I've Analysed Everything, and These 31 High-Street Buys Look the Most Expensive

How do you find expensive-looking summer buys on the high street? After working in fashion for quite some time, I have an instinct for determining what affordable pieces could pass off as designer. But there are definitely a few boxes that need ticking to ensure that they look as expensive as possible. The first thing I look at is the material. A non-man-made fibre is ideal. Cotton, lyocell and linen are materials I look to for that more luxe-looking sheen, especially during the warmer months. The next tip is the silhouette of the piece. Does it fit with current trends that have come straight off the 2023 runways? If so, I tend to think it looks more designer. That said, classic items such as blazers and shirt dresses in muted tones also tend to look richer.


(Image credit: @symphonyofsilk)

While most of the items below are simple, elegant pieces that could easily be mistaken as being from much more luxe labels, there are a couple of bolder looks that I've included. The main reason is they remind me of brands that are more expensive and will make your outfit stand out. Keep scrolling for more. 

Shop Expensive-Looking Summer Buys

This story was published at an earlier time and has since been updated.

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Maxine Eggenberger
Deputy Editor

Maxine Eggenberger is Who What Wear UK’s deputy editor and has over thirteen years of experience in fashion journalism. She been creating engaging and elevated style content specifically for Who What Wear UK since 2018, covering runway reports, emerging trends, long-form features, self-styled shopping stories and columns, including her edit of the best new-in buys. She ensures the highest editorial standards are met across the site, leads the editorial team in their SEO strategy and keyword planning, works closely with the beauty team on content initiatives, represents the brand at industry events, and regularly contributes to social media, including her own Who What Wear UK TikTok franchise, French Style Fridays. Previously, Maxine appeared on ITV's This Morning in her own fashion segment and has interviewed countless celebrities—everyone from Victoria Beckham to Oscar winner Lupita Nyong’o.

Prior to Who What Wear UK, Maxine’s career began when, after completing her first-ever internship at Look magazine, she was offered a position on the brand's fashion desk. She accepted, leaving university a year early in the process. Her passion and natural talent for writing and styling meant she swiftly rose through the ranks to become the title's fashion news and commercial content editor, with a stint as InStyle.co.uk’s fashion and beauty writer along the way. She later served as Look’s acting Editor in Chief, overseeing both print and digital, before embarking on a successful freelance career, working with Grazia, The Pool, and Marie Claire amongst others.

Maxine is based remotely from her countryside home near Edinburgh where she spends her downtime renovating her house, walking her dogs, hosting friends and trying to master the art of making Old Fashioned cocktails.