5 Thrifting Tips for Every Student on a Budget

Thrifting is the perfect way to shop for students who are on a budget. If you love the idea of thrifting but aren’t sure how to do it successfully, you are not alone. Learn how you can get the most out of your thrifting trips and money with some of these helpful tips. I always keep these things in mind when I am shopping.

1—Go thrifting with an open mind

After years of thrifting, I have found that entering the store without expectations will yield the best results. Have fun and embrace the eclectic collection of clothes, shoes, and accessories waiting to be found. Thrift stores tend to have merchandise that changes quite often, so you never know what you might find on any given day.

2—Deals are everywhere

Beyond offering already deeply discounted merchandise, many thrift shops will have a special deal for each day of the week. Keep an eye out for these! Try to go on student discount days or attend early bird specials to save even more. Others may have colored tags that correlate to markdowns and rotate by day.

3—Thrifty is trendy

Thrift stores house many hidden gems. A second-hand, silk, lingerie top could actually become a staple in your wardrobe. Some current trends that I have found at my local thrift stores include embroidered tops, velvet tanks, mom jeans, and more! At this point, I would say the majority of my closet is thrifted. So, it is definitely possible to accumulate classic pieces over time!

PHOTO: Lex Kelly

4—Embrace all sizes and labels

Clothing sizes are not universal, so the thrift store is no different. But, this is actually positive news! A top that you would typically not consider because it may be too big, could turn out to be an adorable oversize shirt with endless styling possibilities. It is also helpful if you don’t focus on labels when thrifting. Sometimes you can find high-end clothes. Other trips, you may not spot any, but don’t let that keep you from exploring new (and old) brands that you may not have heard of before.


Shopping second-hand is great for the environment. Since the retail industry has been largely wasteful with the rise of fast fashion, thrifting is a great way to make a positive impact on the fashion industry and environment. You can take it a step further and try donating your own used clothes. Each time I go thrifting, I try to donate the same number of items that I purchased. It is a nice rule to make for yourself that will keep your closet decluttered and make a difference in the world. Imagining others up-cycling your own pieces is so exciting and inspiring, too!

Hopefully, you are able to take these tips to your nearest thrift store and discover unique new pieces for your wardrobe. Tag @Cfashionista on social media so we can see your thrifted purchases! Don’t forget to comment below your favorite part of thrifting as well!

Additional photos by Lex Kelly and Maddy Haller.

Get that Dewy Summer Glow

When summer rolls around, a glowing fresh face is always my go-to for an everyday makeup look. This look is incredibly versatile as it can be paired with any lip you desire and can easily be transitioned from day to night. The how-to below will provide multiple options for different levels of radiance with a range of products. Continue reading this tutorial to learn more about how to achieve a luminous face!


1—Face Base

I always prep my skin before applying makeup. It is especially important to keep your skin hydrated, so apply a moisturizer first (don’t forget to include SPF). After your moisturizer sinks into the skin, layer a primer on top. Your primer should be chosen based upon your skin type and could work to fill pores, eliminate oil, and more. For an extra boost of inner radiance, use a luminescent primer on the outer portions of the face.


Next comes foundation. There are so many dewy foundations on the market, especially affordable ones that can be found at the drug store. My favorite foundation has a more natural finish, but many brands have luminous ones that work so well for summer shine. Simply apply your foundation with a brush, sponge, or even your fingers, all over your face and blend until an even complexion is achieved.

After foundation, apply a concealer to the under eye, middle of the forehead, bridge of the nose, and chin. This creates a contrast between the center of the face and the outer areas, giving a natural highlight. If you have oily skin, you will definitely want to lightly set the concealer under your eyes with a powder in order to prevent creasing.

3—Contour and Highlight!  

For this look, I chose to go in with a cream contour rather than powder because creams blend to create a more natural, glowing effect. This should be applied and blended at the cheekbones, temples, and jawline.

