Why Outfit Formulas Won’t Work When You Want To Get Noticed For Your Style

Why Outfit Formulas Won’t Work When You Want To Get Noticed For Your Style

Getting dressed isn't a one-size-fits-all experience. Therefore, wearing outfit formulas isn't the answer. These style tips tell you what to wear instead.

Do you want to get noticed for your vibrant sense of style? Then please do not subscribe to wearing outfit formulas. These seemingly easy solutions to getting dressed do nothing to elevate your style, and only drag you into the pile of looking like everyone else.

Watch the video where I explain why getting dressed is not a one size fits all formula, and how to create your most individualized outfits.

And read on for my styling advice that help you show up and get noticed for your vibrant style.

Outfit Formulas Are Perfect…

When you want to look like everybody else. They’re quick, thoughtless and have nothing to do with the individual they’re recommended for. Outfit formulas are for women who don’t prioritize personal style. And because they’re they’re generic, they must satisfy the lowest common denominator.

Let’s use the outfit formula of skinny pants, a chunky sweater and tall boots. You’ll see this formula allover Pinterest. I also see this formula at the school drop off and on the streets. Is it easy? Yes. Is it inspiring no? It’s perfect when you want to look like everyone else!

Outfit Formulas Won’t Translate On Everybody

Getting dressed isn't a one size fits all experience, therefore, wearing outfit formulas isn't the answer. These style tips tell you what to wear instead.

Generic recommendations must fit all. But it’s not possible that one formula can suit everybody.

Let’s take the slip dress / tee shirt / flats outfit formula as an example. If we were working together, and I said, this slip dress / tee shirt / flats outfit formula is SO easy! This will solve your getting dressed dilemmas in one swoop. Pop on the tee. Slip on the slip dress, and step into the flats, then BOOM! There’s your outfit; all packaged and ready to go.

You may be like, YES! This formula is so me!

Or perhaps you’re feeling, no way am I wearing that! It’ll make me look like I’m trying too hard to look like someone I’m not.

The simplicity of an outfit formula is too narrow. It’ll never meet the demands for a stand out style.

When You Want To Stand Out In Style

Getting dressed isn't a one size fits all experience. Therefore, wearing outfit formulas isn't the answer. These style tips tell you what to wear instead.

Your outfit must be an expression of who you are. It must tell the world what you’re about, and you’re not the same as everyone else! I’m all for easy outfit planning. If you like to take inspiration from a formula so you can get dressed faster – do it! But it’s crucial that you add in your personal statement. You’ve got to make the outfit YOURS.

For a look that’s 100% true to who you are, incorporate elements that are uniquely you. Do you have a signature color or accessory that you love to wear? Add it to the formula!

And don’t be afraid to experiment. Play around with variations of the formula. If it’s the chunky sweater, skinnies and tall boots look – swap out the sweater for something else that feels SO YOU.

With the slip dress, tee and flat formula – I’d make this mine by bringing in a graphic tee- that’s definitely a SO ME item. Then I’d throw on my son’s Adidas warm up jacket on top. I’d also do sneakers instead of flats and I’d probably put a pair of jeans underneath. Because…that’s how I roll

So you see how the formula can be your starting point? Just don’t rely on it for your complete outfit. Unless you want to look like everyone else. When standing out in style is your goal, you’ll need your outfit to be individualized, and one of a kind. Just like you!

How do you feel about wearing outfit formulas?

Elysha Lenkin
I help women feel like superstars in their clothes.

5 Comments

  1. Pamela Goldman says:

    I could never get into the Birkenstock sandal look. or men that ear big leather sandals LOL I think the way you show your toes in warm weather is so personal.. I love to feel sexy when I’m with my husband so a t-shirt under a slip dress never appealed to me although the slip dress on its own is great. ie. Carolyn Bessette Kennedy’s wedding dress.

  2. Carol says:

    Breath of fresh air in a formula dressing driven culture. Now: confession. I love systems and formulas. They help me get a handle on parts of life where I would otherwise flounder. What doesn’t work is becoming their slave. Elysha’s points are well taken: pay attention to whether a formula works for you and then make it your own. I compare this whole process to ballet. You practice the plies, the work at the barre or the center work and you are just following what you’re taught. Then you get really good and in time those movements become second nature and you can improvise and create your own dance.

  3. Carol, I LOVE your analogy to ballet, and how having the foundation is a stepping stone to fully owning your dance (or style). Because it’s then that the magic happens and the art is created.

  4. Vickie says:

    I have either worked in the military (uniforms required) or as a government contractor in computer security (suit/dress required) for over 25 years. I dress according to the dress code requirements of my industry and workplace. Personal style is not the main driver of my wardrobe at all, and many of the so called systems on Pinterest are too unflattering, too age inappropriate and too trendy for my needs. I do appreciate the theory of capsule wardrobes because it can maximize wearability by minimizing the color pallette, but most of these capsules are too informal for my needs. I get most of my inspiration from Polyvore, and even those capsules are limited by women’s sizing: about 75% of the outfit items are not available in extra large (16 – 18 US).

  5. Hi Vickie, Have you tried doing a search in Pinterest for your specific needs? It’s a search engine so it should turn up a bunch of suggestions based on what you put in the search bar… (something like “work wear dress code capsule size 16-18”).

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