How to Pick Out the Right Outfit for the First Day of School in 7 Easy Steps

Like it or not, school is just around the corner—and you'll need a cute outfit for the first day.

If the thought of picking the perfect back-to-school ensemble sends you into a panic, have no fear. These seven simple steps should make the whole process a lot easier for you.

1. Don't Leave Things to the Last Minute

If at all possible, start thinking about your back-to-school outfit as soon as you can. You may not be ready to get back into the school mindset just yet, but being prepared will prevent it from sneaking up on you. Try planning a shopping trip at least a couple weeks ahead of time so you can sort everything out and have a plan B in case you change your mind about anything.

Clueless: Cher with shopping bags

(Clueless via Paramount Pictures)


2. Decide Whether You're Going for Reinvention

New year, new you—or not. While some people might want to use a new school year as a time to totally reinvent their look, you might want to stick with what you know, and there's nothing wrong with that. Before you start obsessing over the little details of your outfit, figure out the big picture first. First, that means deciding whether you want to try something new or do a smaller update to your known aesthetic.


3. Identify a Style Icon

If you love a certain star's look, there's nothing wrong with getting a little bit of fashion inspo from them. When you're out shopping, try putting together outfits you think they'd love to wear using basic pieces from some of their most iconic looks. You may be surprised to see what winds up working for you, and what doesn't. It'll help you try out some new things and put you on the path to finding something that looks stunning and feels great on you.


4. Wear Something That Feels True to Who You Are

Find the look that makes you feel like the best version of yourself—not a copy of someone else. Let your favorite fashionistas inspire, but not define, the clothes and accessories you put together, and make sure that no matter what you wear, your personality is what shines through. If you're starting to feel fake, or like the outfit isn't reflecting who you are, try something else.

Wonder Woman: Diana tries out outfits

(Wonder Woman via Warner Bros. Pictures)


5. Make Sure You're Comfortable in the Outfit

It's critical that you're comfortable in the outfit you wear on the first day of school. While you may want to use this as an opportunity to experiment and showcase a new you to the world, if you go too far out of your comfort zone, you might wind up spending the entire day worrying about how you look. There's already so much to trouble over on the first day of classes, so don't add to that stress with an outfit that's unique, but doesn't make you feel comfortable and confident.


6. Break in Your Shoes

Physical comfort is super important, too. If you've found a pair of shoes that perfectly complements your outfit, you might feel like you should wait until school starts to wear them so they're shiny and new on the first day. Resist that urge. Start breaking them in as early as possible so that by the time school starts you won't be limping around with blisters between classes. Your feet with thank you.


7. Don't Stress, and Keep Things in Perspective

Putting together the perfect back-to-school outfit can seem super stressful, but keep in mind that everyone else is going through the same thing, and they're probably feeling the pressure, too. If you see someone else in the cutest outfit ever, chances are they also labored over the choice, and a lot of people might be too preoccupied with their first-day jitters to even notice what you're wearing. The most important thing is that you're wearing your outfit for you.

The Simpsons: Lisa Simpson tries on a new outfit

(The Simpsons via Fox)


If you're headed to high school for the first time, click HERE for everything we wish we know before high school.