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8 Steps to Defining Your Personal Style

Style is ever changing and personal style itself is an elusive beast at best. Besides it ever evolving nature, we are sure you also appreciate a handful of different styles. But the question is; which one speaks to you? And that’s where we come in.

No matter where you are on the scale of mastering your personal stand on fashion, there are certain actions you can follow to hone in on it. Below are steps to discovering that particular look that speaks to your most stylish and fashionable self. Let’s face it, t’s not that you don’t look good in the styles — because trust me when I say you definitely do. It’s not that you can’t pull them off; you can make any style work with your closet if you have the mind to. It’s just that they… well, may not always feel like you. We’re breaking down ways to tap into your unique style and all of the many nuances it has.

1 . Find Your Style Menagerie

The likelihood of finding that one style icon that speaks or defines you, is very low. Most people look to mix, a little Selena Gomez, with a dose of Hadid plus a dash of Rihanna. To figure out your who your main influencers are, Pinterest is your friend. You can search for “style icons” and save the images that attract you. You’ll start to see a collection of repeat people (your style menagerie) who you can look to for inspiration.

2 . Put a Label on It

Are they classic, modern, eclectic, bohemian, or trend-forward? Take a second look at your inspiration photos, don’t just look at names, focus on the outfits. Pick a few words that describe what you  vibe to. Settle on a handful of words that feel true to your style and persona, you can write them down for future reference, as they will help you clarify and define your look.

3 . Take a Selfie of the Winners

You know those days you walk out the door feeling like a billion buck like your most stylish self? Take a selfie for future reference. These outfits epitomize your true personal style and should serve as inspiration for spin-off outfits.

4 . Notice What Your Favorite Pieces In Your Closet Are

At this point you’re starting to catch on as to what sort of vibe appeals to you the most. Do you like the relaxed, unbothered feelings you get from baggy boho pieces and simple lined minimalist pieces? Or do you enjoy the creativity it takes to mix colorful patterns and clash preppy prints together? Jackie O. had her oversize sunglasses and Audrey Hepburn had her cropped pants and ballet flats.

While keeping these feelings in mind, study which pieces you like to reach for the most in your closet and ask yourself why that might be. Do you like the silhouette it creates? Do you enjoy how the color mixes with other hues, or how the pattern contrasts in a fun way against other pieces? Once you pin down your likes, try to find other wardrobe pieces that fit in those categories.

5 . Don’t Think That Finding Your Style Is Sticking To One Look

First, let’s clear up some misconceptions. Usually when you think of finding your style, you think of choosing a certain personality and running with that aesthetic. While it does narrow things down if you fall into a certain type of look, that doesn’t mean you can’t like things outside of that style. As we mentioned in step four, it’s not a bad thing to rely on a signature staple but The trick is to notice what specifically you like about that style.

Do you love bohemian pieces because of their loose, earthy qualities? But do you also like the unfussy, clean-lined looks of minimalist looks? This means you should look for clothes that fit those shapes and hues, rather than those categories. You can love wide leg culottes and long sleeve maxi dresses equally as much.

6 . Identify the Odd Piece Out

Which pieces in your closet just never worked? Which still have the tags on or were worn a couple of times, only to be thrown into the back? These are just as important to consider as your favorite pieces because they tell you what you don’t like. These are called your outliers.

Which pieces in your closet just never worked? Which still have the tags on or were worn a couple of times, only to be thrown into the back? These are just as important to consider as your favorite pieces because they tell you what you don’t like. You have to list a few adjectives on why exactly they didn’t jive. Keeping these facts in mind, avoid them when shopping to make the same mistake and be in tune with what isn’t your style.

7. Know Thyself

Trust your instincts, and wear what makes you feel like the best version of yourself. If you have more classic style, wearing the season’s most out-there trend pieces is going to look unnatural. Similarly, if you align with Rihanna’s tough-meets-glamorous appeal, a floral maxi dress might not be your best bet. Chances are you’ve likely already got a winning sense of style, so embrace it, refine it, and don’t fight it.

8. Look For Inspiration When It Comes To Piecing Together Outfits

Now that you have an idea of what you like, what you don’t like, and the details that constitutes both, you’re ready to start combining your pieces into outfits. Which is when you might think, “Er, how exactly?” Shopping is much different than styling, isn’t it? To get you started, look for inspiration outside of yourself.

For example, find a few bloggers that instantly captivate your aesthetic; head to Instagram and follow a handful of women with very defined looks that are similar to your style; take a few days scrolling through Pinterest, gathering outfits that you already have the pieces to recreate. I use Pinterest to only find interesting layering ideas for future outfits. And I mean it when I say “only” — my style board doesn’t have a single streetstyle shot that doesn’t revolve around one layering move or other. The reason for that? It’s my textbook. If I’m feeling uninspired with my closet, I scroll through the images and read my notes and instantly get the itch to copy one of the ideas. Try searching #ootd or #fblogger on Instagram for a good start to finding information.

So go hunt down looks, examine your own closet and tastes, and dip into fashion with purpose. You’ll be stylin’ in no time.

Have you struggled with your personal style in the past? What tips helped you?

Daniel Bishopp

Daniel U. Bishopp joined LA MODE in November 2020 to work on the features team covering fashion, culture, food and drink and technology in print and online. Before that, he worked for STYLE ME AFRICA.

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About La Mode Magazine

La Mode Magazine an award winning magazine is founded by Mrs. Sandra Odige, a Nigeria based monthly publication established in 2011.  A digital and print publication known for its innovative and creative initiatives and style of publishing.

We have published over 20 editions with top notable personalities and celebrities of all works of life.

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