There seems to be this unfortunate misconception that fashion editors have unlimited access to nothing but designer clothes, bags, and shoes. While we certainly might have more access than people working in other fields, rare is the occasion when we'd be freely given such precious goods.
In reality, we are normal people! We have to budget just like everyone else and make our fashion purchases within the constraints of our financial capabilities. (Of course, being that we're always talking about beautiful clothes, this is much easier said than done.)
As such, we've spent more time than the average person digging up the best the budget fashion world has to offer. Keep scrolling to find out which fast-fashion retailers the Who What Wear editors shop most!
“I think the best places to shop when you’re on a budget are those that have a high-low mix of product. It shows that the buyers have a good sense of the company’s aesthetic, and it’s not necessarily contingent on price level. Need Supply Co. is my go-to for this.”
“I have a uniform. On any given day, you’ll find me in skinny pants, a tee, some sort of jacket, and white sneakers—and COS stocks all of those items and more. Plus, each piece looks incredibly high-end (seriously, quality fabrics make all the difference) without that high-end price tag. No joke, people have stopped me asking if a jacket I’m wearing is designer!”
“The quality is amazing for the price. Plus, the U.K. brand hasn’t taken off stateside just yet, so it feels a little more distinct than many of the major fast-fashion brands we have.”
Finery London Beatson Curved Bodice Jumpsuit ($105)
“Madewell always has a great mix of classic and on-trend styles. The quality is good, and everything from their denim to their shoes is really strong. Plus, they frequently have amazing sales!”
“Their products are on trend without going overboard in the way I think some fast-fashion brands do, and they always seem to have a more mature take on whatever is currently popular. I’m going to get this shirt in both colors; it suits my simple taste but has that perfect unexpected detail to make it a little more interesting than your average top.”
“As much as I like to shop around and try other budget brands, I feel like I always end up coming back to H&M as my go-to. Every time I walk into the store or browse the site, I’m pretty much guaranteed to come away with at least one thing I love. Plus, the Swedish brand‘s fit has consistently proven to be better on me than any other fast-fashion line.”
“Whenever I’m looking for a quick style pick-me-up, I cruise over to Forever 21’s home page. Although you have to do a little digging, they always have budget-friendly buys sure to fool your friends. Just look at how cute this little dress is!”
“I love their knit tops for layering, and they’re so affordable. They come in almost every color and are always available in-store for when I need a specific style to go with an outfit!”
“They do a great job adapting seasonal trends into affordable pieces that only look expensive. I check the site almost every week for new items. When it eventually cools down here in Los Angeles, this dress will pair perfectly with a pair of suede over-the-knee boots.”