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Become an Outfit Repeater: How to Stop Your Overconsumption!

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at Holy Cross chapter.

I am mostly writing this article to follow up on my own advice. I have fallen victim to overconsumption far too many times. For every event, formal, trip, and special occasion, my first thought is what to wear. I immediately turn to Revolve and Princess Polly and throw things in my cart, knowing I’ll most likely only wear these items once. I’ve spent way too much money on clothes that have only been worn for a few hours. In high school, I was an avid seller on Poshmark and loved the satisfaction of selling my clothes, but I only made back a fraction of what I paid. I often used this as a crutch, justifying only wearing things once because I could sell them, and they wouldn’t go to waste. This left my closet full of trendy pieces that I could only style one way and then never wanted to wear.

Now, in college, I crave a neutral, closet with staple pieces. Building a whole new wardrobe is tempting when popular brands like Aritzia advertise themselves as having versatile and staple pieces. I’ve learned that I can shop for pieces like this in my closet from different brands. I recently went away on spring break and challenged myself not to buy anything new for the trip. I shopped in my own closet and realized I already had everything I needed. I didn’t need four new dresses, two new sets, and five new bathing suits. I already have plenty of dresses and bathing suits, which are meant to be worn!

My biggest tip for reducing overconsumption is to think about your purchases. I’ll often ask myself a few questions to test myself. Could you style this in multiple ways? Would you wear this after college? Do you already have something like this? Are you only buying this because an influencer wore it? Do you genuinely LOVE this piece? If any of these answers conflict, then wait on the purchase. Recently I’ve been thinking about buying clothes that I can wear post-college. Buying new going-out tops is tempting, but do you need more? Will you wear them after college? Probably not.

If I could create my perfectly curated winter/fall closet it would consist of versatile, simple pieces. It would be best to have some reliable pairs of comfortable, good-quality jeans. For me, these are my Levi’s low-pro jeans and my Abercrombie high-rise 90s jeans. Both go with everything and are comfortable all day long. A set of basics is also essential. For me, this means a few plain t-shirts, long sleeves, and a gray sweat set. I’ll often get these basics from Aritzia or Brandy Melville. In the winter, I rotate a few sweaters almost every day. A few good sweaters are necessary for colder weather. Brandy Melville is also great for these, and another option is JCrew. For jackets: a black blazer, a good leather jacket, a simple wool coat, and a puffer can be worn a million different ways. In terms of shoes, all you need are good white sneakers, a black bootie, and simple sandals. A black loafer can elevate any outfit while keeping it simple. To accessorize you only need a black belt, a simple leather bag, and some hoops. Every item I have just listed can be worn together, in many ways and can be dressed up or down. You would also never notice if these outfits were re-worn because they are simple and classic.

Although I have not covered every essential for everybody’s perfect closet, I have covered my favorites. Try to pare down your closet and get rid of things that you’re not happy to wear! I usually do a closet-clean-out every few months and donate the clothes that I no longer wear/no longer fit. Now is the perfect time to clean out your wardrobe with spring is quickly approaching. This obviously doesn’t mean you should get rid of all your fun clothes; it just means you should be proactive about what you will actually wear. Your washing machine is your friend! Use it! Re-wear those adorable outfits and try your best to stop buying for every occasion!

Quinn Havlicek

Holy Cross '25

Art History Major with a minor in Creative Writing!