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How to Look Put Together with Minimal Effort

Looking put together doesn’t need to be complicated. I understand how it can feel overwhelming. When I scroll Instagram or watch TV, everyone is so done up. To the point that I feel underdressed!

Makeup and dresses that were saved for special occasions and fun nights out are worn for an “everyday” look.

However, if you’re into the natural, less-is-more approach, then this article is for you!

In this article, you will:

  • feel beautiful in your own skin
  • throw together your outfit and feel elegant and chic
  • know how to look more polished
  • know the answer to “Am I pretty without makeup?” and other insecure questions

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How to Look Put Together with Minimal Effort – The Morning That Changed it All

In the mornings, I like to keep it simple.

Not only do I get some of my work done, but I have my family to wake up and start their day. Trying to embrace my elegant lifestyle, I like to get dressed and ready for the day.

I know that when I’m fully done – I am more patient, flexible, and feel relaxed.

Before, I used to stay in my pajamas and robe until I had to bring the boys to their bus stop. However, there was a day that I was running late.

Later then I would like to admit.

The morning was anything but ideal. There was a little yelling, a little whining, and most of all there was a lot of tension. You’re probably thinking that I should have just driven them in.

However, we are a one-car family and my husband had the car that morning and would be gone for most of the day. It was imperative that they got on that bus!

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How to always look put together, like this elegant woman

Why it’s Important to be a Well Put Together Woman

In that rushed moment, guess who ran out to stop the bus as my kids were clamoring to get their boots on?

Yes.

Me.

Except instead of looking like a chic elegant woman, I resembled a more crazy cat lady with my hair a mess, my robe, and slippers waving dramatically at the passing bus.

I was able to flag it down and my boys were able to get to school that day. When I walked back into my home and looked at my reflection in the mirror, I was mortified. This was not how I wanted anyone to see me!

I promised myself to always look presentable after that because you never know! [The same thing happened when my neighbor came to the house in the early afternoon and I wasn’t ready – but apparently I didn’t learn my lesson then!]

In the morning, I want to look polished and ready for the day. And I especially need something with minimal effort. It’s important to be a well-put-together woman because you never know what will happen.

Here is the elegant woman guide on how to always look put together.


How to Look Polished

It’s easy to put on a beautiful outfit, some jewelry, and a good quality pair of shoes and call it a day. However, perfectly put together women can look out of sorts if some details are left undone.

Luckily, these are easily addressed and remedied.

I like to start from top to bottom.

Head + Face

Neck

Upper Body

Hips

Legs

Feet

Attitude

Going through this every morning ensures that you look put together with minimal effort.

And no more embarrassing moments in my pajamas!

Secrets that a Polished Woman Does Every Day

A woman who knows how to have poise and grace understands that daily maintenance is the true secret!

It’s difficult to always be put together, but with some effort, it can be done.

Start your day by taking care of yourself both physically and emotionally.

Here are a few tips on how to start your day off right:

  • Wake up early so you have time to get ready without feeling rushed
  • Have a morning routine that you do every day. It will set your day in motion and get you ready for the day ahead
  • Dress yourself nicely [even if it’s just your work clothes] – looking presentable is the easiest way to improve confidence and mood
  • Don’t wait until the last minute or you’ll look frantic

However, there are THREE main key points to look at.

Hair.

Skin.

Shoes.

how to look put together with minimal effort

Looking Your Best – Head and Face

How to Look Put Together with Minimal Effort – Hair

1) Hairstyle:

A chic updo or a sleek ponytail can add to that polished look. [If you want to skip this, then having your hair down and styled in soft waves is always an elegant go-to.]

It’s important that your hair is intentional. If you are going for a “messy chic” hairstyle, make sure that the hair is messy on purpose. Bedhead is never elegant, but a properly minimal bun looks great.

If you’re like me and don’t know how to do hair very well, stick to a few classics.

Choose one that flatters your face.

2) Quality of Hair

Regardless of how nicely you can do your hair, if it’s frizzy or unhealthy, it won’t look good. If it has been a long time, try doing a hair mask to add moisture at least once a month.

