How to Upgrade Your Wardrobe in Spite of Your Budget

The thought of adding new pieces to your wardrobe is exciting. From staple pieces to accessories and outerwear, there are plenty of options to consider as you upgrade your wardrobe. But whether you need more variety in your current selection or you want to reinvent your wardrobe on a budget, we’ve got tips to help make it happen without breaking the bank.

Here are six tips to make it happen.

Step 1: Shop your Existing Wardrobe

To upgrade your wardrobe on a budget, think about what you already have. You don’t need to do a total overhaul of your closet when you update your wardrobe. Hold onto pieces, but be sure to try them on or check them out to make sure you still want to use them. 

Donate what doesn’t fit or is outdated and inspect the existing pieces and utilize a new fashion style. Very often in the rave of long-forgotten items in your closet, you might encounter the cardigan you need, so there won’t be a need to buy a new one. Once you’ve gone through what you already have, start filling the gaps with some shopping.

Step 2:  Shop for Staple Pieces

Don’t head out shopping for pieces you know you’d wear only once, but rather try to select pieces that you’ll wear a lot so you would get your money’s worth. Those items are cool staple pieces like a classical little black dress, fancy denim jeans, nice leggings, basic tees, and tops. 

Later, you can easily reuse them in countless outfits, especially pairing them up with gorgeous accessories like fashion rings. Make sure to focus on things you’d normally wear, think both about the comfort and practicality of that item, and later spruce it up with top-notch shoes and a leather bag, and you’ll always look sensational.

RELATED: 5 Simple Steps to Create a Capsule Wardrobe

Step 3:  Add Accessories

Accessories are a fabulous addition to your wardrobe, especially if you don’t need to overhaul your clothing options completely. Show off your style or add useful pieces to your accessory arsenal. Mixing accessories into your clothing options helps you add even more combinations to your wardrobe. It may also help you reduce the amount of clothing you need to buy, saving you money.

Check out what you already have on hand or create a shopping list of must-haves. Either way, you can accessorize and change outfits by adding jewelry, hair accessories, hats, bags, and shoes

Step 4: Thrift and Consignment Stores

Second-hand, charity, consignment, and other used clothing stores can be a gold mine when updating your wardrobe. If you’re patient and thorough, you can find everything from a conservative-looking business suit to funky concert clothes.

The best strategy is to go in armed with a plan. If you have your list of classics ready to go, you can reference it during your thrift shopping so you can stay focused and avoid getting distracted by things you don’t need. Some of the best categories to shop for at thrift stores are outerwear, knitwear, denim, and accessories.

RELATED: How Children’s Consignment Sales Can Help Stretch Your Budget

Step 5: Shop End of Seasons & Clearance Prices

At the end of every season retailers typically have leftover inventory that they put on the clearance racks! They discount all those items you paid retail price for when the season started.

Most stores usually time their new inventory with New York Fashion Week which happens in February and September every year. February is the end of winter, and the beginning of Spring/Summer lines, so you can shop for winter clearance in February. September is the end of summer and the beginning of Fall/Winter lines. So you can shop for summer clearance in September.

Step 6: Update Your Style

Sometimes you will outgrow a style and the outfits you have don’t match your or personality anymore. When that happens, you’ll want to change up your style, and you may be tempted to toss everything out of your closet.

If you’ve had the same style for more than four or five years, it’s time to shake things up. Changing up your style can be important to keeping your look in tune with where you are in your life and to prevent you from looking older or unflatteringly younger than your true age.

Don’t get rid of everything in your wardrobe, it’s possible to upgrade your wardrobe on a budget while still keeping some of your pieces.


Whenever in doubt about how to upgrade your wardrobe simply aim to save money. Don’t go spending all your month’s salary on a new piece you’d probably wear once. Stay open-minded, shop your closet, add a few accessories or visit thrift shops or flea markets where you could find wonderful items that suit your character.

If you simply desire to update your wardrobe, cut expenses elsewhere and save for a long-awaited bag, ask for gift money or vouchers for your birthday, or shop on sale.