Ever wondered what got you to buy a top or a pair of shoes that turn out to either be ill-fitting or hard to match with the rest of your clothes? Ever had to return a piece of clothing because you realized it didn’t suit you after you tried it on at home and got to see how it really looks on you after the shopping fever-fog wore off? You’re not the only one. And you’re also not the only one to wish those kind of things won’t happen again.
Fortunately, there are ways to avoid such fashion mishaps, which also are costly and just plain embarrassing and inconvenient. Here are 6 hacks to help you minimize styling missteps and bring a lot of clarity to your apparel shopping.
Know Your Body Type and Skin Tone
Sure, that top is what all your style heroes are wearing right now, but does it suit you considering your body type and coloring? Don’t be misled by the marketing pitches of various fashion blogs and sites, trumpeting this or that item as the next big thing that you should have in your closet. Your first and foremost consideration when buying clothes, shoes, and accessories is whether they actually are suitable for you. If you’ve got a rather athletic or rectangle-shaped body, for example, you’ll know that you can never wear dropped waist dresses or tops and that boxy silhouettes would never suit you. Go for the trendy item that are flattering for you (ruffled details, for example, are flattering for rectangles) and steer clear of those that don’t.
Also, the color of the apparel should complement your skin tone. If you have a cool undertone, for example, bright warm colors (orange, mustard yellow, etc.) will not do your looks any favors. If you have a warm undertone, the trendy pastel pink shades aren’t the right color for your skin, although fuchsia pinks or peachy pinks will suit you better. Knowing these things will help you narrow down your choices and make the clothing selection process less of a headache.
Determine Your Style Keyword Trio
Some shopping mavens have recommended identifying the three keywords that best describe your style. One example is CLASSIC, EFFORTLESS, and COMFORTABLE. Once you’ve determined your keyword trio, use it in assessing whether the top, accessory, or shoe you’re about to buy fits that criteria.
Go for Quality Dupes
You fell in love with those red strappy sandals recently released by one high-end designer label. It has since haunted your dreams and is making you obsess over owning it somehow. The good news is that some high-street brands deliver a slightly modified version (or even straight up exact copies) of some designer items, allowing you to own the apparel or footwear of your dreams without costing you an arm and a leg. You can search online for the affordable versions of the items you’ve been eyeing to make the process easier.
Never Buy Anything Without Trying It On First
The only worry about buying, say, gadgets online is its handling as it’s being shipped to you. However, when it comes to clothes or shoes, you also have the fit and suitability to your body that you have to worry about. Sure, you can always return them if you don’t like them, but that’s not helping you develop an efficient shopping habit, where there is little room for error and more convenience.
However, there’s also the fact that purchasing apparel, makeup, or footwear online may be less costly than the brick-and-mortar option. What you can do, though, is try on the item in question or test the product in the physical store and then order it online if you find the item suitable for you.
Take Advantage of Sales and Discounts
End of season sales can yield great finds at great rates, so stretch your patience a bit further and wait until the markdown phenomenon happens. Or you can look for and collect discount vouchers and other options that enable you to buy clothes, shoes, and accessories at a lesser price. For example, you can bring in your used clothes to H&M, which is running a textile recycling program, and get a discount voucher in return. You can then use the voucher to buy the item you’ve been eyeing.
When in Doubt, Don’t Buy
Buying clothing and shoes is similar to falling in love – you just know deep in your bones that the person is The One even without explanation. You have to be moved deep down inside in order to confirm that, yes, the other person is the one you want to spend your life with. Similarly, you have to be excited and utterly convinced of the appeal of the item before you take it to the counter. You have to be absolutely want it at the first moment you laid eyes on it, much more after fitting it or testing it. However, if the decision takes more effort and you notice yourself rationalizing and anxiously enumerating reasons to buy it, then that means that you probably should not get it at all. If you push the purchase, chances are you’ll end up regretting the decision.