With her red cape on, Newsday Super Shopper Lauren Sheehan...

With her red cape on, Newsday Super Shopper Lauren Sheehan is ready to take on the Black Friday sales. (Nov. 27, 2013) Credit: Newsday John Paraskevas

Lauren Sheehan

Age: 27

Hometown: Levittown

How long have you been shopping on Black Friday? Since 2005.

What is your Black Friday mantra? If it’s full price, keep it movin!

Describe your Black Friday 2013 plans. Early on I started with my two friends; we always had a plan and always liked to shop at the same stores. Later on my mom started coming and now my fiancé and friends all team up together to conquer the Island! Levittown is a great area to shop as there are major player stores there (Target, Kohl’s, Best Buy, Sports Authority, BJ’s and Ulta).

What is the best Black Friday deal you've ever scored? About two years ago my fiancé and I were moving in together and Kohl's was having AMAZING black Friday deals. We furnished our entire apartment from Kohl's and had to leave with a flatbed to carry all of our merchandise out of the store. We got Black Friday doorbusters, plus a 15 percent coupon, plus 15 percent off for opening a credit card and Kohl's cash back!

What is your budget this year? If we find great prices on appliances (for our post-Sandy home), about $3,000, if we don’t see any great deals, about $1,000.

Who and what are you shopping for? I shop for myself, holiday gifts and for co-workers if they can’t brave the craziness on Black Friday. There are great deals on the iPad Mini at Target this year.

What is your shopping strategy, and how do you prepare for Black Friday? My shopping strategy is to be prepared! I start by checking and reviewing all the black Friday ads weeks in advance, I price shop and see which stores are giving the best deal and best price. (Target usually always offers a gift card with hot item purchases.) I make a check list and know what I am going in for. I then usually scope the store out a day or two before. Most stores always move the hot items to a different part of the store; TVs are never in the TV department. Sometimes, if you're extra friendly, associates will tell you in advance where you find something on Black Friday. I always dress light; it’s never fun to be running around a store with a heavy coat or jacket. I dress in layers and try to be able to put items in a pocket or handbag.

What tips do you have for others trying to score deals on Black Friday? Try to get a team together. If you’re a parent shopping for kids, have one person at Toys R Us and another at the second choice store. Also, check online early! Many many times stores are making their black Friday pricing available online! This is huge! 

What are some common mistakes to avoid on Black Friday? Don’t show up 15 minutes before a store opens and try to get hot ticket items. Always go early if it’s something you really want. Know your prices, sometimes a camera is the same price Friday as it was last week and they're only offering a bonus bag or gift card. If that’s not worth it to you, stay home and avoid the craziness. Don’t show up without a plan!

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