Ten Tips to Feel Confident in Your Wardrobe

wardrobe confidence tips

Feeling confident in your wardrobe effects the way you show up in the world and is crucial to your overall sense of self-assurance and self-esteem. But for many women, putting together an outfit that makes them feel confident can be a challenge. That’s why we’ve put together this comprehensive guide on ten tips to feel confident in your wardrobe. Whether you’re seeking inspiration for your daily wardrobe or looking for ways to step up your style game, these tips will help you put your best foot forward and feel confident and fashionable every day.

feel confident in your wardrobe

Ten Tips to Feel Confident in Your Wardrobe

1. Get a great fitting pair of dark wash jeans.

If you are stuck in a style rut or lacking confidence in your style the first thing you need is a quick boost to give you the momentum to move forward. Dark wash (or black) jeans are a classic closet staple item that can be worn season after season, year after year plus they can easily be dressed up or down.

They don’t have to be expensive, this pair on Amazon for $25 has almost 30,000 five star reviews and is available in regular and plus fit. Already have a pair you love in your closet? Even better! 

Choose the fit that you like best – skinny jeans, bootcut, straight leg, highrise…. denim silhouettes are having an ‘anything goes’ moment so go with the cut that you love, you really can’t go wrong.

2. Everybody is going to groan at this tip but it’s critical to building a wardrobe you love… clean out your closet.

You have to know what you have in order to know what you need. If your closet cleaning is long overdue, then it’s time to get rid of the stuff you no longer wear and start again. Not sure what to get rid of? Ask yourself the following questions:

Have I worn it in the past year?

Is it a classic piece that will stay in style?

Is it still in good condition?

Can I pair it up in more than one way?

Do I feel good when I wear this?

Does it fit?

Would I buy this again?

If you answer ‘no’ to any of these questions… it’s not a keeper!

As women we go through lots of ups and downs with our bodies over the years. If you feel like you want to hang on to other sizes just in case that’s fine… but pull them out of your closet and store them in a separate space. Everything you see when you open your closet or drawers should fit your body as it is today. It’s no fun to stare at a bunch of clothes you can’t wear and it just makes getting dressed even more frustrating.

3. Build your closet staples.

Having the right foundation pieces in your wardrobe is essential to creating outfits you’ll feel confident wearing. It’s likely none of the pieces on this list are going to surprise you and we’re willing to bet you already have a bunch of them in your closet. Think pieces like a basic white tee, dark wash jeans which we already talked about, a black purse, a neutral cardigan, black ankle boots, metallic slip on sneakers, and hoop earrings.

Closet staples are your investment pieces and if your budget allows this is where we recommend investing in a higher quality if you can. You are going to wear these pieces season after season, year after year.

4. Incorporate trends affordablY

This is where the magic happens! Once you have your closet staples in place you can add in seasonal trends and we always recommend doing this in a budget friendly way. Especially if you aren’t sold on a trend or it’s longevity just yet.

For example, leopard print is a classic but it was having a BIG moment last year – especially on clothing pieces. We often see leopard accessories, but it was more prominently featured on skirts and tees and sweaters last year.

Now if you’ve NEVER worn leopard print in your life, jumping right into a bold overall pattern is going to feel like a huge leap and you may not feel comfortable with that. So try the trend in an affordable, lower risk way. Maybe you skip the leopard skirt or sweater for now… and instead you try out a budget friendly pair of leopard flats from Target or tie a leopard neck scarf to the strap of your purse for a little pop of pattern and interest.

If you try something and you LOVE it and feel like it has some staying power – THEN you can look at a higher quality pair of flats when yours wear out or try out a leopard tee if you loved the scarf on your purse.

And if you try a trend and it’s not for you that’s totally ok too! The important thing here is that you are getting out of your comfort zone.

5. Don’t settle

In the Outfit Formulas community, we are closet curators, not caught up consumers. We don’t buy clothes because we are bored or just because something is on sale. We buy clothes because something fills a gap in our wardrobe, makes us feel confident, and will serve us well. Those magical unicorn pieces are what we call a HECK YES! Why?

