I'm not going to lie—I started mourning the end of summer about a month before Labor Day. I'm one of those people who crave the heat, but your girl's got to roll with the punches. To force myself into the spirit of fall with a little fashion and beauty inspo, I hit up two extremely stylish women, my boss at Who What Wear, Natalie Cantell, and digital creator Seyi Famuyiwa, to dress up in their favorite fall looks that I can steal on a budget.
After checking out what they sent me—and then double-checking the prices––my excitement level for the new season is definitely on the up and up. Their looks are surprisingly affordable thanks to Walmart's insanely good selection of fashion from the likes of Scoop and Free Assembly (as well as top beauty brands like NARS and Lancôme). Prepare yourself to restock both your beauty cabinet and your wardrobe, from the most glowy liquid blush to the blazer both Cantell and Famuyiwa are currently obsessing over. Keep scrolling to see their favorite fall buys.
When I first saw Famuyiwa's look, I was sure she spent more than $500 on it––turns out, it rang in well under $150. She gave me the lowdown on how to make an outfit look more expensive, and it turns out it's all about fit. "A well-fitted item is one that will transcend time," Famuyiwa said. "A good fit will elevate a look immediately, and you'll walk out of your home feeling great."
In this outfit, her blazer stands out to me most. And according to Famuyiwa, "A good blazer is the fall-staple winner. It's honestly one of those pieces that can work with every look." She keeps this particular look low-key with sneakers and a tee, but there are so many more ways to wear it. "Drape it over a dress, wear it over a casual outfit to make it feel more elevated, or dress it up with heeled sandals, and you have a more refined look," she said. "The possibilities are truly endless."
Famuyiwa's beauty look deserves a moment, especially the very on-trend styling of her bobby pins (which thankfully come as a perfectly mismatched set, to take the guesswork out of it for people like me). But what you can't actually see is her favorite part of the routine: perfume. "I never leave the house without perfume," she said. "I’ve become that person who has to have some sort of fragrance on when I leave the house. Prada Candy is a perfect scent that makes me smell like a fresh-baked pastry, which is fitting for this season." Honestly, I get it.
I thought I was here for Famuyiwa's first 'fit, but that was before she introduced me to this modern shirt dress, paired with fall-ready accessories and layers that are very ready for the new season. "I have been waiting for the moment to bust out the leather and boots," Famuyiwa tells me. I, for one, am obsessed with the juxtaposition of feminine and edgy pieces, and that's exactly what she was going for. "For this baby-doll dress look, I wanted to toughen it up, so I incorporated the faux-leather biker jacket to help with that," she told me. "And pairing it with boots was the perfect finishing touch."
Famuyiwa admitted that this outfit definitely has a dressier feel, but that's her fall forte. "In the fall, I definitely like to dress up more," she told me. "I think that because the weather is fairly neutral, I am much more comfortable with really styling and layering pieces and experimenting a bit more."
This beauty look has me more than convinced that I need to master a matte, red lip. Just like her outfit and accessories, it's the right balance of elegance and edginess to keep this classic look interesting.
I'm in virtual meetings with Cantell daily and always asking her about her 'fits, so I knew I'd be obsessed with her outfits before she even sent them to me. I don't even know where to begin with this look. The midi dress (my ultimate favorite item for any season), the chunky lug-sole boots (badass at all times), and this purse (a fashion-crowd favorite) were all factors in my immediate "add-to-cart" frenzy.
Turns out, Cantell and Famuyiwa are very in sync when it comes to the balance of tough and pretty. "A tiered dress with tie details could easily feel soft and romantic," she said. "Pairing it with a tougher boot and a trending ruched bag in a modern shape feels way more interesting."
"This is one of those looks you can easily take straight from running errands around the city to a cute dinner," she told me. "Practical footwear with a great dress is the recipe for a perfect day-to-night look."
When it comes to makeup, Cantell and I are quite similar. We like to keep it simple and light. "I like the fresh look of a clean, glowy lid, so the trick is to use the Nars pencil to add a little smudgy drama to your just lower lash line," she told me. The finishing touch? "Two-Faced Better Than Sex mascara. It's definitely the way to go for a more dramatic lash."
While Cantell says leather jackets absolutely dominated her 20s, she admitted that her 30s are "all about the blazer." It turns out this affordable one from Walmart is truly a fashion crowd secret favorite—Cantell tells me she sizes up to give it an even more relaxed fit. "I love the fabric of it. It's fully lined and has a decent weight to it, which is key to it hanging nicely and looking expensive." Wear it with light-wash jeans, a soft tee, and this season's must-have clogs for the most effortless fashion editor look.
Speaking of clogs, I haven't officially stepped into this trend, but Cantell (who's always in the know when it comes to each season's most stylish but secretly practical footwear) is all in. "I've had my eye on them as they've been on the rise," she tells me. "Happy to report that they've found a prime spot in my fall wardrobe."
Again, Cantell's beauty look is simple and glowy (seriously my two favorite adjectives). "I love going against the grain of more matte fall trends and leaning into fresher beauty looks," she said. When I first saw the look, I noticed that her eyelids, cheeks, and lips were a subtle pink. As it turns out, she used the same product on all three. "I applied a little more Nars liquid blush than I usually would to really make it feel fresh and bright, and I carried it slightly over my eyes as well," Cantell said. "I used the little bit left on my finger to dab on my lips with some clear lip balm, so there's that little hint of color there as well." BRB—I'm taking notes on this three-for-one trick.