We know the difference between Valentino and Vetements. We can spot a fake Birkin from a mile away. But, as we’ve recently realized, some of our most tried-and-true fashion tips have come from our friends, family, coworkers and random women on the subway. Here, nine of the best fashion and style tips we’ve ever heard.
SPEND ON STAPLES, SAVE ON TRENDS
Trends come and go, but a timeless bag or coat is forever. In other words, go ahead and test out sock booties, just try not to spend an entire paycheck doing so.
RELATED: 19 INVESTMENT BAGS THAT WILL NEVER GO OUT OF STYLE
WHEN IN DOUBT, GO FANCIER
This one’s pretty simple, but it’s better to be overdressed than underdressed. If you’re not sure whether everyone else will be wearing jeans or ball gowns, err on the side of dressy.
TEST TRENDS WITH ACCESSORIES
You saw a supremely stylish woman rocking head-to-toe florals and you loved the look, but you’re wary to go all in. Test it out little by little (via boots, handbags or jewelry) before committing to actual clothing.
ALWAYS ADD A THIRD ELEMENT
Here’s the deal: If your pants and a top qualify as a first and second element, a third jazzes things up and makes the final look more interesting. For example, if you’re wearing jeans and a sweater, top it off with a fun coat, a statement bag or a pair of showstopping shoes. It’s a super-simple way to spice up a basic outfit.
NO ONE WILL KNOW YOUR DIAMOND STUDS ARE CUBIC ZIRCONIA
OK, if you can splurge on the real thing, go forth and sparkle. But it really isn’t the end of the world if your studs are—gasp—fake. Plus, on the off chance you lose one, you’ll feel a lot better if they cost 50 bucks as opposed to hundreds.
PAIR FLATS WITH SHORT HEMLINES AND HEELS WITH ANYTHING LONGER
Not sure what shoes to wear with your skirts and dresses? Here’s our rule of thumb: Wear flats when the skirt hits above your knee, and heels with longer hemlines. You can, of course, make exceptions, but in general, these proportions will keep you looking polished without erring trashy (short skirt) or dowdy (long).
REMOVE THE ’X’ FROM COATS AND BLAZERS
Psst…You know the little “X” that’s stitched in the back of blazers, jackets and coats? Did you know you’re supposed to cut it off when you take your topper home from the store? Well, you are. Snip before wearing to avoid a faux pas.
READ WASHING AND DRYING INSTRUCTIONS
Cleaning instructions are on your clothes for a reason—they matter. Sure, sending clothes to the dry cleaner or hand washing (or drying) them can be a hassle, but ruining your favorite jeans or cashmere sweater is worse.
LEOPARD IS A NEUTRAL
Consider it a swap for solid black, white, navy, blush or camel. It goes with everything, from bright hues and metallics to other (subtle) prints. A stylish no-brainer.