The 5 Most Common Fashion Mistakes (and How to Fix Them)
We’d be lying if we said we’ve never made a fashion mistake (the velour tracksuit ordeal of the early 2000s comes to mind). Which is why we’ve compiled a few of the most common, most fixable ones to help you avoid future disaster.
Mistake: Your Pants Aren’t Hemmed
Of course she looks amazing, she’s J.Lo. But there’s something just a little off about the way her pants are bunching at the bottom. A tiny detail like an improper fit can totally throw an outfit’s vibe, making you looking shorter and sloppier than you really are.
Solution: Befriend a Tailor
A professional seamstress can take even the most meh-looking pants and make them red-carpet worthy. (Here’s a handy guide for which pieces in your wardrobe you should—and shouldn’t—take to a tailor.) As a general rule of thumb, slim-cut trousers should hit right at your ankle, just above where your shoe starts, while anything with a boot cut or flare should almost skim the ground (but not drag).
Mistake: You’re Wearing the Wrong Shoes For Your Hemline
Here’s the deal: A miniskirt or dress worn with sky-high stilettos looks too young (at best) and too vampy (at worst). Yes, even if you’re a super goddess like Blake Lively.
Solution: Follow the Hemline Heel Height Rule
See how much more elegant she looks? Our cardinal rule: If your hemline hits above the knee, stick to loafers, ballet flats or even white sneakers. With a longer skirt or dress, you can go with sky-high heels and still look super-refined.
Mistake: You’re Over-Accessorizing
Necklaces are beautiful, statement jackets are to-die-for and hair accessories are great in the right situation. But when you wear them all at once, it can get overwhelming, and you end up looking like a Boho crazy person. (Love you, Mary-Kate and Ashley!)
Solution: Take Off One Thing (or Two)
That old Coco Chanel adage that you should take off one thing every time you go out? Still works. Sometimes, less really is more.
Mistake: You’re Hiding Your Body in Baggy Clothes
We’ve totally been there: Thinking that layering a bunch of loose clothes will make us look smaller, when, in fact, they make us look heavier, and signal to the world that we’ve got something to hide.
Solution: Use Form-Fitting Clothes to Play Up Your Best Assets
Take a lesson from Melissa McCarthy and choose silhouettes—like a dress with a cinched waist and snug, three-quarter-length sleeves—that embrace your curves and highlight your favorite body parts, while also faking a killer hourglass figure.
Mistake: You’re Wearing the Wrong Bra
Maybe you’re wearing padded underwire that creates an unnatural cone effect. (Hi, Joan!) Maybe you’re wearing a size too small that gives you visible bulges. Maybe you don’t have enough support and the girls are doing their best Jell-O impression. The point is: The wrong bra can ruin an otherwise impeccable outfit.
Solution: Get Fitted and Match Your Bra to Your Top
Stores like Nordstrom, Victoria’s Secret and Soma all have staffers on hand to take your measurements and match you with the perfect size and style. Take advantage. Then, make sure you’re wearing the right bra each time you get dressed. Some good guidelines: Wear a delicate but opaque bra with anything sheer, a plunge bra with V-necks and a non-textured bra with cotton tees. And, for the love of God, never let them see your straps.