The Importance of Breaking Out of Your Style Box

The summer before my senior year of high school, I remember flipping through a Teen Vogue . It was the back-to-school issue and there was a shopping guide for each personal style category. My sister decided that she was “Urban Preppy” and I announced that I am “Girly Chic” (or something to that effect).

My sister at the time lived in polos, but also wore cool sneakers thus urban preppy. I was a girly girl through and through who had just gotten over her preppy phase. I started dipping my toes in the fashion pond, so enters the chic in girly chic.

I was in high school at the height of Laguna Beach so my sophomore and junior year was all Uggs, denim skirts (with leggings), and Hollister polos/graphic tees. Then my last summer of high school, I got a paid internship in the city. That’s when my style and understanding of fashion did a complete shift.

I had exposure to street style and affordable fashion. With my new minimum wage earnings, I was able to ball out at Forever 21 on a weekly basis. By the time the school year rolled around I had a whole new wardrobe. I tacked the girly chic label on to myself and intended on living up to its name.

What’s funny is that quiz fed into a mindset that took years for me to break out of. There’s no denying, that people have an aesthetic that they stick to. It’s their essence and goes way beyond personal style. It’s when we cannot even fathom doing something different that it becomes a problem.

My mom says I have always been a girly girl. I even went through a phase where I insisted on wearing a dress with tights every single day when I was little. It didn’t matter if it was below freezing outside, I was committed. Even though I’ve ditched the opaque tights of my childhood years my girly tendencies live on.

I decided at a certain point to stop holding myself back though. Yes, I would much rather wear a cute pair of heels over combat boots, but sometimes the combat boots are what give the look a boost. Yes I love a whimsical ruffle dress, but sometimes the leather pants win. I don’t limit myself and neither should you.

I’m not saying you shouldn’t like what you like. I lived my early 20s in ballet flats and fit-and-flare skirts/dresses and I wouldn’t have it any other way. I’m just saying try new things that are not what you’d normally gravitate to. Don’t be afraid to break out of your self-made box! Change it up!

There is nothing better than surprising yourself. You don’t need to do it everyday, but be sure to do it on occasion. Whatever is the opposite of what you would normally wear, go for it. You can head right back to your comfort zone tomorrow!

Are you going to break out of your style box?