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

Because Retail Therapy Works Wonders

If you’re anything like me, clothing retail therapy is your best friend in times of need. Sometimes though, when I’m lacking direction about what new pieces to spend my money on, I’ll just buy something super trendy that I hate a month later. This is frustrating because I essentially wasted money and also only bought something because everyone else did. So, I’ve recently found myself in a sort of style rut– wearing the same sweats to class every day because I simply don’t care enough to put together a fun outfit (not that there’s anything wrong with doing this, I just often feel better when I love my outfit). In the midst of this rut, I decided I needed to find some ways that would help me become more in touch with my personal sense of style. Fashion is a fun, lighthearted way for me to express myself; it’s not something that needs to be taken too seriously, and sometimes I really need that outlet. Through my new outlook on fashion, I find myself getting more excited to get dressed in the morning rather than dreading it. So, here are a few fashion tips I’ve been using recently!

1.  Find some style role models

One way I try to combat a style rut is by searching on Pinterest for style icons that inspire and excite me– people or characters with funky yet timeless looks that make me feel excited about clothes again. Some of my favorites are Princess Diana, Eva Meloche, Carrie Bradshaw, Rachel Green and Lily Rose Depp. While I’m not big on copying someone’s look directly, because I think it takes away from my own sense of style, it can be really exciting to pick up some inspiration from fashionistas like these. And, just searching for cool outfits in general on Pinterest can be super fun! 

2. Invest in basics

You’ve definitely heard it before, but investing in basics is truly a game changer. One reason I find myself unable to put together an outfit is because I have too many crazy tops and bottoms and nothing that matches each other. Purchasing that basic pair of blue jeans and those neutral-colored tops has been super helpful for me and has made the styling process so much easier.

3. Thrift!

I used to think thrifting was simply too much of a hassle; I never had the motivation to look through 100 ugly pieces in order to find one gem. But, I’ve come to the realization that thrifting can be amazing for several reasons. First off, you can find unique, vintage items that would never be seen in a mall. Second, it’s cheap, so when you get sick of something you bought you feel much less guilty about the purchase. Third, it’s sustainable! There are so many different ways to thrift too, from upscale vintage stores to online apps like ThredUp to your basic Goodwill. I’ve found that thrifting is honestly the best way for me to shop because I can buy cool new stuff, and if and when I decide I’m over the pieces, I can donate or sell them back to the thrift stores and feel so much less guilty. 

In the grand scheme of things, the clothes you put on your body are there to keep you warm and protected. At the same time, style can also be an exciting mode of expression, and having a cool outfit can make you feel cool. If you too often find yourself feeling lost in your sense of style, overwhelmed by the multitude of ever-changing clothing trends, hopefully, these tips can help!

Lily Wood

Wisconsin '26

Hi! My name is Lily, I'm a freshman at UW Madison and I'm thinking about studying psychology or English. I love to travel, read, listen to music, go on walks and hang out with my friends and little sister. I'm so excited to be a part of Her Campus!