Going clothes shopping can sometimes feel like the worst thing ever. Am I right?
One minute you’re giddy with excitement at the idea of finding the perfect outfit to woo your boo and the next you’re crying in the dressing room because the zipper won’t zip.
Yikes. Been there, done that.
But shopping doesn't have to feel laborious or flare our insecurities. Making subtle changes to your shopping habits can make a huge impact on how you feel before, during, and after your dressing room saga.
Here are 10 fool-proof ways to make shopping trips tolerable.
Set a time limit. ⏰ Make it short. If nothing fits or you don't find what you're looking for, try another store another day. You want to walk into stores feeling equipped, centered, and confident. Not burned out from shopping all afternoon, frustrated you haven’t found what you want, and insecure. Need clothes for a specific event? Plan in advance. 1-2 stores per shopping trip.
Set yourself up for success. 🎉Go to stores that you know sell your size/style. If you’re reading this, chances are you’re old enough to be shopping in adult stores with adult sizes. Stay out of the juniors and teen sections if you’re worried about getting triggered by sizes (these clothes run small). Go to stores with curvy, petite, and tall options if you fall into one of these categories. Find clothes that fit your body, not the other way around.
Go into the store with an idea of what you’re looking for. 👕 Envision it. Imagine it fitting. Imagine it feeling good on your body. And GO FIND THAT. Don’t settle for anything less. If you don’t find what you’re looking for, it’s the store’s fault - not yours.
Get 2-3 sizes of each piece of clothing you want. 👚👚👚Try on the biggest size first. If it fits, great! Stop there; you’re done! If it’s too big, then continue to the next size down.
Face away from the mirror while taking your clothes on and off. 🙈When you’re trying on a new piece of clothing, first assess how the clothes feel on your body before turning to face the mirror to see how they look.
Only buy what fits. 👗Don’t ever ever ever buy clothes under the umbrella of “I’ll wear this when I lose weight.” or “I’ll buy this as motivation to get down a size.” You’re basically paying $19.99 to feel guilty every time you open your closet door.
You deserve to be comfortable. 😎 Find clothes that FEEL good. Hear me: all bodies can wear all clothes. Bikinis, sexy lingerie, crop tops, shorts, dresses. But if there’s a particular style of clothing that you’re not comfortable in, don’t wear it.
Figure out if you prefer having a buddy or flying solo. 👭 Make it a priority to do whichever one you prefer. Too often people know that shopping can be stressful, they accept it’ll be stressful, and then they just keep doing it stressfully. If you know a trick that will make it less stressful, DO IT!
Shop in your house. 🏠 Stitch Fix* is my love. If you’re not familiar with it, Stitch Fix is an online company that hooks you up with a personal stylist and you get outfits delivered to your doorstep. You can try the clothes on in the privacy of your home and return whatever doesn’t fit or you don’t want. I have had huge success rates with Stitch Fix* and highly recommend trying it out. The clothes are pricier than I normally pay, but they're American made, high quality, and everything I’ve gotten from them truly fits me like a glove. *Using this link gets us both a $25 credit!
Self compassion is everything. 💖Make a point to notice your thoughts and self talk during your shopping experience. Any time you notice your mind slipping into a place of criticism or judgment, gently place your hand on your heart, come back to your breath, and have compassion for this hard work you’re doing. Standing in front of a mirror, under fluorescent lights, trying to find clothes that you feel comfortable in isn’t easy. Take time throughout your shopping experience to turn inward and see how you're really doing.
Try to be gentle with yourself and this process. My relationship with clothes shopping has changed for the better over the years and I know yours can too.
If you struggle with feeling guilty or shameful about your body while shopping, be sure to check out my blog post all about shame and how to work with it.
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