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37 Expensive Mistakes You Don't Realize You're Making When Getting Dressed

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In the race to get ready on busy mornings, it’s easy to let things slide. Some shortcuts are forgivable and even encouraged, but certain mistakes you make while getting dressed can be downright expensive. I don’t mean pairing clashing prints or forgetting to zip the back of your blouse (you do you, my friend) — but certain wardrobe hacks will go a long way towards keeping your clothing in mint condition so you save money on repairs and replacements.

Prevention is the best place to start. Weatherproofing shoes, bags, and jackets help waylay water damage, and some treatments will even repel stains. There are even similar products to prevent jewelry from tarnishing. While you’re at it, pick up some cedar blocks to protect your sweaters from moths. If you know you won’t take certain items to the dry cleaners, spring for an at-home dry-cleaning kit or wool shampoo (rather than risk ruining them on a machine cycle and a sectioned hamper that pre-sorts your laundry).

If, despite your efforts, tragedy strikes, that’s where DIY repairs come in. Heel tip covers slip overexposed stiletto nails and buy you some time before heading to the cobbler, and there are even professional-grade adhesives that can reattach a sole. A tiny knit hook will repair snagged sweaters, and a stain pen stashed in your bag will prove indispensable if you happen to spill something on yourself when you’re out and about.

Not only will your clothes and accessories last longer, but you’ll also look more polished and put together on the regular. These products are actually affordable investments that pay long-term dividends.

1

A Waterproofing Spray That Protects Shoes & Bags From The Elements

This spray-on leather and fabric protector goes on clear to create a waterproof barrier that repels dirt and water so your favorite pieces stay clean and dry. It can be used on leather and suede as well as imitations and textiles, and only needs to be reapplied once every season.

2

A Leather Conditioner That Totally Revives Beat-Up Boots

Apparently, Leather Honey makes one of the best leather conditioners on the market with over 27,000 ratings to back up its cult status on Amazon. The nontoxic formula soaks deep into boots, belts, gloves, and more to restore suppleness and sheen so effectively that even seriously worn-out pieces look new.

3

A Pocket-Sized Knit Picker To Fix Snagged Sweaters ASAP

Repair tiny snags before they turn into big problems with this knit picker. It threads through the opposite side without damaging fabrics to hook onto loose ends, and it pulls them back into place. This picker fits in the palm of your hand and comes with a protective cap so you can toss it in your bag and always be prepared.

4

A Set Of Bra Band Extenders To Get More Use Out Of Them

If your bra fluctuates between just right and uncomfortably tight, this set of bra band extenders gives you a few more inches to work with when needed. They’re made from durable nylon with stainless steel and come in dozens of options for two, three, and four rows of hooks and eyes to work with virtually any bra.

  • Available colors: 26

5

These Genius Clips That Make Your Bra Straps Look Like A Racerback

This set of bra strap adjusters lets you create racerback bras on demand and tweak regular strap placement so you don’t have to shell out for a new one to get the right fit. The clips are easy to slip on when you’re already wearing a bra, and the straps are even adjustable whether you’re looking for a subtle shift or extra cinching.

6

Some Iron-On Hem Tape That Saves You A Trip To The Tailor

Pants that are too long inevitably get stepped on and frayed before their time, but the cost to get every pair tailored quickly adds up. This fusible interfacing is cut to size and irons on for a no-sew solution that’s strong enough to go through the wash. Use it to adjust hemlines and cuffs for a made-to-measure look or make quick repairs on the fly.

7

A Set Of Heel Caps To Prevent Your Stilettos From Wearing Down

Whether you need an emergency fix for an exposed nail or just want to baby your shoes between trips to the cobbler, these protective heel tips slip over your pumps to create a barrier between your stilettos and the sidewalk. They’re made from rubber for a waterproof finish with a flexible top that makes them easy to slip on and a stiff traction grid underneath; get them in black or nude across multiple sizes so your favorite pairs are always covered.

  • Available colors: 2
  • Available sizes: 5.5 — 15 millimeters

8

The Outdoor Heel Protectors That Keep You From Sinking In Grass

These brilliant little heel stoppers give you a wider base so it’s easier to walk on grass and gravel without destroying your party shoes. They’re completely clear for a discreet look and flexible enough to work with round or square heels with a sturdy base for stability. Each pair will last approximately 10 wears, and you get a set of six in three sizes with a dedicated carrying pouch perfect for slipping into a clutch.

