Some people were born to shop. They can track down rare art like bloodhounds on a scent, search thrift shops for hours looking for the perfect matching end table, and recall with perfect clarity what they already have so their purchases can coordinate. Most of us, however, are not like that. We're lucky if we come up with one great find after hours at a mall, and we don't have time to devote our lives to shopping. Luckily, there are personal shoppers who can help us with our deficiency.
A personal shopper is a person you hire to do your shopping. You can send them on specific missions with instructions to find a particular type of historical license plate once used on a taxi service or dispatch them with general instructions to pad out your work wardrobe. Some are paid by the hour, others are on salary, and still others are paid based on their results. Either way, they make their careers on their ability to make your life easier.
Not everyone needs or can afford a personal shopper. Most personal shoppers are kept on retainer, so you should only think about hiring one if you find it consistently impossible to find enough time off from meeting with dentists and looking after your kids to go shopping. If it's one time help with an outfit for a wedding or special event that you need, many upscale stores have shoppers on staff whose aid you can enlist in an emergency.
Personal shoppers can be given any type of assignment. If you have one, you can send them out to a specialty store in the next town over to find those cloth diapers you heard about online or you can give them a credit card and tell them to create a new fall wardrobe for you. Personal shoppers should instinctively know what you want, what you would look good in, and what you would like, so before you hire one, give them a test or trial period to make sure you're a good fit for each other.
If you love shopping and you think you would like to be a personal shopper, there's no specific career path you should take to get into it. A background in fashion helps, but if you spent years at a catering business dealing with customers and designing menus that fit them, you can get experience that way as well. The most important skills you need to have are patience, fashion sense, an ability to read people, and an accommodating nature.