Why Being Out of Style is Cool - picture of rack of clothes

Why Being Out of Style is Cool

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The other day, I wrote about how much I hate the mall.  I seriously cannot stand shopping, and the mall is the antithesis of everything that I stand for.  To me, the mall is a place where people gather to buy things they don’t need, spend money they don’t have, and gather material possessions in order to impress each other.   I cannot think of anything more pointless than mall shopping.  Shopping has become a national pastime, a hobby, and we are paying for it in both financial and environmental terms.

When it comes to fashion, I am not very cool in general.  I really am out of style. I have a closet of very nice work clothes and suits, but they are almost all black. In addition, they were mostly bought second-hand.  I refuse to “consume, consume ,consume,” as our society tells me I should.  I refuse to play the fashion game.  I will not ask myself what color is “in” this fall.  I truly do not care.

“How can a young woman who is as awesome as yourself not care about fashion?” you ask. “Don’t you want people to think that you are hip? Don’t you want to be the cool mom?”

If being the cool mom means spending all of my hard-earned money on brand name crap that I don’t really want or need just to impress others, then no thank you. I’ll pass. In fact, I think that being out of style is much cooler than constantly trying to keep up with the latest fashions.  Here is why.

It’s Too Expensive

Fashion is always changing and it’s expensive to keep up.  A fashionable piece of clothing can go from “in” to “out” within a few weeks or months.  When it goes out of style, we are told that we need to go out and buy whatever is newly fashionable.  The fashion industry plays a constant game of manufacturing endless wants in order to move more product. It really is ridiculous. The fact that we place so much importance on it is even more disgusting.

I refuse to waste my hard-earned money trying to stay in perpetual stylishness.  Why even bother when there are some items that never really go out of style? Try filling your closets with solid colors and basic timeless items. If you do, you won’t have to worry about following the constant barrage of latest trends.

New Fashion is Ugly

When we were at the mall, I could hardly believe what I was seeing.  Some of the newer fashions are so ugly!  Maybe I live in a bubble, but I cannot believe that anyone would buy some of the painfully ugly things that I saw.  In one of the stores, we even saw them selling leopard print onesies for women.  ONESIES!??!?!?! I mean, seriously? My 1 year-old rarely wears onesies anymore.  I do not need my shirt to snap at my crotch.  Who buys that crap?!?!?!

It is Bad for the Environment

Not to get all “tree hugger” on you, but we all need to consume fewer items.  Buying clothing is no exception.  Why does one person need 85 shirts, 150 dresses, and 95 pairs of pants?  They don’t…and it’s wasteful.  The constant production of these items is bad for the environment. and we cannot possibly keep consuming clothes and other items at our current rate. There just isn’t enough resources or space to continue making products and then discarding them after use.

Opt Out of the Game

It may not seem like it, but you actually do have a choice. Nobody is forcing you to buy all of this useless crap. If you listened to the tabloids and celebrity news shows, deciding to be out of style may seem like the end of the world to you. However, it can be one of the best decisions you have ever made.

Being cool really has nothing to do with the clothing you wear, the car you drive, or the gadgets you tote around. In my opinion, being out of style is a much cooler way to live because it will save you endless amounts of time and money. Furthermore, once you’ve opted out of their game, you no longer have to the worry of trying to keep up with their idea of cool.

Besides, you’ll never make it to that holy grail of coolness anyway. Instead, you can feel the free from the pressure of having to keep up with the Joneses. So, choose to be out of style and enjoy the coolness of holding on to your money. You’ll be glad you did.

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39 Comments

  1. If not being “in-style” is cool, then Mr. PoP and I have been cool for ages! I have skirts and shirts that I bought in the 90’s (the late 90’s, but still!) and can wear them.
    The best part, until I tell someone how old the item is, I often get compliments on it!

    1. I have this shirt that I got at a garage sale that I get compliments on all the time!!!!!!

      1. Nice!
        I shop for most of my clothes at the thrift stores in the upscale communities nearby. Gargage sales in gated communities are also a great way to find nice stuff.

  2. Great view, Holly! We agree.

    Actually, I have more clothes than my wife, believe it or not, mainly because I just keep things forever. I just don’t like throwing things out. As we ran out of closet space, the wife said nothing — she just looked at me, then the clothes, then back at me. Some things just don’t need to be said.

    So I made a rule: nothing new until something gets thrown out to make space for it. I don’t think I’ve bought a new piece of clothing for going on three years now! My reticence to toss effectively shut down my clothes shopping. Walmart and Costco haven’t gone out of business yet because of that, so we’re all good.

    Fashion Schmashion. When we were young and traveled a lot we used to privately chuckle at what we came to call German tourists. You know, the older folks, with the gentleman wearing a floppy hat of sorts, khaki shorts over white skinny legs, and the piece de resistance: sandals with short black socks. Other than the black socks (you gotta draw the line somewhere) that’s us now. Now we laugh at ourselves… and wonder if the younger folks think we’re from Germany! 🙂

    1. LOL, you old germans!

      Yes- fashion, schmashion. Pointless and expensive. I will win the game by not playing!

  3. But if we don’t consume consume consume then our economy will crash 😉 Oh the joys of having an economy based on people choosing to spend instead of save and invest…

    1. I am the worst consumer on the planet. If everyone were like me, the economy would definitely crash. Luckily, the Joneses are all out there buying all the crap.

