Your personal shopper stories

There couldn’t be a better time to uncover your ideal capsule wardrobe for Autumn/Winter and we know a few people who could help…

Our personal shopper service is available in stores across the country where our style gurus are on hand to offer friendly advice and outfit suggestions with no obligation to buy. Members of the Debenhams Design team recently shared with us their personal shopper stories and here are some of our favourites…

June says…

“Assuming personal shoppers were something for the rich and famous I’d always put it off, however I decided to give it a go and have not looked back.  As soon as I arrived I was treated so well, I was offered a drink, a magazine and a lovely big changing area with cooling fans for such a hot day.  I instantly felt relaxed whilst my personal shopper zoomed off to collect clothes for me to attend 2 hen parties and my own Birthday party.

The things she chose were definitly not things I would have chosen although with a little coaxing and willingness to open my mind I tried them on and took them all.  I feel the best part is when you are wearing them and receiving really nice comments.  I almost didn’t want to confess to my secret!  Its a great experience and one I wish to repeat again SOON.  It’s also cost effective as it stops me buying things I will only wear once and put to the back of my wardrobe.”

Liz says…

“I didn’t think a personal shopper would be my thing but I got it as a gift with a £200 gift card so it would have been rude not to take advantage!  I had a fab time, felt really pampered and my personal shopper was so good.  She knew my size just by looking at me and was able to immediately tell what I would look good in.  And blimey she was right, the outfits I got were from Coast, they looked and felt amazing – and still do.

So ok, I spent more than the £200 I had been given!  But I don’t regret a penny.  Having had the experience, I then knew what styles would look good on me and can apply that knowledge to all my shopping.  Go for it if you get the chance!”

Sarah in her new outfit

Sarah looking fabulous in one of her new outfits

Sarah says…

“I used the Personal Shopper service at the Oxford Street branch. I am a 5′ size 16 woman who finds it very hard to pick clothes that not only fit but look half decent! My husband booked it as my 30th birthday present so we went along, not feeling too hopeful that someone else would be able to find stuff that I couldn’t.

I was so surprised at the outcome. The advisor sat me down and talked to me about my likes and dislikes and immediately started giving me advice on the types and colours of clothes I should go for. i.e. she advised me that I should go for bright vibrant colours as I have such pale skin, she said pastel colours would drain any colour I had left out of my face. She was so right!

She went into the store while I stayed in the private dressing area with my tea and biscuits and brought up a rail full of clothes. I must admit when I first saw them I thought ‘Not in a million years would I wear that.’ I decided though to be brave and just try everything on, what could it hurt? I found I was liking a lot of the clothes that I would never have even picked off the rails as they were too short, too bright, too revealing etc.

There was no pressure to buy at all, we just divided up the clothes into what I liked and disliked. I bought most of the ‘like’ rail and have a staple wardrobe which will last through a few different seasons. It was such an amazing day and I had a beautiful outfit to wear that evening to dinner and the theatre. ”

Barbara says…

“A couple of years ago I was invited to a charity black tie event at the Cafe Royale in London, I was invited two days before the event! I panicked about what I was giong to wear and a friend in work suggested that I try the personal shopper service in Debenhams. I went straight to the Preston store and although I turned up without an appointment I was told that they would be able to help me in half an hour.

The ladies in the personal shopper department were absolutely marvellous. I have had a severe skin condition all my life and although it’s much better now I have lots of scars. The scars are particularly evident on my arms, yet I felt completely comfortable telling the ladies that I didn’t like showing my arms and why. All the outfits they brought me were appropraite for the event, but also appropriate to what I had told them about my arms.

I ended up with a lovely dress, shoes, jewellery and evening bag. I enjoyed the event very much and also had a few compliments on the night about my whole outfit.”

Have you used our personal shopper service? Feel free to comment below to share your story.

