Do you want to know what the biggest fashion mistakes that you might be making and how to fix them? We have all have made a few of these at one point or another. Or maybe we’re still making them and don’t even know it! It’s time to become aware of your bad shopping and dressing habits and learn from them! This is going to get you one step closer to curating your perfect wardrobe so that you not only don’t waste your money but also feel confident about what you’re wearing on a daily basis. These are the top 25+ biggest fashion mistakes.
The biggest fashion mistakes are only buying trends, discounted clothes, name brands or hyper pieces. Also avoid wearing clothes that aren’t flattering, your style, comfortable, cheap-looking and that don’t fit well, your lifestyle or wardrobe. Bad shopping habits include impulse purchases and spending out of budget. Other mistakes are not dressing for the occasion or season.
Only buying trendy clothes
Only buying trends is one of the biggest fashion mistakes you can make.
While you may want to keep your look modern, if you’re buying something just because you saw it one too many times on Instagram it’s not worth buying.
Trends can often be a waste of money because they might not actually suit your style or body shape. They may also not be generally flattering, practical or appropriate.
Fix: So next time consider the trend more carefully and whether it would actually fit nicely in your wardrobe. Only go for ones that you’re sure you’re going to get a lot of wear out of.
That’s why it’s important to follow the 80% / 20% rule. This means that 80% of your wardrobe should be items that are your style, classic basics and flattering on you, while 20% consists of trendy and experimental pieces you just can’t resist.
However, when you just have to try a trend (we have all been there) and but not sure how often you’re going wear it, don’t spend a lot on it. These are the perfect items to get from affordable stores.
Not shopping for your lifestyle
Buying clothes that don’t suit your lifestyle is another huge fashion mistake if you’re planning on curating a wardrobe that you absolutely love.
It does you nor your wallet any good if you have 20 new party dresses but nowhere to wear them to. So this means that if you don’t go out as often and you’re rather a homebody, then it’s worth investing more in chic, yet casual outfits rather than many formal looks.
Fix: Take some to consider your day-to-day life and what you spending most of your time doing – whether you work from home, run errands a lot, travel frequently, do a lot of sports and what kinds of outings you have. Then invest in appropriate clothes for your lifestyle.
This way you can feel good every day because you have enough options to wear for whatever the occasion is.
Wearing unflattering clothes
There are just certain universally unflattering cuts and silhouettes, like short shorts, low rise bottoms, cut outsand cropped shirts.
However, we all have a unique body and what looks good on someone else may not look as good on you – and vice versa. This could be certain lengths, fabrics, necklines, styles, cuts, patterns and even colors.
According to color theory, there are unflattering colors for your skin undertone that can even make you look sick. For example, wearing warm toned colors as a cool toned person, and vice versa, might be not doing your complexion a favor. It’s just something to keep in mind.
Fix: Become aware of your body shape, height, skin undertone any other prominent features you’d either like to enhance or rather not draw attention to. If you’re not sure how to determine these, just Google it!
Then observe the fit and feel of certain clothing. If it doesn’t make you feel super confident, it’s likely that it’s just not flattering on you. So, it’s just not worth not buying no matter how cute you thought it would be. Let it go. Nothing is more elegant than your confidence.
Choosing clothes that don’t fit
Unfortunately, this happens to the best of us – buying clothes that just don’t fit your current body size, weight and height – or even just one part of your body like the shoulders, thighs, etc.
Most of the time, it’s buying clothes that are your desired or old size rather than your real size. It may also be because you couldn’t find your size but already got attached to the item while shopping.
It’s not going to make you feel good every day by seeing or even trying to put on that pair of pants that used to fit but you know won’t anymore.
Fix: It’s best to just get rid of all of your clothes that don’t fit and to just exercise the willpower to not buy your ‘fantasy’ size. Shopping for your real size you will save yourself a lot of headache, frustration and money.
Moreover, you might be shopping in the regular section when you should be looking in the tall, petite or curvy departments.
The most flattering and elegant clothes are those that fit you. Besides if you do end up losing that weight that you wanted to, you can treat yourself to some new clothes as a reward.
If you do get hooked on an item that isn’t in your size while shopping, just quickly look it up online (Google) – even if you have to do this on your phone in the store – and see if you can find a similar item in your size. The chances are high that you will in the huge online retail world. That way you don’t waste your money on the wrong size and can still have what you wanted.
Of course, in the best-case scenario you’d get most of your clothes tailored to fit your body like a glove.
