5 Ways to Make it in the Fashion Industry

When The Devil Wears Prada was released in the summer of 2006, a strange phenomenon occurred.  Millions of women across the nation became even more obsessed (if that’s possible) with the fashion industry.   We all somehow developed a passionate desire to be just like Andy – because who doesn’t want to be bossed around by one of the world’s best editors, fetching coffee and preparing look books?  The appeal of it all comes down to this: Andy was a strong, smart woman who worked her a** off and reached her goals.  She made it. 

For those of us who have ever dreamed of “making it” and living the live of Andrea Sachs, the light at the end of the tunnel may not be as far away as it seems.  Her Campus is, after all, an online beauty and fashion magazine.  In some aspects, we are even more than just that.  Either way, by simply reading this article you are one step closer to your dreams of making it in the fashion industry - because I’m going to teach you exactly how.

 

1. Join Her Campus!

I cannot stress this enough.  I joined Her Campus originally as what I’d like to call a design consultant.  I helped design what is now our official HC Boise State logo.  I then began to write for HC and one year later here I am as the official editor – and I absolutely love my job.  Although it’s an unpaid position, I enjoy writing articles and sharing anything HC related via social media! I’ve always loved to read fashion and beauty magazines, and now I feel like I am truly working for one.  I often receive emails from the amazing ladies at nationals offering paid positions at their Boston headquarters.  Women who have worked for the official Her Campus team have went on to work with other esteemed publishers such as Teen Vogue, Marie Claire, Vogue, Lucky, MTV and more!

By joining Her Campus and becoming a writer for your school’s chapter, you can gain experience and position yourself so that future opportunities will become available to you.

2. Research the Field

This one is easy – you can accumulate a large knowledge of the industry simply by reading fashion and beauty magazines.  Although Andy managed to be successful after being thrown into the glamorous world of fashion without a single clue, I’m going to advise that you skip the awkwardness of it all.  Download apps such as LookBook and follow well-known designers and editors on Instagram or Twitter.  This way, you’ll be inspired with a daily dose of fashion and you’ll stay in the know when it comes to the industry.  Some notable names to follow (today, missy) are Eva Chen, Anna Wintour, Marc Jacobs or even models like Cara Delevingne and Kendall Jenner.  Constant updates from people in the industry will make you more conversant and familiar with the field.

A look provided by LookBook user Anila.  For more photos like this, and New York Fashion Week photos, visit the site!

3. Read and write, everyday.

Whether or not you actually want to be a journalist or an editor, reading and writing everyday is important.  It’s improves your vocabulary and expands your knowledge and creativity.  Being a great writer is never a bad thing.  Plus, when it comes down to the hundreds of girls applying for that internship position at Glamour, your resume will be the only thing separating you from the crowd.  Make sure it stands out by using verbose and intellectual writing! 

 

4. Blog about it!

Starting a beauty or fashion blog has forever been on my list of things to do.  As busy as I am, the task is quite daunting, but I still encourage you all to start your own!  Similar to joining Her Campus, starting a blog can open many doors toward entering the fashion industry.  You’ll become part of a community that shares your passion, and you’ll be put in contact with people who might someday help you land that internship.  Remember to update your blog daily, promote your material via social media, and reach out to other fellow bloggers!  Those are the women who are going to help you along your way to greatness.  Put it this way – they are the Nigel to your Andy.

Image provided by the amazing beauty blogger, milkteef.  Follow her today!

5. Develop Your People Skills

Take some time to improve your people skills.  Not only is this helpful for literally any position in the workforce, it is especially helpful in an industry that really is about who you know.  Andy taught us the importance of this when she was magically able to provide Miranda with the unpublished copy of Harry Potter.  No, Andy did not borrow Harry Potters’ wand to conjure up the book.  She used a string of various contacts and people she knew to get her hands on that copy.  With the right people skills, you can develop a network of friends and colleagues that will help you in your time of need.  As an intern it’s important to have people skills when attending events as well.  Eric Shannon of Just Jobs Academy outlines the many ways you can improve your people skills (such as pacing your conversation and using listening with intent) here.

 

As you pursue your dreams and work towards making it in the fashion industry, keep these helpful tips in mind!  Remember: Success is not the key to happiness.  Happiness is the key to success.  If you love what you are doing, you will be successful.  Strive for your passion and the rest will fall into place.