How to Always Look Put Together and Polished on a Budget

Updated on February 19, 2020
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Katy has an open-minded but practical approach to style. She shares all the details about making fashion work for you.

As women we aspire to look our best all the time. How do some women look flawless while others feel like they struggle just to look presentable? The answer is in knowing where to put your efforts and finding out what works for you.

It doesn't take a lot of money or even time to achieve this look. It's all about wisely choosing what to care for and what to let go.

Looking polished and classy comes down to daily habits.
Looking polished and classy comes down to daily habits.

How to Look Classy Every Day

Want to know the secret to looking classy every day?

It's simple: find what makes the biggest impact. Find aspects of your appearance people notice the most and learn to take care of those every day.

Here are the main things to focus on to look great every single day:

  1. Intentional outfits with clothes that fit
  2. Well kept hair and nails
  3. Simple, natural makeup
  4. Healthy skin

That's it! Polished basics can cover up the slip ups we all make when things get busy. No one will notice if you haven't washed your hair today if you're confident in your go-to bun style. You won't worry if your clothes are old if they're well taken care of and fit well.

What Aspect of Your Appearance Do You Put the Most Effort Into?

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How to Build "Put Together" Outfits

Your choice of clothes has a big impact on your appearance. We often get caught up in thinking we need the latest, brand name styles. But it's not the dollar amount of the items that count. It's how well they fit and their condition.

Coordinated outfits are a sign that you've mastered adulthood. And they're not as hard to achieve as it might seem!

Let's break down what makes a classy looking outfit:

  1. Coordinated colors and fits.
  2. All items fit properly.
  3. No wrinkles or wear.
  4. It fits your personal style.

None of these items need to cost much but it does take some money and time to figure out each.

Use Balanced Silhouettes

Balancing fits is something basic you can do to automatically look stylish. Some items fit tighter like skinny jeans or tight tops, others are loose. A general guideline is to style your upper half or lower half tight or loose and then do the opposite on the other half. So a full skirt on bottom should be paired with a tight tank on top. Wear a bagging sweater with slim or skinny jeans.

Take Care of Your Clothes

A fabulous blouse that fits great and goes with everything will still drag you down if it's wrinkled. Maybe you have time to iron all your shirts but for me this Secure Handheld Steamer has been the holy grail of looking classy.

No matter what I do, most of my clothes dry with anywhere from a slight to horrid amount of wrinkles. This keeps me from looking polished, when I spent so much time trying to look nice. A handheld steamer changed all this and was a cheap and quick solution.

Stick to A Color Palette

Color makes a huge impact in our outfits. You probably know what colors look good on you and if you don't you can take some fashion color quizzes on Google. Making outfits is easier with a simple color palette. Pick a few colors you like and one or two neutrals.

Part of the reason capsule wardrobes are so popular is they have a simple color palette and one or two silhouettes. So whatever you grab from that wardrobe will immediate look great together, in color and fit!

On A Budget

If you find your wardrobe needs a change you don't need to replace all your clothing immediately. Simply limit yourself to your color palette and style when shopping for your next pieces. This strategy will gradually build your wardrobe into your secret weapon for looking great everyday.

Also, spend some time arranging the clothes you do have into new outfits. You'd be surprised what you can come up with when you dedicate 10 or 15 minutes a day trying new outfit combinations.

Example of a capsule wardrobe to make getting dressed easier.
Example of a capsule wardrobe to make getting dressed easier. | Source

Simple Makeup for Everyday

Follow these guidelines for great looking makeup every day:

  1. Take care of your skin first.
  2. Find the products that work for you.
  3. Keep it simple!

Let's look at how to pull off these easy principles everyday.

Skincare Routine

Everyday makeup application is easier when there are less flaws to cover up. Start with a solid skin care regimen that works for you. The most important aspect of skin care is sticking to a routine.

Consistency will be easier to keep up with if the routine is simple. Find affordable products and do only what you need. Better yet, learn to make them at home like this DIY Rose Water Toner.

Everyday Makeup Routine

Just like skincare, you're more likely to stick to a makeup routine if it's easy. Narrow down your products to the essentials that make the most impact for your face.

Be honest about how much time you're willing to spend on makeup each day. Cut products until your process fits into the time.

I have dark circles under my eyes and some red patches but otherwise clear skin. Concealer is a must for me and makes a big impact on making me look awake.

I spend more time on basic skincare so all I need on top of that is a BB cream. My favorite is Bare Mineral's Complexion Rescue. It's covers imperfections without looking cakey or highlighting fine lines. And it's a great moisturizer with a bit of sunscreen so it's not fighting my skin care routine.

You could add in mascara or a neutral blush. Whatever makes you feel great!

Women who look great everyday have strong self-care habits

Look Classy Everyday Tricks

Yes the basics for looking nice takes some time commitment. But there are some clever shortcuts you can take when life gets busy. Here are some "hacks" to try to take your everyday routine to the next level.

Polished Nails

Painted nails in a bold or classy color elevates any outfit. Get your nails done and you'll look stylish in just jeans and a t-shirt.

Doing a professional looking manicure or nail job at home is a skill you can learn. But remember that chipped polish looks worse than none so it can be a time commitment.

Pearl Stud Earrings

These can be any stud earrings you like. But pearl earrings have a certain class that's hard to replicate in such a simple accessory. They go with anything from the gym to the office.

Bad Hair-Day Hairstyle

Any busy woman has a go-to hairstyle for when it just won't cooperate. Master a few buns or half-up styles you like. Practice when you'll be at home all day and see if the style stays up before you wear it to work or out for a night.

Share Your Tips for Looking Great Everyday

What tips do you have for looking your best everyday?

Share with us in the comments below.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2018 Katy Medium


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