How to Look Good for Less

How to look great for Less

Do you want to look good for less? In order for a girl to look a million dollars, there can be a temptation to think that she has to spend a million dollars.

Sadly, however long we lust after the latest catwalk looks, or spend with our noses pressed to the glass in the windows of boutiques on Bond Street, few of us will ever have the disposable income to be able to buy a complete new designer wardrobe on a whim.

What savvy, fashion-conscious women can do, however, is be smart about what they buy, ensuring that every item has maximum impact.

If you are able to splurge in Chloe, Christian Dior or Issey Miyake now and then, that’s great, but the rest of the time, here’s how you can dress stylishly without breaking the bank.

Savvy, fashion-conscious women are smart about what they buy, ensuring that every item has maximum impact.Click To Tweet

6 Simple Ways to Look Good for Less

Student Designers

Every year, the UK’s fashion colleges produce a new generation of superb designers, many of whom will be the big names of the fashion world in years to come. You can check out their inaugural collections at their end of year shows, and then snap up the samples for a song.

This is a prime opportunity to pick up real statement pieces, including evening dresses and magnificent examples of tailoring, as you will get the couture look and exclusivity for a fraction of what you would pay elsewhere.

You can also be confident in the knowledge that no one else will be wearing the same design, and you are actively supporting the fashion industry of the future.

Sample Sales

Pop up sample sales have become big business in London and New York, and you can find out where the next one will be taking place at Samples Sales London.

The sales typically have a small entry charge (not more than £10), but once inside you will get discounts of up to 80% on designer samples and ends of lines etc.

You will find the greatest selection if you are a UK size 6-10, but remember that you can also pick up shoes, bags and other designer accessories, and these sales are a great way to get inspiration for item pairings.

Outlet Stores

The UK’s biggest outlet stores and villages, including Bicester and Swindon, have become tourist destinations in their own right, with visitors travelling huge distances to snap up a designer bargain. TK Maxx falls into this category too.

You will have to fight with the crowds, and rummage through a great deal rubbish, but hidden amongst it all are indisputable gems, often marked down by 60% or more.

Go with a friend, have a giggle whilst you are hunting, and wear with pride that Ralph Lauren jacket or the Jimmi Choo heels you had always dreamed of owning.


According to The Telegraph, British women spend £1.6bn on clothes they never wear. Luckily for us, many of these items – often with the price tags still attached – make it onto eBay, where you can buy them for a fraction of their original retail price.

The eBay/PayPal guarantee protects you against unwittingly buying counterfeit items, and you can always earn a few pounds selling your own unwanted clothing, putting the proceeds towards something you really love.

The search options make finding what you want a breeze, though browsing for “Ending Soon” bargains is also a blast!

Pairing Statement Pieces

You don’t have to be dressed from head to foot in designer or other costly items. It is often just as effective to select one statement piece – perhaps a well-cut jacket, or a particularly beautiful skirt – and then to pair it with basics from more affordable high street stores.

Your basics should always be neutral in colour, made from a good fabric and well-fitting so as not to detract from the more expensive item.

High Street Collections

In recent years, models and designers have made collections specifically for high street stores, and these collaborations have brought looks from the likes of Isabel Marant and Alexander Wang to H&M, and Marques’ Almeida to Top Shop.

Without blowing your budget, you can snap up these bargain items in your lunch hour, though beware that the most popular items often sell out in a matter of days.

Your Turn…

Think stylishly, and think smart. What will you do to get the most from your fashion budget?

Money Nuggets

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