Nordstrom Return Policy: Answers to Your 8 Biggest Questions

Updated December 13, 2023 by Kyle James

Similar to Costco’s return policy, the return policy at Nordstrom is really liberal and quite popular. But as with any retailer’s policy, there are always questions that many shoppers have, especially since Nordstrom changed some of their policies recently. Here are the 8 most popular questions that shoppers have about the Nordstrom return policy. Some of these answers can’t be easily found on the Nordstrom website.

Nordstrom Return Policy

How Many Return Days Does Nordstrom Offer?


While Nordstrom reserves the right to handle returns on a “case by case basis” they do not have a set number of return days in place.

I’ve actually heard of some shoppers return items that are well over a year old and have clearly been worn.

But be warned, if you abuse Nordstrom’s return policy to often you’ll probably end up getting banned.

See Also: Nordstrom Price Match Policy: Everything You Need to Know (and Much More)

Does Nordstrom Offer an Extended Holiday Return Policy?


I’m a little confused why Nordstrom offers an extended holiday return when they have unlimited return days.

But…for all purchases made between 10/16/23 – 12/23/23 you have up until 1/15/24 to return.

Can You Return An Item Without Receipt?


It definitely helps (speed wise) if you have your receipt but it IS NOT required.

If you return something without a receipt, Nordstrom will attempt to find your purchase within their computer system.

If they can’t find your purchase they’ll refund you the current price of the item in the form of a Nordstrom gift card.

See Also: All the Stores That Allow you to Return Items Without a Receipt

Can You Return Shoes or Clothing You’ve Worn?

Yes, you can.

Nordstrom does almost everything possible to keep their customers happy, this includes allowing returns on items that have been worn.

All they ask is that you treat them fairly and don’t abuse their liberal return policy.

The Wording “Case by Case Basis” Seems Bad for Shoppers…

While the policy states you can return stuff at any time, many of the folks in the comments have had their returns denied recently.

It’s safe to assume that Nordstrom management is taking a stricter stance on those returning items 1-2 years after they bought them.

They definitely are using the wording “case by case basis” to their advantage and denying returns when items are clearly worn and not in saleable condition.

What About Makeup…Can You Return It?

Yes indeed.

Both used and unopened.

If you’re not happy with it, for any reason, just bring it back in (hopefully with the receipt) and get a full refund.

What If The Item Has No Tag?

Not a problem, bring it in for a refund.

Heck, you can even return it if the item doesn’t have a tag and it’s been worn.

How Do You Return Online Purchases?

You have two options.

You can either mail them back with the enclosed return label or bring them back to your nearest Nordstrom location.

If you don’t have a Nordstrom account or are missing your order information, you can click here and print out a blank return form.

The best part? Return shipping is FREE.

Can You Return “Special Occasion” Dresses Without Tags?

No way Jose.

Because of recent abuse of Nordstrom’s return policy, “Special Occasion” dresses now come with a tag that reads “if this tag is removed the garment cannot be returned”.

After all, nobody wants to pay big bucks to wear a beautiful dress that’s already been worn once, or multiple times.

See Also: Macy’s Return Policy: We Untangle ALL the Confusion

Can You Get a Cash Refund at Nordstrom?

As of January 2017, you can only get a cash refund if the purchase was made in cash.

All other refunds will be given in either store credit, or put back on the credit card you originally used to make the purchase.

Nordstrom is cracking down on shoppers who abused their return policy, especially those whose store account shows more in returns than actual purchases.

Nordstrom Return Policy “Nitty Gritty” Stuff:

1. Be Prepared to Show your I.D.

When returning anything without a receipt they will ask you for your I.D. and enter your info into their system.

This is how the keep track of those who abuse their return policy.

2. Nordstrom Rack has Different Policy

If you make a purchase from their “Outlet”, known as “The Rack”, be aware that they have a less lenient return policy.

Namely, they only give you 30 days to make a return and you better have your receipt with you.

Also, they will NOT take back items that have been worn.

3. You’ll Catch More Flies with Honey than Vinegar

Make sure you’re polite and conversational when making a return at Nordstrom, especially when returning used items without a receipt.

Employees are much more likely to help you if you are. It’s simple human nature.

Ask the Reader: Have you ever returned anything to Nordstrom and was it an easy process?

By Kyle James

Photo credit to Phillip Pessar.


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And it does not say if you can EXCHANGE an item bought at a regular Nordstrom, at a Nordstrom’s Rack. Does it?

Jennifer W

I think the agent you spoke with provided inaccurate information – maybe John is a new hire on the side and unfamiliar with Rack vs Full Line Store policy differences.’s website states the following regarding exchange options in their site FAQ: “Sorry, we do not provide an exchange option at this time”.

Stating this as a former Nordstrom employee, they don’t cross-train the customer care team on policies specific to N Rack (at least they didn’t during the 5 years I worked with that team) – So if you showed up wanting to do an exchange, they would likely refund you the amount of the purchase (if within their policy guidelines) and you would then need to repurchase the preferred item you wanted to exchange for initially.


Your information is incorrect. NORDSTROM WILL NOT OFFER STORE CREDIT OR EXCHANGE FOR ITEMS WITH TAGS ATTACHED IF THERE IS NO PROOF OF PURCHASE. Aka you cannot return gifts even if they have tags. Their website gives false information as well and says they will offer store credit. I have been trying to exchange Christmas gifts with no luck. They need to be called out on their inconsistent and unfair policies.

Stephanie Mobley

Can I return my purchase to Nordstrom rack if I bought it from Nordstrom‘s

Anon Obvi

As long as it’s not designer you can


No you cannot.

Anon Obvi

If it’s something like a pair of Levi’s jeans or Dr. Martens boots, obviously they’re not going to return them without finding the transaction because Nordstrom is not the only place that sells them. And sometimes they won’t return an item even if it says Nordstrom on the tag because people steal from Nordstrom every day for the sole reason of “returning as a gift” and getting free money.

Anon Obvi

Abusing Nordstrom’s return policy is directly taking away money from employees, not the company. Nordstrom sales associates are commission-based and any returns affect their paychecks. Wearing a pair of $200 shoes for a month and then retuning them because you found a cuter pair is not only wrong, but is (in every employee’s eyes) theft.

Igor Sandler

And what about their policy when they(Nordstrom return department) admit receiving a return, then they lost it on their premises and because of that they are refusing a refund? What are we supposed to do in this case? In this is not a single case, it’s all over the internet including BBB


I went to return a pair of designer sneakers I purchased 2 years ago and wore 2 times. The left foot didn’t feel right. I checked the website about returns and it said no time limit. It also stated case by case and if you abused their return policy. I never did, I talked to the store manager on duty y and he refused my return stating they don’t do returns on designers.

He tried to show me a card, which I stated I never received 2 years ago, which I read is part of a new return policy. I asked can he show me the return policy he is quoting in writing and he said it is not in writing and I asked him, how would I know about this policy if I can’t read it.

I left a message for the regional manager and I will call the store manager tomorrow. I don’t feel comfortable with his reasoning and I will take it further if need be.

unknown sender

Hia, not sure if you are going to see this but i am a current employee. The store manager was correct in the sense returns for designer would not be accepted after two years. Most brands like YSL and similar have a 30 day window, as other brands have a 14 day return window.


Hey I have a question, I want to return a Moncler jacket I bought a year ago but never wore it. The jacket has the original tags and everthing but I lost the receipt and paid cash would they accept the return?

John chew

I was denied because the Canada goose coat was too dirty. This issue , the dye will run if cleaned , so coat was ‘dirty’. A classic catch 22. Service manager did not seem very willing to accept returns.