A lot of people consider their fashion choices to be very important—they are a reflection of who you are as a person after all. So, it goes to say that a lot of people are inclined to spend quite a bit of cash on their clothes. But what happens when life gets in the way, and your budget for clothing plummets?
It might be that you’re simply not making enough to afford the styles you desire, or maybe you’re saving up for a big purchase, like an engagement ring for your fiancée. If you find yourself on a tight budget, there is no need to worry that your style will slip. In fact, it’s not that hard to stay fashionable while you are on a budget using these tips:
Invest in Staples
You’re probably thinking “How is investing going to help me save money on fashion?” Well, listen up, because this is a very important lesson. There are some staple fashion pieces that will never go out of style—they serve as the base for your wardrobe and constitute the outfits that you wear every single day. If you invest a little extra cash in these pieces, then you will save some money in the long run by not having to replace them as often. Plus, it’s a good way to supplement some of the cheaper options in your wardrobe with some nicer pieces.
A lot of people have different ideas about what are and are not considered “staples,” and that’s okay! It all depends on your body shape, personal style, and what you feel most comfortable in. Here are some examples of what a lot of people consider to be “staple” wardrobe pieces:
- A leather jacket
- Black slacks
- Black flats
- A little black dress
These don’t have to be name brands or cost a ton of money. You can get a great pair of jeans for $20, and a great leather jacket at the thrift store. The idea is not to spend a lot of money, but instead to spend your money wisely on classic pieces that will remain in your wardrobe for a long time.
Stay Ahead of the Trends
Any true fashionista understands just how truly cyclical trends are. This means that everything that was once in style will most likely come back into style, for better or for worse. This is great news for those who stay one step of the trends, however, because they can always catch the next fashion trend before it becomes expensive.
If you read blogs, pay attention to fashion week trends and stay on top of what is hot in fashion. Not only will you be able to be one of the first on the fashion bandwagon, but you might also be able to find some trendy pieces for dirt cheap in thrift stores! This is due to the cyclical nature of trends and people’s tendency to dispose of their unwanted clothing without realizing those fashions will come back in style.
Have a Clothing Swap
This is one of the most fun options on this list. If you find yourself getting tired of your current wardrobe, then it’s time to throw a clothing swap party! This is a fun and innovative way to spice up your wardrobe for free.
All you do is clean out your closet of gently-used clothing that you no longer want or wear and encourage all your most fashionable friends to do the same. Then, grab some drinks and snacks and invite your friends over. Pick and choose new pieces from each other’s unwanted clothing until you have some awesome new additions to your wardrobe!
Shop the Menswear Section
With the fashion industry today being what it is, men’s clothing is generally less expensive. This is great news for the smart fashionista who knows how to rock an androgynous look and for every sale-savvy, fashion-forward gentleman. A menswear garment can easily become one of your best statement pieces with a little fashion know-how.
From bold blazers to basic white t-shirts, the men’s sections of stores have a lot of great clothing to offer at a lower price point. Here are some other great pieces that can be found in the men’s section:
- Graphic T-shirts
Of course, this last bit mainly applies to the ladies. If you’re already a man who shops in the men’s section though, there are still things you can do to stay within your budget while looking good. Sometimes, it means making changes to your habits outside your clothing. Do you find yourself buying new razors every month? If so, it might be time to invest in a beard trimmer Not having to make repeat purchases monthly can save you in the long run. It can also mean thinking ahead to prevent yourself from incurring future costs. Find your eyes straining from staring at a computer all day long? It’s not a good look. Instead, save your eyes—and your wallet—from having to buy glasses later down the line with a pair of sleek anti-glare shades.
Adjust Other Factors in Your Budget
Sometimes, after all this, it still might seem like your budget is still too small to accommodate the styles you really want. If that’s the case, it might also be time to sit down, look at your budget, and see if there are other unnecessary costs that you can cut out.
If you’ve recently started a home renovation project that leaves you little money for clothes, maybe you can determine where to make more affordable purchases. Blinds at low prices, or even DIY furniture allow you to make a great home space without leaving you in rags. If you find yourself spending exorbitant amounts on a chiropractor and massage therapist for back pains every month, have you considered that it might be a new mattress is what you need or a back-friendly stand-up desk to reduce shoulder and lower back pain? Or if you travel frequently for work, and you have to pay out-of-pocket until your company reimburses you, maybe you need to look into affordable car rentals and hotel expenses. You’ll be amazed at all the ways you can free up more of your budget by eliminating or diminishing repeat expenses with smart choices and quality products.
Fashion is a fun expression of what you feel on the inside. It helps you create a visual representation of who you are as a person. While sometimes it can be expensive, it doesn’t have to be as unaffordable as it seems. With some smart thinking and some expert tips, you can be your most fashionable self while still adhering to your budget.
Ally Gonzales is the founder & editor-in-chief of RunningSoleGirl. Along with blogging she is also juggling attending college and majoring in Exercise and Sports Science with a Sports Management minor.