The Myth of Effortless Style -

The Myth of Effortless Style

What can you do to make your style more effortless

The majority of women I work with as a style and personal brand consultant aspire to have effortless style. You know that well-put-together yet not too polished look that says you are naturally good at style?

And it’s not only about being good at personal style. Effortless style is highly practical too: you spend a minimal amount of time and you look great. Who wouldn’t want that?!
Effortless style in the buzz word in fashion industry too and the media is filled with pictures of off-duty models, celebrity mums,  actresses and bloggers in their effortlessly chic outfits.

effortless style

I have to admit I’ve fully embraced effortless chic as my day-to-day choice ever since leaving the corporate world. It’s relaxed and comfortable without compromising elegance and femininity.

Whether smart casual is your daily style or only something only reserved for Fridays and weekend, it’s an important “art” to master. Even most of the corporate women I know these days only wear more formal trouser or skirt suits for specific client meetings. And with so many entrepreneurs out there effortless chic is the new uniform.

Yet, there is a misconception about this style. Its name “effortless” is quite deceiving. Most of my clients confess that they feel lost when it comes to pulling together an elegant smart casual outfit. There are not many rules to guide you and when you try to “throw” together your various items, you end up looking plain, frumpy or like you are trying too hard, in other words nothing like those women in magazines and on blogs.

Sounds familiar?

First, let’s bust the effortlessness myth when it comes to style.

Myth: Effortless elegance literally means dressing with almost no effort on your part

While this statement may be true for some women (most of them close to fashion industry) and it is certainly possible for effortless chic to take a lot less effort than dressing up for a formal occasion, effortless style require more effort than it may seem. Many styles you see out there are made to look as if they were completely effortless but some of these outfits you see in the media looking so effortlessly well-put-together with just the right amount of casual and dressed up take time and focus.

So if you don’t find this particular dressed up casual style very easy, don’t think for a second there is something wrong with you.

Here is what you can do to achieve more effortlessness in your style whether it’s casual or anything else.

It’s about the mindset.

When you know something requires effort, you are prepared to invest time and energy to get to the level you want to be with it. However, if you believe something that takes quite a bit of effort for you should be effortless, you are more likely to get stuck and discourages. The same goes for style. Think of it as art or a skill to learn. At first it takes more effort, then it gets easier.

And sometimes you may need a teacher.

Start where you are.

For some women style in general is quite effortless because they have done the background work:

They know what looks and feels good on them.

Their wardrobes are filled with pieces that fit them and work well together.

They have are quite familiar with what’s in fashion so they know how to look contemporary.

If your wardrobe is filled with clothes you don’t love…

If you don’t know what suits you…

If it’s difficult to find items that go together in your wardrobe… it’s certainly going to be difficult to throw together great outfits with minimal effort.

Start where you are. Identify what your main wardrobe challenge is (i.e. lack of tops that you like and that go with most of your bottoms) and focus on resolving that. Things will get easier and putting outfits together will take less time when you are working with well-curated pieces.

Create formulas for yourself.

To save time on a daily, it helps to think about what’s in your wardrobe and how different pieces combine. You will notice certain combinations work every time. These are your successful style formulas, feel free to replicate them. Not every style formula works for everyone. But here are a few examples:


biker jacket + skinny jeans + simple top + pointy flats = casual yet chic OR swap jeans and top for a jersey dress for a feminine look with a bit of an edge

Fitted jeans + long sweater + scarf + chic belted coat (swap sweater for a loose-fit blouse for added elegance)

Fitted jeans + long sweater + scarf + chic belted coat (swap sweater for a loose-fit blouse for added elegance) is such an easy formula for colder days.

Classic blazer + jeans + white blouse or shirt accessories with statement necklace, elegant bag and ballet pumps is a classic casual smart formula that doesn't go out of fashion

Classic blazer + jeans + white blouse or shirt accessorised with a statement necklace, elegant bag and ballet pumps is a classic casual smart formula that doesn’t go out of fashion

Detail is everything.

Blogger Anh from 9to5chic shows how the details make an outfit Photo credit:

Blogger Anh from 9to5chic shows how the details make an outfit
Photo credit:

You can wear the simplest outfit of jeans and sweater and look elegant. Have you ever noticed it’s the details you wear that make all the difference?

The necklace you put on with that plain sweater…

The length and shape of your trousers (these change quite a bit as fashion moves forward)…

The way you tie a scarf with that shirt…

The way you balance your trainers with an elegant coat…

The way you roll your sleeves…

What shoes you wear….

This is the fun part. That’s where you can play and express your signature style. The key is to enjoy it.


Enjoyed this post?

Why not share it on social media using the buttons below?

natalia-shpek-5538-webWant support with creating your own successful style formulas or working out how to put all elements together to reflect your unique personal brand?

Then I have a very special invitation for you. Click here to find out more.