Seriously, what on earth is happening to the High Street at the moment? Today I went shopping and I saw bright green jumpsuits, hideous cold shoulder tops, jeans with so many tears they are indecent and cardigans with no sleeves. Why? You wear a cardigan if it’s cold, surely?
At the risk of sounding like a grump, I hated nearly all the clothes. They are all bedecked with tassels and have bits cut out. I am officially the world’s coldest person so there was nothing suitable on any level. Stupid ties on everything as well as the frills. It’s really hard to find anything this year. I know that clothes seem to have been stuck in a rut for a good few years and since the purpose of fashion is to sell units, sometimes the designers have to change things up. Only problem is, it’s hideous. Don’t they realise that most women who actually have the money to spend on clothes are older and not a size 0?
And don’t get me started on the throwback fluffy peplum rubbish. For those who are tall or curvy those cutesy high neck, bell sleeve monstrosities are a nightmare. I had a clear out of my wardrobe a couple of months ago with the aim of buying some new things. Hopefully more timeless and flattering, more of a capsule mix and match wardrobe. I have bought exactly nothing in the last 6 months except for one Breton top from Boden, which I now live in. So, what are your tips for looking polished and not looking like you’ve tried too hard, when the High Street has lost its mind?
Here’s a few of mine:
Quality neutral accessories are important, tan goes with almost anything. I cannot recommend a good hair cut every 8 weeks or so highly enough, alongside regular hair removal and a skincare routine that works for you. Avoid at all costs high fashion trends, garish colours & patterns
I’m late twenties and no longer do current fashion, not sure I ever did to be honest.. I mean, I’ve yet to see anyone look good in anything like this. My number one rule is to focus on wearing what suits you. I’ve come to realise over the years what I actually look best in is classic cuts and plain colours, so I have built up a wardrobe around this which I then dress up or down depending on the occasion. You see, I am very lazy so I also like to stick to a uniform so that I don’t have to think too much. I work in a casual environment in the creative industries, so I’m not going for super smart, I’d say that my look is very relaxed.
Half of my wardrobe comes from La Redoute, Uniqlo and Next. I have Uniqlo’s easy care silk touch blouse in every colour. It doesn’t need ironing, most days I wear this with skinnies and flats. Or one of these linen blend dresses, which I have in every colour again. I find I can layer these up when needed but they keep me nice and cool in the Summer too. These are just the right length to still look great with flats and I get lots of those from La Redoute, I find that their range can’t be beaten in both quality and variety.
Skinny trousers wise I have these leggings trousers in many many different colours. And with knitwear I find that Uniqlo Cashmere is some of the best on the high street. Alongside these, too. All my basic t-shirts and base layers mostly come from Next. My other go-to store for expensive looking basics is H&M. The photos of the products on their site are usually diabolical though. Take this dress for example, it’s truly one of the most flattering dresses for pretty much all sizes on the market right now. You wouldn’t know it by the picture, but It looks super expensive and stylish in person. There’s usually 25% off for new customers too, if you fancy trying it.
Extra tips for looking more polished generally include taking care of eyebrows, they must be groomed but none of that HD caterpillar brow nonsense. That’s just about the furthest from polished you can get. A good haircut is essential, a combination of a good cut and care means I don’t have to do too much to it. I also only wash it twice a week. Over washing of hair is immediately obvious, and almost always makes hair look limp and fragile. Nails need to be taken care of, clear or nude polish on hands and something a little more daring on toes is fine.
Now for the one that everyone forgets – good posture. No matter how much time and money you’ve spent on your look, if you don’t hold your head high and walk like you own the World you may as well have not bothered. Also, discreet, quality jewellery. One quality piece is worth ten pieces of costume jewellery. I only wear a watch on my right wrist, wedding ring and engagement ring on left. I wear dewy makeup that I keep very natural for everyday. I only wear eyeliner or lipstick in the evening, my preference, although I have seen lipstick look good on other people for daytime.
I always try to wear natural materials – wool jumpers in winter, linen tops in summer but I’m also the type of person that hides indoors as soon as the temperature goes above 25degrees so stylish wear isn’t needed. H&M is great for basic linen blend T shirts. Now for handbags – It’s easy to spend the most here, but it isn’t necessary. Understated is key, absolutely no MK bags or any with big logos, and that includes any monogrammed LV.
The most important thing is to find your own style and colours. Mine are usually a mixture of Navy, Cream and Tan. It completely frees you up to only buy things that are right for you. It took me a long time to work this out. Now I can look an item and say that’s lovely, but that green is too cool for me. As well as knowing what suits my body shape and lifestyle.