Fashionology 101 with Dana Bloch

Keep a stocked closet without an empty wallet

February 28, 2013

Just about every college student understands the idea of living on a budget, and it’s no exception when it comes to your wardrobe. Having a killer closet isn’t always the easiest thing when you have to worry about paying for groceries, school books, or any of the other expenses that come along with college life.

It would be great to walk into your favorite store and have the ability to spend hours buying whatever you please, but unfortunately not all of us have that luxury. It may not be the easiest thing to do, but spoiling your closet can be done even with a tight budget.

The biggest thing to do when it comes to saving your wallet is to ignore the fly-by trends that never seem to last more than a season. New fashion is always a fun thing to have, but they’re usually costly and don’t stick around for too long, so what’s the point? Buying clothing that will only be wanted for a few weeks isn’t something to spend much money on.

You only need to buy what looks good on you. It sounds silly to be a budget-shopper rule, but it’s true. Make sure you try on the clothes you’re planning on purchasing; nothing is worse than coming home to find out your new dress makes you look frumpy versus chic. Don’t waste money on pieces that don’t compliment your body, character, or personal style.

It may not always work out, but plan your shopping trip around big sales. End-of-season clearances, holiday deals, and random store discounts can add up and end up saving you a lot, which allows you to buy more but stick with the same budget you originally planned for yourself.

Try to ignore the brand names and high-end labels that represent the ‘best’ in fashion. Spend your money in stores that you can afford and that make you feel good. As long as your cart is filled with pieces that flatter not only your body, but your mood, it shouldn’t matter what label is on your clothes. Go for the low-priced bargain items, it will make you feel better when you see the receipt.

Thrift stores may not be your favorite shopping place, but you would be surpirsed by how much that can be found there. It’s usually a hit-or-miss attempt, but you can find gold if it’s a good day. Sometimes they even  have designer lables, sometimes with the tags still in place.

Second-hand shops are great when wanting to buy a lot without spending much. You can find just about anything in these types of stores, but you have to be careful to make sure your picks aren’t covered in stains or have big tares. Things in theses stores don’t last on the rack too long, so try it out before it’s too late. You may be surprised by what you find.

Aside from trying to save every penny possible, there are things that you should splurge on. Basic shirts, skinny jeans, colored cardigans, along with other timeless pieces are things that will be kept in your closet for a while, so it’s okay to splurge on them a bit.

When it comes to beauty products, opt to buy the drugstore prices versus the high-end stuff found at places like Sephora. There will be more variety of products in a drugstore versus the small selection at a supermarket, and it’s obviously ten times cheaper than most specialty stores.

If you have sensitive skin or need a specific type of product, beauty products are definitely something to splurge on. But if you’re the type of person who can work with any product name, and doesn’t mind a cheaper makeup selection, drugstores are the place for you.

Sticking to a budget can be pretty tricky, especially if you seem to fall towards the shopaholic side of the spectrum like some of us do, but a few alterations to your normal shopping venture can save your wallet without hurting your wardrobe.

No one likes a budget but it doesn’t have to put stress onto your shopping trips. A well stocked closet doesn’t have to be the result of an emptied wallet; save your cash while improving your daily wardrobe.


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