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Do you often return from a shopping trip empty handed?

Or, are you more likely to return with bags full of random purchases, much of which will hang in your wardrobe never to see the light of day? (Or worse, remain in the bags?)

Or does the thought of traipsing around the shops to find a special occasion outfit fill you with dread?

 

Outsourcing

I’m guessing you are great at your job. People hire you as the expert to do the thing you do because you do it well. You get great results and your clients know that they couldn’t get what they need without calling on your expertise.

Perhaps you view shopping for clothes as a thankless task; you know that you need new clothes but you have no idea what suits you or what is “appropriate”. Or, maybe you have the mind-set that nothing will look good on you so buying new stuff is a waste of time.

Stop! There is an easier way. Call in an expert.

With the right kind of help, you are guaranteed to find outfits that fit you well, flatter your body shape and that make you feel great, even if you haven’t felt that way in years…

 

Why work with a personal shopper?

If you need a special occasion outfit, want to update your look or just fancy being encouraged out of your clothing rut, a personal shopper can help. They can advise you on the seasonal colour and style trends and adapt them to work for you.

Working with a professional saves you time and makes shopping more fun and fruitful. It relieves the stress associated with choosing what to wear and enables you to open your eyes to clothes you would otherwise not have looked at, never mind tried on.

Accessible to everyone

Personal shopping is no longer reserved for the glitterati of Hollywood. Most high-street stores offer a free in-store personal shopping service and there are many independent image consultants or stylists that offer this service for an hourly or daily fee.

So which would serve you best?

In-store personal shopping

Pros

  • This service is free in many shops and department stores but it is advisable to book ahead. This means that you can spend all of your available budget on new clothes and accessories.
  • You relax in the spacious personal shopping suite, enjoying the complimentary refreshments, whilst your designated personal shopper brings you items to try based on your needs and budget. This makes for an incredibly relaxing experience. It means no more frantic searching through the rails for your size, only to try it on and find it doesn’t suit you anyway; dealing with less than helpful fitting room staff or drowning under armfuls of clothes that you are hoping and praying might look half decent.
  • Your personal shopper will know their stock inside out (and where to locate it) so if it exists, you will have an opportunity to try it on.
  • They will bend over backwards to make your experience enjoyable and successful.
  • Your personal shopper will have a good eye for fashion and how to put outfits together so you will end up with entire outfits rather than a selection of tops and bottoms that don’t go together.
  • If your experience is a success you can book in for seasonal updates and your shopper will keep a record of your purchases and tastes and get to know what you like.

 

Cons

  • Your choice is limited to the labels in that particular store. If they don’t have exactly what you need, you may be encouraged to settle for a less desirable alternative. It is easy to get caught up in the excitement of the experience and the enthusiasm of the personal shopper and buy items that you later realise you don’t really want.
  • In-store personal shoppers often work on commission or to targets which means that they may encourage you to spend more than you intended. You may not really need the matching handbag, jacket and tiara! It is worth noting that job advertisements for in-store personal shoppers put a lot of weight on the sales ability of a candidate. They are employed to sell clothes to you.
  • Your personal shopper may not have any formal image training in which case they would be using their personal taste to choose outfits for you (and that might not be the same as your taste).

 

Independent personal shopper

Pros

  • An image consultant will be fully trained in colour and image analysis. You will work together to determine the colours, cuts and styles that flatter you and that are appropriate for your lifestyle. As a result, you can shop in the most suitable places for your needs and work together in a collaborative way.
  • Being independent, they won’t have any ties to particular stores which means that you can shop wherever will genuinely serve you best. They will know which brands are cut for your shape and can quickly and efficiently guide you towards the right ones. You will feel safe in the knowledge that every recommendation you receive is being made for authentic reasons.
  • They will do the running around for you, making your shopping trip easier than shopping alone and a lot more fun!
  • As you are paying for their time, you will feel under no pressure to purchase anything you are not sure about. This can make the experience more comfortable.
  • An image consultant is interested in how well the clothes suit you and has no attachment to how much money you spend (other than ensuring that you stick to your budget). This means that you are more in control of what you are spending and your purchases will serve you and your wardrobe well.
  • You will be stretched out of your comfort zone in a way that suits you and is complementary to your lifestyle. Because of the expert help you have experienced you will be free of any nagging doubts about whether or not something suits you and you will wear your new clothes with confidence.

 

Cons

  • An image consultant will charge you for their time. (Prices range from £150 to well over £1,000 per day). Plus you then need a budget for buying the clothes.
  • More often than not you will have to use the regular changing rooms rather than the personal shopping suite which won’t make for such a luxurious experience. (Although many stores will allow independent personal shoppers to use the personal shopping suite if it is not being used).
  • You will have to carry your shopping bags with you from store to store and make refreshment stops to re-energise, take stock and re-fuel. Usually an image consultant is happy to share the carrying load and may even pay for the coffee and lunch!

 

So, if you are someone that spends too long each day deciding what to wear, or if you are sick and tired of opening your wardrobe and being faced with the same old drab clothes, this is the time to work with a professional.

Imagine your wardrobe being stocked with separates that you can easily mix and match to create different looks. No matter what your day brings you will have choices. You’ll feel stylish and confident in your new look. There will be no more wasting money on expensive dresses with uncomfortable matching shoes that you wear once and banish to the back of your wardrobe.

Choosing what to wearing can be fun and stress-free but this can only happen when your wardrobe works well for you. The way you look affects the way you feel and you deserve to feel great every day.

 

Have you ever worked with a personal shopper? How was your experience?

Please share your experience by clicking on the comments button to the right of the title of this post.

If you like what you have read and would like to read more, click here to receive my 5 essential style steps to looking and feeling fabulous.

 

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