1. Dressing extra nice for an interview and then telling your boss you had to leave in the middle of the day for a "doctor's appointment." Yeah, she knew.
2. Buying new underwear because you were too lazy to do your laundry. The cheap, scratchy kind that came in a pack of five from the drugstore and seemed to have been designed specifically to give you visible panty lines in everything you owned.
3. Buying a dress you knew wasn't your style just because your friend said she loved it on you. Then feeling a pang of resentment toward her for making you waste your money on it every time you saw it hanging, unworn, in your closet.
4. Buying something because you thought it would totally change your life. Unless a bag comes with a genie inside, the only thing it's really changing is your bank balance.
5. Convincing yourself that you couldn't wear the same fancy outfit more than once because people would recognize it and judge you. Who did you think you were? Beyonce? No one was keeping tabs on your looks like that. And if they were, then they were either completely obsessed with you or had literally nothing interesting going on in their own lives. Besides, truly amazing outfits are hard to find. Better to wear the same pieces over and over again and look totally awesome than to waste a bunch of time and money on stuff that doesn't look as good.
6. Throwing your favorite sweater in the washing machine or dryer because you were too cheap to take it to the dry cleaner. Why is it only the sweaters we love the most that actually shrink? (Apparently, you can un-shrink a sweater by soaking it in a sink full of gentle hair conditioner and lukewarm water, and then laying it out to dry on a thick towel.)
7. Bingeing on cheap clothes and accessories, and then complaining that you couldn't afford anything nice. All those flimsy polyester blouses really added up.
8. Buying pretty much the exact same thing over and over again. You would go to great lengths to rationalize it - "Oh, but this gold zipper totally changes the whole look!" - but eventually you came to realize that the real reason you kept buying slightly different versions of the same thing was that you weren't really that into any of them. You were just anxious that the perfect version of whatever it was would never show up.
9. Letting your shopping choices be dictated by what other people thought was "right" for your body shape. All that does is stop you from trying new things and convince you that your body is some sort of problem that can be solved by shopping, which is seriously messed up.
10. Throwing away your favorite pair of boots because the sole wore out. It took you three years to find those boots, but you couldn't give a cobbler three days to resole them.
11. Wearing clothes that were too small because you were afraid that wearing the next size up meant you were fat. Oh, the shame!
12. Buying shoes that killed your feet because they were just too beautiful to pass up. You somehow managed to convince yourself that they would be more bearable on the street after you'd been wearing them for three hours.
13. Buying clothes you needed to iron when you didn't actually own an iron and knew full well that even if you did own an iron, you'd never actually use it. And how many thousands of gallons of hot water did you waste running the shower, trying to get the bathroom steamy enough to de-wrinkle your clothes? And did it ever really work? No. No, it didn't.
14. Overpaying for something because of the name on the label. A lot of high-end designer fashion is no better, or better made, than the cheap stuff. They just have better marketing to make you think it is.
15. Not buying something you love because your friend had the same thing. As if, on the off chance that you ended up wearing it at the same time, in the same place, the world would literally end right then and there.
16. Talking shit about someone being too fat, or flat-chested, or whatever else to pull off a certain piece of clothing. Not only were you being petty AF, but all that body hate was making you more critical of your own body too.
17. Shopping just because you were bored. Honestly, how many worthwhile purchases ever started out that way?
18. Buying something really nice and then being too afraid to actually wear it. You were saving it for a special occasion, but you waited so long that by the time that special occasion rolled around, it either didn't fit anymore or you were just plain over it. Similarly, holding onto an old bridesmaid's dress as if you will one day look in your closet and not totally hate it.
19. Buying something because it was a "staple" piece and "totally versatile," even though you didn't actually like it. A khaki trench is only a good investment if you actually wear it.
20. Only splurging on things that were either super trendy or super classic, when what you should be spending your money on were the special pieces that embodied your own personal style. Of course, the real problem was that you didn't actually have a personal style. Once you sorted that out, all the other stuff just sort of fell into place.
By Charles Manning
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