Five Ways To Stay Fashionable On a Budget

Everyone wants to look fashionable. In fact, everyone needs to look good. It’s one of the main reasons some people are more successful than others. It’s much easier to get a job or make new friends if you dress well, but it’s difficult to do if you are on a budget.

Finding ways to save on things like fashion is an uphill battle. This article will not solve all the issues in one stroke. Nothing will. What you can and should do is look at it creatively and try to find strategies that work for you. The below five methods should give you some starting ideas.

Loyalty Programs

Some people are obsessed with registering for every possible loyalty program, while others avoid them like plagues. If you want to save money on fashion items, you must be smart about choosing the offers from loyalty programs.

The ones that require you to spend more money to get better discounts are designed to get you to pay for things you don’t need. They should be avoided unless there is a one-time discount for buying in bulk, which usually happens only at fast fashion stores like H&M.

The best loyalty programs are those that can provide you with exclusive deals come the end of the season. You can save a ton with such offers, buying winter jackets in summer, shorts in winter, and so on. It might require you to subscribe to a newsletter or two.

Surveys For Gift Cards

While loyalty programs are great for saving money, a much better strategy is to have a way to increase your fashion budget. That’s where gift cards and other coupons come into play. Various online activities may earn you cards you can spend on budget shops and even luxury brands.

Micro-tasks, software testing, unused bandwidth sharing, lotteries, and many other ways of earning gift cards are effective. However, I found paid online surveys to be the most efficient way to get an extra budget for clothing and accessories.

Most people avoid questionnaires as they are intrusive and time-consuming. These days, paid survey platforms have improved their game so much that it’s pleasurable to participate. You can simply install an app and access questionnaires that pay in gift cards from various shops on the go.


Most questionnaires take twenty minutes to complete, and you get at least a dollar for participating if you time it cleverly. For example, while on a commute, it won’t even feel as if any labor was put in for adding ten or even fifty dollars per month to your fashion budget.

It would take a bit more explaining on how paid survey platforms work, so I suggest you read more here. In a nutshell, it’s a way to exchange some of your free time for gift cards for fashion, almost effortlessly.

Recycle Old Clothes

Years of marketing have put a belief in our heads that clothes are no longer good after a couple of years. This might be true for fast fashion products from cheap brands, but more often than not, clothes can be used time and time again.

All you need is some creativity and a bit of knowledge about sewing. I know the latter part scares most people, but there’s enough material on YouTube and elsewhere to teach you at least the basic skills. You don’t need to be a master in sewing to repair torn socks.

Once you start doing such repairs, you start seeing more possibilities. Torn pants can become shorts, the old T-shirt is a great mop, and almost any clothes you no longer use can be stuffed into comfortable pillows. The possibilities are endless, and all it really takes is determination.

Shop Second Hand

If you can’t recycle something, you should give it away to second-hand shops. Often, they have programs that allow you to bring clothes. You’d be surprised at the quality of the stuff you can find there for a fraction of the price. Most of the time, all it takes is a good clean to start using the clothes or accessories purchased.


Most items in second-hand stores or online portals, like Vinted, are received in bulk or sold in haste. Sellers often do not know the real value of what they are selling. Here are some tips for finding and repairing second-hand fashion items to get the best value out of them.

  • Always check the labels for brands and materials. You’ll know how to take care of the item and what it’s actually worth.
  • Go shopping with specific pieces in mind. Don’t buy stuff you don’t want or need now. Focus on some specific fashion parts.
  • Shop out of season. Just like in brand stores, second-hand shops have lower prices for things that are out of season.
  • Know your measurements, but don’t be afraid to add some customizations on your own. Sometimes, it takes just a bit of sewing or cutting to get the item to be just right.

Capsule Wardrobe

This concept is simple – it’s a small wardrobe that is carefully curated but allows you to interchange and mix different outfits. The aim is to maximize the usage of every piece of clothing in your garderobe. Casual shirts can be used as a part of formal attire if used with proper jackets and pants, for example.

Chances are, you are already using the concept of a capsule wardrobe without thinking of it. So, what most people need to do is apply it consciously and get rid of items that are unnecessary. You’ll not just save but also lower the clutter in your wardrobe and house.


I must admit that the above list of methods for saving on fashion items is based mostly on personal preference. A combination of all these strategies I apply to my family’s garderobe every month, and it works. I barely spend any money on fashion, and we still look completely ready for success.