Join the Debenhams Design Team


  1. by Sandra on March 17, 2015  10:37 pm Reply

    I have been using the personal shopper service in Oxford for 3 years now, I have become so confident after meeting the personal shopper there she is a credit to your company, everyone of my friends and family have noticed that I have changed, feel feminine again comfortable with my imagine. I had lost confidence in my appearance after an illness - body changes but now I don't know what I'd do with out this particular personal shopper choosing my outfits. I feel happy with my image feel it has changed me in day to day life . It's a VIP service in Oxford I recommend it as I have to everyone I know.

  2. by Jenny Holl on March 29, 2015  12:02 pm Reply

    I have previously used the Personal Shopper at your Taunton store and thoroughly enjoyed the experience.
    I am going to my son's wedding in America in June and tried to book the service again only to find that is no longer available at the
    Taunton store. I was very disappointed, can you tell me why the service is no longer available there?

    • by Ellie on March 30, 2015  4:53 pm Reply

      Hi Jenny, I've passed your comments on to our customer services team who will e-mail you shortly. Many thanks

  3. by Caroline on February 2, 2016  6:21 pm Reply

    On Sat 28th Nov'15 I visited Debenhams in Oxford Street to complete the outfit for my Goddaughter's Wedding only 7 x days away, feeling very nervous as I had left it to the last minute. I ordered a beautiful black & gold lace dress on-line from your 'Debut' Collection but had to find everything else! On asking an assistant in Ladies Wear if someone might have time to help me out she suggested I went up a floor to The Personal Stylist Department. I was met by a charming lady called ‘Jeanne’ Bangura-Panton who - although I had no appointment & it was a Saturday near Xmas - said she would fit me in, if I could be a little patient between her bookings. Jeanne then proceeded to give me VIP treatment & nothing was too much trouble, even down to refreshments. I left feeling 'totally spoilt' with only shoes left to finish off my Wedding Outfit - & that was only because my size was out of stock! Pls pass on my comments to her, be it a little late & I will definitely be returning in April to see her when my other Goddaughter also gets married.

  4. by Glenys Robinson on February 19, 2016  4:13 pm Reply

    I used the Personal Shopper (Alex) at Debenhams Hanley this morning for the first time in my life, why oh why has it taken me 75 years to discover this service, what joy to be taken to a large, comfortable, changing room, given a cup of tea and magazines while she found and delivered to me lots of lovely outfits for my sons wedding. I came away a very happy shopper with a perfect dress and jacket and advice on how to accessorise it. Thank you Alex I will be back x

  5. by Cheryl on April 17, 2016  10:30 am Reply

    After a hard day shopping in London , looking for a mother of the bride outfit we thought we would try the personal shopping service in Oxford Street
    I couldn't have been more pleased with the treatment that my daughter and I received
    Malgorzata was attentive and listened to what I thought I was looking for
    Thank you very much for making our experience special

  6. by Sheilla on June 11, 2016  9:06 am Reply

    My sister & I used the personal shopper experience in your Oxford Circus brand. We had never tried an experience like this before & we're not sure what to expect & were quite nervous. Sylvan was our Stylist & we cannot praise him enough for the amazing experience we had.
    We wanted evening dresses for my sister's 50th birthday party which was a black tie event. He made us comfortable,picked out dresses & styles we would never have even looked at & gave us the confidence to try them on. He was so warm & friendly. We both bought fabulously dresses & he even picked perfect accessories for them as well. We felt no pressure to purchase any of our items. But we both loved the dresses & accessories we did buy them. He took us out of our comfort zone & really gave us the confidence to try clothes we would never ever try! I now look at clothes differently when I go shopping & try to pick something a little different! We have booked another session with him next month for items for a summer wardrobe, just because it was so much fun & we wanted Sylvan to be our stylist again.

