I’ve been working on having a few more “mature” items in my closet this year. Attending a private, Christian school for 12 years does a lot to your psyche let me tell you. It’s taken a while for me to embrace showing and loving my body as opposed to constantly covering up. Don’t get me wrong, I love me some Jesus but I love me some crop tops too lol. I’m happy to say that two-piece sets are here to stay and will be a permanent feature in my closet.
My workwear game hasn’t always been strong. When I first got accepted to my MBA program at Clemson, I was so excited! That was until I learned we had to wear business casual every day to class. I remember nervously glancing at my closet that had about 3 professional dresses that I’d owned since high school. However, I’ll never pass up an excuse to shop for new clothes!
My only concern was that I wasn’t going to be able to find business outfits that reflected my personal style. I didn’t want to show up on the first day of class with the same workwear wardrobes as my peers. From the first day of your internship or the start of a new job, it’s important that you stand out! A sharp, professional wardrobe is a great way to catch their attention.
I also wanted to make sure that I wasn’t breaking the bank. College grads, grad students, and young professionals, you definitely understand the struggle! Brooks Brothers and Louboutin heels aren’t exactly in the cards right now. Thankfully, there’s a way to buy stylish, business clothes and stick to your budget. Check out my favorite finds below!
7 Best Places to Shop for Trendy, Workwear on a Budget
Target: We all know the magical powers of Target and their workwear is no different! Their dresses are cute enough to work for your 9-5 and happy hour with the girls.
TJ Maxx / Marshalls / Ross: It might take a bit of digging in these stores, but they’ll have the best deals hands down for shoes. Discounted designer shoes like Sam Edelman, Tory Burch, and Vince Camuto? Sign me up.
J. Crew Factory:Factory is the key word here. The same quality as the original, but with prices more suitable for someone still occasionally eating Ramen for dinner.
ASOS:Their workwear has seriously expanded recently. It’s even higher on my list because you can use a student discount to make it even more affordable! You can sign up here.
Shop the look:
Let me know where you shop for your workwear or business clothes in the comments below! P.S. If you’re moving to go to college, an exciting internship opportunity, or starting a new job, you can check out my tips on how to transition to your new city here.
We all know how important it is to have the best wardrobe essentials. The iconic little black dress (or LBD) has been saving women’s lives since the beginning of time. I’m pretty sure the first outfit Eve put on after she figured out she needed a new outfit was an LBD, but that’s yet to be confirmed. Of course, they’re always slimming. But it’s something about how they create effortless looks on any woman who puts it on! From cocktail parties to date night to a casual day on the town, this dress is the perfect go to.
Why you need this LBD in your life:
I love how I can style it here with so many options like this vest. Which did I mention was originally $44 and has now been marked down to $13?! *insert praise break here*. You can also pair it with a nice pair of jewelry or another accessory like this animal print scarf. I seriously see this LBD as a year-long favorite. I’m a big fan of pieces that are good for transitional weather. It’s a lighter material so it’s ideal for layering, but it also means I don’t have to shove it into the back of my closet when it starts to get warmer outside. The material even has a bit of stretch so it can effectively cover all food babies. I’ve tested that part out JUST for you. You’re welcome.
Would you guys be interested in a capsule series on the blog? I’ve shared my tips on how to rock over the knee boots before and people really enjoyed it! I would love to share my favorite wardrobe essentials and how to use one piece, like this amazing LBD, and create multiple outfits! Let me know what your go-to closet staples are below!
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Gucci Belts. Fairy Lights. Goldendoodles. These are all things I considered buying this year in the name of Instagram. Sure you can try staying off of social media, but you can’t really do that when it’s your job! I’ve been sitting on this post for days because I didn’t want to admit how this hits so close to home. It’s very easy in an environment like blogging or even just as a typical consumer of social media to compare yourself to others.
“Comparison is the thief of joy” and we all know that to be true. I’m not talking about in the competitive aspects of how studying people in your industry can help you be a better brand. I’m talking about focusing on the superficial moments that affect your mentality. “How do they get their hair perfect EVERY time?” “Where do they find the money to go on trips to fun places. Wish that could be me.” “Why am I still stuck at X amount of followers when she started blogging after me?”