9

A Natural Deodorant That Helps Prevent Yellow Underarm Stains

Aluminum is the culprit behind those tell-tale pit stains, and switching to a natural deodorant can combat the problem at its source. Native deodorant is an all-star choice that has developed a massive following with over 40,000 ratings and counting for its gentle, yet effective and cruelty-free formula made with probiotics and natural starches to keep you and your clothes feeling fresh — day after day.

10

A Smock That Protects Your Outfit From Makeup When You’re Getting Ready

The Beat Bib snaps on like a stylist’s cape to catch fallout during a makeup application and save your clothes. In other words, you can get dressed before doing your makeup without having to worry about stains or slipping a shirt overhead. There are five pockets for keeping your must-haves organized while you get ready, and it all zips up to become a multifunctional toiletries bag. Toss it in the laundry when you’re done; the 100% cotton is machine wash-friendly.

11

A Soft Fabric Hood That Protects Your Hair, Makeup & Clothes

The Beat Bib is good for makeup applications, but this makeup protector hood is a little different. It slips over your fully done face and hair so you can slip into your clothes without having to worry about crushing curls or getting foundation on your shirt. The soft chiffon is light as air and its zip closure will open wide to accommodate even the most intricate updo, but it’s just as handy on rushed mornings as it is for special occasions.

12

Some Ultra Low-Cut Socks To Protect Your Shoes From Sweat

If you often skip socks, it’s time to rethink that habit: Going without actually shortens the lifespan of your favorite pairs by exposing them to sweat. These ultra-low socks leave your instep totally exposed for a bare look that disappears inside your shoes. The ultra-soft microfiber won’t take up extra room in slim dress shoes, and a gel tab ensures they stay put on your heel.

  • Available colors: 6
  • Available sizes: 4 — 12

13

A Pack Of Period Panties That Help Prevent Unavoidable Leaks

Whether your period always takes you by surprise or you’re dealing with heavy flow, a good pair of period underwear will protect your clothes against leaks and their tough-to-remove stains. These have a 100% cotton crotch with waterproof lining and extra coverage front and back so you can even sleep in them, and they’re absorbent enough to be worn alone on lighter days.

  • Available colors: 5
  • Available sizes: X-Small — 3X-Large

14

A Spray-On Stain Guard That Makes Liquid Roll Right Off

This stain guard goes on completely clear to create a microscopic layer of protection against spills and dirt, buying you extra time to blot up messes before they can absorb. The gentle water-based formula is odor-free and safe for indoor use (but strong enough to protect even deck furniture). Just spray it on and let your favorite pieces cure for 24 hours and then top it off once a month or so.

15

A High-Quality Shoe Horn That Preserves Your Shoes

Repeated tugging and pushing can deform the backs of your shoes with enough wear, but a shoe horn makes even the tightest pairs easy to slip on without resorting to brute force. This one is built from stainless steel to last for years of rust-proof use and ergonomically contoured so your heels slide right in, with a hole at the top for hanging storage. Simple, high-quality, and remarkably effective — the kind of niche product shoppers said they wish they’d purchased years ago.

16

A Set Of Shoe Inserts That Eliminate Toe Creases In Your Sneakers

Keep your kicks looking freshly unboxed with these shoe inserts. They provide extra scaffolding in the toe to prevent telltale signs of wear whether you’re protecting a fresh pair or breathing new life into old favorites. They’re thin and washable and can be cut to size for just the right fit, with a bit of anti-slip grip to keep them in place and targeted ventilation so your feet stay cool and dry.

17

A Heavy-Duty Adhesive That’s Strong Enough To Reattach Shoe Soles

If your shoes separate along a seam or the sole, you won’t have to toss them and shell out for a new pair. A little dab of this industrial-strength repair adhesive creates a permanent, waterproof bond that goes on clear for an invisible fix. It can also be used to fill in worn-down soles and add traction; some shoppers reported that it could even retread their boots.

