What clothes, school supplies are included in Illinois' tax holiday -- and what's not

  • Markers and crayons are among the school supplies that are eligible for the reduced tax rate.

    Markers and crayons are among the school supplies that are eligible for the reduced tax rate. Patrick T. Fallon/Bloombergn

Updated 8/5/2022 6:33 AM

SPRINGFIELD -- Beginning Friday and lasting through Aug. 14, the state will reduce its sales tax rate from 6.25% to 1.25% for certain clothing items costing less than $125 and school supplies.

The "tax holiday" was included in Gov. J.B. Pritzker's "family relief plan," one prong of several bills making up the Fiscal Year 2023 operating budget. The tax breaks passed with nearly unanimous support in the General Assembly.


The state estimated the sales tax reduction would amount to $50 million in savings for taxpayers.

Included clothing items

The 10-day tax reduction includes clothing items costing less than $125 individually.

That covers standard items such as shorts, pants, skirts, shirts and underwear, as well as aprons, hats, caps and earmuffs, coats and jackets, belts and suspenders, rubber pants, lab coats, hosiery, scarves, bathing suits, school uniforms and neckties.

It also applies to footwear -- not only shoes but also shoelaces, slippers, insoles, boots, sandals and socks.

Excluded items

But it does not apply to ballet, tap or athletic shoes, roller or ice skates, ski boots, waders, or fins.

Shoppers also should not expect the reduced sales tax rate on accessory items such as briefcases, hair bows, handbags, jewelry, sunglasses or wigs. The reduction also does not apply to sports gloves, goggles, elbow guards, life preservers, wetsuits, shoulder pads, shin guards or mouth guards.

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Also excluded are protective equipment items such as breathing masks, hearing protectors, face shields, hard hats and helmets, respirators, protective gloves, safety goggles or tool belts.

Included school supplies

Binders, book bags, calculators, cellophane tape, blackboard chalk, notebooks, erasers, folders, index cards, legal pads, lunch boxes, pencils and sharpeners, supply boxes, protractors, rulers, compasses and scissors are all eligible for the reduced tax rate.

So are glue, highlighters, markers, crayons and colored pencils.

Excluded items

Shoppers should not expect other art supplies to be eligible for the reduced rate, however. Clay and glaze, paints and paint brushes, sketch pads and drawing pads will all be taxed at the regular 6.25% rate.

Textbooks, reference books, maps and globes are all excluded from the "holiday" as well.

Electronics and computers will be taxed at the regular rate. That includes cellphones, computers, flash drives, memory cards, data storage, computer cases, cables, printers and ink.

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