best After-Christmas Clearance Items to Buy (& How to Get up to 90% Off!)

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Hobby Lobby Christmas clearance in-store display

The Christmas clearance shopping is here! 🤗

Oh, how we love this sweet, little word: CLEARANCE! 😍 The after-Christmas clearance sales are here – 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.

christmas decor items in Target cart

Usually, retailers like Target, Walmart, Michaels, Hobby Lobby, and other popular stores start marking down their holiday inventory to 50% off on 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 29th-31st), many stores will mark down their Christmas clearance items to 70-75% off. With COVID-19 throwing a wrench into most holiday activities, we can’t be 100% sure what to expect this year, but we’re hoping that the Christmas clearance sales will be business as usual!

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

Walgreens Christmas Clearance

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. But stock up if you can!

Here are 10 Christmas clearance items to watch for:

1. Gift wrap

Store display of World Market Gift Wrap

Grab these items while you can! Look for wrapping paper, gift bags, tissue paper, gift tags, ribbon, 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

woman in gold bracelets holding up scalloped edged christmas tree 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.

hand holding a box of Ziploc Holiday Slider Bags

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

3. Kitchen & bath items

kohls christmas dish towels hostess anyone gift guide

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!

hand holding Bath & Body Works Hand Soap

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. Holiday decor

Mini Christmas Trees and Santa

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!

5. Gift sets

Hickory Farms gift sets at Target

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 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.

old spice gift set in hand in store

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!).

6. Seasonal food items

Ferrero Rocher Trees, Elf on the Shelf candy and tootsie pops

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).

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

Dunkin' Donuts ground coffee

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.

7. Clothing pieces & accessories

man wearing a Christmas sweater jumping down stairs

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!

8. Pet toys & treats

dog toys in stocking hanging in store

If your dog is like mine, he/she 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.

9. Books & advent calendars

red and white house standing advent calendars on store shelf

Books and coloring books are always a great gift idea, 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!

10. Stocking stuffers

ulta sugar cookie lotion stocking stuffer

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, beauty products, mini candles, travel games, crafts or activities, and more! Check out some stocking stuffer ideas here!

Try out this fun candy hack for boozy rummy bears on New Year’s Eve!

Join The Discussion

Comments 60

  1. Jackie

    I hope they will having these discounts this year after Christmas. Due to covid my stores had no clearance items after Easter, back to school or Halloween ☹️

    • sneg

      So true. People just can’t grasp the reality. We live in a different world now. Retailers are not going to discontinue holiday merch to 90% that quick. Most stores are not stocking up on holiday merch as much so they don’t need to have a lot left over and sell at a lot less. If you are going to see anything at 90%, it’s going to be slim picking.

      • Citizen

        China detected

    • Mrsyancy

      Maybe that’s in certain places, bc there was plenty of clearance where I live.

    • Diana

      I know! I was waiting for target halloween 90 or even 70.. they had taken it all away after 2days!!! 😭😭😭😭

    • animity

      Most of the stores here are almost completely empty of Christmas stuff. Hobby Lobby, not much there, Big Lots, really nothing there, Michael’s has very little too. Walmart had lots of candy left though. Probably not much of an after Christmas sales in our area. I was hoping to snag a new Christmas tree afterwards but I don’t think that is going to happen. Our Lowes had five trees left last week.

  2. Erin

    Target has been discounting holiday merchandise 50 percent off before the holiday in my area.

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Thanks for the tip, Erin!

  3. Happy Aunt

    I’ve noticed the trend among retailers to start discounting prior to the holiday so that there are fewer leftovers afterwards. Sometimes you can get things cheaper before Christmas rather than the day after. It’s not like how it used to be and I’m sure Covid will change things even more so.

  4. NV2007

    Our area Targets are almost completely cleared out by 12/26. Walmart is usually a great source for clearance deals long after Christmas – I LOVE stocking up on the wrapping paper at a discount. I don’t think I’ll wait around for 90% deals this year, though. Nor will I pop into the stores over and over again to see how low they go. But grabbing what I can at some kind of discount is a good plan.

    • Brit

      Yes,our Walmart actually hung onto Christmas merchandise until March! About 2 days prior to everything closing down, I scored some $3 holiday blankets. I am sure things will go differently this winter though.

  5. Pamala

    No food items? Check out expiration dates. Some are at least a year+. I buy them IF the date is past next Christmas. Candy canes from last year expire in 2022.

    • Katie

      Do you hold on to the food until next Christmas?