  7. by Alison Deegan on June 24, 2016  12:24 pm Reply

    I had the pleasure of availing of your personal shopper in Henry street Dublin yesterday, I always shop in Debenhams but this experience would be a first for me.I arrived on time and was promptly greeted by Aisling Mc Clean she welcomed me and sat me down for a chat to see what I was looking for. Within minutes she was back with outfits for me to try, I have to say I was a bit nervous at first " baring my middle aged flab" but I was so relaxed because Aisling was so friendly and professional. I got a beautiful dress which everyone agrees suits me well and I'm delighted. I recommend using Debenhams personal shopper to everyone it's a fabulous service,thanks Debenhams and most of all thanks Aisling for all your help, your an asset to my favourite store. Regards Alison

  8. by Anne on July 5, 2016  8:18 am Reply

    Went along with a friend last night to a personal shopping experience with Jeanne at Debenhams
    Oxford Street. My friend came out with four carrier bags full of clothes for various events that she had
    Comming up and a summer wardrobe. Jeanne took note of what she was looking for and came back
    With 2 racks of clothes. We had great fun selecting outfits and Jeanne made us feel very comfortable
    And even stayed past her time to help my friend finish her shopping experience. Thank you Jeanne I am
    Sure we will see you for the Autumn Winter wardrobe in a few months time.

  9. by Trish on July 25, 2016  2:03 pm Reply

    Hi, had the most amazing experience with my first ever Personal Shopper. Colin was recommended to me by another shopper In Debenhams Bristol when I visited 2 weeks ago. Last Saturday my friend and I went along to meet Colin. Wow he is just amazing!! I cannot recommend him highly enough. He made me feel a million dollars. He dressed me from head to toe for a wedding and it was in an outfit that I would never have chosen. I have sent pictures to my friends who all say I look amazing.
    To top it all off we laughed so much it was better than many nights out I have had!! Just the tonic I needed and came away feeling fantastic when usually I leave a shopping trip exhausted and very unsure of my purchases.

    Thank you thank you Colin!!! Cant wait to see you again to dress my friend for her sons wedding!!

  10. by Rebecca goldsney on July 31, 2016  6:42 pm Reply

    I booked my mother and soon to be mother in law in for a personal shopping experience at the Oxford street branch to purchase outfits for my up coming wedding. Both are " reluctant" shoppers and had no idea what they wanted. Our appointment was with jeanne Bangura-Panton who immediately put them both as complete ease with her smile and friendliness. Whilst drinking our wine she discussed what they liked and didn't and promptly came back with a variety of items in various styles and colours. She picked up very quickly that my mother in law was not comfortable in dresses and swiftly came back with separates that left my mother in law with a smile on her face! We left our appointment with a round of hugs and a promise to send pictures of the wedding in Las Vegas in September!! Jeanne is a real asset to this branch and made our shopping experience memorable and fun

  11. by Carolyn on October 31, 2016  8:18 pm Reply

    On Saturday I was in the Southamption branch personal shopper Eatie Eastwood was fantastic. She was so helpful and her ability to find the right outfit was brilliant. I went to buy a black jacket and left with three tops and two jackets . The colours and styles were perfect, she made you feel very special. I can not recommend her highly enough .

  12. by Louise Piddock on November 11, 2016  4:53 pm Reply

    I went to the Southampton branch today looking for work trousers as I have lost over 3 stone, after trying on a couple of pairs it didn't go well - I decided to try on one last pair and asked a lady for directions to the nearest dressing room. It turned out to be Jane the personal shopper she got me a smaller size that fitted perfectly and then some jeans, boots, a coat, 5 tops/jumpers and a scarf. It was the best experience and have been more happy with my purchases. Thank you Jane and thank you Debenhams Southampton the best day off in ages Louise

  13. by Jude on November 12, 2016  9:06 pm Reply

    Having been invited to a charity black tie event and as I want to look my best I booked an appointment with Sue the personal shopper at Debenhams in Chesterfield. I never have had the personal shopper experience before and today I had the most fabulous time coming away with a beautiful dress, jacket, shoes (x 2 pairs !!) jewellery, clutch bag and supportive underwear (which is very comfortable) plus I had my eyebrows waxed and I have a makeover booked on the day of the event with the girls on the Benefit counter. All my purchases then wrapped in girly pink tissue paper in "posh bags". Thanks to Sue I had the best experience ever of clothes shopping with such personal attention and I will be back to see her many times in the future. There is nothing to dislike you have your own personal large comfortable changing area which is air conditioned, refreshments to enjoy and magazines to read while Sue goes into the store to collect clothes to try on (many of which I would not have picked myself but they looked fabulous on me so it's best to have an open mind about the clothes being brought to you). It is a service that I will be recommending to my friends. Thank you Sue for all your help today.

