10 Cardinal Rules EVERY Woman Should Live by // inspirationindulgence.com

Happy Monday!

Because Monday’s are so drab, I thought I’d compile a list of the 10 style secrets that I live by. To me, these are my 10 cardinal rules of dressing myself that I’ve learned (sometimes the hard way!) throughout the years.

1.) It doesn’t matter how cute it is on the rack. If it doesn’t compliment your body shape, DON’T WEAR IT!!

Ever see a dress or top that looks AMAZE-BALLS on the shopping rack, only to try it on and see that it accentuates unflattering parts of your body? Been there and done that, sister. I have found that even if the outfit is oh-so adorable, if it doesn’t work for my body shape, I can’t wear it. For example, I cannot wear stripes. I’ve been  * blessed * with the boyish, ZERO curve torso, so anything that widens my hips and makes my non-existent curves look even more boyish, I can’t wear it. That’s why the high-wasted trend works for me, because tucking in my hips makes me look curvier than I am.

2.) If you hesitate even a second in the dressing room, it’s a no.

You’ll regret buying that purchase the second you get home. Trust me.

3.) Find a color that compliments your skin tone

10 Cardinal Style Rules Every Woman Should Live by // inspirationindulgence.com

We always feel sexier when we know that our best features are being complimented. For instance, I’ve found that olive works well with my beige tones in summer, but in winter, I should stick to blush tones to complement my ivory “winter” skin. (I’m a northern gal, so my skin is literally two completely opposite shades January vs. August.)

4.) Practice walking in your heels before your big event

Whatever your occasion may be, If you are wearing uncomfortable shoes (such as stilettos) make sure you practice walking around the house with them before your big event.

5.) Speaking of shoes, one can never own too many pairs.

10 Cardinal Style Rules Every Woman Should Live by // inspirationindulgence.com

Shoes are a woman’s best friend. I’m a firm believer that there is nothing wrong with having a closet full of shoes.

 6.)  Don’t let others’ opinions sway you

I remember last year when I saw on Facebook a few people saying that high waisted pants are super ugly and that nobody should wear them. I stayed away from them for nearly the whole summer because I felt SO insecure about wearing them. But the truth is that I LOVED this trend- they accentuated my shape and I felt super sexy wearing them. Now, I hardly ever am NOT wearing high-waisted bottoms. It’s my style and I’m sticking to it!! Bottom line: Fashion is all about self-expression. Do YOU and don’t care what anybody else thinks.

  7.) Neutrals are your BFF

10 Cardinal Style Rules Every Woman Should Live by // inspirationindulgence.com

 I’m convinced that literally everyone on the planet looks stunning in black or white.

8.) Invest in pieces that you can mix and match with other items of your closet

Have a high-waisted skirt that you wear in the summer with a crop top? Pair it with some bold leggings, an oversized cardigan and some combat boots this winter. Don’t be afraid to mix up your wardrobe. I am a firm believer in outfit-repeating. (Duh. I can’t afford NOT to.)

 9.) Lipstick makes everything look 10 times hotter

 For realz. Pucker up and apply the boldest shade of red you have.

And I saved the best tip for last…

10.) Confidence is your greatest accessory  

10 Cardinal Style Rules Every Woman Should Live by // inspirationindulgence.com

I’ve said it time and time again. Having confidence is key. Keep that pretty chin up, know you’re freakin’ gorgeous, and rock it, girlfriend. XOXO

What style cardinal rule do you live by?


Be sure to follow me on Instagram to stay up to date with the latest trends!

  • Love the blogging t-shirt! I’ve really been making an effort on #8 recently. I love a lot of versatile pieces that I can mix and match!

    • Thank you! Agreed, I have been working hard on this well. I’ve been trying to only buy pieces that I know I can mix and match!

  • I would add to # 6 – just because everyone is wearing it doesn’t mean that you should. I look back at the trends I wore and purchased because everyone was and so many times I didn’t feel comfortable or like it. I’m a southern girl and I don’t own one piece of Lilly Pulitzer!

    • Totally love this piece of advice. And I’m with you on that- I see tons of fashion bloggers wearing all Nordstrom and the truth is that I don’t live anywhere near that store, and it’s out of my budget range!!

  • Katelin

    Totally agree with you on confidence! If I feel confident in what I’m wearing, it’s one of my favorite pieces immediately!

    • Aw love that you live by this! We should always feel confident in our dress!

  • Jessica Hughes

    “Lipstick makes everything look hotter”…totally agreed. Just a little lipstick can even dress up sweatpants :)

  • #4: yes! For a big event or for life in general. I always feel the pain when I see a woman walking in heels that she’s not comfortable in.

    Totally agree on the lipstick too. And #2. I used to hesitate, but buy it anyway. No. Just no. I never felt comfortable so I never wore those items, or I did and felt awkward and uncomfortable all day.

