Ever felt like you’re stuck in a style rut? I know I have! I remember when we lived in Paris going to a gorgeous department store and having a personal shopping session which revolutionised my wardrobe. None of the clothes I walked out with would have even warranted a second glance if I’d been left to my own devices. Needless to say I wore every piece until they literally fell apart at the seams! If you feel you are in a style rut, my great friend Carol Hanson of www.wantheroutfit.com has got some fab advice to get you feeling fab again.
Stuck In A Rut And How To Feel Fabulous Again
“I love my coffee dates with Sandra. We are former work colleagues and have been meeting regularly for about a year.
Sandra walked into the coffee shop last week wearing a grey T-shirt and jeans.
It suddenly struck me that since we’d been meeting for coffee I’d never seen Sandra in anything except grey T-shirt and jeans.
When we got settled with our coffee I asked her if everything was okay? She looked at me before answering and said yes, but why do you ask?
I said that it was probably just coincidence but that every time we met she was wearing jeans and a grey t-shirt. When we worked together our mutual interest in clothes had been key in developing our relationship.
She hesitated and looked at me sadly, before saying that for her, clothes had just become a massive effort.
I asked her gently if she’d like to talk about it. While I might not be the person to deal with any deep underlying issues, I could certainly help with what appeared to be a classic style rut. A small smile played around her lips and she said it would be good to get her style mojo back!
Being in a style rut can be like doing a job you don’t love. It saps your energy but you carry on doing it because:
- It serves a purpose – financial security;
- You have no idea what else you might want to do.
But ultimately spending weeks, months and even years doing a job that you hate can lead to illness and have an impact on every area of your life.
Not caring about the way you look can also have a major impact on your life and those around you.
Equally feeling good about your appearance is empowering and gives you confidence. Both of which will help you to lead a more enriched and happy life.
Are You In A Style Rut Or Not?
So how can you tell if you are in a style rut?
- Shopping feels like a huge chore and drain on your energy
- Your wardrobe is full of the same items – eg how many grey t- shirts?
- Your wardrobe is full of neutral colours (black, brown, beige, grey)
- You have an ‘off duty uniform’ you wear when you don’t need to dress up
- Your wardrobe is a reflection of an era when you felt really good
So How Do You Get Out Of A Style Rut?
As I’ve alluded to earlier, there may be a deeper underlying problem as to why you are in a style rut for which you may need to seek other help. So you do need to take a look at why you feel stuck or out of balance.
But for the moment we’re going to focus on my five top tips of how to get out of a rut.
Avoid Shopping If You Are In A Style Rut
If shopping has become a huge chore then simply don’t do it!
Your attitude will be wrong and nothing is likely to inspire you.
Your buying trip will most likely result in a bag full of the same clothes you’ve been wearing during your style rut phase!! Or if you feel you ‘ought’ to be a bit more adventurous your choices are most likely to be expensive mistakes.
Tip: Even if you feel that you need to go shopping to get out of a style rut then put your credit card in a safe place!
Empty Your Jewellery Box Over Your Bed
Not only does it make a fabulous messy pile, you will have great fun sorting it out.
I bet you will find some hidden gems (no pun intended!) of necklaces and bracelets you’d forgotten about. Especially if it’s in a colour that really suits you. Or perhaps the colours enhance the colours of your eyes.
This was one of the tricks that I suggested Sandra tried. As Sandra’s style rut had manifested itself as jeans and a grey t-shirt, there was so much scope for adding colour.
Tip: One of the simplest ways to transform an outfit is to add a necklace.
Colour Your Way Out Of A Style Rut
Most people who are in a style rut wear a lot of neutrals. They want to blend into the background and not be noticed.
But if you’ve stopped caring about your wardrobe, my guess is that there will be lots of lovely colourful gems hiding there!
Find something colourful you haven’t worn for a long time. Preferably something that others have previously complemented you on. Put it on. How does it make you feel? If it feels too much then mix and match with neutrals to reduce the effect. Wear it and see what happens.
Tip: Wear something colourful, even as part of an outfit. See what happens – how do you feel?
Cut Your Way Out Of A Style Rut
How long has it been since you tried something different with your hair?
Your hair is a big part of what defines you. We can’t just take it off and leave it in the wardrobe if we don’t like it!
When I had mine cropped and went blonde, I was blown away by the confidence it gave me. I’d not told anyone what I was planning to do, so it was a major ‘wow’.
You might not be ready for this dramatic change, but why not have a think about what you could do differently. Pinterest is a great source of inspiration.
Tip: Create a mood board and book an appointment with your hairdresser. Your hairdresser will help you based on what suits you and the options for your natural hair.
Making It Up To Get Out Of A Style Rut
How long has it been since you looked in your makeup bag? I don’t mean a cursory glance to find that eye shadow you always wear which is lurking near the top. I mean a deep dive into the grimy contents at the bottom!
Your make up and skincare routine needs to adapt to your changing skin condition, as you get older.
This year I started to have regular manicures. My nails are brittle, previous treatments had damaged my nails and I believed it was a waste of time and money.
But the beautician I see has kept my nails looking amazing and in great condition. Technology and products evolve and so check out what’s available.
Hot Tip: Seek advice if you’re not sure what products to use and how to update your look.
Put An Action Plan In Place To Get Out Of Your Style Rut
If you recognize that you’re in a style rut congratulations. That’s a great step towards solving the problem. See if you can identify what has led you to not caring about your wardrobe.
As I mentioned earlier the reasons may be deep and you may require some help or they may be things you can identify and work on. It may be that you’re devoting your life to others and simply not spending enough time on your own self-care. Perhaps you’re in a job that gives you no satisfaction and so your whole life is impacted. It may be much simpler than this – perhaps you do a job that requires a uniform and you’re not sure of your identity outside the workplace. Whatever the reason, putting an action plan in place will help to build your confidence and get you looking and feeling fabulous.
Do you have a wardrobe full of clothes but nothing to wear?
Do you ever look at your clothes and think about how much money you’ve invested? Do you sometimes feel guilty knowing that the shop tags are still on half of them?
Do you shut the door quickly, closing your eyes to the fact that there’s a large percentage of what’s in your wardrobe that you never wear?
My mission in life is to inspire women to look and feel fantastic every time they get dressed. I help women to feel more confident about their clothes and how to express their unique sense of style. I show women how to get more from their existing wardrobes and avoid those costly mistakes, meaning a better return on the investment I your wardrobe.
My passion for helping women comes from my own experience of a 20-year battle with anorexia. Now fully recovered, my focus is to help women overcome their body image issues and express their own unique style with confidence.
When I’m not empowering women to feel good about themselves, I can be found: spending time with Mark, my husband of 35 years; walking my two dogs or working out at the gym.
My style tips and details about how you can work with me can be found at: http://wantheroutfit.com.”