I like to soak and rinse my hair with diluted apple cider vinegar every time I wash it.

The health of your hair is incredibly important and should never be overlooked.

The most healthy and shiny hair can get away with a minimal hairstyle and still look chic, elegant, and classy.

3) Finishing Touches

After you have your hair styled to your liking, that’s when you need to take out a little spritz of oil or hair shine and control the flyaways. Give your hair a boost of shine and vitality.

Take out a second mirror and check for out-of-place hair and see if there is anything that needs to be readjusted.

An elegant woman quickly fixes the frizz and rebellious hair which is enough to make any hairstyle look classy.

4) Defeated?

If you feel that no matter how you do your hair it doesn’t look good, it might be time for a hair appointment. You might need a trim, or add bangs or just a highlight.

It’s hard to try to fix something that seems an overhaul might be the answer.

When was your last style change? Hint: if you’ve had the same hairstyle for more than 10 years, you might want to take a look at yourself and see if it is time for a new style. It’s easy to get complacent with our looks and we don’t see that it’s outdated. Do it every 3-5 years and you’ll never feel old again!

How to look put together

How to Look Put Together with Minimal Effort – Face

1) Skin

It doesn’t matter how much makeup you use (you look good without makeup!), if the foundation is poor then it won’t look as good. It’s important to make sure your face is clean and exfoliated. You can watch this video if you want to see how to apply foundation properly.

Fall into a good habit of cleansing and moisturizing.

One of the most vital tips for getting clear skin is to drink a lot of water and eat healthily. It starts from the inside out.

2) Sunglasses

This is the most effective tip to looking more put together because it takes no time and all the tiredness or wrinkles that are close to the eyes will disappear behind sunglasses.

I remember reading that a lot of celebrities are spotted wearing sunglasses getting off airplanes because it can hide everything. How elegant!

3) Lipstick

Whenever you are in doubt, always go for some lipstick.

It can really add that pop of color that will enhance your look every time. It is one of those little details that you have to go out of your way to apply.

Therefore, the very act of stopping and putting on lipstick shows that you are trying to look put together.

You are putting in a minimal effort that is paying off!.

4) Teeth

I don’t really have an opinion on teeth whitening (If you want some info on it, here’s a good article). I think the idea is very interesting and can probably take years off your face. However, I still have yet to try it. If it is something you will do, then that’s fine!

If you prefer more natural rather than chemical, I try to swish water around my teeth after eating something acidic. I try to stay clear of candies and unnecessary sugar (keyword: try!).

Looking put together with minimal effort is also the simple act of making sure there is no lipstick marks on your tooth.

How to look poised

How to Look Put Together with Minimal Effort – Neck

5) Perfume

Perfume is one of the dominant places that I like to spray on a little perfume. Even if it’s not very strong, the important part is that you can smell it and that it makes you feel like the most elegant woman in the world.

6) Necklace

Depending on the shirt you are wearing, a necklace might not be necessary. However, if it is, make sure that you adore it.

7) Scarf

If you’re wearing a plain outfit and you want to spruce it up, try wearing a scarf. They come in many different sizes and shapes. Try wearing a square scarf wrapped around your neck with the little knot under your chin. It’s trendy, chic, and simple to do!

Scarves are part of every classical wardrobe.

Since it is wintertime, I like to wear scarves because they make me feel cozy and at the same time elegant and put together. Wear a different color scarf according to your outfit!

But, you can (and should!) wear scarves all throughout the year. They can truly elevate your outfit. The only thing that will change is the material they are made from. Wearing a wool scarf in the dead of summer would be too much.

8) Earrings

Again, it depends on the outfit that you are wearing. If you’re wearing a dress or something more formal, then I would suggest going with some dangly earrings. However, if you’re wearing a t-shirt and jeans then I would go with some studs.

However, if you are wearing jeans and a casual shirt, wearing little over-the-top earrings can balance it out.

My only suggestion is that I wouldn’t wear earrings, a bracelet, many rings, and a necklace.

