How to find your personal style

We live in a society of ever-changing fashion norms, micro-trends and overconsumption ( I srsly can't keep up). It can be exhausting constantly updating your wardrobe to fit what's "in" and what's "out."

Finding your personal style can not only boost your confidence, but also take the pressure off of always being trendy. Even though some fads can be super fun, it can be an exciting (and empowering) journey to figure out what clothes *you* like to wear, not what TikTok says you should wear.

Full disclaimer: I'm not exactly a fashion icon. But over the years, I've definitely developed a strong understanding of my personal style—and that's helped me to feel super confident with my wardrobe (while saving some bucks doing it!). Here's how you can discover your dream fashion vibe...

1. Analyze your closet 

The first step to curating your style is to take a good, hard look at everything in your closet.

Think about outfits you've worn in the past and what you did and didn't like about each of them. Take note of what you own a lot of, what pieces you usually reach for and what you forgot you even owned.

When I looked through my dresser, I noticed I owned lots of flowy pants that I paired with tanks. This helped me realize that these two items are "basics" in my closet—my go-to outfits in the summer months and what I feel most comfortable in.

I also noticed that I don't own many skirts, probably because I find them harder to style. When you complete this process, you'll gain a better understanding of the items you like and the items that collect dust. 

2. Download Pinterest 

Pinterest is the holy grail of fashion inspo, because once you find a pin you like, the algorithm will show you thousands of other outfits with a similar vibe. It also shows you cohesive outfits instead of singular pieces. So if you aren't already on it 24/7 like me, start creating some boards.

It might help you feel more organized to categorize the boards into sections such as "school outfits," "accessories" and "summer outfits." While you're scrolling, think about what you like about each pin. Maybe you love the sundress but don't like how it's paired with the shoes. Think about how you would style each piece in a way that feels authentic to you. 

3. Take off the pressure 

The fashion world is super intimidating. I think many people feel like their outfits have to be perfect all the time. Unique but still trendy, bold but not tacky, classy but not's all too confusing!

Hear me out: You do not have to wear a never-seen-before outfit at all times (talk about exhausting). The whole concept of being "basic" is dumb and frankly misogynistic. Who cares if "everyone" owns that top? If you feel cute and confident, that's all that matters.

On the other hand, if you're venturing into a more creative style, you should take risks—and it's OK if your vision doesn't always come to fruition 100% of the time. The only way to figure out what you like is to try, so don't worry too much about what other people will think...and just have fun with it! 

4. You don't need an "aesthetic" 

One of the things that felt the most stifling to me when finding my style was the idea that you should have one singular aesthetic that your entire closet conforms to. I generally would describe my style as "beachy boho." I like pieces that are '70s-inspired and comfortable. 

Even though this is usually what you'll find me wearing, sometimes (based on my mood and the weather) I opt for darker colors, leather jackets and a more "nighttime city" vibe. The beauty of fashion is that these styles can co-exist, you do not have to put yourself in a box! 

5. Have fun! 

Fashion is supposed to be fun! It's a way to express yourself and figure out how you want to present your aura to the world.

Explore new places to shop with your besties by checking out local flea markets and farmers markets (all of my jewelry comes almost exclusively from craft vendors). It's a great way to find unique pieces and support your community. 

This is also the perfect time to try your luck at thrifting! It takes some practice before you start finding fab items, but you never know when you might get lucky. Thrifting is also a great way to expand your closet on a budget. Experiment with different colors, silhouettes and accessories. 

Follow us on IG for more fashion inspo @girlslifemag!


by Alex Marek | 5/18/2024