Even the most sartorially savvy person eventually grows tired of wearing the same outfits day in and day out. Once-new jeans, jackets and sneakers start to feel old and lame. But when the time comes to overhaul your style, it can be a daunting change that takes effort and a cash investment. Not only that, but you’ll need some time to adjust to the changes.
If you’re ready to inject new life into your wardrobe but you want to do it without spending a load, we’ve put together a list of 8 ways to reinvent your style on a budget so you can revitalise your look for less.
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1. Clear out your wardrobe
First things first - it’s time to dive into your wardrobe and clean it out. There are two benefits to doing this. The first is that you can remove items you no longer need or that don’t match your new style.
The second is that you’ll find items you no longer wear, or completely forgot you owned, that can be reused. That’s an automatic saving of time and effort in buying new clothing.
The trick here is to sort through your basics to see what you can reuse and what has to go.
Once you know which basics are missing you can easily make up for those as you begin planning out which pieces to buy on a budget. And with the space you free up tossing out what’s no longer needed, you’ve got a home for your new wares without having to create a pile somewhere in your bedroom.
2. Decide on a budget
Before you drop cash on any new items, first decide on how much you’d like to spend so you can keep yourself within a spending limit you’re comfortable with.
Reinventing your style doesn’t have to cost a bomb, but if you miss this part then it’s easy to get carried away with the many possibilities you’ll inevitably find.
The easiest way to create a budget is to make a list of what you need. This way you’ll have a clear picture of the items you don’t already have, plus give yourself a rough spending total so you won’t be in for a nasty surprise at the end of the process.
Breaking your plan down into smaller parts also allows you to build towards your new style with an overview of what’ll you end up with right from the start.
3. Basics buy-in
Once you’ve got an idea of what’s needed and how much you’re planning to spend, it’s time to start with the wardrobe staples you’ll be using to build out your new looks.
Basics provide a foundation for your wardrobe and are flexible enough that you can match them with other items without colours clashing and other mishaps.
Wardrobe staples include some very common items you’ll get a lot of usage out of, including T-shirts, jeans, jumpers, classic shirts and sneakers.
As there is such a large supply of (and demand for) basics, they’re easy to find and very affordable. You’ll be able to lay the groundwork of your new style in no time.
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4. Get alterations
One way to reinvent your style on a budget is to visit a tailor. Having alterations done to clothing you’ve had for a while can breathe new life into them plus earn you style points.
You can find local tailors through a quick online search, or perhaps your dry cleaner can do simple nips and tucks on the cheap.
Simple alterations include lifting suit hems and sleeves to improve the fit, but you can also get tapering done to replace details like buttons with better-looking ones, or simple re-lining of jackets.
The major benefit of tailoring is that you can make average clothing look more premium through a better fit, but note that changing the style of your clothing will require reconstruction to modify colours and fabrics, which can cost a bit extra.
5. Lift your grooming game
Going for a new hairstyle or facial hair can have a dramatic effect on your style without costing a lot. While there’ll be some initial outlay for shavers, trimmers or a visit to the barber, it’s a relatively cost-effect way to change your look.
Whether you’re normally clean-shaven or like to wear stubble, going for a different facial hair style can completely refresh your look in either minutes or a few weeks, depending on your preferences. Facial hair styles to switch to include a full or partial beard, mustache or simply a layer of well-groomed stubble.
Some hairstyles that you could opt for include a high fade pompadour, high fade quiff or a messy undercut. A slicked-back side part can also change up your style if you’ve normally worn your hair short.
While it’s safe to say that a man bun is not a good idea, a tidy long mane can have a dramatic effect on how you look if you’re prepared to grow it out.
6. Buy accessories
Small tweaks can have a big impact as you reinvent your style. High on the list of cost effectiveness is adding accessories into your wardrobe.
The obvious benefit is that you can add highlights to your outfits without having to commit to large pieces, while also displaying a keen ability to work the finer details of your wardrobe to achieve individual looks that are unique to you.
For the colder months ahead you can buy scarves, beanies and gloves that are colour-matched to your existing clothing colour palette, while watches can be worn at any time of year and go with a wide variety of outfits.
Best of all, you can find good quality accessories that aren’t expensive if you’re willing to do a little research.
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7. Check out thrift stores
Being resourceful with your style transformation will take a bit of effort, but can help you skip the retail profit margins that could hurt your budget.
Finding second-hand clothing at thrift stores is a great way to bulk up your wardrobe on the cheap and can lead to some golden finds that’ll make it worth the patient effort you’ll put into the search.
While you can search online, also take a look for local thrift shops in your neighbourhood. Budget enough time to browse various sections so you’re able to score items you’ll want to wear more than once. N
ot only can you grab some great pieces like cardigans, jackets and coats for layering, there are often used designer pieces or collaborations from seasons past that cost a fraction of what they once were at retail.
8. Avoid impulse purchases
One way to experience a budget blowout is by making impulse purchases. You found an item that fits into your style transformation perfectly but you’re not 100% sure if you want it - though you buy it anyway.
This inevitably happens at some point and is at best annoying, at worst a depressing waste of money. But you can avoid this on the journey to reinvent your style.
Stick to a rule that you won’t finalise any purchases until you’ve given yourself a brief cooling off period. It could be anything from 10 minutes to two days. If you’re shopping online, save your priority finds as bookmarks or in a list that you’ll revisit later.
Once you come back to these pieces, if you’re still convinced that they’re the right style match and are worth the asking price, then you can hand over your cash with confidence.