Go for the less-is-more approach with your jewelry.

how to look put together with minimal effort

How to Look Put Together with Minimal Effort – Upper Body

9) Shirt or Blouse

If you’re wearing a top, make sure it’s ironed and fits well. Don’t wear anything too tight or too loose. It should be comfortable and look like you put some effort into picking it out.

It’s amazing how something as simple as ironing can make your outfit look put together.

Always check for lint!

A quick tip with shirts, you should always tuck it into your pants. This adds a nice clean line and can enhance even the most casual shirts.

10) Jacket

A jacket can make or break your outfit. Make sure it’s the right style and color for what you’re wearing. If it doesn’t fit well, then don’t wear it!

Again, make sure it’s clean and pressed.

There are different lengths of jackets. I tend to prefer shorter ones because they make everything look proportioned.

11) Belts

Belts are also a nice touch to make your outfit look put together. They can define your waist and make everything else look neater.

Belts also let you add that splash of color which can be elegantly chic when wearing a monochrome outfit.

12) Hands

Your nails are one of those little details that tell other people a lot about yourself. If you are dressed in your best clothes but have dirty or unkempt nails, it ruins the overall look.

Attractive hands are a must to look put together with minimal effort.

If you have beautifully painted or natural nails, it shows that you put in a little extra effort with your grooming habits. Don’t forget that once your nails start chipping, either fix it or remove the polish. Chipped nail polish is hard to be chic.

The same rule applies to your hands. If you have extremely dry and crackling skin on your hands, it needs to be addressed.

A little moisturizing and nail oil can dramatically improve the look of your hands and nails. Don’t forget to file them (I love this glass nail file!) on a regular basis to avoid any snags or tears in the nail. Choose what shape best flatters your hands.

One tip I’ve heard for shaping your nails is the shape of the tip of your nail should match the nail bed. Some people have a very square nail bed, so their nail tips should be more square.

13) Bra

This one can be one of the very simple fixes that can change the whole look of the shirt. If you’re able to get fitted properly, you will see and feel the effects. Here’s a good article to help find the perfect size!

It’s minimal effort because once you go and purchase a good quality bra that looks good under your clothes, it will boost your confidence.

14) A Watch

If you want to feel and look instantly put together, put on your most beautiful watch. There is such a refined look when a woman has a beautiful watch on and uses it as jewelry. There are so many different styles of watches, so have fun with them!

Experiment with oversize watches and tiny dainty ones too.

I love the leather bands, but I have friends who swear by the metal ones. Find your signature watch. Regardless of what one you wear, it can make you feel put together with minimal effort.

How to look put together in a skirt - woman in a pink skirt wit matching heels

How to Look Put Together with Minimal Effort – Lower Body

15) Pants

Today’s style has changed greatly. Anything goes really. My personal favorite is the skinny leg. I am on the shorter side, so properly hemmed pant makes me look a little taller. The secret to looking leaner is to crop the pants a little over the ankle.

This shows the tiniest part of the leg and draws attention to it.

You don’t necessarily need to get them tailored. A little fold is chic, but if you don’t want to do that, you can tape it up with special fabric tape.

High-rise pants are also bringing people’s eyes to the waist, which is smaller than the hips.

It depends on what your favorite style is, but if it looks good, make it yours.

16) Pantyhose / Compression Stockings

This always reminds me of my grandmother. She wouldn’t go anywhere without her pantyhose on. Whether she was wearing pants, skirts, or dresses. She swore that it gave her a nice clean line.

I didn’t understand what she was talking about but it makes so much sense. Sometimes, the older you get the more wrinkles and sagging happen.

The extra layer can hold in anything unwanted.

I am fairly new to the compression stocking world, and I love every second of it! Not only does it improve my legs (say goodbye to tired legs!), but it makes my legs feel slimmer!

17) Shoes

A good quality pair of shoes can make the whole outfit. If you’re wearing a simple dress or skirt, a nice pair of shoes can take it to the next level.

When looking for a shoe, always try it on and walk in it. You don’t want to be the person who wears shoes that are too tight and have to take them off after 10 minutes. It also isn’t very chic if you can’t walk tall and properly. Here are some good tips for finding the proper size shoe.