Because if it’s not a HECK YES, it’s a NO!

If you feel just ‘okay’ in something, or the material is scratchy, or it’s not the most flattering cut, guess what will happen… you won’t reach for it in your closet and it will be a waste of your money. Nobody wants that! By intentionally building your closet staples and incorporating trends you’re learning over time what pieces will serve you best so that you can curate your closet with confidence. Yes, this is a process that takes time but we PROMISE it is worth it in the long run.

To get a more objective view of how something looks, taking a selfie photo is incredibly helpful. A selfie is a quick and easy way to help you determine if an item or outfit is a ‘heck yes’ or a ‘no’.

It’s also a great way to see if an outfit is missing something. Would a long pendant necklace help add interest to a solid top? Would front-tucking your top or cuffing your shirt sleeves help zhuzh up your look? (FYI – The answer is almost ALWAYS yes to cuffing your sleeves.) You can create an album for your selfies on your phone so you can easily reference them in the future. If you felt amazing in an outfit it’ll be easier to recreate if you have that handy reference photo.

6. Online Shopping

We are all shopping online more and more these days. Following these tips will give you the best chance at getting the right fit, and what to be aware of in terms of returns if needed.

Know Your Measurements

At the start of each season take 5 minutes to update and record your measurements. You’ll want to record the following information:

Chest – measure your chest over the fullest part of your bust while wearing a bra that fits.

Waist – measure at the narrowest point.

Hips – measure around your hips at the widest point.

Inseam – measure from the top of the inner thigh down to the floor.

Having these measurements handy will make referencing retailer sizing guides easier and faster. Keep them in a note on your phone or in a notebook by your computer. You’ll never have to interrupt your online shopping session to find a measuring tape again!

Reference Retailer Sizing Guides

Nearly every retailer has a sizing guide available on their website, although occasionally it may take some searching to find it. If you don’t see it linked on the product page scroll down to the website footer and look for headings like sizing guide, customer service, or FAQs. With your measurements readily available thanks to tip #1, you can quickly check the guide to see which size will give you the best fit. 

Keep in mind that some retailers offer a general sizing guide as well as specific measurements for individual items. The measurements for individual items are typically more accurate as it takes into account the material used and will offer a better fit guide.

Checking the size guide is especially important when purchasing from international retailers as sizing scales can vary greatly around the world. In these cases, return shipping can be especially inconvenient so it’s truly important to follow the tips here for the best chance of success.

Once you become familiar with a retailer, it’s worth writing down your size at that store alongside your measurements from above. While you may run in to some slight discrepancies due to fabrics/stretch, you’ll at least have a general idea of where to begin.

Read The Reviews

Of course the retailer is going to tell you a product is fabulous… the real inside scoop (and helpful fit information) can be found in the reviews. In addition to open form comments, many retailers have incorporated a survey format for key factors like quality, sizing, and comfort so you can quickly see a summary of those rankings at a glance. If the overall sizing reviews say an item runs small or large you’ll know to size up or down.

Some retailers also allow the reviewer to leave their own sizing information. A review from a person with a similar height/weight/body shape as you may also prove to be helpful in finding the best fit. 

Take A Good Look

Take a close look at all of the available images of the product. Most of the time you’ll find the model’s sizing information in the item description and you can use that to compare the fit to your own size. The model’s height may also give you a better idea of how long or short an item is.

Seeing an item ‘in motion’ can also give you a better look at the fit and movement of the piece. Several retailers have added video clips to product pages of a model walking in the clothing or an associate showcasing the clothing and discussing details you may have missed in a still image. 

Know The Return Policies

From time to time, despite our best efforts to order the right size, it just doesn’t happen. Before you find yourself in that situation, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the return policies of the retailer. The two biggest factors to consider are usually cost and time frame.

Each retailer should clearly outline their return policies on their website (again you’ll likely have to scroll down to the footer to find it). You’ll want to pay attention to details such as:

Is return shipping free?

When is the deadline to return an item?

Are online purchase returns accepted in store?

Bonus Tip
If you make a purchase and then notice it has gone on sale shortly thereafter many retailers will honor a price adjustment if you reach out to their customer service. 