  6. Julie

    Our stores have been selling pallets/trucks to resellers vs discounting them in store anymore. Clearance never goes to 70 or 90 like it used to.

    • animity

      Ours too…it is soooo sad.

    • Marie

      Target is on to us! 😂😂😂😂

    • Gaby

      Same. Our local target and Walmart did not have any holiday things in their store on dec 26th last year because it was shipped elsewhere. Not even food items could be seen.

  7. Sylvia

    My target in PA has no items left even days before the holidays.

  8. Hipgrandma

    Meijer has their brand pumpkin spice items on clearance now. Especially k cups and bagged coffee

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Awesome! Thanks for the heads up on your find!

  9. Dara

    In January I scored one 90% off Christmas item at Walgreens which I was sure glad I’d bought extras of…HAND SANITIZER!

    • willowcat

      Score. By March first I couldn’t find any!

  10. Cheryl S

    If you buy something with “pieces” just open it after you purchase, and don’t wait until next year. I bought a Christmas tree on the 90% sale at Target….opening it to put it up the next year…missing important pieces, and it was too late to return or exchange…so worthless.

    • Kathleen

      Great tip!!

  11. Angela

    I can hardly find Christmas items around my city everything has been picked over

  12. Esther

    Macys had Christmas decorations discounted at 70% yesterday

  13. DT

    I was shocked to see that our Hobby Lobby had gone to 66% off as of Monday. Slightly disappointing as I don’t want to spend the $$ on myself/supplies right now. My Dad has give me a $100 bill every year since I was a teenager to spend on day after Christmas shopping. It hasn’t been as fun the past few years because everything is picked over or completely gone. : (

  14. E

    My sister’s target (S. FL) was apparently wiped out of Christmas stuff a few days ago! She said they had wrapping paper and some stockings, but no ornaments or other decor! I doubt stores will clearance much this year.

  15. Suzanne H

    Our Target is always wiped out on 12/26. Not sure when these folks are buying! LOL I did stumble onto a sale at Hallmark last year – got wrapping paper, Xmas stationary, envelopes and a few ornaments. Was happy to pull those out this year since I am not going out shopping! I am going to miss looking for red items that I use for Valentine’s Day and our anniversary as well as non-Xmas wrapping paper that I use for birthdays. Love 90% off wrapping paper!!!!

    • Ashley

      Do you happen to remember how long after Christmas when you hit that Hallmark sale? I really love their wrapping paper designs this year, and would love to stock up, but I do NOT pay full-price (or close to full price) for wrapping paper supplies. Usually I just get it at Target or Walmart the day after, but I don’t think I want to venture there this year…

      • Sneg

        Hallmarkstarts their clearance sale on 12/26 and continues through at least January.

  16. Saboo

    I swung by my Target after an appointment this morning. I was surprised to see the packed parking lot on a dreary, freezing, rainy weekday morning. And then my surprise and disappointment peaked at the Christmas dept- it’s wiped out. A couple bins of broken ornaments, a few shelves (not aisles, shelves) of candy, and tons of wrapping paper. That’s it. And Christmas is still 9 days away. There’s nothing to go on clearance. Hobby Lobby is nearly as bad.

  17. Lissa

    About a year ago I discovered that Target sells all those end of season items it quickly pulls off the shelves at Bulq.com and other similar online places. Resellers buy it in bulk. I see these items listed on eBay all the time. Out of curiosity I bought a few boxes, but unless you resell you end up with a lot of stuff you don’t want.

  18. hipsaver2

    My Walgreens Downtown has a ton of Christmas stuff. I may have to check them out. I plan on getting paper products from Hobby Lobby. Hoping to find gift sets with at least some stocking stuffer stuff for next year or to help out organizations with needed items like soap and lotion. It’s always hard for me to find things at Walmart for me due to no price checker in the store. Target last year wasn’t as great as the year before.

    • tipaye

      If you download the Walmart app, it has a price-checker 🙂

  19. Evie

    It will be harder this year because of online ordering and such.
    But, it has become more of a hunt and peck for years. Not really a deal till it is 75% or 90% off.
    The stores like government do not want us to have anything.
    They always say they are “helping the community.”
    Let’s be real they only help to make money for themselves!

  20. No

    The weekend before Christmas, there were no lights , ornaments etc to be had in my area, upstate NY. Lowe’s had 1 small makeshift aisle with a few trees and very few outdoor decorations.

