This summer’s funky fashion is coming in full throttle, with several staples that are key if you want to belong to this season’s latest trends. Chunky sneakers, conch bracelets, cat-eye sunglasses and many other peculiar accessories are here to stay. However, many of these must-haves are designed by really expensive brands, therefore almost impossible to actually purchase. But have no fear, here are 10 affordable fashion staples that look as good as the high-end version.
1. Chunky Sneakers
At the beginning, it was practically unimaginable that we would ever hop on the chunky grandpa sneaker trend. They seemed too big and not aesthetic at all, but oh how things have changed. Now, all we want are those beautiful Balenciaga sneakers that every celebrity has, especially the new ones that come in beautiful neon and pastel tones. But, if you can’t hop on the designer train, Skechers offers amazing designs, known as the D’Lites 3 Zenway and the D’Lites 3.0 Ocean Cloud, which are as equally chunky and funky but worth a ton less, starting at $75. Adidas has also come up with a more sophisticated version, however it’s a bit pricier than Skechers but totally worth it: they’re comfy, durable and stylish. The Adidas Falcon Low-Top Dad Sneakers start at $100 and range in colors and fabrics, and can be found anywhere. Both of these sneaker brands offer plain white, emulating the high-end sneakers you see at Balenciaga, Stella McCartney and Louis Vuitton, but they also offer colorful versions that are perfect for summer and double as the must-have affordable fashion staple.
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2. Cat-eye Sunglasses
Feminine and classy, cat-eye sunglasses are this summer’s IT accessory. What’s not to brag? Their elongated shape fits and flatters everyone. Once again, there’s no need to head over to Fendi or Chanel and splurge your entire savings, because brands like RayBan, Le Specs and Quay have our backs. Quay offers cute cat-eye sunglasses for $30, Le Specs for $100 and RayBan starts at $160. You won’t have designer fame, but they’ll look exactly the same! That’s why we’re sure these are your new favorite affordable fashion staple.
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3. Conch Shell Bracelets
It might seem a bit weird that a trend we used to buy at cheap stores by the beachside in the 90’s is not only back, but back in full swing. These shell bracelets are everywhere, and can be certainly penned as the new must-have affordable staple. Very posh jewelry brands like Isabel Marant have taken over the shell trend, making these cute pieces practically unattainable. But, if you still want to brave it up and channel your inner Moana, see the line where the sky meets the sea? That’s where brands like Shashi, Lulus, Baublebar and Free People come to the rescue by offering prices like $13, $30, $40 and $50. The truth is, you wouldn’t want to spend quite a lot on a trend that will probably and unfortunately die before next season. How many summers can we wear shells until they become slightly tacky again? For now, we want them on our wrists for sure, so hurry up before these affordable versions sell out.
4. The Bucket Hat
If there’s one staple that needs to be in your wardrobe ASAP, but is totally overrated in price, it’s definitely the quirky and beloved Bucket Hat. Just a mere few summers ago, if you were even seen wearing a bucket hat the beach, not to mention out in the street, you were probably given weird stares and looked like a total middle school nerd. Now, it’s all about rocking that Bucket Hat to the core. In fact, you’re actually an outcast if you don’t have one. So go ahead and give a chance to these affordable fashion staple options that are as cute as the high-end brands. Bucket Hats were unfortunately picked up a few seasons ago by coveted brands like Prada, Versace, Gucci and Acne Studios, and therefore sold at prices starting no lower than $350, which is crazy. It’s just a bucket hat! So, precisely because it is just a Bucket Hat, you can get your affordable beach buddy at Free People, Urban Outfitters and ASOS for no more than 2o lovely bucks!
Tie Dye has a similar story as our Bucket Hat. Hated, tacky and forgotten a few years ago, now it’s roaring. It’s one of those staples that you probably neglected because of how much you wore it when you were a child, and now you’re begging to find it deep within your 90’s boxed clothes. Now, high-end brands like ALICE + OLIVIA, All Saints, and Zimmerman are claiming territory and charging more than $200 for something you used to get (and still can) at a cheesy beach store. In reality all you need from tie-dye is a cheap version that won’t go to waste when the trend ends and heads to the bottom of a dusty 90’s trunk again. If you’re too lazy to tie-dye your own clothes, just pay a quick visit to Junk Food Co., Urban Outfitters and Forever 21, and you’ll be ready to hit the beach or the city with your new all-time favorite affordable fashion staple.
Yes slides are still a thing. Yes, they’re still overpriced. When will the love-hate relationship end? Slides are fantastic because they glamorize any outfit while feeling comfortable and fresh, no matter the designer or the style. You might feel like a model or one of those famous influencers if you get your hands on a pair of Gucci, Dior or Louis Vuitton slides. But that’s not the case for all of us. Either way, comfy, fashionable and accessible slides do exist, such as Nike, Steve Madden and Adidas, which start at a mere price of $20 and don’t go past $40. The white Gucci slides with silver apliqués? Yeah no, you’re not gonna even want to wear them cause the slightest stain will give you a heart attack.
7. Beaded Bag
Um, when did this one catch on, and when was it really a thing? We’re not exactly sure, but it’s so Lizzie McGuire that we’re ready to jump on the trend a fast as we can. You don’t have to be on a Paris runway in order to afford such a staple, instead you can head over to Zara, TopShop and SkinnyDip London to get yourself that cute bag you actually already had during high school’s most awkward times. Fancy designers like Loeffler Randall and Susan Alexandra have to starting prices of around $300, but you can certainly get the same style for just $20 or $40!
8. Big Shield Sunglasses
You know those big massive sunglasses Kim Kardashian has been rocking lately? Well, yeah the trend has officially landed and it seems it’s here to stay. Worn at elite runway shows, movie premiers and magazines, these shield sunglasses are another staple birthed by fancy brands like Balenciaga, Acne Studios and Prada with prices that won’t go under $300. But, if you feel like cooling this summer off with a trend that has all the 80’s ski-vibes, it’s time to head over to Quay ($60), Rad + Refined ($42) and Free People ($19.95) to grab your next winter (or summer?) staple. Fun fact: if you’re feeling adventurous you can actually give a shot at Kim Kardashian’s own shield sunglasses line that she launched in collaboration with Carolina Lemke. They’re pretty affordable and you’ll definitely feel like a reality star.
9. High-Rise Utility Pants
No, Kim Possible didn’t bring utility pants back! Or did she? The trend calls for a very feminine look nicely unbalanced by wearing oversized cargo pants that kinda don’t match everything else. The key is contrast, so that’s why there’s many options when it comes to buying a cargo/utility pant. You can either go the fancy way and copy Hailey Bieber by buying at brands like RE/DONE, Cinqt a Sept and I.AM.GIA, or you could save a few bucks by getting yours a Forever 21, Urban Outfitters and ASOS, for $30, $69 and $40 respectively.
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10. Bamboo Purse
The Bamboo purse has been going around for quite a while. It tried last summer, but it didn’t quite catch. However, these cute bamboo purses are all we’re seeing on Instagram these days. Expensive brands like Cult Gaia and Madewell have the lead with final prices of around $200. But if all you wanna do with the bamboo purse is take a few good photos or go to brunch on Sunday, then just get an affordable version that is as good as the original, if not better. MANGO, Amazon and most probably your local flea market usually offer the same exact bag for just $20. That’s a bamboo bag of $20 against an untouchable designer version that shines high up in the $400.