With the season of pumpkins and eggnog quickly approaching, now’s the time to revamp your wardrobe. If the end of summer has got you feeling down, there’s an easy solution - upping your fashion game. When you look good, you feel good - it’s that simple.
Interestingly enough, scientific studies have done the work on this, confirming that what you wear can influence how you feel as well as influence how others perceive you in a business setting. So let’s upgrade those clothes to brighten your smile!
Without further ado, here are five essential (and existential) tips to accomplishing your wardrobe goals this fall before you clock in:
Profile Yourself Before Styling Yourself
Finding out who you are takes a lifetime. But chances are, you’re an expert on the topic of you. Even if you don’t know what you like, you certainly know what you don’t like. Do you see yourself wearing a romper like this? If not, that’s a start.
Are you introverted, or extroverted? Realistic, or idealistic? Spontaneous, or organized? Inquisitive, or supportive? Beatles, or Stones? Et cetera.
If any of this feels irritatingly close to taking a personality test, that’s because it is. If you’re bold, you might want the bowtie instead of the snazzy, tonal ribbed slim tie. If you like trinkets, maybe those cubed dice cufflinks look appealing. Either way, if you’re modest and practical, then a ten foot long trench coat is probably not for you (or your bosses).
Making a List, and Checking it Twice
Ever wonder why grocery stores stack a bunch of candy in front of you before you’re ready to check out? It’s because a Stanford experiment in 1952 revealed the truth about impulse buying: decisions are like muscles, and once we’ve used them enough, we’re less likely to fight our impulses. Combat your sweet tooth the same way you do at the shopping mall — by making a list.
Not only does making an exhaustive list help you figure out your style, but it also keeps you from straying away from your style path once you’ve set foot in the store. In addition, a broad list gives you an idea of how you expect to look. Your vision will emerge, allowing you to focus and finetune what you want, the way you want it.
Mobile Apps are the New Aide
Now you’ve got a profile of yourself, and a list of how you want to look. It’s time to figure out how you’re gonna buy. One of the benefits of the digital age is that there are multiple ways to approach how you purchase items.
Pinterest is a good place to start — along with online shops that help with the visualization process themselves. Not only does it bring your list to life, but it gives you access to ideas and styles that may overlap with your own. Once you’ve got your list, apps like Honey can automatically direct you to the lowest price of the items you’re looking to buy.
You’ll find apps for coupons virtually anywhere, but if you want something different, CamelCamelCamel has the unique function of tracking Amazon prices in real time so that you’re always in-the-know when it comes to discounts on the items you’re looking for.
Buy Clothes that Will Last
It’s always important to save money, but sometimes the more expensive item saves you money in a different way — it lasts longer. A Professor of Fashion Design interviewed in Quartz broke down what to look for when identifying quality material such as: checking for density by holding the fabric up to the light, the more tightly spun the yarns the better, and making sure the stitching is evenly (and closely) spaced.
Expensive Doesn’t Always Mean Frivolous
This last tip is not for the faint of heart. Mark Bain has an unusual bit of advice for fashion goers: spend at least $150 on each item of clothing. There’s an important caveat, however. The point isn’t to go on some wild, spending spree you’ll regret once it’s time to pay for the electric bill. The point is that the more you spend, the more critically you have to think about what you buy. Spending too much forces you to treat your clothes like an investment rather than an impulse.
It’s a little like the famous study on credit cards and basketball tickets: we double our expense when we buy with credit cards than we do with cash. Overspending forces us to readily calculate what we lose, allowing us to use more caution than cravings.
In closing, upgrading your fall wardrobe for work is about upgrading in general. Figuring out your style is similar to figuring out your personality. There’s a good chance your fall wardrobe will stay with you for a long time, especially as US employers are increasingly allowing casual dress.