    • Jackie

      Same here in KS! ☹️

    • Kelly

      I couldn’t find gingerbread items anywhere. I found gingerbread men shaped shortbread cookies and a build your own Nestle chocolate chip cottage but no gingerbread anywhere in my local area of NE CT.

  21. Jackie

    I just think it’s sad that Target and other stores are selling the left over stock to other retailers/private sellers. When they used to have their 90% not only did I buy a ton of great deals but I also purchased regular price items since I was already at the store. They don’t see that they are also loosing that revenue because I bet I wasn’t the only one who did that. Now I don’t even bother going after Christmas. There are no sales and this year I was there yesterday and there is nothing left even at regular price. The Christmas section was empty! Maybe a handful of candy canes and cookies, that was it. I never saw Xmas trees, lights or ornaments at my target this year…super weird.

  22. Madison

    Looking for sales on artificial tress online. I do not have any large retailers near me and don’t drive, so I would like to get a good deal on a tree online!

    • Carlye

      Got a nice tree at Home Depot 🙂 50% off

  23. Anne

    Is there by any chance a schedule of when all the stores had their different markdowns last year? I’m sure it will be different this year, but it would be great to use as a starting point to plan when I want to venture out.

    • Ashley

      Every store is different AND every store switches it up from year to year. I assume they base it on inventory levels. But trust me I follow the sales and no year is ever quite the same. I just tend to check more during this time. Pop in when I can after the holidays

  24. Renee

    The only items any of the stores had left here was some high price gift bags and a little candy. Most decor has been sold out since the beginning of December.

  25. Jill

    I always by my Christmas stuff after Christmas I’m not paying full price lol 😂

  26. Mia

    Target had already replaced most of the Christmas stuff with Valentines’ Day merchandise when I was shopping Dec 22nd in my town.

  27. Angela

    Our Walmart started taking all the holiday stuff off the shelf BEFORE Christmas..we had a hard time finding more wrapping paper earlier this week when we ran out smh.

    • C

      @angela- that’s employees hiding stuff in back and waiting for it to drop to 90 and then buying it… saw 4 employees on the clock doing that here yesterday- Carts piled so high it was 3xs over their baskets and laughing and chattering about how they would hold it in back for themselves… also I’ve seen this with clearance items that aren’t holiday items- stuff is “in stock” but nowhere to be found- including 15 or more big dolls that were about 80 percent off (sorry but for them to not update counts in 4 months and 15 of those big dolls to be stolen or broken is impossible lol.. if the regular clearance isn’t scanned in, it won’t drop more, in fact it will bounce back up to full price! So as these things continue to drop, someone is scanning them in to the system)

  28. Suzanne

    I’ve noticed that you can usually get good deals on candy at drugstores after holidays.

  29. Dawn

    Do you remember where the advent calendar in the picture is from?

    • Amber (Hip Sidekick)

      Hi Dawn! I believe that one was from Target.

  30. Marylynn

    Not sure how it will work this year, but Dollar Tree had wrapping paper at 2/$1 last year after Christmas. They’re not the biggest rolls, but they do carry Disney and other cartoon paper.

  31. Gina Delmore

    No discount is worth going out for right now!
    Covid cases are high.
    It’s finally hit one of our family members. Just waiting to see how far this spreads.
    Stay safe.

  32. irene

    As some of you have indicated, the after Christmas clearance is not the same as years past… surprise, 2020! LOL! Very little stock of decorative items, if any. But I was able to find a Stollen and chocolate-dipped gingerbread cookies at Aldis and a $.99 Panettone from Sprouts. I will console myself with a sugar high!

  33. Allie

    I’m not sure if I’m just an unlucky person here but last several years, I would go to Hobby Lobby and evening days after Christmas, there were always some wrapping papers left. This year, I went to Hobby Lobby as soon as it opened, and there were absolutely no paper or bags. Not even ONE. I went to another Hobby Lobby location several hours later and that one in a whole new city 40 miles away (had to travel for family) and had absolutely none as well! Am I the only one or did Hobby Lobby decide to not sell discounted wrapping paper this year??

    • Allie

      ***even*** days after Christmas. (Sorry! Phone tried to autocorrect)

  34. Jan

    I was able to grab Bic razor sets at Walmart today for $5 and a couple Secret deodorant sets as well. I was shocked those were available but otherwise not much that was too exciting at half off…

    • Jennifer (Hip Sidekick)

      Sounds like you got some great sets, Jan! Thanks for letting us know what you found.

  35. Lynn

    90% off today at socal target!!

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