  14. by Kate Quartano Brown on January 13, 2017  6:48 pm Reply

    Needing something smart casual (I have nothing between dead posh and sloppy) and being a complete shopophobe, and also being a difficult shape and not good in frocks, I booked in with Jenni in Oxford Street this afternoon. She took lots of details and then left me in a quiet room with a cup of coffee and some magazines while she went and found a railful of tops and jackets and trousers. All of them fitted though some were cut better for me than others, there were several pieces I would never have chosen but which looked brilliant, and I came out with two really smart outfits which also impressed my very picky husband. The whole experience was completely, and amazingly, pain-free (also for my pocket, since Jenni managed to find lovely things on the sales rails). I'm determined to go back in the summer and do the same for summer clothes. Please send my thanks to Jenni!

  15. by Paula Gamble on February 4, 2017  6:35 pm Reply

    I needed an outfit for my daughter's wedding in April, so I went to
    Debenhams at the white rose centre. Right from the start the personal shopper who was also called Paula, made myself and my friend who had gone for moral support welcome. She made us both a drink, then while we sat chatting she went off to fill a rail full of beautiful dresses and jackets. It was so easy just trying things on and not having to go around the store myself. I bought a gorgeous dress, jacket bag and fasinator. She then gave us a voucher each for a free drink and cake in the restaurant, and some perfume samples. All in all it was a very positive experience and one which I would certainly recommend. Thanks Paula for making me look lovely at my daughter' wedding!

  16. by Lynn on February 18, 2017  8:59 pm Reply

    MY friend and I had a personal shopper experience in Southampton with Jane . Wow, brilliant ! I tried on things that I would never have even taken off the rail. She was absolutely brilliant, thank you Jane for such a good day and making me feel good in my clothes .

  17. by Mandy L. on February 27, 2017  12:33 pm Reply

    I have had a personal shopper appointment at the Oxford Street branch nearly a year ago now with Jeanne. This was my first time trying this sort of service after a desperate day spent for hunting for a white tie (!) event dress. The amazing thing was that I went into the same store earlier that day and found nothing! By accident I returned and saw the advert so I gave it a go. SHE WAS AMAZING. After a quick conversation what I wanted and more importantly what I did not, she ventured out into the store (without me, I was relaxing) and returned with about 10 amazing dresses - none of which I have seen on my previous store visit. I would have easily bought three if there was enough money ;) . She totally understood the brief and found me an amazing dress for my dinner. I absolutely loved the service and will only buy dresses this way in the future. A late, but a big thank you to you Jeanne!!

  18. by Kellie Hall on March 5, 2017  6:53 pm Reply

    Used this service yesterday at the DERBY branch. Cannot recommend it enough. Jo was fantastic. I am the mother of the bride very soon, already had my dress so took it along and needed accessories inc shoes and a balero to match. Everything Jo bought through was perfect and I purchased everything. Didn't have to do any shopping! Will definately use again and recommend to everyone. Thank you so much.

  19. by Deirdre Gilchrist on April 16, 2017  10:34 pm Reply

    I used this service in Debenhams Belfast last Wednesday 12th April. I had asked my DIL to come and help me choose something to wear at a reunion. She went online and booked a slot. We were 15 mins late cos I got held up and there was no problem with that. Margaret Rafferty was my Personal Shopper and I will go back to see her again. She was brilliant. I am a casual person and was a bit apprehensive that she would want to "overdress" me. She definitely didn't push anything on to me that I didn't want and love. Between my DIL and herself they have got me into a dress that I love and I am a jeans/trousers person. Also challenged me a bit and I took her advice. I couldn't praise Margaret enough and as I said I will definitely be back. In fact am online at the moment booking a slot!!!

