One of the most complicated balancing acts of the millennial generation is budget vs beauty. We’re encouraged by the media to spend spend spend but we’re told by society to save save save. This is supposed to be the most exciting time of our lives, where we’re free to live our lives and explore who we are. Yet we’re simultaneously being told to prepare for the future, get one foot on the property ladder and find a well paying job because ‘we can’t live on thin air’. Our appearance now matters more than ever before as we attend high end interviews, showcase ourselves on Instagram wearing the hottest brands, and try to survive in a world where high street becomes catwalk on a daily basis.We’re a poor generation, living in a high society world and for many of us, our lifestyle expectations are just not sustainable. So what can we do about it?
When I say ‘shop differently’, I don’t mean stop shopping. There are always going to be occasions where you need something new – weddings, meetings, interviews, performances. Simply stopping all purchases isn’t an option, and we all know it. So now it’s time to change how we shop. Firstly, avoid shops like New Look, Topshop and Next like the plague. Although they may still ‘technically’ fall into the high street category when it comes to fashion brands, they’re still extremely pricey and can do some serious damage to our bank accounts in a matter of minutes. Instead opt for charity or vintage shops. Although a few of us may have that inbuilt urge to turn our noses up at the thought – if you want decent clothing at a low price point, you have to make some sacrifices. Take out the ‘pre-worn’ elements of the clothing, and simply see the brands attached to the label. You’ll find a huge variety of H&M, New Look, Urban Outfitters and Boohoo goodies on those racks, you just have to look a little bit harder. Vintage shops are also a fantastic way to find some incredible pieces of fashion, and are becoming increasingly popular with the millennial generation. Don’t discount them from your next big shopping spree, as you might just find some gems.
Also, shop online! But not from the major retailers. Discount, low end online stores like Romwe, SheIn and Everything5Pounds.com are really great sources of cheap clothing options, at a surprisingly good quality mark. With some really beautiful and unique pieces, you might actually be surprised by how much you can find! Romwe even offers a points system which helps you convert Romwe points into money – so for a few short reviews, you can help to make yourself for money for your next purchase! The only disadvantage with these sites might be the delivery date, as they don’t quite have the same efficiency and speed as the high street stores…so perhaps don’t buy anything you need in a hurry!
Accept the hand-me-downs
We all remember those days sat with our mum, going through the bin bag of clothes donated to us by an older friend, sibling or relative. Sitting on the floor going ‘nope, nope nope nope…ooh that’s cute…nope nope’. Well let’s bring that back! Everyone has clothes in their wardrobe they’re dying to get rid of, so why not make it known to your friends that you’re looking to re-style your look and if they have any hand offs, you’d be happy to take a look! There are even clothes swapping events happening all over the country that might be worth taking an interest in. Simply bring a bag of your unwanted clothes, and swap them for pieces of someone else’s wardrobe. New isn’t always better, and pre-loved is usually the most budget friendly option. There are so many ways to save cash when shopping, it just might take a little bit of time to get used to your new fashion suppliers!
One of the biggest things to remember about finding your new style outlets is that pride does not and should not matter. When you’re running on financial fumes, whether you get your clothes from Gucci or garage sales shouldn’t be your priority. But that doesn’t mean we should sacrifice the fashion styles that make us who we are. Be yourself, but just a more budget friendly version of yourself. Make those sacrifices, and be happy. Thanks for reading my fashion tips for Poor Girls! I hope you’re enjoying my Poor Girls series, and if you want to find out more about my budget friendly beauty hacks, check out my last post: Wellness Hacks for Poor Girls. Have a great week!
In honour of being ourselves, even in difficult times, this week I’ve chosen a charity dedicated to helping young people living safely with their true identities.
Chosen Charity: The Albert Kennedy Trust
Why you should donate: Saving young LGBT+ individuals from the streets, and getting them into warm beds, with warm food and water.
How you can donate: https://www.akt.org.uk/donate