Highlighters come in so many forms! Today, I used a liquid highlighter at the highest points of the cheeks, above the brow bone, the bridge of the nose, and the cupid’s bow. After blending, I topped this highlighter with a powder one in order to make it shine even brighter. This is totally optional, though. The liquid highlighter would add a more natural glow if you wanted to leave it on its own. Finish with a dewy setting spray to complete the look!

This face makeup can easily be finished off with a few coats of mascara and some lip gloss, or you can smoke out the eyes to make them pop against the rest of the face. Lip options are also endless! Here I opted for a neutral, glossy nude, but you could always go bold with a florescent orange or bright red. What is your staple lip color?

What is your summer go-to makeup look? Let us know in the comments below. Have fun glistening in the sun! Tag us @CFashionista

Hole in One

Summer fashion has a tendency to evoke gorgeous colors and lightweight fabrics, a comforting combination. Some of my favorite outfits for the season stray away from my more typical black, monochromatic ensembles that I feature in fall and winter. Seeing other Fashionistas strutting in color and unique silhouettes constantly inspires me to change up my wardrobe.

The Fashionista I highlight in this article represents the epitome of summer. On trend by sporting a cropped jumpsuit enhanced by an adorable pair of heeled sandals, this Fashionista is embracing the sun and truly glowing. The jumpsuit displays a seersucker-inspired striped fabric along with a delicate and relaxed bow at the waist. The lack of sleeves and cropped length are convenient benefits that keep the Fashionista cool on especially toasty days. Moreover, this jumpsuit also presents infinite opportunities for accessorizing. To heighten the look, one could add a silk scarf around the neck or ankle, a statement purse for a pop of color, or even a light jacket. Here, this beautiful Fashionista decided to keep her accessories simple and elegant with a couple of silver rings. For example, the bright fuchsia flower she holds definitely exemplifies how well a bold color statement can be done with the jumpsuit. The deep emerald ivy also showcases the outfit and could be used as styling inspiration for this piece as well.

After chatting about her day, I learned that she chose this ensemble especially for a local golf tournament she attended. I would say that her outfit was definitely a hole in one.

Where could you envision yourself wearing this look? Let us know in the comments below!


Since beginning college, Kent, Ohio has been my home away from home. After returning to Columbus, Ohio for the summer, however, I have once again been exposed me to the exciting fashion scene of the city. I explored the adorable little Old Worthington area on a Saturday afternoon just after the Farmer’s Market. In Old Worthington, brick is abundant and the streets are full of quaint restaurants and boutiques. There is an antique hotel that anchors the street corner and is full of character. It reflects many of the same colors that this Fashionista captures within her ensemble, too. The bustle from the Farmer’s Market fills brick sidewalks with sounds, smells, colors, and fashion (arguably the best part). I adore that this Fashionista’s outfit seems to represent what a Farmer’s Market encompasses, but through clothing.

Although this city is not new to me, I love sharing it to those unfamiliar and observing the various fashion that can be found. This Fashionista’s outfit reminds me of the warm colors found in Italy. Having not yet travelled there, I can only speak from photos. But, when I do finally get to see Florence, I can definitely envision myself styling an outfit inspired by this one. Layering two dresses is such an innovative and intriguing idea that this Fashionista chose. The floral dress provides a delightful contrast to the mustard sundress layered over top. Rain boots are perfected with the cutest detail of frilly socks that peek out above the shoes. Lastly, this Fashionista sports very chic, neutral glasses that complete the overall aesthetic of her look. For those without a need for prescription glasses, sunglasses with a similar beige rims would work as a perfect substitute. Hopefully this summery and stylish Fashionista inspires you as much as she did me!

Have a great summer!

