You have a desire to have a cohesive personal style that makes you feel beautiful.
Yet, when you look in your closet, you see random clothing you’ve been tolerating.
You thought you were doing the “right” thing by buying what your favorite influencer or celebrity looked great in.
Or shopping from your carefully crafted Pinterest boards…
But, what you ended up with is more than half of your closet filled with items you’re not comfortable in, or pieces that flatter you in all the right places.
Celebrities, fashion designers, and influencers all flaunt their fabulously curated personal style that feels so effortless that it makes you wonder what you’re doing wrong.
Well keep reading this post and you’ll get the keys to defining your personal style.
I’ve put together a 4-step plan to show you how to find your personal style. You’ll learn:
Why you’ve made these style mistakes to begin with
How to figure out style elements you doesn’t suit you
How to figure out what style elements define your personal style
The best part about it, is that you can get this done in a weekend!
By the time you’re done reading, you’ll know what past mistakes you were making and you’ll have a step-by-step plan to define your personal style and become more confident and intentional in your wardrobe building.
How Not To Find Your Personal Style
Defining your personal style can feel overwhelming with all of the influence at our fingertips. It can be incredibly frustrating because of the wasted time and money spent on the creation of a wardrobe you don’t feel beautiful in.
Most of the articles on how to find your personal style tell you to create a Pinterest board full of looks like that you like or to follow your favorite celebrity and try to mirror that.
I’m here to tell you why that’s all a mistake and what you should do to define your personal style instead.
Spoiler alert: You’ve got the keys to your personal style in your closet right now.
But we’ll get to that in a moment. Let’s talk about what not to do when trying to find your personal style.
Skip the Body Shape Charts
If you’re completely new to understanding how to dress for yourself, these body shape guides are meant to help you narrow down the overwhelming options of what types of clothing you should shop for.
These shape charts really have the best intentions. But, I’m here to tell you why you’re more than a piece of paper.
Many women don’t fit into one clear body shape, which can make trying to figure out what you should be wearing even more confusing.
And most importantly, it doesn’t take into account the most important piece of finding your personal style: how you feel!
So, let’s put the body shape charts on the back burner.
You are more than a piece of paper and the shape of your body does not define only one way to dress.
Mirroring Your Favorite Celebrity Style
Here’s a secret – many of your internet favorites have a curated personal style.
That’s a fancy way of saying that they have a professional personal stylist on-call to create their looks and curate the image they want to portray.
Yep, even your favorite style blogger.
And keep in mind, an influencer’s job is to influence you to buy the products they promote for the brands that hire them.
Pause. I am in no way hating on the job on influencing. I’ve purchased a many items based on the recommendations of an influencer and will continue to do so.
The key is that when it comes to you finding your own personal style, you still have to be aware of what works for you and what doesn’t work for you so that you aren’t continued to be influenced into a personal fashion style that doesn’t suit you.
You have to build your internal filter.
That filter will allow you “like” their post, appreciate the beauty of their look, but be fully confident in knowing that that look is not for you and save your money.
How to Find Your Personal Style in 4 Steps
Now that you know the importance of learning who you are and how not knowing this can influence you to keep going in circles with finding your personal style, it’s time to share what to do.
The personal style types most familiar to us, like minimalist, retro, urban, and edgy are clear labels that are great for women who have fine tuned their look. That usually takes years to evolve to.
For the purposes of figuring out your personal fashion style and building a wardrobe without completely starting over, you have the keys to carve out the look that’s perfect for you in your current season of life.
Build A Wardrobe Around Your Lifestyle
Your lifestyle is one of the most important aspects of learning your personal style. The clothes you wear must fit into your lifestyle, not the other way around.
Consider your work environment, family activity schedule, and social calendar while you think about how you spend most of your time.
You will want to build a wardrobe that supports your most frequent activities. When you step out to those events, you want to feel seen, comfortable, put-together, and beautiful.
I don’t know about you, but I’m a sucker for fancy dresses, skirts, and blazers. My Pinterest board is full of looks that are perfect for a fancy date night or cocktail party.
But, when it comes to my date nights with hubby, we often found ourselves at the movies, a comedy show, museum, or some other event where I would have been extremely overdressed and uncomfortable in heels and a cocktail dress.
While, I loved the looks, my lifestyle doesn’t support that type of wardrobe.
Your goal is build a wardrobe that fits into who you already are, not who you wish to be.
2. Learn What To Emphasize On Your Body and What To Hide
It’s safe to say that just about every woman has something she loves about her body and something she doesn’t.
Take a look in the mirror and think about what parts of your body you like to emphasize in an outfit and what you try to camouflage.
I’ve never been comfortable with short, or mini length anything. My knees aren’t ugly, I just don’t like short items that could ride up my thighs. Midi length, or just below the knee is my sweet spot in showing off the length off my legs and giving me the modest coverage I’m comfortable with.
If you’re uncomfortable about your arms, then sleeveless looks aren’t going to be something you need to shop for, unless you plan on layering a top underneath.
If you love your shoulders, then cold-shoulder cut out everything is going to be for you!
Think about your must-show and must hide parts. This will help you narrow down what to consider as you curate your wardrobe.
3. Clean Out Your Closet and Learn What No Longer Serves You
I’ve got a secret to share with you…
The key to unlocking what your personal style is lies in what you no longer want in your wardrobe.
We’re told to clean out and purge our closets every so often. We’re told to get rid of what we haven’t worn in a year.
But, when was the last time that you paid attention to what you got rid of and asked yourself “why does this piece no longer work for me?”
Asking this question on every item in my last closet purge is what truly helped me understand who I was in this current space in my life and what type of wardrobe I needed to support it.
Pull out the items from your closet and drawers in preparation for your next closet purge.
And for every item, ask the question, “why do you no longer serve me?”, and make a note of why.
You may begin to notice a trend in color, fabric, fit, and style. Knowing these trends will be the key to stopping yourself from making the same wardrobe mistakes in the future.
4. Learn What You Love – Identify Themes In Your New Wardrobe
In the same way that you analyzed why pieces no longer serve you, you’ll want to do the same with what survived your wardrobe purge.
There’s a reason those pieces made the cut. Ask yourself why.
Try them on, connect with how they make you look and feel.
Is it the way the fabric feels or the way the color looks great against your skin?
Is is the way that it hides your mommy pooch, or lengthens your legs?
Pay attention to those same themes of fit, length, color, and fabric, for instance.
These will be the themes you will look for in your future shopping.
This photo is my actual closet.
After my purge, without me making a truly conscious effort, it was very clear to me that I lean toward neutrals. It was a big “DUH!” moment on why I was never attached to my more vibrant and printed pieces!
These will be the observations that you’ll find just by purging your wardrobe and organizing what’s left in your closet!
Unlocking Your Personal Style Is Within Your Reach
By learning who you are and leaning into the lifestyle that you live, you can begin to break down your personal style needs.
The keys to unlocking defining your personal style are in your closet, even if they’re telling you what you don’t like about your clothing. Every piece of information takes you one step closer to becoming who you envision yourself to be.