  4. Love it! I totally agree. The desire to keep up with the Joneses or “doing what everyone else is doing” paves the road to debt. I find that often times if we just focus on living for ourselves as opposed to what everyone thinks we’re much better off financially. I am, nor my wife thankfully, not concerned about fashion or having to have the latest thing.

    1. We aren’t either and our bank accounts prove it!

  5. I think happiness comes right after you stop trying to be cool. ALTHOUGH! If you tried to tell this to a middle schooler or a high schooler, I’m pretty sure you wouldn’t get the same response.

    1. I totally agree. It is after high school and college when you find out that what other people think doesn’t matter at all!

  6. I personally care so little about style too. I never have any clue about what styles and colors are ‘in’ each season. I just wear what I find comfortable and situation appropriate. There’s no way I’d drop $100 on some fancy name brand shirt or pants. I laugh inside when I see the people who are trying so hard that their everyday outfit is worth hundreds of dollars just because of who’s logo is on it.

    1. I like nice clothes- but I like buying them secondhand so they are very inexpensive!

  7. I wear my clothes as long as they physically last. I once had a shirt for 9 years that just wouldn’t give out. My bf made me get rid of it when it started getting too many holes in it, but in my mind it never went out of style!

    1. Same here! Greg has thrown out my shirts before because they had too many holes in them!

  8. We don’t having a clothing line item in our budget. And this is precisely why. Thanks for making “out of fashion” a good thing 🙂

    Though, I have to say, I love looking good in the clothes I wear. Some may even consider me to dress well, but mind you, I got all this stuff on sale! Or at a thrift store 🙂

    Heck, the shirt I’m wearing right now was from a cousin who ditched it for more “fashionable” clothing. Hah! SUCKER! (j/k, i love my cousins)

    1. We always take clothing leftovers anyways. Greg is so hot that he can make anything look sexy.

  9. Whenever I need to buy new cloths, I usually decide to go on a diet so that I can fit in the ones I already own 🙂

    Have to agree completely with the article. Its not cool being “in style” yet broke. Better to be “retro” than “broke”.

    1. That’s a good point! I could fit in a few more things if I lost 5 pounds!

  10. All my clothing right now is either old or just plain cheap. I still get compliments on my “fashion sense!” 🙂 I think it’s all in how you wear it. If it fits well and is flattering to your shape, a brand name does nothing to make it better or worse. So why spend the extra money? Silliness.

  11. I’m horrible with fashion-I tend to like secondhand clothes for the most part as they are already broken in and comfy! I know I need to go shopping here pretty soon and I’ve already looked into the thrift stores around here. Nothing worth buying sadly! But yes, the mall is horrilble and I enjoy my comfort more than I care for fashion.

    1. I prefer second hand too. There is something satisfying about taking over someones discarded items and making them your own!

  12. The last trip I went on to TJ Maxx was to get shower curtain for our rental, and I couldn’t help noticing the selection of jumpsuits in the ladies department. I don’t know about you but it is hard enough to hold my bladder after having a child. I would pee my pants if I had to get out of a jumpsuit to go to the bathroom. Where we live, everyone is painfully out of style. It’s great. I do have to wear decent clothes to work, but weekend wear is tshirts and yoga pants. Woo hoo.

    1. Same here! I have to dress up every day for work so when I am not working I don’t want to dress up at all. I want to be comfortable!

  13. I’ve always been just a t-shirt and jeans kinda guy. Do those items ever go outta style? 🙂

    Everything the opposite always gets cool after a while. Like a clock that strikes 12 twice a day!

  14. My biggest reasons for the past few years has been the UGLY factor! I think they’re just doing market research to see how far past looking good they can go before we’ll stop buying their advertising. Consignment stores are my haven.

    1. Amen. Either I am getting super old or clothes are getting super ugly. They are all looking cheap lately too.

  15. Love it. Couldn’t have said it better myself. I have no idea why pockets are sticking out form the bottom of denim shorts is a cool thing. I feel old, because I remember my parents didn’t understand why I wanted holes in my jeans in high school.

    1. Yes, I know exactly what you mean! Now we are turning into our parents!

  16. When I was in high school, I certainly couldn’t afford “stylish” clothes, so I didn’t bother. Instead, I created a certain image for myself and wore cheap clothes that made people think I was cool for ignoring conventions of style. A great example (albiet not very frugal) was my keychain collection. I used to collect keychains whereever I went, and developed a 5 foot long chain of them. I wore them around my waist and made a VERY loud clanging sound walking down the hallway. It was absolutely rediculous and lots of kids laughed, but they were laughing with me instead of at me.

  17. I , too, HATE the MALL. I find I get a headache if I spend an hour in there or more. I have the tendency to shop like a guy, go in and out as fast as possible. I’m definitely not a fashionista either. It works out cause both of my jobs I don’t have to wear nice clothes. Awhile back, my mom and my sister joked about sending me on that TLC show: “What Not to Wear.” Ha ha.

  18. Great post! I agree there are a few key items I buy at the mall (mostly a few cosmetics) and other than that I stay out of there but I do stop by our mall to see my daughter working. I don’t buy starbucks, I skip all the shops for the most part but I will run down to our local mid eastern food counter sometimes and get her some hummus for her lunch break but thats what Mom’s do!

  19. I am very happy to be out of style when it can save me some money. I don’t go out to eat that often, and I have not been to a big coffee shop in a long time. It’s not cool, but it is very frugal!

  20. Here’s what I like about your blog:

    “How can a young woman who is as awesome as yourself not care about fashion?” you ask.

    I was just wondering that when I read those words.

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