STYLE ADVICE: Color in Theory

How did this Fashionisto attain such a timeless yet distinct look? The key components are from his color and texture choices. Color-blocking is always a stylish way to compose an outfit, as perfectly exemplified by this chic Fashionisto. He chose to primarily combine a deep red, black, and grey, with a contrasting white accent in his shoes. One suggestion to amplify your look is to add depth to the ensemble through the mixing of textures. The Fashionisto I photographed did this by layering a velvet blazer over his red polo and pairing with grey printed jeans. He elevated the look even further by accessorizing with an intriguing set of metal jewelry. The gold collar necklace and silver chunky rings are focal points, texturizing the outfit even more. Lastly, the bowling-inspired, color-blocked shoes tie all of the garments together in a very unique and fun way. The whole combination is inventive and visually intriguing.

You could achieve a similar effect by also choosing a monochromatic color scheme with a pop of color. If you wanted to take more risks with color, you could always take a brighter approach and use a triadic or complementary color combo. This may sound complicated to some, but it is actually so easy! Just take a color wheel and look for colors across from each other that form a triangle. All of a sudden you have a triadic palette to use for inspiration. Complementary colors are even simpler, you just look for ones that are directly opposite each other on the wheel. These are just a couple more tips that can make color blocking with clothing more fun and spontaneous! With spring well underway, and summer fast approaching, try taking some chances with bolder hues when mixing your colorful outfits. These months can be the best for being risky with loud hues.

Hopefully you are now feeling inspired to glance inside your closet and infuse a little bit of color theory into your next look! And, of course, don’t forget your accessories!

WHAT TO WEAR: Rock the (Not a) Fashion Show

Following NYFW, I am sure many have been feeling a little extra inspired by the new trends presented by our favorite designers. It is always thrilling to discover a new trend and style it with your own twist, so this article will feature an edgy Fashionista’s take on the fishnet frenzy. Originally popularized by Kendall Jenner, there are many different ways to flash your fishnets in an outfit. From fishnet socks, to layering underneath a slip dress, to peeping through slits, Fashionista/os are getting creative with this craze. This Fashionista decided to have them peak through her ripped jeans and flaunt the waistband just above her mid-rise jeans. She also chose to sport her look at Diablo Conglomerate’s “Not a Fashion Show” on March 3, 2017. Following the trends to the runway, she displays a perfect example of what to wear to the runway with an edge. Fashion shows are the optimal opportunity to display your sense of style because it is a highly experimental and innovative environment full of other clothing lovers.

The trendy Fashionista achieves her unique street vibe with the combination of casual and classy clothing. The fishnets are the focal point of the look and are fused with very relaxed torn jeans, a basic black tank, and Nikes. Layered on top is a textured, caramel colored, long-lined coat. Not to forget accessories, she added a split choker to complete the ensemble. The contrast evoked from her street-inspired pieces under the timeless coat is what truly sets the outfit apart while keeping it current.

Hopefully this look motivates all of you reading this article to chase a trend or attend a fashion show! Drawing creativity from others is so powerful in fashion, so get out there and try some new looks with your own personal approach.

ALL IN THE DETAILS: A Personal Touch

I hope everyone is surviving winter so far. In this bitter cold, it can be difficult to express your sense of style covered from head-to-toe underneath giant coats and hats and gloves. If you need any tips on how to stay chic for the season, you can always head on over to my last article to read some more about winter weather wardrobe tips. An easy way to elevate the looks that will keep you the warmest is to accessorize. Little details provide subtle touches that will heighten any outfit and jewelry can peek through the warmest earmuffs and mittens. For this post, I had the pleasure of photographing a beautiful fellow fashion-lover. With snow on the ground, she still managed to appear stylish without sacrificing warmth.

This gorgeous girl added lots of classic accessories that provided the perfect amount of detail for her casual outfit. For the basics, she is sporting a pair of ripped boyfriend jeans with a grey turtleneck sweater and a black bomber jacket. She went on to add a timeless watch and a few personal Alex and Ani bracelets that feature her love for traveling and her sorority. A few simple rings were sprinkled on her fingers as well. The accessories did not just stop at her wrist, though. She went on to complement her ears with a couple of pairs of elegant studs. Also, to protect her eyes from the sun’s reflection off of the blinding white snow, she wore a pair of black sunglasses with a sophisticated gold embellishment. Lastly, she laced a powder pink scarf over her neck, which is both fashionable and functional. Collectively, all of her jewelry and additional accessories worked seamlessly together for an everyday winter ensemble. Her simply refined yet trendy look is the perfect example of how to add unique details to any outfit.

