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How to Look Expensive… Without the Price Tag!

I spent several years trying to compare myself to the most expensive dressers.  From the time when I worked retail back in high school, I had a problem with my paycheck either going to the most expensive yoga studio in town or to the nearest Saks to the too expensive hot new trend that was long gone by the next year.

But now, slowly jumping into the foray of the fashion world, I’ve found that there are some consistent factors that I can easily apply to my current wardrobe that instantly make my ensemble look more expensive.  Check out my favorite tips below that will instantly turn your current wardrobe to looking pricey and brand new.


Tailor Your Clothing


Victoria Beckham is the queen of perfect tailoring,  but she’s on to something.  I know I’ve spoken about my love of tailoring in my previous post on the biggest fashion faux pas, because this tip is true to my heart.  Tailoring by someone you trust will change an affordable skirt from Target into looking like a million bucks!  You won’t regret the few minutes and dollars you spend on making your wardrobe look and feel custom made.


Polished Hair and Makeup

16 corporette

First of all, I love that I’m writing this while in my workout clothes after a tough fitness sesh on the couch.  But second of all, this one doesn’t cost a cent and makes a HUGE difference.  The low-key look is in right now, and that’s okay, but my suggestion is to pick a look and stick with it.  If you want low key, that’s cool, go low key.  If you’re dressing up for an interview, then a sleek, sophisticated look would make more sense.  Good hygiene is a huge part of simply looking polished.


Go Monochrome


Late Afternoon

Don’t get me wrong, I’m a huge fan of pattern mixing.  But if you’re going for a classic, expensive look, then a monochrome look is the way to go.  Pick matching colors for an elongating effect that looks intentional.  You won’t have to spend too much time pulling this look together, but it will look instantly like your stylist hand picked it on your behalf!


Maintenance is Imperative


I once heard someone say, “Remember, a bad manicure is a good manicure that’s been on too long.”  And I think this on applies to more than just to manis!  If you get a stain, spot treat it or bring the item to the dry cleaner.  Put your clothing into the freezer after every wear rather than immediately defaulting to the washer/dryer.  Steam your clothing rather than instantly ironing, especially because most synthetic fabrics shouldn’t be ironed.  These tricks can be done with your current wardrobe and can make a huge impact!


Black & White Always Work

8bf720bc32a9c8aa01f91cba19fbaea9 Harper’s Bazaar

When in doubt, black and white, unless incredibly worn, consistently looks classic and expensive.  Simplicity is key when trying to go for elegance, and not much is much more pulled together than this classic color combination.



What are your tips for always looking more expensive?  Do you have to pay a small fortune to be comfortable in what your wearing?

Create a great life!

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  • Reply Vanessa @ Living in Steil

    Great tips! Good tailoring is really important, especially with suits. When I still had an office job, black and white or an all grey ensemble were my go-to’s. So easy and you were sure to look polished!

    September 29, 2015 at 8:35 am
    • Reply semisweettooth

      Completely agree with you – and perfect for mixing and matching!

      September 29, 2015 at 1:22 pm
  • Reply The Two Savings Sisters

    I especially liked the fact that you were writing in your gym gear on the couch. Nice touch and incredibly honest! I aspire to be polished but my hair never does the right thing! Lucy

    September 29, 2015 at 9:10 am
    • Reply semisweettooth

      Haha, I think everyone feels that way the majority of the time! 🙂

      September 29, 2015 at 1:22 pm
  • Reply Jamie

    I love this! I like to invest in a few staple, timeless pieces that I will pair with less expensive items. I find that it brings a higher quality look to my overall outfit! Now if I could figure out how to do makeup or my hair… haha

    September 29, 2015 at 9:18 am
    • Reply semisweettooth

      Great tip – I completely agree with you there! Stick to your staples and you’re off to a great start! (And about hair, see above… everyone feels that way, ha!) 🙂

      September 29, 2015 at 1:23 pm
  • Reply Daisy9979

    I don’t think you have to break the bank to look great but I do sometimes pay a bit more for staple pieces I know I’ll have in my wardrobe for a long time. I bought a nice pair of khaki slacks that were a bit high priced for me but I had an interview coming up and really wanted the job. They fit like a dream, I had them hemmed professionally, and I know they’ll be part of my wardrobe for a long time plus I got the job so I think they’re lucky pants, lol. 🙂 Great tips!

    September 29, 2015 at 9:31 am
    • Reply semisweettooth

      I love that! And you’re so right – if you find something that’s great quality and you love the fit, the cost per wear will absolutely be worth it!!

      September 29, 2015 at 1:24 pm
  • Reply Blair Clark

    I go thrifting!
    It’s amazing the absolute steals you can find second hand. I’ll often choose a “money area” and scope out the local thrift stores. A lot of times the designer finds still have tags on them.

    September 29, 2015 at 10:36 am
    • Reply semisweettooth

      Awesome tip! I’ve had some great find at local thrift stores, but it definitely takes time and commitment. Absolutely worth it, though, the second you have that great find! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

      September 29, 2015 at 1:26 pm
  • Reply Beautif{eye}YourLife

    Loving this post I completely agree with these. Great tips!

    October 2, 2015 at 1:00 am
  • Reply The Amazing eShakti & a Discount! | Semi-Sweet Tooth

    […] often talk about how tailoring is incredibly important to looking polished and pulled together (see here and here as examples), but eShakti gets rid of all of those worries.  They provide custom […]

    November 3, 2015 at 7:28 am
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