    • I have learned the dangers of hesitating. In fact just the other day I bought white jeans and slightly hesitated in the dressing room. When I got home I took off the tags , wore them once and instantly regretted it. They just didn’t fit right!! Should NOT have bought them!!

  • Allie

    Love this!! Definitely guilty of #1. Oh man, it took me forever to accept how true it is! Sharing this. :)

    • Aw thanks so much for sharing!! And #1 is common; I do it quite frequently too but try not to because then I feel so insecure!!

  • Mimi Rose

    These are great!! I especially love the last one, confidence IS your best accessory, so true. Also – I have learned the hard way many a time to walk in new heels before an event, haha it is so not fun if you don’t break them in ahead of time and/or get used to walking from that height.

    • RIGHT! So embarrassing!!! Rock it, girlfriend! Confidence is KEY!

  • Jessica Bradshaw

    These are great tips!! I agree with all of them. I sometimes forget the just because it looks good on the mannequin doesn’t mean it will work for you thing. :)

  • I love this! I’m very simple with my wardrobe (I’ve actually been wanting to do a capsule wardrobe, because it would be the perfect for me) and I’ve learned I need to be hypercritical of clothing when I’m in the store. Anything trendy or outside my comfort zone, I’m just not likely to wear. I have clothes that looked amazing on the mannequin or on the hanger, and they’re just not my style, so they’ve been sitting in my closet unused.

  • Dana Brillante-Peller

    #5, 8 and 10 are my favorites – but ALL are on point! Great advice!!

    • Thank you so much, my dear! My favorite is #10!

  • I love 1 an 10, but all fabulous tips! I love that blogging tshirt..where did you get it? You look beautiful in all the pics as always!!

    • Thanks Valerie! I got it at Forever 21!! 😉 You are seriously the sweetest! I appreciate your support! XO

  • Brittany Ashmore

    Those are great! Yes to don’t hesitate!!! I want that blogging shirt!

  • Neutrals are so necessary! When I’m in an outfit rut, I throw together neutrals and it makes for a chic outfit every time. Side note: I totally agree with being two completely opposite shades in summer and winter. In January, I’m pale as can be. I’m August, I look like perfectly toasted bread haha

    • Right! The struggles of being a northern bunny. Neutrals are always my go-to when I don’t know what to wear!!

  • I love this!! I think #6 resonates the most to me, because it’s something I’ve recently begun embracing. Wear what YOU like, not what others like. I love your style too!

    • Thanks Rebecca! I’m so happy that you live by this rule. It makes my heart happy!

  • Neely

    Im a big believer in thinking about big purchases. If IM still thinking about it 3 days later buy it!

    • I love that!!! I’m not an impulse buyer when it comes to huge purchases, so this is a great rule!

  • Love your rules! I live by one shopping rules which kind of sums up a few of these. I ask myself, “Will I regret it for the rest of my life if I don’t buy this?” –if yes, I buy it, if no, I don’t buy it. Sounds dramatic, but I’m a dramatic person, so it works,and I only have clothing in my closet that I absolutely love and cherish.

    • I am a dramatic person too when it comes to shopping so I totally feel you! I’m going to be incorporating this into my life in the future!! XO

  • Great rules! #2 all the way haha :)

    xoxo, Jenny

    • 😉 Thanks for reading, Jenny!

  • Yes, I think #6 & #10 are the most important ones. Be confident and don’t let other peoples opinions dictate what you wear. If you look good in it go for it!

    • I agree, Jazmine! Those are my two favorites as well!!

  • ashley

    YES to all! <3 And lipstick always makes me feel better. No matter what I am wearing or how my hair is.

    • Right! I don’t know how lipstick has that magical power, but it does!!

  • Sarah Emily

    I love all of these! 100% yes to lipstick! I always feel fearless in a bold color!

  • #2 has been a rule I’ve been trying to stick to the last several years. Buy less. Love the pieces that I have.

    • Yes! I’m an outfit repeater and proud of it!

  • I’m loving these 10 tips, thanks so much for sharing babe! Love all of them!

    -Lily from With Love Lily Rose

    • Thanks Lily for stopping by!

  • Ruthie Ridley

    Love all of these tips but def a believer in a nice bold lipstick! Great post!! Xo

  • Rosemond

    Oh yes, if you hesitate in the dressing room, it is a NO. And truly, trends are trends, only wear them if they look good on you!

    • Yes, you have to go with what looks good for your body!

  • I totally agree with if it’s a no at the store its a no go! I can’t count how many times I’ve taken such cute pieces home only to never wear them again!
    May from http://www.mayliving.com

    • The struggle is so real! I’ve done this countless times!!

  • Melissa Chee

    I agree wholeheartedly with #1! You have to get something that compliments your body type.

    • Completely. If you don’t feel good in it, you probably will never wear it!

  • Casey Oakley Bennevault

    These are so on point and I totally live by these!!!! Love love love this post!

