What is Black Friday?
Originating in the US, Black Friday was traditionally a one-day in-store sale event taking place the day after Thanksgiving Day, marking the start of the Christmas shopping season.
Amazon first brought Black Friday to Britain in 2010, but it wasn’t until 2013 that the event gained momentum in the UK, when Asda introduced the first in-store sale, which had people flocking to their nearest branch to take advantage of the hefty discounts. The huge success of Asda’s event led to many other retailers introducing both in-store and online deals.
Retailers have since kicked off the sale earlier and earlier. Notably, in 2020, both Amazon and Boots launched month-long Black Friday sales before the big weekend, and they are expected to do the same this year.
What’s the history of Black Friday?
Black Friday shopping dates back to 1952 in the US, when retailers in Philadelphia discounted products to mark the beginning of the festive season. Later uses of the term in the 1960s saw the police referring to “Black Friday” when describing the chaotic traffic congestion the day after Thanksgiving.
The event gained international attention in the Noughties when coverage captured US shoppers raiding the shelves for discounted TVs and tech.
When is Black Friday 2021?
The 2021 event falls on 26 November, with deals dropping throughout the whole weekend.
In 2020, the landscape of Black Friday changed, with shoppers instead encouraged to stay at home due to the coronavirus pandemic and hunt down the deals online. This meant most of the biggest discounts could be found via the web, and this is likely to be the same in 2021.
What is Cyber Monday?
The Monday following Black Friday has come to be known as Cyber Monday and it is the last day of the sales. It’s named as such because pre-Christmas online shopping normally peaks on this day.
Some retailers continue to slash prices throughout the Monday, so it’s the perfect opportunity to bag a bargain if you missed out on anything over the weekend. It’s also the last mass sale event until January.
The Best Right Now
Calvin Klein 3 pack trunks: Was £41, now £25.80, Amazon.co.uk
There’s a reason why the Calvin Klein brand is so enduring with its underwear designed in classic styles for everyday use and comfort. Its men’s trunks are one of its most popular fits and you can save nearly 40 per cent on a pack of three in size XL, while discounts on other sizes vary a little more. Made from 95 per cent cotton and five per cent elastane, the low-rise trunks have the signature Klein logo waistband and are machine washable.
Dr Martens 1460 bex patent leather ankle boots: Was £170, now £127.50, Laredoute.co.uk
An instantly recognisable boot for very good reason, this pair of Dr Martens in a patent finish are emblematic of the brand’s style with their ankle-grazing fit, black upper, eight-eyelet lace-up design and yellow stitching. In our round-up of the best women’s boots, we reviewed the leather finish Bex boots, with our tester saying: “The slightly chunkier sole of the Bex model gives them a contemporary feel that still retains the durability, comfort and looks of the classic pairs.” Thanks to La Redoute, you can save 25 per cent on the patent boots right now by inputting the code “NOVEMBER” at check out. Make sure to bookmark our Dr Martens Black Friday guide for all the latest deals and discounts
Converse Chuck Taylor all star lugged hi tops: Was £70, now £60, Very.co.uk
A chunky, contemporary twist on the classic Converse style, these white trainers boast a gripped outsole for extra support, a platform sole with exaggerated lugs and a rubber toe cap for enhanced durability. Perfect for refreshing your wardrobe for winter, there’s £10 off them right now.
Birkenstock Madrid unisex-adults’ sandals in mocca: Was £50, now £27.10, Amazon.co.uk
It may be winter but there’s no reason why you shouldn’t invest in your summer wardrobe. A pair of Birkenstocks will see through the warmer months year after year, and this pair has nearly 50 per cent off right now for Amazon’s early Black Friday sale. Featuring a one buckle design and 1cm heel height, the mocca colour of the pair will look particularly great with jeans. The Madrid pair were included as a pair to buy in our Birkenstock buying guide. This deal has been so popular, it’s now only available in a size 9.
