Let’s face it, these days snagging an entry-level job that pays the big bucks is about as likely as winning the lottery. So when fashion accidents happen—you know, like that unfortunate red wine stain on your new silk dress—the costs can really start to add up, leaving you feeling slightly panicked. These broke girl fashion fixes may not save you a ton of cash, but we figured every penny counts, right!?
Use dishwashing soap to remove stains
A lot of people aren’t aware of this, but many fashion emergencies can actually be fixed quickly (and cheaply) with household products and other items you can find around the home, says certified image consultant and personal stylist, Lindsay Weiner. “In the case of a stain, attack the underside of the spot with dishwashing soap. It will break up any foods and oils and help remove the mark.” This technique comes in handy especially when you’re in a hurry and don’t have time to toss those pants or that top in the wash.
Eliminate static with a wire hanger
Sick of your clothes constantly clinging to you? Weiner recommends gliding the long side of a wire hanger down your garment to get rid of any static electricity. A dryer sheet will also do the trick, she notes, as both will neutralize and remove static.
Take blood out of whites with ice
Yes, seriously…it works! “If you happen to get blood on any of your white garments, grab a piece of ice and put it directly on the stain,” suggests sustainable fashion designer Auralis Herrero. It’ll take the spot right out.
Steam your garments in the shower
Don’t have an iron? No problem! Turn your shower on the hottest setting, and shut the door. Then hang your dress (or shirt or whatever) from the shower rod away from the water, and steam it for about 20 minutes or less depending on the fabric, says Herrero. “It takes time, but it works!”
Hand wash silks
According to Herrero, the majority of silks are actually hand-washable. “Many manufacturers label garments ‘Dry Clean Only’ when they don’t do wash tests,” she explains. So you can save some money simply by sticking them in a tub filled with cool to lukewarm water. Then gently rub/wash your silks with a mild soap (like Woolite), and let them soak for a few minutes before hanging them inside to dry away from the sun. Make sure you don’t wring them out, but instead wrap them up in a towel and squeeze to get rid of any excess moisture. You can also add a few tablespoons of white vinegar to the water to help protect against color fade.
Get rid of lint with tape
Psh, who needs a lint roller when you have tape! Lindsay Weiner recommends wrapping your hand with tape so that the sticky side is facing out. “Then pat your garment until all the lint is gone,” she says. It’s easy peasy.
Fix scuffed shoes with nail polish
Extend the life of your favorite kicks by using nail polish in the same color as your shoes to cover up any nicks or scratches, advises Chicago Red PR Beauty & Fashion Rep Rachel Cooper. Just don’t forget to test the color on your nail first to be certain it’s actually a match!