A shoe can also add color or interest to an outfit. If everything is black and white, add a pop of color with a red shoe.

My biggest rule for shoes, make sure they are easy to clean, good quality, and make you feel elegant.

18) Skirts/Dresses

The beautiful thing about dresses is that they are a complete outfit in one. There is no trying to match or figure out what looks good with something. It is much easier to look put together when you have the perfect fitted one.

Always check the length. You never want to go too short or too long, depending on the day. There is nothing wrong with a little bit of skin showing, but too much can become inappropriate for certain occasions.

If you’re the type that likes to dress up and look formal, wear it with a nice pair of heels. If you’d like to wear it casually, I love pairing dresses with ankle strap sandals or ballet flats.

Also, make sure to not make your shoes the focus of the outfit. They should be complimenting you, not stealing attention.

Different styles always complement certain body shapes more because different cuts shape differently. A fitted dress can also hide any trouble spots because it will distract from them.

Elegant fashion is all about the little things that are different. It’s always fun to have a new pair of shoes, bag, or dress that makes you feel amazing.

When it comes down to it though, what looks best on YOU is what you should wear over and over again. The most important thing about fashion is feeling comfortable in your own skin. If you’re feeling good, it will show.

And when you feel confident, you look put together without even trying!

How to Look Put Together with Minimal Effort – Attitude

19) Confidence

The best way to look put together is to have confidence. Wear what you want, when you want, and how you want. If you’re feeling good about yourself, it will show.

There is no right or wrong when it comes to fashion. It is all based on personal preference and what makes you feel confident and beautiful.

I think the best advice I could give you on looking put together is to be yourself and wear what feels good.

As long as it isn’t offensive, there’s no harm in wearing something that makes you feel good outside and inside.

The only exception is if you are attending a certain event or day of school. For those instances, it’s better to play it safe. Always err on the side of caution when wearing something that could be questionable.

20) Believe your chic

One of the best things you can do to look put together is to believe in yourself. Wear what you want and how you want.

There is real power in believing in yourself and feeling beautiful.

Most of your grace and elegance come from the way you carry yourself. Never feel ashamed or ugly.

It all starts with you. You are the most important person in your life, so start by loving yourself first.

Once you do that, anything is possible! Even if it requires makeup or hairstyling, I promise you can look put together without them. All it takes is one simple trick to maximize your potential and look amazing every single day.

All it takes is a little bit of confidence and a small boost to feel glamorous.

21) Choose Happiness

Audrey Hepburn said it perfectly, “... I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls.

Have you ever been in the presence of someone that is just incredibly charming? They have this radiant glow of beauty that surrounds them. Even if they aren’t the most “attractive” person, their charisma is what attracts you to them.

I truly believe that when you try to live life more positively, other people respond the same way. Your happiness can exude elegance.

Looking put together does include looking good, but it also is about the aura you give off. Does it pull people in or push them away?

Be more positive and you will see that looking put together will come easier. Even if you have something out of place, others will be more focused on YOU as a person than that.

How to Look Put Together with Minimal Effort – Other Tips

20) Smile

The best accessory you can wear is a smile. A smile makes you look put together, happy, and approachable. If you’re having a bad day, it will show on your face.

Whenever I’m feeling down or insecure, I always put on a smile and it instantly changes my mood.

Not only does it make you feel better, but it also makes the people around you happy.

A smile is the best way to show that you’re confident and happy with yourself. It’s also a great way to start off your day.

21) Eyebrows + Eyes

Filling in your eyebrows can make a huge difference in your appearance. It can help frame your face and make you look more put together.

Eyebrows should be filled in according to their natural shape. If you have thin eyebrows, fill them in with a pencil that is one shade lighter than your hair color. If you have thick eyebrows, fill them in with the same pencil color.

When applying an eyebrow pencil, always start in the middle of your brow and blend outward. It is also important to use short strokes to mimic real eyebrows. I love using Anastasia Beverly Hills.

Another thing to focus on is your eyes. If you have tired eyes, there are a few things you can do to make them look more awake.

The first is to curl your eyelashes. This opens up your eyes and makes them look more awake.