    • Aw thanks so much, Casey! I really appreciate you loving my post!!

  • Maya Kohn

    Yes! Great rules… ummm can you let my husband know about the shoe one though… for some reason he doesn’t believe me! haha

    • …my thoughts exactly 😉

  • Samantha

    This is fantastic! I love the tip about hesitating in the dressing room. It’s always a no, so why bother agonizing over it? :)

    • I can’t even tell you how many times I have learned the hard way.

  • Yes! I totally live by #2. If I hesitate at all, I know that I’ll find that item in my closet two years later with the tag still attached. I’m currently trying to balance some risk taking in my wardrobe while sticking to what I know works on me. I just bought some pants in a super fun pattern that I’d normally pass up for being too bold, but the pants are a comfortable cut and my signature navy and white, so I went for it. :)

    • That’s awesome!! Good for you, girl! I made the mistake a few weeks ago of buying white distressed jeans. I really liked them even though they didn’t fit the best. I regretted it immediately. Hoping they shrink in the dryer because now I can’t return them!!

  • I LOVE these tips!!!! There have been MANY times when I should have listened to #2 and I always regretted the purchase after I got home. <3

    • I know; haven’t we ALL!!!!!

  • Heather Gullett Denniston

    Oh I continue to learn the “don’t like it in the dressing room, won’t like it at home” thing. Such good advice. :-)

    • It’s a lesson learned the hard way!!

  • Sara Pittman

    #3 and #9 fo sho!!! Greens and yellow are my go to and a bright red lip can make me feel like I totally have my sh*t together!!

    • Totally, lady! I love wearing bright restock :)

  • Lilies + Lambs

    Excellent rules, lady! Number one is so hard sometimes, but I’ve gotten pretty good at it. Number 10 is right on too xx

    • #1 is definitely the most difficult rule after #10!

  • Angelle Marix

    Ahhhhh, love all of these rules. I totally agree!! Number 9 & 10 are for sure my favorite!!!


    • #10 all the way. Thanks for stopping by! XO

  • I totally agree with your rule that if its a second in the dressing room its a no. so many times I think i may figure out how to wear it, but then never do! I love these tips!

    • Thanks for reading, lady!

  • Such great tips! I loved every single one of them! I also LOVE those neutral wedges you have on in one of those pics <3

    – Nicole @ http://www.workwearwander.com

  • Love number 10. I think if you feel really good in an outfit and feel confident you’ll look and feel great.

  • Brie @ Sophistifunk

    I love all of your style rules! I definitely feel like lipstick has the ability to totally pull an outfit together. :) And neutrals are definitely my BFF!

    xo Brie

    • Neutrals seriously look good on ANYONE!

  • Neutrals are my favourite too, excluding white. So, yeah, I love black. And you surely can’t own too many pairs of shoes! Great post! :)

  • Haha these are soooo true. I love #8, it’s such a great tip. It helps make you feel like you have more outfits because they go with so much. This post is adorable and creative!! Thanks for sharing
    Danielle | AccordingtoD.com

    • Aw thank you so much! I had a blast with this post! XO

  • Love this! I have a shoe closet full to the brim and do not feel guilty about it in the least :)

  • Ashley

    These are great tips!! I love number 8! I couldn’t agree more!

    xo Ashley

    • Thanks love! It was a blast :)

  • Great tips. I have given up on heels though. I will do flats all day long, and I’m usually ok with that. haha.

    • I only wear heels for special events! Never day to day wear (:

  • Love these tips – especially practice walking in your heels!

    • YES!! I do this every single time- or else it doesn’t end well!

  • Belle Vie A Deux

    Love the tips! So pretty!

    • Thanks for stopping by! xo

  • Heck yes to number 4!!! I’ve done that and just regretted awfully! I’ve done the rest too haha but nothing has given me such pain. And definitely to number 8 and 10! I struggle with confidence so I feel like I don’t always look confident in what I’m wearing ha.

    liz @ j for joiner

    • Confidence is key, my darling! XO

  • It was a pleasant surprise to find that I live by several of these style rules already. =) Have a great weekend.

  • I love these rules. They are so much more freeing than the rules that say, “every girl must own a LBD, or a black moto jacket.” This is great advice!

    • Yes!! A black leather jacket goes well with anything! xo

  • I love your blog. I love your posts. I love everything about YOU! When you get the chance you’ll have to tell me what widget you use for the “you may also like” at the end of your post. I’ve been trying to find one and just can’t! Keep smiling!

    • Aw just saw this! Thank you Molly dear! I love your blog as well…and YOU, of course! The widget actually came with my blog theme.

  • Number three cracked me up! I am always asking my husband, “does this color make me look washed out?” He thinks I’m nuts, but I so agree that certain colors compliment certain skin tones better! I also agree black and white are the best 😉

    • It’s sooooo true!! Thanks for following along!!