Repeating Outfits: 7 Millennial Women Weigh In

The act of repeating outfits gets such a bad rap. Do a quick search on Google and you’ll see a number of articles featuring serial repeat offenders such as Kate Middleton (yes, it’s true) that analyze her choice to re-wear her dresses multiple times.

So, the question is – should we really be repeating outfits? Is this a fashion faux-pas or is it actually the smart thing to do?

repeating outfits

Photo credit: Stylish Petite

Personally? I’m definitely guilty of it and I enjoy it! I may not always wear an outfit the exact same way every single time I wear it – but I truly do enjoy getting creative to make it look different. For example, I may wear a top with different bottoms, layer a blouse underneath a dress or add some fun accessories to make the outfit look like it’s brand new!

You can repeat an outfit without looking like you’re repeating an outfit.

It’s true – you have the power to transform your outfit in any way that you choose. You can add accessories, wear different shoes, swap out a skirt for pants (or vice versa) and although the basics of the outfit may be the same, you can achieve a completely different look! These are the basic principles of a capsule wardrobe (which hasn’t been covered here yet but will be soon!) as you simplify your wardrobe to just a few pieces and then mix and match to achieve different looks every time.

I decided to turn to the DWDW community via Instagram for their thoughts on the matter:

@chiconwallst says: With the economy we’re in, repeating outfits are essential! But there are ways to repeat pieces without others knowing. Wearing a blouse with a different bottom or even layering items to change the look. I’m a proud outfit/item offender!

@lawyerdmag says: Love this idea! My take: i’m all for repeating outfits, but like good food and music, you just hit em with the remix!

@inasequoia says: I have a capsule wardrobe. I love it. And I’m essentially forced to repeat outfits regularly.

@summerxskin says: GUILTYYY of repeating outfits and don’t regret it one bit. Although if I can, I try to mix it up with a different bag, shoes or jewelry! I used to buy a new outfit for every occasion whether it’s a party, dinner or even a random outing. Now I stick to quality pieces that I can mix and match and be happy to have in my closet for a longer period of time.

@nikitarenay says: Yess! I do it all the time, I think smart shoppers purchase staple items they can mix and match!

@anne.tega says: A while back I read that Ariana Huffington advocated for repeating outfits (a la Steve Jobs & Mike Zuckerberg). I posted this idea to my friends and followers here on Instagram, and though it was a unanimous “Hell no!”, everyone had their own reason for saying no. For me, dressing up and mixing up my work outfits (by way of remixing how old pieces are styled and/or buying new pieces) adds an excitement to work life. A new/renewed outfit adds a certain jubilance to an otherwise dull day.

@teal.tat says: It’s good, because by repeating outfits we are going against what fast fashion wants us to. It’s environmentally conscious and at the end of the day, most folks are too concerned with themselves to realize that you’ve repeated an outfit. I don’t notice when people repeat outfits. We should all strive to get the most wear out of our clothes before tossing them to the back of the closet and later donating them where they either get sold or put into landfill. 

@ktetylr_ says: I try to avoid repeating exact outfits and instead pull bits and pieces from past ensembles to create a new look! Cause nobody has time to pull a Lizzie McGuire #NotAnOutfitRepeater

@AdrienneEm says: I do my best to switch it up as much as possible but honestly, sometimes an outfit needs to be repeating. I’m also quite conscious of how much $$$ I drop on clothes, so sacrifices must be made!

Looks like the verdict is clear! As much as we’d all like to have an endless amount of money, it’s safe to say that most of us don’t have that luxury which means we can’t afford to replace our wardrobe items after only one wear. In other words, we have no choice but to become repeat outfit offenders.


What are your thoughts on repeating outfits? Smart idea or fashion faux pas?


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