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  • Writer's pictureSamantha Aldridge

5 Ways To Be Fashionably Minimalistic In College

Updated: Jun 8, 2022

With the rise of fast fashion and trying to keep up with trends seen on Instagram and TikTok, it can be hard to try and live minimally in college. The problem with trying to live up to these unrealistic social media standards while in college, is that it can create some bad habits that may follow into adulthood. Here are 5 tips that can help you live fashionably while staying minimalist in college.



1. Keep the things you wear the most


Have you ever thought "if I wear the same shirt twice someone is going to think I never wash it?" Let's be honest, most people are consumed in their own lives to worry about yours. Keep wearing that sweatshirt you've had since highschool because YOU love it or because it's your emotional support sweatshirt and you refuse to ever take it off. And that is perfectly fine. Who wants to wear a brand new itchy sweatshirt to an exam anyway?


Although a gray sweatshirt isn't new or the most trendy thing, it can be worn with almost anything. It is important to hold onto the things that can go with anything whether or not you have had it for a long time. Most blank sweatshirts that you see on Pinterest and Instagram can be found at local thrift stores and are generally around $4-5 rather than $35 from an online store.


2. Thrift, thrift, and thrift some more


Thrifting can inspire you to create a whole new vibe and style to your wardrobe without breaking the bank. It also allows you to create your own interior style with paintings and dishes you can DIY. During my first semester in college I got an originally expensive lamp and table for around $14 and although they are in my apartment now, they will eventually be in my forever home.


BIG TIP: Students and working professionals are always moving out of their apartments so be sure to go to Goodwill and any local thriftstores to see the things they donate. Most people are trying to move out and take as little as they can home. This means they will donate furniture, clothes and dishware to cut back on the stuff they bring home.


If you are looking to buy some thrifted clothing follow my Instagram @bangerthrifts




3. Buy only what you need


Sometimes I tell myself that I don't necessarily need something, but that is never the big determining factor in why I don't buy it. A good way to tell if you should buy something is by asking yourself 4 questions:

  • Will I need/wear this a year from now?

  • Will I use this more than 3 times a week?

  • Does it fall within my monthly/weekly budget?

  • Do I really like this outside of trendiness?

If you said yes to all 4 then I think the item you are looking to buy is a good purchase. This can be applied to anything that you might want to purchase such as: clothing, equipment, decorations or electronics. In regard to trendiness, hold on to the classic necessities and don't fall for short lived trends because they are a waste of money.


4. Donate frequently


Now that you have thrifted almost everything you own, be sure to donate the things that you no longer wear or use. Think of it as someone being able to enjoy the thing you used to love and how much happiness it will give them. I like to remember the memories I had in certain clothes and imagine the new life it will have with someone else.


Getting rid of things that no longer serve you will help you declutter and appreciate the things you love. You can also feel good about donating for a good cause. Maybe your old favorite mug will be the gift for a future couple starting out in the early days of falling in love, who knows!



5. Buy new shoes


If you have to choose between a new pair of shoes or a thrifted pair, 9 times out of 10 I will buy new shoes. Again, staying within the lines of what is classic/trendy buying shoes that you will wear for years is worth it rather than buying a bunch thrifted. I always rationalize buying new shoes by limiting myself to only thrifting clothing. We can wear shoes for multiple days in a row and not get tired of them, but we tend to get tired of wearing the same clothes every other day. That is why the turnover rate for wearing clothes is essential to keep in mind when trying to live minimally.


Overall, switching to a minimalistic lifestyle while in college can be hard if you are trying to stay trendy. Just stick with the classics, buy new shoes, buy what you need, donate frequently, and thrift to stay fashionably minimalist in college without breaking the bank. :)


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