College is the journey in which many begin to discover their own style and find personal growth, and fashion can play a huge art in self expression and identity. It can be challenging to find your own style in college when you have to compete with being trendy, especially on a college budget. Being in college myself, while studying fashion, it can be hard to not want to spend money on excess clothing to keep up with the latest fashion girly styles. Especially with rent and tuition, students everywhere do not have much left over for outfits to dress up in for nights out. Here are some budget-friendly tricks you can try to stay stylish:
It can be easy to click that checkout button with a cart full of items you have been distractingly looking at instead of doing work. Most of the time, impulse buys do more harm than good in the long run, as they are something you want at that moment. The longevity of that item of clothing isn’t significant enough to be putting a dent in your bank account, so sleep on the thought of buying those items. With the fast turnover rate for trends, clothing goes on sale fairly quickly, so waiting is worth it.
When you go out to the mall randomly, you’re likely to spend money on clothing you probably don’t need. Shopping with a list and a plan in mind will always be your best bet. For example, shop for winter clothes in the summertime, with a list of a few staples you will need for that season, such as jeans, a sweater, and some boots. If you stick to only buying necessities, you won’t be splurging on unnecessary items .
Thrifts stores can be gold mines for the latest styles. Thrifting can bring out your creativity and inner fashionista, as you can find articles of clothing that might not be on the racks anymore, or something trendy at a much affordable price. Plus, some places, such as Goodwill, offer student discounts on certain days of the week! From my thrift store experience, I have found brands like Ralph Lauren, Calvin Klein, Urban Outfitters and BDG.
But besides finding amazing brands, I have found myself visualizing and creating outfits with the clothes I thrift, sparking my own creativity. Alongside in-person retail stores, any online retailers offer a student discount when you shop via Student Beans or UNIdays. Honey, an easy to download browser extension, can help find coupons you might not have known about. Retailers also do seasonal promotion deals, so sign up for newsletters or follow your favorite brands on social media to know when those deals are taking place. Taking advantage of this while in college is crucial, as this won’t last for the rest of your life!
Consignment stores such as Buffalo Exchange offer in store credit or cash for donating your clothes to them. Clean out your closet for some staples you no longer wear and sell them for store credit or cash, so you don’t really spend money on new items. It’s like trading in clothes for other clothes! Plus, doing so is helpful for the environment to reduce waste. Depop is also a creative way to sell clothes, as it’s all online, and you can earn money on the side from clothes you sell. It’s as easy as taking and uploading a picture of your item, and shipping it out when it has been purchased. Shipping costs are covered by customers, so you don’t have to worry about spending money on shipping your clothes!
A clothing rental service can be an effective solution if you need a certain outfit for a special occasion. Online platforms provide clothing rental services, making it possible to wear designer pieces without incurring a high cost.
You can dress stylishly in college without straining your finances by setting a budget, exploring secondhand options, taking advantage of sales, and adopting creative strategies. You don't have to spend a fortune on your style if you want to express yourself and feel confident. It's a time of growth in college, and you can use your fashion journey to grow while staying on budget.
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