Always giving in to impulse purchases
The next fashion mistake is impulse purchases. You might have felt the pressure before to buy something in a store just because you made the effort to go out shopping and didn’t want to come back empty handed.
Or you might have bought something online because you felt the time pressure that it was going to run out of stock (which is a marketing ploy). Or maybe you just wanted to buy something for the sake of consuming. Or you were worried that you wouldn’t find it again.
Regardless, it was an impulse buy and something you didn’t really need or want. These types of purchases only make you feel guilty afterwards.
Fix: Never buy something spontaneously. It’s best to sleep on it. At this day and age there is no reason for you to need to buy something immediately. They’ll usually still have the item in stock a few days later or somewhere else – whether it’s at a different store or at another retailer.
Most likely that style will still exist – even after a few days 😉 – so don’t get sucked into the (time) pressure of having to buy something just because it might sell out. You will eventually find it again or other alternatives if you just wait a little. But by that time, you’ll be much surer about your decision.
Also shopping online makes it even easier to sleep on your purchases since you’re not physically stuck in the store. Just save the item in a wish list and you can always go back to the tab / app after an hour or a day and still purchase it.
Sometimes, you can still buy impulsively. Just make sure that it’s on your shopping checklist, you’ve been searching for it for a while and have finally found the perfect piece.
If you still ended up buying something you didn’t want, it’s never too late to return it. After going through the hassle of it several times, you’ll discipline yourself to not buy it in the first place.
Only buying discounted clothes
You and probably everyone else has done this at one point or another. You probably bought something that you didn’t actually love or need but just because it was on sale or inexpensive.
Buying on discount is one of the biggest mistakes that you can make because it will lead you to having a wardrobe full of items that you sort of like or don’t even wear at all. This ends up costing rather than saving you money.
Fix: It’s best to just create a list of all the clothes that that you are missing, would love and know would elevate your wardrobe. Then when you shop, keep your eye on the goal.
This doesn’t mean you can’t buy items on sale or affordable clothes, it’s just about making sure that you were going to purchase the item anyways. That way, if it does go on sale, you’ll actually be getting a good deal. Use apps/ browser extensions like Shoptagr to notify you about an item going on sale that you wanted.
Buying by label sizes (S/M/L)
This mistake happens when you’re just buying by the sizes for example S, M or L and not actually looking at how it truly fits your body.
The sizing of clothing can vary greatly at different brands as well as for each individual clothing item. So what might be a medium for one shirt, may be a small for another.
Fix: That’s why it’s very important to try every piece of clothing on to make sure that they actually fit.
Don’t shop by the size tags. If you’re not sure try on a few different sizes. If you’re shopping online, order two sizes to be sure.
If you love the piece but there’s still something that needs to be altered, then it’s worth getting it tailored to get the perfect fit.
Wearing uncomfortable clothing
Buying clothing that is uncomfortable is basically like burning your money. At the end of the day, you will not end up reaching for it because subconsciously your mind knows that it’s not comfortable to wear the entire day.
Fix: Whether it’s that itchy sweater or those uncomfortable shoes that give you blisters, just don’t buy them. A lot of times you can actually notice that something is uncomfortable just by trying it on. Walk around in the shoes and wear the shirt a little longer before buying it.
Become aware of what materials and styles make you feel uncomfortable. If it already has a scratchy fabric or is made out of certain materials that your skin is sensitive to, you can be pretty sure that it will irritate your skin. If possible, it’s best to invest in cotton and fabrics that are soft to the touch.
Buying clothes that aren’t your style
Buying clothing items that just aren’t your style doesn’t do you any justice. If you buy a certain item just because it looked cool on someone else, you’re not going to end up wearing it. Deep down you knew that it’s not really your style. Don’t be delusional.
This isn’t to say that you can’t try new styles out. On the contrary, you should be pushing your comfort zone. But there’s a difference between that and buying something you know you won’t truly feel like yourself in and therefore not really wear on a day-to-day basis or at all.
Fix: It’ll take some experimenting to find your style but learn quickly to stop making bad purchases. Try getting inspiration from Instagram and Pinterest and start collecting pictures of what you know your style is.
Reflect on the pieces that you already own and why you love some and dislike others. Knowledge is power. Soon, you’ll be able to quickly distinguish between what you feel comfortable in, what your style is and what it’s not.
Having a wardrobe full of hyper pieces
The term, “hyper pieces”, was coined by AlexandrasGirlyTalk in this video on her Youtube channel. Hyper pieces are those items for which your excitement peaks at purchase.
