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Stylists for the Rest of Us: Affordable Ways to Get Expert Fashion Advice

Stylists for the Rest of Us: Affordable Ways to Get Expert Fashion Advice
Alison Storm

Getting red carpet ready isn't a solo job. It takes a team of talented individuals to get A-list celebrities ready for big events like the Oscars, Golden Globes and the Grammy Awards. According to the LA Times that team often includes a tailor, fashion stylist, hairdresser and makeup artist. Stars may also enlist a manicurist, personal assistant and even an eyebrow pro to get the perfect look. In all it takes months of work and thousands of dollars to pull it all together. But what about the rest of us? Thankfully there are affordable ways to get expert fashion advice and perfectly styled looks, even if you're not going anywhere near a red carpet.

Get Instant Feedback

Have you ever been hunkered down in a fitting room and wondered if a pair of jeans or a sweater looked good or not? Now you can get instant feedback with the free Pickn'Tell app. Take a selfie in the fitting room and upload it to the app. Your community will be able to tell you instantly whether you should buy it or leave it behind. This kind of feedback can you help you make (or avoid) fashion purchases.

Style for Hirestyle for hire

Stacy London, host of the hit TLC show What Not to Wear, launched Style for Hire to help make stylists accessible to everyone-- not just celebs. Your stylist introduction is free and can be done on the phone, through a video chat or in person. From there you can decide how much you want to invest in polishing your style. For around $100 an hour a professional stylist will meet you in your closet or your favorite store to help you love your look.

Free Personal Shoppers

Many department stores and retailers offer free personal shoppers. The complimentary service is a great option for those who need help pulling together the perfect look for a new job or a special event. While these personal shoppers are working for the store and may try to get you to spend more money than you were intending, they can offer good advice on what colors or styles work best for your body. Plus, when you use the free service you may qualify for extra perks. For instance when you use a Very Personal Stylist at J. Crew they'll open the store early or stay late just for you. And shipping is free on any purchases made over the phone or through online appointments.

Rent a Designer Lookrent the runway

For a very special event you may want to try out Rent the Runway. It's a way to get a designer dress at a fraction of the price. Think of them as your best friend with a much better closet. When you find a dress you like they'll send you an extra size free of charge. You can also order an additional style of equal or lesser value for just $32.50. Choose between a four-day or eight-day rental. You can also ask their on-staff Go-To Girls for free advice on fit and accessorizing your look.

Shop Street Style

One way to improve your fashion sense is by studying up on street style. Get quick access to hot looks that other people (who probably are considered more stylish than you) are wearing right now. Two apps to check out are Swaag, which is geared towards men, and Pose, which is for the ladies. Both apps are free. Pose even gives you new personalized outfit ideas every day based on your weather and location.


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