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5 Tips for Looking Put Together On a Budget

The cover is not the book. Yes, it is a truth, as it should be, but in reality people often judge others based on their looks even unconsciously. Michelle Obama once said "Fashion for a woman still predominates how people view you and that's not fair, that’s not right. But it's true. And that's when fashion isn't just fashion; it’s how you turn it into your tool, rather than be a victim of it." To make others see your best inner self, you may need to pay extra attention to your outfits. However, it can be challenging to achieve polished looks on a budget. Here are five tips and tricks that will instantly help you look polished and put together with an everyday wardrobe.

Wear a Maximum of 3 Colors

Wear a maximum of three colors, especially when you are wearing patterns or prints. It sounds boring but trusts me, it works. This is the easiest tip that you can achieve without spending a penny. If you want to make your style even more sophisticated, go for all black or white looks with statement jewelry. It will instantly give you a minimalist chic vibe.

Wear Flattering Clothes

Imagine wearing wrong size shoes and walking for a whole day. It's too painful to imagine, and the same goes for the clothes you wear. No matter how expensive your clothes are, if it's not fitting you properly, you won't look polished. Even if you are wearing a coat you got on sale, you can make yourself look put together, or even expensive, if it fits you perfectly. The key is fit. Not too big, but not too small. Despite the fact that clothing companies define the size of the clothes only by numbers or alphabets, all humans’ bodies are unique. Don’t be disappointed just because you can’t find perfectly fitted clothes or fit into particular sizes. You can bring clothes, especially coats and jackets to your local tailors. The cost will depend on where you live, but tailoring clothes is worth a try. 

Avoid Obvious Logo Designs

Wearing clothes or carrying bags with a big high-end brand logo might make you feel expensive, but sometimes the brand logo can be overwhelming and overtake your personality. What you wear should be a supporting actor and you should be the main character. You don’t need to advertise clothing companies, use their products wisely to make yourself shine even more. 

The Steamer is Your Best Friend

Imagine walking into a nice high-end boutique—all the clothes are hung nicely without any wrinkles. Then imagine the sales section of a fast fashion store—the clothes are wrinkled and crammed together. Just by steaming, clothes can instantly look more expensive and fresh. You can find steamers for 3000 yen, and it's definitely worth the money. 

Wear a Watch

In today’s society, wearing a watch isn’t as common as it once was, but that’s exactly why you should wear one. It gives you a professional vibe and it helps you to look older and smarter. A nice fine watch doesn’t come cheap but you can still find a good one for around 10,000 yen.

Lastly, looking polished and put together is still important but the most important thing to be confident in your skin. Confidence is the best and most powerful accessory you can wear. These tips are just to help you to show the world the best of yourself. Don’t forget that what matters the most is what you can’t see on the outside. 

Coming up next is an article written by Maasa: "What Do We Really Need? The Case for Slow Fashion’’. If you have a closet full of clothes you don’t wear, you definitely need to read this. It will stop your insatiable desire for clothes and make you realize what true satisfaction is in a mass consumer society.

Ruka Saito

ICU Japan '24

Ruka Saito is a Sophomore studying business at International Christian University in Tokyo, Japan. In her spare time she enjoys baking, calligraphy and exploring nice coffee shops in Tokyo.
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