I've worked as a stylist for over 30 years - these are my 5 favourite fashion hacks

A style pro shares her simple tips to make your life easier

julie player 5 fashion hacks
(Image credit: @julieplayerfashion)

I began my career as a fashion assistant on a women's weekly magazine back in the late 1980s, and I'm now a freelance fashion editor and wardrobe stylist. Over the last 30 years I've dressed women from all walks of life and found outfits for every type of occasion, and I've learnt lots of tips and tricks along the way.

I've discovered that the right clothes can boost a person's confidence, and that building a clever capsule wardrobe will save you both time and money. I've helped women who have closets full of things that they never wear to re-work their clothes and passed on some simple styling hacks to improve their look.

Whether I'm styling fashion shoots, working on a television programme or showing a personal shopping client how to wear new trends for spring 2024, there are some quick and clever shortcuts and styling techniques that I use to ensure everyone looks great and feels fabulous.

I've worked as a stylist for over 30 years - these are my 5 favourite fashion hacks

These are my favourite hacks, chosen because they really work - simple styling tricks that will help you to get more wear from your wardrobe and expert advice to improve the way you look. These hacks are guaranteed to make your life simpler - and more stylish!

1. Get the foundations right

women in flesh coloured underwear

(Image credit: Panache/Fantasie/Triumph)

The first and most important rule of dressing is to get your underwear right. The majority of women I dress arrive wearing the wrong size bra and it's the first thing I advise them to change. Nothing looks good if your underwear is ill-fitting.

Personal Stylist Clare Watkins agrees. "I believe it’s actually what goes on under the outfit that’s most important," she says. "Correct fitting underwear is the key to creating a beautiful silhouette. Ensure you’ve had a recent bra fitting (being checked every 12 months is essential) and wear a bra that gives your bust shape and support. Invest in smoothing underwear to create a clean line under whatever you’re wearing."

2. Layer a white T-Shirt

Julie Player wearing white t-shirt

(Image credit: @julieplayerfashion)

Use a white T-shirt to reflect light towards your face and make your skin look brighter. Layer under a jumpsuit to add interest and turn your outfit from something you are simply wearing into something you have styled by opening the neckline and rolling-up your sleeves. Wear one peaking out at the neck of a bright jumper to draw attention towards your face.

"One of my favourite laid-back looks is to wear a white tee showing at the neckline of my jumpers" says fashion influencer Marie-Louise Maxwell. "But most tees don’t come up high enough to show, so when this happens try turning the tee back to front, the back is always higher!”

3. Invest in statement sunglasses

Julie Player wearing sunglasses

(Image credit: @julieplayerfashion)

A great pair of sunglasses will transform your look in an instant. Go for an oversized pair if you want an air of mystery or choose a quirky design to detract from an otherwise boring outfit.

“When you pop on a pair of sunglasses it instantly adds glamour to your look," says Woman & Home Fashion Director Paula Moore. “A pair of sunglasses can elevate the most basic outfit into something more interesting. I have a pair of Gucci sunglasses that I wear with clothes I’ve bought on the high street to give them a designer edge and a pair from Marni that I found on a pre-loved site for £5 and wear on the dogwalk!”

4. Upgrade your belt

Julie Player wearing oliver bonas jumpsuit belts

(Image credit: @julieplayerfashion)

Swap a fabric tie-belt for a more interesting and unusual one and you will instantly add more personality to the outfit. This jumpsuit from Oliver Bonas has been revamped with 3 different belts to switch up the look.

Adding a leather belt will make the outfit look more high-end and, like sunglasses, you can invest in a designer belt to add a luxurious touch. Search vintage markets or charity shops for great belts too.

5. Secure your sleeves

Julie Player wearing a blue blazer fashion hacks

(Image credit: @julieplayerfashion)

Stop your bunched-up sleeves from slipping down by using hair bands to keep them in place. Start with your sleeve down and put the hairband around the outside, just below your elbow. Push both the sleeve and hairband up over your elbow and finish by hiding the hairband with some of the excess fabric. Just make sure the band isn't too tight - you don't want to cut off your circulation!

Julie Player

Julie has over 30 years experience in the fashion industry and is a regular contributor to Woman & Home, Woman’s Weekly and Chat magazines, creating engaging fashion and lifestyle content for women of all ages. She also works in the wardrobe department at ITV, dressing the presenters for Good Morning Britain. Aged 57, Julie loves seeking out the most figure-flattering fashion for every occasion. She’s a qualified sustainable fashion expert with a wealth of knowledge of planet-friendly fashion brands and ways to shop more ethically.