Kohl's vs. T.J. Maxx: 5 reasons I find shopping at Kohl's faster, cheaper, and less overwhelming
- Danielle Bauter recently compared shopping at her local Kohl's and T.J. Maxx in Upland, California.
- She said the brands at Kohl's appeal more to her style and the prices are easier to identify.
When it comes to Kohl's versus T.J. Maxx, both are great places for finding savings on clothing, accessories, and housewares. But after recently visiting the department stores in my hometown of Upland, California, I realized I'd much rather shop at a store like Kohl's — here are five reasons why I like it better than T.J Maxx.
1. Kohl's is more organized and not as cluttered as T.J. Maxx
I found that the overall layout of Kohl's makes the store easier to navigate, whereas T.J. Maxx often has a menagerie of mismatched items that seem to be crammed into every possible space. As I walk through Kohl's, I often admire the orderly displays — crisp piles of Levi's jeans, walls of Lego toys, and an array of towels representing almost every color of the rainbow.
The store I shopped at also has more room to work with than T.J. Maxx, and I appreciate how each department groups similar items like athletic apparel together, making it easier to find what you're looking for.
2. Kohl's rewards program is easier to join and save than T.J. Maxx's
When I first learned about the rewards program at Kohl's, I was immediately sold. As its marketing slogan puts it, "It's like getting paid to shop." You earn $10 Kohl's Cash for every $50 you spend, making it easy to rack up rewards. The catch? You must spend said cash within a specified redemption period, or it disappears.
T.J. Maxx also has a rewards program, but it requires that you sign up for a TJX Rewards credit card. This credit card also allows you to earn points with Marshalls, Home Goods, Sierra, and Home Sense stores, too. However, I'd much rather earn cash-back rewards without having to use a credit card.
3. It's easier to determine the prices at Kohl's than it is at T.J. Maxx
Signs advertising deep discounts at Kohl's are like a siren's call, promising savings of up to 60% off. Overall I appreciate that prices are clearly marked and discounted prices are easy to identify.
At T.J. Maxx, I often have the opposite experience, as prices are more random and not easily identifiable.
Bonus: Between its constant sales and the ability to use Kohl's Cash, the benefits of shopping at Kohl's is more exciting than randomly encountering discounts at T.J. Maxx.
4. Kohl's offers more consistent items from store to store, whereas at T.J. Maxx it's often hit-or-miss
Kohl's carries the same items at its physical stores and online, while T.J. Maxx's merchandise is much less predictable. On any given day, you might delight in a pair of Kate Spade sunglasses or a Longchamp handbag — but there's no guarantee that you'll find it at another T.J. Maxx or even online.
Also, some of the items at T.J. Maxx appear to be picked over — I've encountered packages of bedding that had already been opened and shoes that looked like they'd already been worn. At my local Kohl's, most items are in pristine condition.
5. Kohl's carries fewer brands than T.J. Maxx, but they speak more to my style
Whenever I visit Kohl's, I always enjoy browsing Simply Vera Vera Wang accessories and LC Lauren Conrad clothing. You won't find these brands at T.J. Maxx. I also enjoy the beauty department, which carries Sephora products and Rihanna's Fenty Beauty line.
Though T.J. Maxx carries a wider variety of designers, I can be easily overwhelmed by too many options. Kohl's appeals more to my shopping sensibilities: I like that it's less of the "treasure hunt" experience and more of an opportunity to shop for brands that I already know I like.
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