Another trick is to use a white liner on your waterline. This brightens up your eyes and makes them look more awake.

I love using mascara but only on the tips of my lashes. I try to make them look as natural as possible.

22) Cover your bad outfit with a beautiful coat

If you’re having a bad day clothes-wise, don’t worry! A beautiful coat can hide all your troubles.

I always have a few coats in my closet that I can rely on when I don’t know what to wear.

A good coat can make any outfit look more put together. It’s also a great way to keep warm during the winter.

Make sure it’s a little longer and pair it with a great shoe and you’re chic and put together effortlessly!

23) Invest in a Classic Wardrobe

Cultivating a classic wardrobe can make you feel put together every single day. When you know that you can grab anything out of your closet that will make you feel perfectly put together then you’ll always have a good clothes day.

Neutrals are always the best investment pieces because they can grow with you. They can be paired with just about anything.

24) Perfect the Posture

A big part of looking put together is standing up straight and walking well. If you’re walking while you’re slouching it will show and make you look disheveled. It also sends signals of self-doubt to others.

It’s also important to be aware of your arms while walking. Make sure that they do not go all over the place and instead stay close to your body.

25) Think about what you’re going to wear the night before

This saves a lot of time in the morning and allows you to get a good night’s rest. I always prepare my outfit for the next day the night before so that all I have to do is grab it and go in the morning.

Looking put together with minimal effort can be easy when you are prepared.

An elegant woman wearing a scarf and looking put together

How can I look stylish without effort?

Elegant style is all about simplicity. The best outfits are often the simplest, requiring only a dress shirt + jeans, tailored pants + fitted blazer, or chic skirt + sweaters. Find your personal style and stick to it.

It’s time to be conscientious of what you wear. Glamour starts with attitude and looking your absolute best will help you feel more confident in yourself.

One of the biggest secrets to staying stylish is knowing your true personal aesthetic. Once you’ve found what fits with your body shape, hair length-volume ratio…etc., branch out from there! Wear clothes that make you feel organized and comfortable in any environment. 

The most important thing when dressing up is to feel comfortable in what you’re wearing. If you feel like a million bucks, it will show.

a woman with a hat on and looking polished

How do you look casual but polished?

Take your favorite pair of clean jeans and put on a fitted, wrinkle-free button-down shirt in a flattering hue. For shoes that are both cute and comfy, choose flats with low or no heels. Go without jewelry or makeup – just be yourself!

You can’t go wrong with casual styling when you feel safe being who you are! And don’t forget to smile – it really is the best accessory you can wear. 

A lot of women find themselves wearing over-styled clothes when they want something casual but polished. The key to pulling off this look is keeping it very simple; no flashy accessories, stark makeup colors, or wild patterns.

A Quick List of How to Look Put Together with Minimal Effort

  • Wear clothes that fit just right
  • accessorize with your favorite jewelry
  • organize your closet so your favorite clothes show first
  • update your wardrobe, try a classic wardrobe!
  • use accessories tastefully
  • invest in good quality shoes
  • consider a capsule wardrobe
  • wear a skirt
  • style your hair
  • wear mascara (go for a natural eye)
  • wear a blazer
  • try a simple cotton dress that is very versatile
  • wear a scarf in your hair and elevate your ponytail
  • add a statement piece with a very plain outfit
  • groom your nails often
  • apply lipstick that will make it pop
  • fill in your eyebrows
  • wear sunglasses when appropriate (not inside!)
  • invest in quality pieces that are neutral
  • wear dark jeans, they make your legs look slimmer
  • develop your own signature style
  • find out what colors accentuate your best features
  • have something extra that makes you feel special (high-quality name purse, perfume)
  • good posture
  • wear black when in doubt
  • be healthy because it creates the most beautiful canvas
  • wear a hat
  • make sure your clothes look sharp and ironed
  • create a morning routine that oozes elegance that spills into the rest of your day
  • believe that you are chic and can wear anything

Get the “How to Look Put Together with Minimal Effort” eBook

How to Look Put Together with Minimal Effort

How to Look Polished