18

Some Quick-Drying Nail Polish Drops To Prevent Smudges & Stains

Scuffing a fresh manicure is annoying, but getting nail polish on a favorite top might as well be a tragedy. OPI Drip Dry gives you salon-perfect tips at warp speed. Add one drop to each nail and they’ll dry to the touch in just sixty seconds, with a full cure in five minutes flat. “I'm not sure how I'll be able to paint my nails again without using this stuff,” one fan gushed, adding that their little bottle still looked full after months of twice weekly use.

19

These Adhesive Pads That Add Traction To Slippery Shoes

These adhesive shoe sole pads pull double duty: They’ll protect your shoes from excessive wear and add much-needed grip if you fall in love with an unexpectedly slick pair. They’re shaped to accommodate even pointed toes but will cut to size for just the right fit, and go on clear with reliable 3M adhesive you can trust not to peel or crack.

20

A DIY Dry-Cleaning Kit You Can Use At Home

Whether you want to save money at the dry cleaners or have been known to skip it entirely, an at-home dry cleaning kit makes it easy to care for delicate clothes properly at home. Twenty minutes in the dryer is all it takes to scrub out stains, smooth wrinkles, and eliminate odors from cashmere, silk, and rayon — and it’s formulated without conventional chemicals to be gentle yet thorough.

21

A Hamper That Sorts Your Clothes To Make Laundry Day Easier

Never risk ruining white tees in the wash again with this sectioned hamper. It has three color-coded compartments to separate your laundry as you go. The bag is made from waterproof Oxford cloth so you can toss anything in, and each section holds around two full loads. When you’re ready to wash, the bag detaches from its reinforced aluminum frame to tote easily via two built-in handles.

  • Available colors: 2

22

An Adhesive Patch That Makes Statement Earrings *So* Much Easier To Wear

These clear stickers by Lobe Miracle adhere to the back of your earlobe to provide invisible support for heavy earrings. They’ll stay comfortable all day long, keep shoulder-dusters from sagging, and make stretched piercings less prominent if that’s a concern. Fans also remarked that they stayed put well enough to wear through a shower to eke out a few extra uses.

23

A Top Coat For Jewelry That Helps Prevent Tarnishing

Costume jewelry seems like a bargain until you’re constantly replacing pieces that oxidize in a matter of weeks or turn your skin green. This polymer resin clear coat paints on smoothly without telltale ridges or bubbles and dries in under an hour to create an invisible long-wearing barrier that preserves metal tones and keeps jewelry looking mint for years to come.

24

A $7 Cotton T-Shirt You Can Keep Buying

Although certain basics are worth an extra investment, the T-shirt is such a workhorse that it needs to be easily replaced — which is a lot easier when you opt for budget-friendly staples. This bestselling Hanes tee has racked up over 28,000 ratings from shoppers who love it for being 100% pre-shrunk cotton with an easy fit and a little bit of shape through the body that’s supremely light with just the right drape for tucking into your jeans.

  • Available colors: 23
  • Available sizes: Small — 3X-Large

25

A Faux Leather Tote You Don’t Have To Baby

Get the look of leather without the investment or maintenance factor in this minimalist-chic tote bag. The textured faux leather is thick enough to take a beating and shrugs off rain, with a flat bottom so it always stands upright. The roomy interior snaps shut for security and a single large pocket tucked to one side keeps the essentials at your fingertips.

  • Available colors: 158

26

A Natural Solution To Save Your Clothes From Destructive Moths

These cedar rings slip over your hangers and inside shoes where the wood’s natural fragrance deters moths that would otherwise eat holes in delicate knitwear. They’re polished smooth so they’ll never snag your favorites, and the scent is easily revived with a light sanding so one set will protect your closet for years to come.

27

Some Budge-Proof Earring Backs So You Don’t Lose Your Favorites

Swap out standard-issue earring backs for these to prevent wayward studs and drooping shoulder-dusters alike. They’re universally compatible with a rubber core to keep posts secure, and the wide disc helps distribute the weight of your earrings so they don’t sag. For just $6 you get 100 pairs of high-quality earring backs — even the most accident-prone will be set for years.