  20. by T McLernon on May 2, 2017  7:17 pm Reply

    I was going to a wedding and I went to Debenhams in Castlecourt, Belfast and did not have an appointment. But Margaret Rafferty took me on - no easy task! She took me into the room. Gave me a drink and a magazine. She went off and came back with a rail of dresses. I have to say, I would have walked past everyone of them in the shop. She said try them on, and she lifted one, that she said she thought was perfect. I tried it on and I bought it. Never even tried on the rest. She got me shoes and a bracelet. They weren`t even expensive. I honestly could not believe it. She even got me a wrap to suit.

    She was unbelievably nice and put NO Pressure on me to buy anything.

    I will have no hesitation in going back to visit Margaret again and I would gladly recommend the personnel shopper to anyone.

  21. by Maria McNaughton on May 11, 2017  7:40 am Reply

    I used the Personal Shopper Service at the Blackpool store on Tuesday 9th having been helped by their brilliant lady, Jane on previous occasions & this time, for outfits for my daughter's wedding weekend. As a 64 year old who feels frumpy, unattractive and out of their depth, I just LOVE shopping this way. She seems to understand very quickly what suits you, the way your mind works & gently challenges you to try out new styles that flatter and surprise. She is thoughtful of costs, especially if you're buying lots and ever patient, warm and genuine. Jane not only helped me sort out a full outfit including hat and shoes but also helped me choose lovely dresses and boleros for the night do's. Can't praise her enough; can't praise the service enough. Sincere thanks. You've transformed my attitude to clothes' shopping from dread to confidence and pleasure!

  22. by Ruth Pollock on May 28, 2017  11:06 am Reply

    I used the personal shopper services in Brighton on the 13th May. By sheer chance the personal shopper was free and I was desperate! I had a posh party to go to and and big birthday occasion coming up. Nicoletta Marini was absolutely charming and very friendly. She asked me what I was searching for and when I said pretty , floaty and flowery she went and gathered armfuls of beautiful dresses. None actually fitted the occasion perfectly. When I said one of my friends was wearing a 'gown' and Louboutin heels Nicolette understood perfectly and I am the proud posesser of the most gorgeous black cocktail dress and killer heels. I felt like a million dollars! I would thoroughly recommend Nicoletta and the whole experience. Would definitely do it again. Thank you so much!

  23. by Amanda Bennett on May 31, 2017  9:46 am Reply

    I needed to buy a dress for a friend's wedding and had heard Debenhams at Lakeside had a great selection. Although I hadn't booked a formal personal shopper session, I was allowed to use the big changing room as it was empty and I had over 20 dresses to try. The personal short, Jan Everett was fantastic. She was honest, energetic, interested, discreet, incredibly helpful and overall made a difficult experience really easy for me - I am not a great shopper. I bought several items which look great and can be worn on different occasions, not just the wedding. She even rang around different stores to find the right size in one part of a two piece. Having found it she reserved it and it arrived soon after. This is my only personal shopper experience and I know some people have a difficult time, but I would recommend Jan Everett highly to anyone.

  24. by Jackie Cole on June 28, 2017  3:50 pm Reply

    My Daughter is getting married in August and we booked a personal shopper slot for my Mum who is in her 80's. We met Andrea and she made the whole experience amazing. She was so friendly, helpful and honest from the offset. She was just lovely with my Mum and nothing was too much trouble. My Mum came away with everything apart from her shoes and she could not have been happier. There was no pressure to buy anything and she was also very honest which I think you need.
    I would like to say a personal thank you to Andrea for the whole experience and let her know that she does an excellent job.

    Kind regards
    Jackie, Connie and Leanne

  25. by Ana-Marie McFarlane on July 30, 2017  2:25 pm Reply

    I had a really great experience with the Clapham Junction personal shopper, Sharon, she was a real star and made the whole, previously detested, shopping experience a really positive one. Came in for two dresses and left with three plus a heap of other stuff. She knew the shop layout like the back of her hand and after finding out my preferences guided me through the departments knowing exactly what she was looking for and helped me decide on the best purchases with honesty and openness. I left feeling very happy with my purchases and feeling very pampered and privileged, my fourteen year old also came along and cannot wait to do it again!!

