5 Ways to Update Your Look for Under $20

Update your look!
With daily responsibilities pulling us in myriad directions, it's easy to get into a style rut, returning again and again to the same old outfits. Fortunately, if you turn to any of the following five tips, it's just as easy to freshen up your style without spoiling your budget.

Shop Your Own Closet

When we get busy, we usually grab whatever is in the front of the closet and wear it in the same old ways. But, chances are you have a bunch of fabulous clothes hidden away and just waiting for you to pull them out and breathe new life into them! Take an afternoon and really see what you have. Go through everything in your closet-clothes, shoes, handbags, everything-if it doesn't fit anymore, if it's worn or pilled, or is now hopelessly out of style, it needs to go. Then have fun and experiment with what's left. Try on your fancy blouses with jeans, your tees with work skirts, blazers over tanks. Take your suits and turn them into separates. See how you like a belt cinching your waist over a sweater or a pair of brightly colored pumps with neutral outfits. Not everything is going to work, but you can probably create dozens of new ensembles with what you already have in your closet! Another way to get ideas: Grab a fashion magazine or browse style blogs to see how other women are layering items. Then try imitating their styles with your own clothes and accessories!

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Opt for a New 'do

A new hairdo can do wonders for updating your look. But, if a pricey haircut is outside your budget, you can still change things up. If your hair is straight, curl it a few times a week; if it's curly, try straightening it now and again. If you always wear your hair down, try some updos. If you generally like your look, experiment with trendy hair accessories or a fun clip-in feather.

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Get a Makeover

If you are tired of your everyday makeup look, head to your local mall for a free makeover. Nearly all cosmetics counters provide makeup applications free of charge with the hope you'll buy one or two items afterward. If you're unsure where to start, walk around the department looking for the artist who's wearing the best face and approach her. Tell her you're looking for something new and let her guide you. Be specific, though, because one woman's "neutral" can be another's "OMG too much!" Ensure you don't spend too much by pick up the least expensive items at the counter and look for duplicates of the others at your local drugstore. If you don't want to commit to the makeover, simply pick up a bright new lipstick or funky nail polish!

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Commit to a Workout Routine
Regular exercise can change your look even before you shed a pound, thanks to the newfound confidence and healthy glow imparted when you break a sweat. Yes, finding time to work out regularly can be challenging. However, keeping yourself in shape is not only one of the most beneficial things you can do to stay looking fabulous, it's essential to your health! Look for gym memberships that are month-to-month with a minimal initiation fee or pick up a low-cost workout DVD you can train with for several months. Better yet, investigate your cable provider's free on-demand offerings!

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Swap Your Unwanted Clothes
After you've shopped your closet, as suggested above, post your unwanted clothes and accessories on a fashion swap site like Swapstyle.com, Clothingswap.com, or Rehashclothes.com. Not only can you snag killer items free, you're doing a good deed by ensuring old clothes go to those who will appreciate them, not straight into a landfill!

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