How to Look Expensive on a Budget: 10 Tips for a Chic Look

How to Look Expensive on a Budget: 10 Tips for a Chic Look

Who says you need to spend a fortune to look amazing? With the right accessories, you can turn the most boring outfit into something stunning. Your creativity is the only limit. If you’re wondering how to look expensive on a budget, follow these 10 handy tips!

Have you flipped through fashion magazines and wondered why your clothes never look that good?

You put time into putting together an outfit, but it somehow never looks quite right. Is the difference just that those are designer labels?

Just because you can’t afford expensive clothes doesn’t mean you can’t look that good.

Sure, designer clothes will automatically look better than something from the bargain basement. But, putting together an expensive looking outfit is about so much more than just the highest price tag.

There are practical tips you can use to instantly make your outfit look high-end and chic.

Who says you need to spend a fortune to look amazing? If you’re wondering how to look expensive on a budget, follow these 10 handy tips!

1. Invest in Timeless Outerwear

If you’re looking to invest a little extra money in your closet, start with outerwear.

Nothing makes an overall look appear more expensive than nice outerwear. After all, it’s the first impression people get of your outfit.

You don’t have to invest a month’s salary, either. If you just think ahead, you can save yourself cash. It’s all about finding those clearance sales!

During the end of the winter season, buy a luxe-looking trench. When autumn is ending, buy a tailored leather jacket.

You’ll get a great price on a piece that can last you several seasons.

2. Avoid Trendy or Loud Prints

Loud or trendy prints can often come off looking cheap or tacky. When shopping for a versatile wardrobe that looks expensive, stick to solids.

The exception to this rule would be classic patterns. Plaid, houndstooth, and pinstripes all fall under this category. Even leopard print can look chic!

However, you have to be discerning when you reach for these prints. The fabric needs to be of a better quality. Sticking with solids allows you to sometimes get away with a cheaper quality garment.

3. Find a Great Tailor

It might sound crazy to tailor inexpensive clothing. But, having an outfit that fits like a glove instantly elevates it.

Just because something is expensive doesn’t mean it will fit perfectly. If you spend less money on the garment, you’ll have money to spare for the tailoring.

Dresses and jackets are items you should definitely consider tailoring. They often don’t fit well off the rack.

When sleeves are too long or a something is too loose at the waist, it looks sloppy. You’ll notice right away how much better inexpensive clothes can look when they truly fit.

4. Check Out Thrift Stores and Outlets

Want designer duds and don’t mind if they’re gently used? Then check out thrift stores.

You’ll have to do some digging, but you’ll be surprised at the things you can find.

Another tip is to check out thrift stores in affluent towns. The wealthier the locals, the nicer the clothes that get donated.

If used clothes aren’t your thing, try the outlet malls. Expensive brands will often make a separate line of clothes for these stores.

5. Go for a Monochromatic Look

When in doubt, go monochromatic. Sticking with one color from head to toe always looks chic and expensive.

An all white or black outfit can be a go-to for when you want to look sophisticated. Your shoes should be monochromatic as well. Add a pop of color with a bold statement necklace.

6. Wear Classic Jewelry

Cheap costume jewelry can easily giveaway that you’re working with a tight budget. If you can, invest in a few classic pieces of jewelry. Something like pearls or a delicate gold chain with a pendant.

This kind of jewelry will last forever and they won’t go out of style.

If spending that kind of money is out of the question, find pieces that will last you a while. This mala bracelet collection is a good example. It’s classic looking, sturdy, and can go with lots of different outfits.

7. Look for Quality Fabrics

When trying to find an article of clothing that can pass for expensive, always check the fabric. Which fabrics pass the test and which don’t?

Some fabrics will always look cheap. Acrylic and rayon fall into this category and should be avoided.

Linen, cotton, and faux suede can be purchased at all kinds of price points but can look expensive. Polyester needs to be judged on a case-by-case basis. It’s in that middle area where it can go either way.

8. Take Care of Your Clothes and Accessories

It might feel silly to treat a pair of $50 faux leather boots like they’re worth $500. But, if you do, they’ll last a lot longer. Plus, nothing takes your look down a few notches like dirty or scuffed shoes.

This goes for all your clothing an accessories. Part of looking like you have an expensive outfit on is looking polished.

People who have nice things take care of them. Does your purse look like it’s been buried in the back of your closet? That’s a clue that your stuff is cheap.

9. Match Your Purses to Your Look

One of the main ways to make your outfit look expensive is by making it look deliberate. When your purse matches your clothes it looks planned.

That doesn’t mean you need 12 different purses to go with everything you own.

However, you should have a few different inexpensive purses you can rotate. For instance, if you’re wearing brown shoes, your black bag probably doesn’t match.

Try finding a purse in black, brown, and a light color you can wear for summer. A dressy purse is a good option to have on hand too.

10. Keep Your Clothes Pressed

It’s just one more thing that will make your outfit look deliberate and polished. It’s tempting to look at your wrinkled shirt and tell yourself it looks fine. You’re running late, who will even notice?

But, you know that when you take the time to iron that shirt, it looks a lot nicer. Make the time to iron your outfit. It’s just one more small, inexpensive thing you can do to elevate your look.

How to Look Expensive on a Budget

Giving the impression that your clothing is expensive is easier than you think. As long as you take the time to try this advice, you’ll be looking luxe in no time.


Are you interested in learning more tips like how to look expensive on a budget? Then check these blogs out for more!

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