  26. by Alana on September 10, 2017  1:11 pm Reply

    I had a fantastic personal shopper experience albeit a couple years back (I'm looking at this blog now as planning on taking a friend back there f). I was going back to work in the City after a few months of being away due to surgery and needed to have a capsule wardrobe. I went in with no expectations other than the actual worry I would be pressured into spending hundreds..... quite the opposite happened. From the moment I arrived I was put at ease, offered a drink and made to feel relaxed. I was asked plenty of questions as to why I was there and what my usual style was. The personal shopper, a mature lady, did an amazing job and put together a brilliant capsule wardrobe for me and actually also suggested sale items. In addition to this, she measured me for a bra (Wasn't expecting that!) and helped me to invest in a couple of really good bras that completely enhanced my sillhouette and worked well with the clothes I purchased. There was no hard sell, all the clothes were modern - not too dowdy or funky and appropriate for my age( Early 40s) and I ended up buying some designs I would never have considered myself. I would definitely use her again. I was surprised by the experience and would recommend this particular store and lady to anyone. The free service is a great bonus as I wouldn't have paid someone to help me purchase clothes. I have no idea if Nicola (Harrow) is still there but call and ask if you want excellent PS experience.

    • by Lisa Foote on September 11, 2017  11:11 am Reply

      Hi Alana,

      Thanks for you feedback, we're so glad to hear you had a great experience with our personal shopper service!


  27. by Lorna on October 9, 2017  3:53 pm Reply

    Imade you are a legend! I booked the personal shopper service for last Saturday not for a special occasion, but just to have input from someone to try and update my very boring plain wardrobe. From the moment I was met at the door, I knew booking was a good idea. I met Imade and we had a chat and off she went. Due to staff shortage, my friend who had also booked the service agreed to share a slot which put Imade under a great amount of pressure, but she pulled it off and was unflappable. She bought back up another rail for my friend and we had a rummage through each other's rails and cherry-picked between the two. The last words I said to myself as I left home that day was I didn't need any coats or jackets. I bought 3. Not only did she bring items of clothing that were well out of my comfort zone, but she gave me advice on how to wear certain items too. I left there £300 lighter (absolutely no pressure to buy) and will be booking again in March. I would have bought more, but a lot of this seasons styles even with promoting are just not my style. As manic as it was, there is a great sense of calm and you have time to think about what works and doesn't instead of fighting your way through other shoppers or being limited to only take 8 items into a standard changing room.

  28. by Sheila Beard on May 11, 2018  6:52 pm Reply

    Visited Debenhams at Southend On Sea today to browse wedding outfits for a family wedding we are attending in Scotland in June. We were approached by Nikki Rennell and what an enjoyable experience she made selecting an outfit and accessories. Nikki selected a dress which I would never have chosen for myself but once I tried it on I knew it was perfect. Nikki then ran around picking the perfect accessories to go with this and even found the perfect shoes to go with it. This is no mean feat as I have so much trouble selecting footwear. Cannot praise Nikki enough she was a perfect personal shopper and a credit to Debenhams.

  29. by Katharine Abrehart on January 5, 2019  11:07 am Reply

    I decided to try out the personal shopper experience at the Chelmsford store, it was a last minute decision. I had planned to go shopping for new work wear as I was starting a new job. I don’t like shopping and often leave the store with nothing or the same old stuff or worse feeling down and frustrated.
    Sam was my personal shopper, she was friendly and settled any nerves I had within a few minutes of meeting her. Sam asked me what I was looking for, favourite colours and sizes. Sam went off to get a rail of clothes she thought I should try. Nearly everything Sam picked out for me looked fantastic and she even made me step out of comfort zone to try different styles and colours. I left the store with more bags than I could carry but more importantly I felt great! It was an amazing experience and Sam exceeded my expectations!! Can’t wait for spring/Summer to book again and ones again feel fabulous. Thank you Sam xx

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