They are novelty items that are so visually stimulating you feel like you’re constantly wearing them because they are so obvious. The problem with having a closet full of hyper pieces is that they compete with each other and are hard to match with each other.
You can spot three types of hyper pieces:
1. Hidden Hyper Piece: It looks like a basic, like a white T-shirt, but it has an exciting element such as gold buttons, embellishments, logos, etc.
2. Loud Hyper Piece: It is a very obvious piece that catches the eye immediately like something in a bright color, shiny, loud pattern like bright florals or geometric shapes, and so on.
3. Hyper Silhouette: The hyper silhouette is an item that has a shape that stands out like mules or a fanny pack. Often these are on trend and not as timeless.
Fix: Stay along the lines of the 80% / 20% rule and buy less hyper pieces, especially if your wardrobe is in need of basics.
When you’re shopping for hyper pieces, find ones that are your personal style. These are items that you don’t mind wearing again and again like leather pants or a certain print, color, etc.
Wearing completely oversized / baggy clothes
Wearing oversized and baggy clothing especially on the top and the bottom are just big fashion mistakes. This is because it is not aesthetically pleasing to have no shape to an outfit.
You are not doing yourself or anyone justice by hiding under a pile of textile. It’s not flattering and it gives the impression that you gave up or didn’t try at all.
Fix: Opt for fitted clothing that accentuate your best features. You’ll feel more confident in them. Going all oversized is just the lazy route.
You can still wear oversized pieces if shape is added to them. Balance them out in an outfit with a more streamlined piece (top or bottom), add a belt or just tuck it in.
Showing too much skin
Showing too much skin is just a little to risqué and rarely what a classy lady does. This draws the kind of attention to you in a way that you might not want.
There are certain cuts that are very revealing like very low-cut necks or mini bottoms which don’t necessarily make a respectable impression.
Fix: An everyday rule of thumb for you is to consider whether you’d feel comfortable wearing it in front of your extended family or parents-in-law.
Of course, there is a time, place and way to dress sexy, yet classy. You can still show off your legs or have a deeper V-neck. However, the key is to find a balance and not show everything at once. The art is in leaving something to the imagination.
Keeping a poorly maintained wardrobe
Another major fashion mistake is not maintaining your clothing very well. It is very obvious when your clothes have wrinkles, holes, lint, pilling, rips, snags and dirt on them.
This also includes missing buttons, scuffs on your shoes, bags and other accessories. Nothing can ruin elegant pieces faster than poor maintenance.
Fix: Educate yourself in easy ways and helpful tools to store and maintain your clothing properly.
When they do become worn out beyond repair, it’s time to let them go. Remember, when one piece has had a long, happy life, it opens the door to a brand-new beautiful piece.
Not dressing for the occasion
Not dressing for the occasion properly is another fashion faux pas. While it may not matter to some, you do often make a better impression if you are dressed appropriately. This is not just about black-tie events.
Are you going for a walk, to a private dinner party or travelling? It happens all the time that someone is overdressed with party attire or underdressed with too casual or athletic clothes. Nothing looks more out of place and impractical than a fully dressed up, accessorized woman in heels at the airport.
Fix: Always consider the occasion and whether you need to be would be dressed casually, casually smart, formally, professionally, athletically, etc. That way you can always feel confident about what you’re wearing.
When in doubt, it is generally better to be a bit overdressed than underdressed. If you still can’t decide, bring a change of clothes.
Dressing incorrectly for the season
This one might seem obvious but seeing bare ankles in the winter is more common than you think!
While it goes without saying, perhaps it should be said once more that dressing too warm or too cold for the season should be avoided. A thick jacket in the summer or strappy heels in the cold months is just a little off the mark.
Not only will you most likely make yourself feel too cold or to too hot, you might make others feel uncomfortable as well.
Fix: Rotate your clothes. This keeps your style well-rounded. A bonus is that not seeing or wearing some pieces until the next year will help give you the feeling that you have a larger wardrobe than you really do.
Besides, it’s more fun to adapt to the seasons and enjoy fall colors, winter sweaters and summer dresses.
Just buying by (name) brands
You may be only buying brand names thinking that the only way to look expensive is to have expensive clothes. This is not always the case. Buying high-end brands doesn’t automatically make you look elegant.
Many designer brands can also manufacture cheap-looking clothing despite the high prices.
Besides many luxury brands also utilized social media to push certain trendy items that will be out of style within a short period of time. Don’t fall into the trap.
