6 Style Rules New Yorkers Have Learned From Their Moms

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Part of the allure of living in the Big Apple is never knowing where the day will take you. Because of that, getting dressed is a delicate balancing act: Looking the part is important, but comfort and practicality can't be overlooked without dire consequences—or at the very least, dire blisters. All things considered, it's safe to say you've got yourself a style equation that's hard to crack.

Kayla Seah of Not Your Standard, Christina Caradona of Trop Rouge, and Lainy Hedaya of Haute Inhabit have a knack for mastering New York style that runs deep, thanks to an oft-uncelebrated source of sartorial wisdom—their moms. Since there's nothing more interesting than someone else's family secrets, we got each New Yorker to spill what they've picked up from the influential women in their lives, from having a go-to perfume (like Coach Eau de Parfum) to knowing exactly which wardrobe items to invest in.

Live in a different geotag? You can still get primo style inspiration from these chic ladies.

Presentation Is Key


"My mother never wanted me to get my hair or makeup done, because she said it was important I know how to take care of myself," the blogger tells us, remembering the importance that was placed on looking put-together. "It's a reflection of who you are as a person." Right now, Hedaya is all about off-the-shoulder tops, especially when paired with palazzo pants or an oversize skirt. "There's something about baggy bottoms, a loose shirt, and exposed shoulders—it's sultry and feminine."

Don’t Rush Your Mornings


"A rushed morning never starts the day off well," Hedaya tells us. "As a kid, I watched my mom getting ready in the mornings, and she always took her time. Now I do the same. My morning routine revolves more around the beauty than the clothes. I like sitting in my bathroom prepping my skin and doing my makeup for the day ahead." Like most New Yorkers, Hedaya can't guarantee where the day will take her, so before heading out the door, she'll always take a moment to spritz on a long-lasting scent. Her classic pick, Coach Eau de Parfum, keeps her smelling every bit as good as she feels.

Invest in Quality Jeans


When it comes to clothing, Seah says her mom relied on three staples: a white blouse, a black coat, and high-waisted denim—items that are now staples in her own wardrobe. "She taught me the importance of investing in classics, namely jeans, and to have a variety of styles, as they'll go with 90% of your closet," the blogger tells us. Seah is incorporating of-the-moment denim styles (read: embroidered, wide-leg, frayed, and two-toned) into her spring wardrobe, but she admits she can never say no to a classic distressed pair.

Sidewalk-Friendly Shoes Are a Must


New Yorkers are the natural champions of slides, mules, sneakers, and every other pavement-friendly footwear style that's trending right now. "Uncomfortable shoes are your worst enemy in New York," explains Seah, who says her taste in shoes has been influenced by her mom, who worked long hours as a hairstylist. When she's not running around town in her favorite go-to slides, you'll find her wearing pointed-toe, flat mules. "They're comfortable, classic, and elongate your legs without having to throw on heels."

Choose Investment Pieces Wisely


"When I was growing up, my mom always told me to buy something that I'll love forever, so I try to stick to that mentality," says Caradona, emphasizing a love of pieces that don't require any "figuring out." "When I'm shopping for an investment piece, I want to put it on and have it feel like it's already mine." The number one wardrobe must-have she can thank her mother for? Her classic trench. "A good trench coat can last you a lifetime and works for any season in New York," she told us.

Rely on a Go-To Handbag


While Caradona acknowledges that this spring isn't the season to shy away from bold accessories, she can't help but continue reaching for her year-round staple: a black crossbody bag. "My mom always told me that your handbag says a lot about you," she shares. So we can't blame Caradona for sticking with it, especially when her go-to style can make an outfit look instantly polished. "It allows me to carry essentials, like gum, lipstick, and my Coach fragrance, so I can be ready to go from day to night at any time."

Stay true to classic Big Apple style, and top off your New York-inspired looks with Coach Eau de Parfum.

Group Executive Director, Branded Content and Beauty

Caitie Schlisserman is an L.A.-based executive director with over a decade of branded content and editorial experience. She joined Who What Wear in 2014 as the first branded content editor and has worked her way up to overseeing a team of talented branded content editors and the beauty department of the media revenue team. Before Who What Wear, Caitie helped launch FabFitFun's first subscription box and worked at a beauty startup where she assisted in successfully launching the editorial department.