Thank you to everyone who took time to read this article and I hope that you are inspired to do a little extra accessorizing this season!

STYLE GURU STYLE: Winter Wonderland Wardrobe

Following my first Style Guru Bio, I decided to continue to write about my own wardrobe and fashion taste. I mentioned in my bio that I tend to have a wide range of garments that I sport—from edgy ripped jeans and a bomber jacket to pencil skirts with a flowy blouse. This article focuses on the more sophisticated side of my closet. In the winter months, it can be difficult to remain warm and chic, especially here in Northeast Ohio. A key to remaining stylish while it’s cold is investing in a statement coat and a pair of trendy boots. Coupling these items with a basic sweater and jeans can elevate your look despite the frigid weather.

I accomplished this with the outfit featured today. Of course, it would not be an ensemble of mine without at least one thrifted garment. Here, the coat and boots—my winter essentials—are actually the items that I purchased from a thrift store in my hometown of Columbus, Ohio. The long lines of the coat emphasize the polished appearance of the outfit while the black booties add a slight edgy feel. Underneath the classic coat, I wore a thick, long-sleeve sweater from H&M and a pair of high waisted jeans from American Eagle. The pale, cream and peach toned sweater establishes a soft color palette that is continued in the blanket scarf that I wore (also from H&M). A soft, warm scarf is another perfect option to heighten your outfit functionally and fashionably. I also accessorized with a simple pair of long, rain drop earrings from Target. These add a subtle detail that also contributes to the classiness of the overall look. Lastly, the makeup that I chose was in the same color family as my clothing. I went with a shimmery, rose gold eyeshadow, no eyeliner, and a nude lip in order to keep the appearance light and fresh.

Thank you so much to all who read this article and I hope that you are able to stay warm and fierce as we progress through winter!

STYLE GURU BIO: Amelia Johnson

Hello Fashionista/os!

This is my first Style Guru Bio and I am ecstatic to be joining this team of creative bloggers and to introduce you all to my style. Some basics about me are that I am a freshman fashion merchandising major at Kent State University and I plan on minoring in fashion media as well as marketing. I am involved in Kent’s Fashion Student Organization (FSO), the makeup artists club on campus, in addition to the National Retail Federation Student Association (NRFSA). My top interests include thrifting (most of my clothing is thrifted), makeup (I am a freelance makeup artist), music (I am a concert fanatic), and dogs (unrelated—I just adore them). I love expressing my passions through fashion and writing for CollegeFashionista is the perfect opportunity to share my style with the world.

I figured it would be fitting for my first photos to reflect my music and thrifting obsessions. So, here I provided an example of an outfit that I would wear to a concert. I most often attend smaller, indie concerts for which I tend to wear casual clothing. For this particular ensemble, I paired a thin-strapped, printed boho dress over a black, lace bralette with an oversized cardigan and black tights. The dress and cardigan were both thrifted and the tights I picked up from Macy’s. Completing the look, I added my oxblood Dr. Martens for a subdued pop of color. To accessorize, I chose long, chain, fringe earrings that I purchased on clearance at Target. My makeup for the night featured a bronze halo eye and a vampy lip. This outfit is perfect for a winter outing because it is functional—including warm layers and comfortable shoes for standing—and yet it still makes a statement.

Lastly, I wanted to touch on the range of my personal style. Similar to the look showcased in this article, I do often wear edgy clothing with feminine characteristics. At the same time, however, I also enjoy wearing classic, polished attire. The theme of my apparel honestly depends upon the day and how I want to portray myself at the time. I believe that many can relate to this dynamic and it is an important part of developing a cohesive yet complex wardrobe. Finally, thank you so much to all who took the time to get to know me by reading this bio and I am excited to grow on this platform over the semester.