As a personal stylist, one of the top challenges I hear is the struggle of finding personal style in a world of fast fashion.5 tips resale shops look for when buying clothes While a lot of advocates are speaking up about the environmental effects of fast fashion, not enough people touch on the personal style aspect. Here are some of the major ways fast fashion in killing personal style.

  1. You’re told what to wear and how to wear it

Have you ever walked into a Forever 21, H&M, or any other fast fashion retailer and noticed how they lay out all their new arrivals? Tops, bottoms and accessories are laid out to make it “easy” for you to pick up, try on, and purchase.

The convenience factor may seem great, until you realize that everyone else looks exactly the same.

You can avoid this by going in with the plan. Instead of retailers telling you what you should buy. Try going in and telling them what you’re looking for. You’re in charge.

  1. Low-quality pieces make it hard to keep, even if you actually love them

Ever notice how inexpensive pieces tend to shrink, rip, and fade a lot quicker than the better-quality items? That’s no coincidence. Fast fashion retailers cut corners to offer the best prices, not the best value. This turns into an item’s short life and more money spent in the long run.

A simple solution to this is to invest in key pieces. Are jeans your thing? Splurging on $50 Levi’s now can save you a lot of money in the future.

  1. Trends come and go, and with it so does your wardrobe

Remember that off the shoulder floral print shirt that everyone was wearing last year? Seems like forever ago, doesn’t it? Trends are one of the most difficult aspects to overcome when it comes to discovering your personal style. Seeing everyone wearing the latest fashions have us running to the latest store to pick it up.

The problem with this is that you’re not actually dressing for your personality. Instead, you’re dressing to the standards of the fashion industry, who happens to make money off us returning customers who are constantly in search of the latest trends.

You can avoid the trend train by understanding your style. Before you purchase the latest release, ask yourself, does this really represent who I am, my values, and my personality? If the answer to any of those is no, then you should avoid the purchase.