Inexpensive Ways to Dress for Success

I remember that when I was starting my first professional internship, one of my biggest concerns was what I was going to wear. I looked up business casual clothes online and did not like the price points that I was seeing, which only added to the stress of starting my first real internship. Upon further digging, however, I realized that it is indeed possible to look the part and not pay the price for it.


The stores where I had the most success shopping for affordable, appropriate attire were TJMaxx and Marshalls. I was able to find great brands at affordable prices, from 15 to 30 dollars. These two stores are where I got most of my slacks, blouses, cardigans and flats.


Kohls was where I found my clothes at the cheapest prices. The quality was great, and I spent from five to fifteen dollars in the clearance section. For anyone really looking to save and not too concerned about specific brands, Kohls is the place to go.


I found most of my shoes for an affordable price at DSW. They had great-quality flats from amazing brands upwards of twenty dollars. In order to save as much as possible, I combined coupons, rewards from being a part of the rewards program, and made use of the clearance section.

Some other options that I haven’t personally made use of but would still be fairly inexpensive options are thrift shops, Uniqlo, H&M, the Barnard and Columbia buy-sell-trade groups, and borrowing from Barnard (which is free)—Beyond Barnard offers formal apparel donated to the college that students can borrow.