Tommy Hilfiger sunglasses: Was £89, now £65.69, Amazon.co.uk
Add some effortless style to your look and soak up the sun with these Tommy Hilfiger aviators, currently reduced by more than 30 per cent courtesy of Amazon. Crafted from metal, the timeless style has a retroprofile with an oversized round frame, matt black lenses, bridge and the Tommy Hilfiger signature branding. Whether shielding from the summer sun or warding off winter brightness, the unisex designer pair is an all-year-round must have.
Wrangler men’s regular fit darkstone jeans: Was £37.99, now £30.39, Amazon.co.uk
No man’s wardrobe is complete without a pair of straight leg denim jeans, and this pair from Wrangler are a timeless take. Sitting at the waist, and regular on the thigh with a straight leg cut, they’re a staple that you’ll want to turn to time and time again. Made from 99 per cent cotton and one per cent elastane, the pair are machine washable and come in an array of shades. Amazon are now offering 20 per cent off the classic pair – although offers vary depending on size – and for £30, you can’t go wrong.
Crocs unisex baya clog: Was £35.99, now £20, Amazon.co.uk
These shoes have nostalgia written all over them. If you thought Crocs had peaked during the Noughties, you’re wrong: they’ve been making a steady comeback and, while it’s a love or hate scenario, it seems like they’re here to stay. In our Crocs shopping guide our reviewer said Crocs are “comfortable, lightweight and breathable” and that “thanks to the material, they’ll mould to your feet”. For those of us who are still unsure about the trend, this discounted pair offers the perfect opportunity to try and get on board.
River Island shirred collared check dress, rust: Was £42, now £34, Very.co.uk
This River Island dress screams autumn and will fast become a wardrobe staple during the colder months. The rust-hued check design is contrasted with the black Peter Pan collar that would look great poking out of a jumper thrown over the top. Meanwhile, the midi-length and long-sleeved dress is given a nice silhouette with the cinched in waist.
La Redoute mid-length coat in teddy faux fur: Was £75, now £56.25, Laredoute.co.uk
This cosy coat screams winter with its super soft boucle faux fur material and mid-length cocooning. The tailored collar adds a touch of smartness to it while the double-breasted fastenings mean you’ll be able to button up from the elements. There’s also handy side pockets and the choice of beige and black colourways. The best news? If you enter “November” at checkout, you can save 25 per cent on the winter staple.
New Balance men’s 574 core sneaker, black: Was £75, now £54.20 Amazon.co.uk
Worn by models in London, dads in Ohio and now by you – Black Friday is the perfect opportunity to snap up a pair of New Balance trainers. This pair of men’s 574v2 shoes are reduced by nearly 30 per cent right now (depending on which size you choose) and are designed in the classic New Balance style. Slightly retro-looking with a suede/mesh outer material, they have a wedge heel type with a lace-up closure.
Ugg kids’ robley weather boot, walnut: Was £85, now £58.20 Amazon.co.uk
Kit your kid out for winter with a pair Ugg boots, currently reduced by more than 30 per cent, although prices depend on the colour and size. With an outer material of cow leather and suede and inner of leather, they’re ideal for keeping small feel toasty, comfortable and cosy during the colder months.
Ultimate strapless wonderbra: Was £40, now £26.40, Amazon.co.uk
If you’re in the market for a new bra, then luckily for you, Amazon had discounted leading bra brand Wonderbra meaning you can snap up this strapless design for more than 20 per cent less right now,though prices vary depending on size. Offering support and comfort while still giving you some cleavage, the strapless style is perfect for low cut tops and dresses. It won best buy in our round-up of the best strapless bras, where our tester said: “This really is the ultimate strapless bra. It is the most impressive bra that we’ve ever tried, with incredible support.”
I’d recommend signing up for accounts with your favourite brands so you can check out with your shopping basket quicker during Black Friday and not miss out. With an account, you can also register for email notifications so you’re in the know about upcoming deals.
Most retailers also allow you to create wish lists of items so when the discounts drop, you can add them to your basket and check out even faster. Lastly, it’s always good to check the RRP prices of items, so you know if it’s a worthwhile discount or not.