Fix: So, the good news is that you don’t need to buy designer brands to look expensive. It can actually be achieved with any budget as long as you follow some guidelines on how to look elegant.
Remember, it doesn’t have to be expensive to look expensive.
However, there are some classic, staple items that are worth investing more money in for their retail value and premium quality.
Spending outside of your budget
Unfortunately, many people spend outside of their budget, despite better judgement. You may be buying too many clothes or pieces from brands that you can’t afford.
This can often limit what you can buy and cause you to constantly rewear the same pieces again and again to get your money’s worth. In the worst cases, you may even go into debt!
Fix: Stay within your price range. Establish a baseline and a monthly / yearly budget and stick to it. Learn which stores you can afford and disregard all others (except for maybe season sales). Remember you can still look elegant and expensive on a budget.
Create a shopping checklist so that you can shopping strategically and curate your wardrobe overtime.
You can still invest in pricier pieces when you’re sure that they’re worth it and you’ll get the most wear out of them. Only treat yourself to a shopping haul to reward yourself when you’ve saved up for it.
Wearing clothes just because you paid for them
Don’t hold on to or even wear a piece of clothing just because you paid for it in the past, even though you don’t really like them anymore.
If you do this, you’ll end up with a wardrobe full of pieces that you don’t feel passionate about or really even want to wear. It might even start to feel more like a chore trying to put outfits together rather than something to look forward to.
This hinders you from growing and learning about what you really love to wear, ultimately stagnating your style and confidence.
Fix: You have to accept the mistake that you made and learn from it so that you don’t make it again. This is why it’s so important to analyze your wardrobe and create a plan to curate your perfect wardrobe over time.
Hoarding sentimental clothing
We’ve probably all been there before. Keeping clothes for the sake of keeping them – perhaps for superficial sentimental reasons.
You shouldn’t be hoarding any pieces that you have no use for any more like clothes from your younger years, don’t fit you anymore, old party dresses, past styles, ripped bags, worn out shoes or the first purchases you made.
This just adds clutter, which may be hiding nice pieces that you own, clouding your judgement on what to wear every day and making your life slightly more frustrating.
Exceptions: Other than perhaps your wedding dress, passed on family heirlooms or anything of extremely significant sentimental value, it doesn’t do you any good to hold on to your fashion past.
Fix: Purge your closet regularly and make room for new items. Unless you have unlimited storage, there is no reason to hold onto whatever you have attached yourself too.
If you have photos of your old outfits, that should serve as enough of a memory. That is the beauty of our digital world. It’s a world where we can store all of the pictures of our past without having to physically hold on to them.
Wearing clothes that are too tight
This is different from wearing clothes that don’t fit you unintentionally. This is when you intentionally want your clothes to fit extra tightly.
Although it might be tempting to size down, clothes that fit too snug are not flattering. Not to mention that it’s much less comfortable when you can’t move as freely.
Nothing is less flattering that a button-up shirt that is splitting where the buttons are or a pair of pants that you can barely move in.
Fix: In general, avoid looking like a sausage, despite the temptation. A large aspect of aesthetic elegance is letting your pieces and body breathe. Allow your clothes to be ever so slightly looser with little bit of wiggle room. You shouldn’t feel constricted in your movement or breathing at all. That dress will look a bit better – have faith in this.
When shopping, there is no harm in always trying on more than one size. If you’re not sure opt for the slightly larger size just in case you gain weight or want to wear layers. You can always have it taken in later.
Picking clothes that don’t match your wardrobe
It may be your style, size, comfortable, in your budget and check off all of the other boxes. But maybe the one catch is it doesn’t match anything else in your wardrobe. This means that if you buy it, you’ll end up having to buy ten other pieces just to wear it.
You’ll fall into a vicious cycle of buying more clothes just so that you can wear the first piece you bought.
Fix: Unless you have a fortune to spare or it’s your job, you need to break this cycle. Before buying anything, make sure that matches 3-4 other pieces in your wardrobe.
You may really benefit from curating a capsule wardrobe first and then build from there. The pieces that you buy should always fit seamlessly into your wardrobe without you trying hard to find outfit combinations. Then later on when you experiment with other pieces, you’ll always have basics to match them.
Choosing cheap-looking clothes
No matter what your style is, nobody wants to look cheap. Although you could write a whole essay on clothes that look cheap (it’s been done!), there are a few, rather universal, guidelines on cheap-looking clothes.
Certain fabrics and materials look cheap when they are too sheer, plasticky or look worn quickly. Super trendy pieces that are also impractical for the everyday like netting can look cheap as well.
