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Don't Waste Your Money on These 6 Clothing Items, Stylists Say

You'll have major regret not too far down the road.

We all know the feeling of getting caught up in the fitting room and purchasing something we wind up regretting. There's something about the lighting, the sales associates, and the urge to leave with something, anything, that often leads to impulse purchases. Our chances aren't any better when it comes to online shopping, either, where reoccurring ads and super sales constantly bombard us with messages to buy, buy, buy. But if you can resist them, there are a few clothing pieces stylists say you should never waste money on. By skipping them, you'll save money for more valuable options. Read on to see what they are.

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Trendy designer bags

Woman holding fashion red bag in stylish clothes outdoor

A classic, trend-proof designer bag is one of the best investments you can make. It'll last forever, pair with countless outfits, and elevate everything you team it with. However, dropping a ton of cash on the "it" bag of the season is probably a bad choice.

"I would say to avoid buying very expensive and distinctive 'trend' bags, which will be the hot bag for the season, and then no one wants to be seen wearing it," says personal stylist and shopper Hellana Mardasian. By opting for something more understated, you'll proudly wear it season after season.

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Sweater dresses

Young woman wearing white sweater dress with black boots against a peach background
Roman Samborskyi / Shutterstock

During the colder months, nothing's more tempting than wanting to envelop your body in a cozy knit—and what easier way to do that than with a sweater dress? Interestingly, stylists say to skip them.

"Knitwear has a sneaky way of growing, which means it stretches and eventually loses its shape, even those that are a blend with stretch fibers like spandex, Lycra, or elastane," explains Elizabeth Kosich, certified image stylist and founder of Elizabeth Kosich Styling.

"Plus, pilling is also an issue," she notes, and if you snag one of the threads in a prominent place, your garment could be permanently ruined.

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Wear-once evening dresses


We all love getting dolled up for a black-tie affair, but if you know you won't get a few uses out of your dress, you might not want to pay too much.

"I see clients who have spent a huge amount on a very dressy occasion dress which sits in their closet, and they never wear again," says Mardasian.

Instead of investing, she suggests shopping for more affordable brands. You could also consider renting a dress for your special day, which is typically even more cost-effective.

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Statement sweaters

A hand with neon yellow nails holding a bright pink sweater
Iana Surman / iStock

You've probably noticed that sweaters in bold colors are having a moment, often with statement-making stripes and bold color blocking. But Kosich says these styles can easily upstage the wearer.

"As a rule of thumb, avoid clothing with bulkiness and large motifs, and opt for knits, patterns, and prints that are more to scale and less trend-forward," she says.

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White t-shirts

Close up of a female leaning against a garage door wearing skinny jeans and a white t-shirt
kieferpix / iStock

A crisp white T-shirt, button-down, or tank top that fits you perfectly can make any outfit look more put-together, but that doesn't mean you should buy them as investment pieces.

Because these items are prone to stains, yellowing, and getting dingy in the wash, you'll want to replace them often, maybe even once a year if you wear them frequently. Find an affordable version you love and restock when needed.

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Sheer clothing

Woman with an afro wearing a sheer red top against a pink background.
Husam Cakaloglu / iStock

Sheer clothing is another major trend nowadays. But Kosich explains that in addition to often being short-lived in your closet (let's face it, mesh inlays and lacey dresses are extremely prone to rips and tears), your wardrobe would be better suited by something different.

"This is a novelty look that can lack age appropriateness quickly, not to mention it's too provocative for most settings," she says. "Such limited wearability makes it not worth the investment, so consider other party trends that have a track record of cycling back in fashion more often."

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Juliana LaBianca
Juliana is an experienced features editor and writer. Read more
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