With Black Friday and the holidays coming, I’m thinking about how to ball on a budget all year round. Living in Miami is often times intimidating when looking at things from a beauty and fashion standpoint. It is a big city at the crossroads of the Americas so every style is represented here. But now with the social media world, the expectations reach across cities and countries. This can make it hard to feel like you are keeping up with trends, and can lead to some people feeling insecure if they cannot stay up to date. As someone that loves looking good and feeling good, it is hard to keep up with these trends and not break my budget. So how do I do it as a college kid living within my means?
- Build a classic timeless style
Rather than focusing on buying the trends, build a wardrobe of basics. Jeans, plain t-shirts, basic tanks, and shorts. If your wardrobe already has all the basics then you can build it in order to add the trendy pieces.
- Spend money on good quality pieces that will be in style for a while
Now to create that timeless wardrobe you need to have those basics. So if I am deciding to spend more money on something, I tend to pick the more timeless piece. Why? Because then my dollar will go further. Sometimes that can be a tough decision to make but in the end, the nice J Crew t-shirt will last you longer than an envelope skirt from Anthropologie (not that it is bad to spend money at either store, just an example…love both stores lol).
3. Use discounts whenever possible
Shopping is all about the deal. Personally, I love getting a compliment and being able to say, “Oh, this I got this for the best price.” While spam emails can be a pain in the butt, they are great for staying up to date on what stores are having sales, but what is even better is shopping in person. College students do not take enough advantage of the copious amounts of stores that give a student discount. If you are interested in learning about stores with great student discounts, I will be posting another article with my top 10 favorite discounts for students. The outfit below looks polished and business casual, but four pieces in this picture come from stores with great student discounts: the button down in from Vineyard Vines as well as the jeans, my belt is from Francesca’s, and the shoes are from TOm’s, all of which give students a percentage off.
4. Buy trendy pieces at good prices
I’ve hinted at this in the first couple points, but the secret is to build a good wardrobe of staples and sprinkle in the latest fashion trends. Since we don’t know how long a trend will last, my strategy is to buy them on websites or stores that sell at cheaper prices, like Forever 21, Tobi, and H&M. They might not be the best quality, but if you have the right basic wardrobe then it won’t matter. The current styles change constantly so don’t break bank trying to stay on top of them. Shop smart.
5. Spice up old clothes
I consider myself to be an old soul. I love old movies, reading bound books, writing down plans, and especially classic rock. My favorite trend lately has been the graphic band tees coming back, but the cost of them can be outrageous at times. Rather than spending so much money on a cool cut out, it is way easier to do it yourself. If you don’t already own old rock shirts like I did, go on Amazon, and you can find them at super cheap prices. Then simply watch some DIY videos or go on Pinterest for some cutting inspiration. Another idea is taking a simple denim jacket and ordering cool patches online. I did that to a jacket I got at Forever 21, and now it looks like a completely new jacket. See an example of a cutout tee and the jacket below.