As 2018 slowly winds to an end, let’s all collectively undo the top button on our mom jeans, loosen the laces on our dad sneakers, and let out one big sartorial sigh of relief. Phew! We made it, folks.
Fashion was all over the place this past year. Depending on where you looked, the last 365 days felt a lot like 1984, 1994, or 2004, to be honest. Retro trends like bodysuits, slip dresses, chunky sneakers, bike shorts, and going-out-tops all came back in big ways. As did western wear, utilitarian dressing, and faux fur. Oh, and let’s not forget about leopard print, either.
But for all the throwback style moments, 2018 was also a year for fashion firsts. Sustainable fashion shed its granola reputation, a luxury designer made a pair of sneakers you can actually work out in, and the influence of wellness on how we dress became undeniable. (Hello, gorpcore.)
Trends aside, though, the biggest takeaway from 2018 for me personally was how much individuality and self-expression reigned supreme. I mean, if Michelle Obama walking out on stage wearing those thigh-high glitter boots didn’t leave you empowered to wear WTFYW in 2019, I don’t know what will.
So, in the spirit of the “you-do-you” ethos that permeates everything we do editorially at Well+Good, I asked our style reporters to share the best fashion advice they embraced in 2018. Unsurprisingly, no two answers were exactly alike—but each was stellar in its own way. Keep reading to see the best personal style tips our fashion writers picked up in 2018.
Everyone can benefit from a little structure
“I turned 30 this year and it somehow made feel ‘allowed’ to dress a little more sophisticated. When I’m not in cozy joggers at home, you’ll usually find me in midi dresses and printed skirts. But this year, I’ve become more emboldened to go sharper with tailored pieces to embody a cleaner, more sophisticated aesthetic—a simple layering effect with a blazer over my go-to dresses; tailored pants with my favorite tops instead of jeans; even a trim wool coat over my workout gear en route to yoga.” —Laura Lajiness
Three doesn’t have to be a crowd
“This year, I fully embraced the three-piece style rule. Whether it’s a vest, statement necklace, or a pair of eye-catching shoes, adding a third element takes a simple outfit (i.e.: jeans and a sweater) into a full-on look.” —Katie Maguire
Think secondhand first
“The most transformative fashion tip I learned this year is to secondhand and vintage shop online. It’s made me a much more environmentally conscious consumer but it’s also ensured that my wardrobe is stacked full with unique and one-of-a-kind pieces.” —Tamim Alnuweiri, assistant style editor
Basic can be anything but boring
“When it comes to bras, I’ve learned to embrace colors like pinks, purples, and grays and come realize that not only do they disappear under light clothing as well as nude, they are *so* much better to look at! Nude is practical, but not pretty. These new colors are both.” —Jenny Altman
Less really is more
“I think the tip I embraced this year was downsizing my wardrobe to the basics. As a former fashion editor who used to receive a lot of free clothes—and someone who had a serious vintage-dress shopping problem in my 20s—my closet has always been overstuffed, and yet I’ve always felt very ‘meh’ about my outfit options. But I recently moved into an apartment with just one tiny closet and had to reduce my wardrobe by about 70 percent.
Suddenly, I feel like I have so much more to wear because the things I really love aren’t being crowded out by items that I’ve aesthetically outgrown (or was never that crazy about in the first place.) And it was interesting for me to realize that the things I feel best in are the simplest and most timeless: a perfect leather jacket, a soft cashmere sweater, and perfectly ripped jeans from 10 years ago.” —Erin Magner
Some of our best fashion advice came from you (thank you!) this year, starting with these leggings Well+Good readers swear by.
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