How to Dress Casual Without Looking Sloppy

While it's no secret we love to get dressed up, there are definitely times we wish we could slip into a pair of sweatpants and head out the door. But when it comes to dressing down, there is a fine line between casual cool and straight up sloppy. Simply rolling out of bed won't get you that chic, thrown together vibe, but remembering these key points about proportion, fit, fabric, and accessories can help you pull off that laid-back look (almost) effortlessly.

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Kick Up Your Heels
All our stylists agreed that adding a high heel to any casual look instantly upgrades it. "If you have a great look going, like jeans and a T-shirt, and you throw on a pair of worn out shoes, you can ruin your entire look," says celebrity fashion stylist Nisonja McGary. Instead, put on a pair of fabulous heels -- even if you're wearing cutoffs.

And since we're talking footwear, there is one big no-no when it comes to looking chic. "Uggs! There's a reason they're called Uggs -- Ugly," says New York City-based fashion stylist Colin McDonald.

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Blazer Basics

You've got two minutes to dress up jeans and a T-shirt, what do you do? The experts say grab a blazer. According to fashion expert, Lauren Finney, "If you throw a blazer on anything, from an evening gown to shorts, you are going to look more put together."

And while a traditional work blazer will do the job, that's not your only option. Finney says the hottest blazers this season are unstructured, meaning they are cut from more free-flowing fabrics and don't have stiff shoulders. As for the trendiest colors, she says to look for deep reds, like bordeaux or aubergine.

The Classic Trench Coat
Is a blazer just not your style? Do you need something a little heavier? McDonald says to go for a trench coat. "A trench coat is the perfect addition to any casual outfit. Its structure and fit can correct any sloppy look in minutes." As for McDonald's trench coat of choice, he raves about the coats by designer Sarah Phillips.

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Think Wrinkle-Free

Wrinkled clothing is one clear sign that your look is more sloppy than casual cool. As McGary says, "Aim to be polished." If you're not a fan of the iron, try to buy clothing made in fabric that doesn't wrinkle easily, like polyester or denim, suggests Finney. But if you got to have some silk or linen in your wardrobe, McGary recommends Downy Wrinkle Releaser, a spray that relaxes fabric fiber, that she calls "a lifesaver." And it goes without saying that clothes that look or smell like they've been living on your bedroom floor are a no-go.

Click here for more tips on how to pull off casual cool.

Now tell us: Have you ever worn sweatpants or pajamas in public?

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