Adulting ain’t easy. Taxes, full-time employment, bills, paying off student-debt… all that fun stuff. Since I will be turning 25 in a few months, I wanted to start making real adult choices, one of them being upgrading my wardrobe. Until recently I would describe my style as extremely nerdy, over-sized, and waaaaaaaay too much black. By being unemployed for six months and going on endless interviews, I knew I needed to start looking like an adult. What I discovered was that is sure isn’t cheap.
My original go-to stores were H&M and Forever 21 because my old faithfuls (black shirts, stuff with Batman on it, etc.) were usually pretty cheap. When I started venturing into stores like LOFT, RW & Co., and ZARA, my bank account curled into the fetal position. The prices were unreal: $50 for a plain shirt and $100 for pants?! My brain (and wallet) couldn’t handle it.
When you are unemployed and looking for a blazer for an interview, finding one that won’t cost you an arm and a leg is nearly impossible. I ended up going to interviews feeling like a schlub and the lack of confidence really showed.
Now that I’m employed with a full-time job, I’ve started looking to buy “grown-up” clothes and transitioning away from my “uber-geek” phase (though I don’t think I’ll ever fully grow out of it). I’ve been buying nicer clothes, but not splurging all at once.
My problem was that I thought I had to buy a whole new wardrobe in one go. This would cost me mad cash and I would end up with something that didn’t really suit me. Now I’ve decided to slow things down and get smart with my spending.
I look for deals, wait until the end of the season to shop during sales, and buy a few pieces that are a little more expensive but make sure that they are staple pieces that will go with LITERALLY everything I own.
I’ve also found that when I shop online I end up drifting back to my old ways of graphic t-shirts with sloths on them or things that are super trendy, but won’t be in-style for more than a season. Plus the risk factor is higher when shopping online because your purchase may not fit you and sending it back could cost you even more.
To make your “transition” into full adulthood smoother, don’t try to do it overnight. Give yourself a chance to adjust before jumping in.
You got this!