7. Celebrate Your Body

We get it, this is a loaded topic because there is so much emotional baggage that comes along with it. We are constantly being fed messages by the media that we should be tall or fit or tan or blonde or whatever! It’s exhausting trying to be all the things and it’s easy to lose sight of what we actually want versus what we are told to think we want. Every body is unique and beautiful in it’s own way and it’s time we embrace that.

We always encourage women to pick one thing that you love about your appearance and play it up. Maybe it’s your long legs or toned shoulders. Do you have great cleavage or a killer booty that you want to highlight? Focus on drawing attention to what you love instead of trying to hide what you don’t.

Another option to celebrate your body is to learn more about dressing for your specific body shape. There are four main body shapes that most women fall into, although some of us walk the line between two shapes which just means they get even more options to play with! Learning the silhouettes that are going to flatter your body best can have a huge impact on the overall look of your outfits.

8. Define Your Style + Lifestyle

When we talk about defining your style a lot of women who have been stuck in a rut will laugh, they’ll often answer “Are sweatpants and a messy bun a style?” We get it. If it’s been a long time since you’ve prioritized your wardrobe you may need to spend some time rediscovering what it is that you like.

Having that knowledge of what you love and, most importantly, what feels like you is SO empowering. Again, it takes time to figure it out and it will take some trial and error… but the confidence you feel when you hit the mark is all worth the effort.

Here are some ways you can learn more about what you are drawn to…

-Start a Pinterest board and pin outfits or clothes you like. Don’t think too much about why you like it, just pin away. Once you have around 30-50 images saved take a look at your board and look for recurring themes. Are the outfits mostly neutral or do you see lots of bold pops of color? Are they minimalist and classic? Or do they lean more towards a trendy or edgy vibe? Do you see lots of prints and patterns or mostly solid colors?

-Are there retailers that you are drawn to? Have a look at their website and examine the style of the clothes they feature. Again you’ll look for common themes to help narrow down what it is that draws you to them and how that translates to your own unique style.

-Do you have a friend or acquaintance whose look you love? Start taking note of their clothes when you see them and again look for those common themes to show up.

You’ll see patterns emerge over time and that information will help you understand what you are drawn to and give you some direction as you start to curate your own wardrobe.

It’s also important at this stage to consider your lifestyle. You may absolutely love the look of pencil skirts and high heels, but if you work from home it just doesn’t make sense to wear those clothes daily. Dress for what your daily activities bring, this might mean a slouchy tee half tucked into some boyfriend jeans with comfy sneakers!

9. Accessorize

Don’t underestimate the power of great accessories. An outfit without accessories is like a meal without salt… it’s okay, but it’s bland!

If you’re a minimalist you might stick to a dainty necklace and small hoop or stud earrings. If you prefer simple outfits you might choose to wear a stack of arm-candy bracelets or large statement earrings to amp up your look.

Be mindful of not going over the top with your accessories. A statement necklace and statement earrings worn together is rarely a good look, but any other combination is typically fair game. Again, if you aren’t sure, take a selfie!

Your jewelry doesn’t need to break the bank. Choose affordable fashion jewelry for your everyday wear. Once you identify pieces that you wear regularly and feel your best in you can gradually upgrade those pieces over time… they are great items to put on your wishlist for birthdays or the holidays.

10. Stop waiting

Yep, it really is that simple. Stop waiting until you’ve lost those last 5 pounds to invest in clothing that you feel good in. Stop waiting until you’ve toned –insert body part– to be comfortable wearing a cute outfit. Stop waiting until the kids are older to make yourself a priority.

The number on the scale and the tag in your clothes shouldn’t determine if you get to feel confident in an outfit. Your body is beautiful just the way it is RIGHT NOW. And setting a positive example of self care for your children is one of the best gifts you can give them (and will impact your family for generations to come).

If you liked these tips, you’ll LOVE the Outfit Formulas All Access Pass monthly subscription – valued at over $750, you get endless outfit ideas, including seasonal looks and tips for wardobe confidence – all for just $19/month.

January 31, 2023
by outfitformulas

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