Are you looking to get out of the rut of wearing the same thing over and over again? Or maybe you’ve been thinking of improving your personal style and want to look like those cute chic women you see in photos.
Well, you’re in luck! In this post, we’re sharing some tips on how to elevate your look into a casual chic style on any budget!
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The good news is you don't need to break the bank for fashion goals. Chances are you own some casual chic pieces already!
You just need a little creativity and balance—pair everyday basics like jeans and a t-shirt with polished shapes, styles, and fabrics. Then, add a little bit of flair, and voila! You’ve got the foundation of casual chic.
So, let's dive into how you can achieve a casual chic style no matter what your budget is. But first, let's discuss what the casual chic meaning is.
Casual chic meaning: What is casual chic style?
The meaning of casual chic can be different for everybody, but the general idea is to mix sophisticated and formal wear with everyday pieces to create a simple wardrobe that feels effortless.
A classic casual chic combination is jeans and a t-shirt outfit with a pair of high heels. The key is to look like your outfit only took minutes to put together while still being polished.
The great thing about casual chic style is that it doesn’t focus on trends. That means you can create your own style by mixing simple items and elevated pieces you already have in your closet while injecting some personality through unexpected additions. These additions could be a pop of color, accessories, a bold lip, or fabulous shoes.
Picture a day dress with sneakers and a statement necklace. A casual chic look is most likely what you wear on the weekend. Or it could be everyday attire if you work in a casual environment.
Want to develop a casual chic style? Here are 8 tips to achieve it on any budget!
Having a casual chic style is a gift for women who like to play with clothes because it has no set rules. You just need to know how to mix and match your clothes and accessories.
So, here we go — our tips on how to be casual chic regardless of how much you can spend on clothing.
1. Invest in casual chic wardrobe staples
A blazer is one of the timeless fashion pieces you should have to achieve a casual chic style. It elevates any outfit and gives it a polished look. Be sure to get a blazer that fits well and flatters your figure.
You can get it in a neutral color like beige, grey, black, navy, or white, so it's easy to pair with other pieces.
Another must-have and one of the most comfortable pieces in the casual chic woman's closet is the shift dress. This is simply because shift dresses are easy to dress up or down.
So, if you like one-item outfits, you can have at least two dresses in your favorite neutral hues. You can also get them in different lengths and necklines for variety.
Lastly, a button-down shirt in white or cream, or even one with a pattern like stripes, is always going to create a classic look that is elegant but not overly styled. One chic outfit idea is jeans and a button-down with slingbacks.
2. Add a pop of color or prints
Although you want to be stylish, clothes should also be comfortable and fun. Casual chic doesn’t just mean neutral colors and minimalist fashion brands. It's ok to add bright colors to your ensemble and play with prints.
For example, you can pair straight-leg jeans with a blazer and a vibrant camisole.
You can even finish the outfit off with an animal print shoe. If you’re feeling bold and if you have it in your wardrobe, a sassy, bright-colored blazer could be the unexpected pop in your outfit.
3. Mix it up with accessories
Adding accessories is one of the easiest ways to make any outfit belong in the casual chic style category. Use accessories like jewelry, sunglasses, hats, and belts to create a different look and feel to outfits you’ve worn before.
Another popular casual chic accessory is a silk scarf. Dare we say it’s the ultimate representation of Parisian chic style! Consider investing in a silk scarf and take some time to learn a few different ways of tying it (find out how to wear a Hermes scarf). You can be wearing a T-shirt or a day dress and still be “le chic” with your silk scarf.
Another great accessory is a well-made leather belt, like the Hermes Kelly belt. You can wear it with pants, jeans, dresses, blazers, and even coats.
Remember, the casual chic meaning doesn’t mean basic or expected. Make the style your own with fun jewelry, rich textures, and unexpected pop pieces in every outfit.
4. Don’t forget the handbag
Whether it’s a cute clutch, a satchel, or a crossbody, chic women are always seen carrying the right bag, like a pre-owned designer handbag. A bag can give your outfit a whole new look; that’s why it’s an essential element of nailing the casual chic style.
As such, a classic leather bag or a statement purse with the right pattern, fabric, or color elevates a simple t-shirt and jeans outfit. For an easy, casual look, you can also carry an oversized tote with a dress and espadrilles outfit.
5. Finish the outfit off with cool shoes
The cool thing about shoes is that you can use them to either dress an outfit up or down to achieve a casual chic look.
For example, you can elevate a tank top and jeans ensemble with a pair of strappy heels or neutral pumps.
On the other hand, you can dress down a button-down top and slacks ensemble with chic loafers or ballet flats. Flats give the impression and sophistication of being dressed up without the pressure of having to wear heels.
Also, flats are comfortable, so your feet will thank you too. Plus, they come in every casual chic style, color, and print that you can pair perfectly with any outfit!
6. Match hair and makeup
As you’ve probably learned by now, the key to casual chic is looking effortless. That applies to creating a minimal makeup routine and hairstyle as well.
So, you may opt for a soft and neutral palette and eye makeup and finish it off with a bright-red bold lip color. Or you could do a dramatic cat-eye with a neutral lip color.
And like your outfit, keep your hair neat but not fussy. A messy topknot or a sleek chignon is a great look for updos. You can also choose to keep it down for a beachy, tousled look.
7. Build style spending into your budget
If your style is important to you, then it should have its own category in your budget. Whether you use the cash envelope system or learn the advantages of zero based budgeting, make sure you allocate funds for things you care about, like fashionable clothes.
You could also try setting aside a certain amount of money per week or per month as one of your sinking fund categories for new clothes, accessories, or shoes. The idea is not to spend the money just because it’s there but to create a sinking fund. Then you will have the money when you find something perfect for your casual chic look.
And a great way to save is to look for items from thrift stores or secondhand online shops, or even vintage. You may find exactly what you need for half the price!
8. Opt for sustainable, affordable clothes whenever you can
You might find yourself spending more on fashion if you equate wearing luxury items to having great style. Thankfully, being stylish doesn’t have much to do with the price of each item.
That said, if you follow trends, you may be buying clothes that cost less but harm the environment. This is why it’s best to know the materials of the items you’re buying and to opt for sustainable, affordable clothes whenever you can.
Cotton, linen, Tencel, and wool are examples of organic materials that would last longer. So, you’ll get more wear out of your favorite pieces, and it creates better budgeting, too.
It’s also best to be thoughtful and mindful of your purchases. When you see something you want to add to your casual chic wardrobe, shop around and see if you can get it from a sustainable producer and also consider cost per wear. Then you know it’s going to last longer, and you’re also getting the best deal.
It isn't difficult to master a casual but sophisticated style. The important thing is to remember to mix elements of different styles so that the look is effortless.
What is an easy casual chic outfit?
When it comes to picking out an easy casual chic outfit, consider a dress with ankle boots or mid-heels and a leather jacket. Or jeans, a tee, a blazer, and heels.
Best fashion item to add more chic style?
A great handbag that is both sophisticated and casual enough for everyday wear is perfect to add more chic style to your outfit. Alternatively, accessories, like earrings, a simple or statement necklace, or a bracelet can do the trick too!
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Build your casual chic wardrobe on any budget
Spend money on things that matter to you. If a casual chic wardrobe is important to you, add a style category to your budget. You are worth it.
Plus, having a separate category means you can track your spending better. It will also help you be more mindful and thoughtful about your purchases.
Remember, the key to achieving a casual chic style is to look effortless. You can start by shopping your closet and then add your personality and a little creativity to whatever you find there! Soon you will look like one of those classy chic luxury influencers you admire!