  • Available colors: 3

28

Some Budget-Friendly Studs That Will Stand In For Diamonds

Protect your good jewelry from everyday wear and tear with these cubic zirconia stud earrings to serve as a stunt double. They’re made from AAA crystals in a classic round brilliant cut with hypoallergenic stainless steel for a glittering look even sensitive skin can wear all day. With a graduated pack of six different sizes, you have plenty of options and leeway to lose or damage a pair.

29

An Extra Pair Of Stretch Jeans To Help Them Last Longer

Stretch denim needs to be laundered more often to regain its shape — but washing and wearing too frequently might shorten its lifespan. Add these Levis skinny jeans to your rotation to help your denim go the distance. The mid-rise jeans offer plenty of stretch and are offered in three difference inseams for a perfect fit, with options for “waterless” denim rinses that are eco-friendly to boot.

  • Available colors: 11
  • Available sizes: 2 — 28

30

A Dedicated Suede Brush That Removes Every Last Speck Of Dirt

Suede requires special care, and the easiest way to do it is a soft brush that removes stains and buffs out scratches while smoothing the surface. The Shacke suede brush has four sides for a truly detailed clean: two bristle strengths, contoured sides for working into curves, and grooves that ensure every angle looks spotless.

31

A Brilliant Clasp That Keeps Layered Necklaces From Tangling

The Necklet jewelry clasp makes it easy to rock layered looks with three rows for attaching necklaces that keep them stay evenly spaced and tangle-free (and so much easier to remove at the end of the day). The hypoallergenic stainless steel is plated in 18-karat gold for a life-proof finish that’s strong enough to weather a dip in the pool and won’t tarnish under sweat, and it features a strong magnet for a truly secure clasp.

  • Available colors: 2

32

A Chic Pair Of Rain Boots To Spare Your Regular Shoes From The Elements

Rain will ruin good shoes, which is why having decent rain boots is essential. The Asgard Chelsea rain boots are a good-looking option on wet-weather days when you need appropriate footwear but don’t want a heavy boot. They’re waterproof and fully lined with a cushy EVA foam insert and high-traction rubber sole. Between their comfort, style, and sheer practicality, you won’t want to save them for rainy days.

  • Available colors: 12
  • Available sizes: 4 — 12

33

A Gentle Shampoo That Pampers Wool Sweaters

Wool and cashmere sweaters are pricey, but proper cleaning will protect your investment — and most can be hand-washed to spare you a trip to the dry cleaner. The Laundress wool and cashmere shampoo is specially formulated to cleanse and condition delicate natural fibers, leaving behind a luxurious cedar-based perfume. The concentrated formula is dye-free, plant-based, and biodegradable for up to 32 loads of laundry.

34

A Reusable Face Mask So You Won’t Burn Through Boxes Of Disposables Anymore

These reusable face masks are made from a skin-friendly blend of cotton and polyester with zinc that features two layers of protection and a stretch fit. A shaped nose wire ensures proper coverage and keeps glasses from fogging while the adjustable ear loops have a dedicated lanyard for serious convenience if you need to unmask. The pack of three guarantees you always have one spare, and they wash up easily on a machine cycle.

  • Available colors: 6

35

A Garment Steamer That’s Gentler Than Ironing

Faster than irons and gentle enough to use on delicate fabrics, a garment steamer releases wrinkles in minutes and extends the life of your clothes. This one boasts an impressive 4.4 stars from over 41,000 ratings for its small footprint and powerful output, with 15 minutes of consistent steam before needing to refill. It comes with a garment brush to refresh tired clothes and a measuring cup so you don’t have to lug your appliance to the sink for a refill.

36

A Travel-Sized Stain Remover If Tragedy Strikes On The Go

Whether it’s lipstick or marinara on your shirt, keeping a stain pen handy can often mean the difference between salvaging a shirt or scrapping it. The OxiClean stain pen is a bleach-free alternative with a scrubby tip that works deep into fibers while the oxygen-based formula lifts stains without fading clothes. It’s small enough to keep in your bag and the pack of three can be stashed in glove compartments and suitcases for wherever life strikes.

37

A Pant Button Extender That’ll Help Make Your Jeans Last Longer

These easy pant button extenders give you an extra inch on your favorite jeans when you need it and slip off easily when you don’t. Just attach the loop to your pants button and thread the extender through. You’ll save money by not having to buy a new pair, and pregnant people can eke out a few more months before investing in maternity pants.