The feelings of self-doubt kept growing stronger and I knew I didn’t want to be on this path again in my life. When I was in middle school and high school I struggled with self-esteem and comparison constantly. It would always come in waves and of course, it was immediately interrupted when I was reminded that I was pretty… for a black girl. Or reminded that I was the friend who was invited just because I was friends with the most popular girls in school. I hated feeling that way. Like I wasn’t good enough and that no matter how hard I worked to get noticed, it would never be enough in comparison.
I wish I had some special eureka moment to share when I finally got it, but I don’t. There was just a time right before college when I remember thinking to myself, “I don’t have to live this way. It’s draining keeping a pulse on what everyone else is doing. Why would I want to waste my energy on something that’s not ultimately helping me to become a better person or better my future? College is honestly when I learned to stop giving people my joy. (#RECLAIMINGMYTIME lol) It’s only when you start focusing on your own goals and opportunities that you can really shine.
We Need to Work On Our Authenticity
In the blogging world, comparison is the reason why the market has become so inauthentic. People are buying followers, comments, and likes or participating in loop giveaways every week. And for what? Some number to flaunt to strangers to prove superiority? If we’re not careful, this can end like a creepy Black Mirror episode. When it comes down to it, being fake does nothing for bloggers in the long haul. 2018 marketing trends will push for more diverse, content creators to make videos, podcasts, and to be more genuine with their followers. Those girls with the perfect feeds who have the personality of a potato will hardly last.
If you’re trying to be the boss babe that I know you can be, it shouldn’t matter how other people are approaching their business. Stay. In. Yo. Lane. Use that time and energy to work on creating something that can really benefit your followers and put back something useful in this world. For me, that means sharing stories just like this one. Unapologetically opening up about my insecurities and how even though I’m stronger now, I still struggle with them. I’m guilty of a few controversial blogger growth tactics like loop giveaways, the follow/unfollow method, and comment pods. It kind of makes me sick to even know I tested them out. Maybe instead of worrying about the quantities of followers, we should’ve been focusing on the quality of our content.
Here are 3 Ways to avoid Comparison on Social Media:
1. Unfollowing Toxic People: That can mean anyone who makes me feel these moments of inadequacy or those who are just there to waste your time and not support you. When I first started blogging, I actually avoided following repost accounts and RewardStyle because I never saw women who looked like me. Fill your feed with inspiration and not the false, aspirational narratives of others.
2. Having Honest Conversations with Yourself: If I want to have x amount of followers is it because I want to reach more people for Christ as a brand or because another blogger just hit that same goal. If it’s the latter, I need to find ways to do it for ME. Understanding the reasoning behind our decisions as bloggers are so important.
3. Community Over Competition. Always: I found a quote on Instagram recently that says, “Don’t compare yourself to others. There’s no comparison between the sun and the moon; they shine in their own time.” It’s ok to support other women and still be hustling for your own dream. Empowered women, empower women. Right, ladies?
It’s easy to fall into the social media comparison game and envy other people’s highlight reels. We’re all works in progress and that’s ok! I can already tell 2018 is a year for mental and spiritual growth for me. If you struggle with comparison, let me know how you hope to fix it this year below!
Whether you’re ready to start a new career or patiently awaiting post-grad life, moving is not as easy as it seems. Even for an extrovert like myself, it’s hard to put yourself out there and make new connections. I’ve moved 3 times in the past year (I know, I’m crazy): Back home after Auburn, New York City, and finally, Greenville. Whether it’s big cities or small towns, check out all of my moving tips below!
When I started my blog in 2015, I wanted to be one of the first black fashion bloggers. Crazy, right? I was really naive enough to think that there wasn’t a lot of us out there. As I began searching through hashtags like #blackgirlswhoblog and #browngirlbloggers and finding inspiration on Pinterest, it became abundantly clear that I wasn’t alone. If there were so many of us, why wasn’t I seeing black fashion bloggers on my feed?
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