The 3-Word Rule Fashion Insiders Use When Getting Dressed

Outfit Planning Rule


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We've all been there—in a hurry, but totally uninspired by the idea of putting together a forward-feeling outfit that feels true to our personal style. In moments like these, it can be easy to just revert to the same old, same old. But there is actually a simple way to ensure you always look on point—you just need to get in tune with your always-fashionable self.

If outfit planning isn't your forte, there's a straightforward rule we came across a couple years ago that will prove to be a game-changer to your daily style and save you so much time. In the April 2016 issue of People StyleWatch, we came across an interview with one of our favorite bloggers, Chriselle Lim. In it, she explains her go-to fashion formula: "Think about your style in three words. Mine are clean, polished, and feminine. When I don't know what to wear, I just go back to those." We love this style mantra—and actually follow it, too.

Interested in testing out this idea? Well, if you're not quite sure how you'd describe your personal style—we're going to help you out. Below, we crafted a cheat sheet for you to pin or save to your camera roll. Whether it's cool or elegant, polished or relaxed, determine which adjectives resonate with you the most. As you go down the list, check off these words that best capture your fashion leanings. Eventually, you'll discover the lexicon that defines your personal style. 

Once you've come up with your list, consider these keywords when you're standing in front of your closet wondering what to wear. Think of combinations that reflect these powerful adjectives—and don't be afraid to experiment. As you continue to think about it and play with your wardrobe, you'll ultimately narrow down the top three words that truly embody you.

Below, we've come up with the three pillars we think most resonate with the Who What Wear girl. Using these three words—"elevated," "trend-driven," and "cool"—we've curated a selection of some of our favorite market picks that we believe showcase that dynamic trio.

Opening Image: The Chriselle Factor

This story was originally published on May 16, 2016 and has since been updated.