Wearing very revealing clothes like a mini, bodycon dress with platform heels can be associated with the look of escort girls. Despite its often trendy, cool status, ripped, distressed clothes, especially denim, and faded colors don’t have a very polished look.
Finally, busy patterns and clashing pieces can look inexpensive. These are those that have too much going on like too many different fabrics, patterns, colors and embellishments. Large, prominent logos can also look tacky.
Fix: Just avoid cheap-looking clothes if you’re goal is to have a classy appearance. Instead, opt for simpler pieces and solid colors in classic, timeless styles that flatter your shape and complexion.
Wearing visible underwear
It’s never a good look to have your undergarments showing – whether it’s your bra, undershirt, underwear, shapewear, tights or socks.
Your bra nor your bra strap shouldn’t be visible at all on your shoulder or in the cleavage area, especially if it’s a different color from your top. Clear bra straps are especially tacky and not fooling anyone.
Your underwear shouldn’t be showing above the waistline (no wale tails!) neither should a panty line be visible. Even when that line of your tights can be seen it’s apparent that your bottoms are too short.
Fix: Invest in nude-colored, seamless underwear so that your undergarments stay hidden forever. It’s worth every cent to avoid any embarrassing moments – like at work, yikes!
Get specialty pieces that are meant for different types of clothes like a strapless or backless bra. Don’t skimp out on your basics!
Settling for almost perfect
Nothing is worse than having a clothing item that is almost perfect but maybe one aspect of it bothers you, like the silhouette, waist/rise, pockets, color, etc.
This happens when we get impatient while shopping. Even those who are following their shopping checklist might eventually settle for a piece just to finally check it off.
But don’t do it. You’ll end up always being reminded of its flaws, no matter how close it is to your perfect dress or pair of pants. It ends up being a waste of money either because you don’t wear it and/or purchase the “right” piece later on anyways.
Fix: Only buy items that you love! If you don’t absolutely love it, put it back. You have to have faith that the right one will come along. Patience is king.
Try online shopping so you can check several retailers and google at the same time for the perfect version of whatever you’re looking for.
Repeatedly buying the same items
Repeat buys are a fashion mistake when you’re stuck in your comfort zone too much. This is when you’re buying the same item(s) again and again in the same color and cut.
If you already have 20 pairs of medium blue skinny jeans, it’s time to stop. You’re not really putting your money to good use, rather wasting it. Your wardrobe can end up being stagnant and a bit boring. Besides, you won’t discover what else you love and look good in until you try new styles of clothes!
Fix: This doesn’t mean that you have to stop buying what you know you like altogether. If you’re repeat buying because you love a certain color or cut, then try getting different cuts in that color and vice versa.
For example, if you continuously buy black A-line dresses, try buying A-line dresses in different colors or play around with different styles, lengths and materials of black dresses.
Also, try experimenting with different styles with inexpensive pieces. So in case you end up not liking it, you didn’t break the bank.
Wearing athleisure all of the time
Especially when you have to work from home, it can be easy to fall into the trap of wearing sweatsuits and leggings all the time (a.k.a. athleisure).
While there’s is nothing wrong with wearing athleisure and it’s actually suitably chic for quick errands, sporty activities and lounging around in, wearing this all the time doesn’t allow you to feel your best.
Fix: Dressing up nicely is a form of self-care, self-love and self-respect which you should do regularly for yourself. Of course, you need to decide what dressing up for you means and how often you need it. But doing this frequently can give you a confidence boost and when you’re feeling confident, the whole world will see it too.
While this isn’t the most dramatic faux pas, you should figure out why you’re wearing sweatsuits all the time.
Is it because it’s comfortable? Try other comfortable, yet stylish outfits and loungewear / homewear options like knitwear or comfortable, yet classy pants.
Maybe you don’t feel like anything else is flattering or you’re trying hide some extra weight? Try to learn about styles that would suit your body shape as well as universally flattering styles like high-waisted bottoms and cinched waists.
Maybe it’s because you don’t know what to wear? Get style inspiration from online platforms like Pinterest, Instagram and blogs and figure out what you’re always being drawn to.
If you do still truly feel the most confident in athleisure and but still want to look more put together, then try to elevate your looks with matching suits in chic colors and fabrics as well as crisp white shoes.
* inanelegantfashion.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com
Was this post inspiring or helpful? Then like it, save/pin it and share it! Have a question or do you want to say what you loved about this post? Leave a comment and I’ll get back to you. 🙂