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Clothes shopping in brick and motar stores can be annoying in the holiday season or seasons of big sales. This is especially true, when you have a shopping list of clothes you want to replace or buy as wardrobe updates. In times of great risk to catch a disease you want to spend as short a time as possible at the mall. The reasons why you go there instead of buying online may reach from better fit to time saving and service. However, these aspects require to create a smart shopping outfit that is comfortable, practicable, stylish and easy to get out and back in to try on potential wardrobe updates. Read what to wear for clothes shopping.


  1. What to Wear When Clothes Shopping during the Holiday Season
  2. Best Footwear for Shopping
  3. Avoid Wearing a Heavy, Long Coat
  4. Pay Attention to the Technical Performance of Clothes
  5. Only Go for the Needed Accessories
  6. Create a Stylish Outfit and Outerwear outfit
  7. What I Wore Shopping
  8. Example Look for Skirt Shopping
  9. More Looks to Run Errands
  10. What to Wear for Clothes Shopping in a Nutshell
  11. Ageless Style Party



Disclosure: This post has affiliate links.


What to Wear When Clothes Shopping during the Holiday Season

While some of the shopping can be done online like ordering special holiday goodies, gift cards, books, many gifts require hitting the mall. Especially, when your loved ones send you a Santa wish list with what item the kids want from which store. When you are to be on your feet all day running from one shop after the next to work down the list, chic comfy European-style walking shoes are a Must-have.


Best Footwear for Shopping

When there is snow on the ground make sure they are high enough so the snow does not get into your shoes when you step out of the car in an unplowed parking lot. Also make sure that they have a non-slip sole when there is snow and/or ice. When temperatures are around the freezing point, the shoes should be water repellent. At below freezing temperatures wear socks with flannel on the inside as extra insulation. A sheepskin insole is also a great insulation when the sidewalks are cold.

Always keep the weather in mind too. More on dressing for wet cold weather.

style over 40 woman in denim on denim
Back view of fall shopping outfit with Loft flare jeans, Great Northwest denim shirt, statement belt, and Musse & Cloud sandals


In the OOTD, I switched my fall sandals to ducks as it started to snow. Note that I can’t walk comfortably in flats. Thus, I go for a comfy heel height.

Tip: Go for a comfortable shoe when going to the mall.



Avoid Wearing a Heavy, Long Coat

You will have to schlep a lot of stuff from the stores to your car. Even when you bring ever bag to the car immediately, the haul can be long especially when the bag is heavy. Thus, you want a coat that is not too heavy on your shoulders as otherwise your back and shoulders will hurt in no time. A short coat with a hem at the hip or upper tights is best.

Tip: A short coat is best when you hit the mall. Your back will thank you for not wearing a long heavy coat.


woman showing What to Wear for Clothes Shopping at the mall in winter
Marc Andrew motorcycle shearling jacket, Great Northwest denim shirt, Loft flare jeans, ducks, statement belt, neckerchief, and 3.1 Philip Lim tote



Pay Attention to the Technical Performance of Clothes

Since you may transpire when carrying heavy bags you want to wear a sweater that dries fast. You outerwear should be semi-permeable meaning that it lets body moisture out, but does not let moisture in from the outside. When it is windy a beanie or pompom hat are great options to stay warm and protect your hair from being damaged by permanent wind caused friction and being tangled up.

Walking shoes rarely look great with a skirt or a dress. Therefore, go for jeans or pants. When you expect a lot of traffic at the mall, denim is better than wool pants as denim is less sensitive.


#midlifestyle woman shopping in a shearling motorcycle jacket and flared jeans
Back view of shopping outerwear with Marc Aurel motorcycle shearling jacket, ducks, and 3.1 Phillip Lim tote



Only Go for the Needed Accessories

Now that you have identified the key items of the outfit search your closet for suitable pieces that color coordinate and create a casual outfit. Go light on the accessories and restrict them to a short necklace to avoid that it gets ripped when you are browsing shelves and racks where it may get caught. For the same reason steer away from bangles and bracelets. Pearl, gold or diamond studs are always appropriate. You won’t need a watch as you can check your time on your phone.

At temperatures below the freezing point, gloves are a Must-have when you have to carry shopping bags. They also protect you a bit from the handles carving into your flesh.

When shopping in winter don't forget the gloves - literally. Always put them into your purse the moment you enter the mall. Click To Tweet


#fashionover50 woman in denim-on-denim casual look suitable for buying new jeans
Great Northwest denim shirt, Loft flared jeans, neckerchief, statement belt (all own), Musse & Cloud sandals c/o Coolway, and wooden sports watch c/o Jord



Go for a crossbody bag so you have your hands free to browse and compare items, hold your list, cross things off the list, etc.


Create a Stylish Outfit and Outerwear Outfit

Make sure that you also style your outerwear. Why should both outfits be stylish? Well, you may be tired and hungry and/or run into an old friend and go to the food court and take your coat off. Furthermore, salespersons treat you better when you look stylish.



Save Time by Dressing for Your Shopping Plan

If the goal is to go beyond browsing, but updating the wardrobe with a trend or replacement, it is important to have an outfit that can be quickly removed to try the pieces out. Fitting rooms are always a nightmare. In Germany, they are typically not larger than a toilet stall. Here in the US, they are typically three times that size, but all the hooks on the walls are full of the last gal’s rejects and/or misfitting clothes. Avoid to look at size tags. Instead learn to use a measure tape for finding your size. It save you time in the fitting room.


mature woman in winter outwear
LeatherCoatsEtc  pea-coat with pom-pom hat, Loft jeans, LeatherCoatsEtc gloves, and booties for a warm casual outerwear when shopping in winter



What I Wore Shopping

The outfit shown in this post would be suitable for buying new winter pants or jeans. It would be too complicated with the layering on top (turtleneck sweater plus leather jacket) when you were looking for tops. Peeling off two items is too much. The booties have a zipper, i.e. are easy to get on and off. They have my typical heel height. Since I do my sport on heels – I am a ballroom dancer – running around the mall in these booties is no problem.


Stylist tip: When shopping for tops, don’t layer your tops for your trip to the mall.


#fashionover50 mature style blogger in casual polished weekend look suitable for clothes shopping at the mall
GNW cashmere turtleneck sweater with Loft boot-cut jeans, Hermes collier de chien bangle, booties, and Akoya pearl necklace c/o The Pearl Source. This shopping look has no belt to be able to get fast in and out of the jeans when trying on bottoms.


Stylist tip: Don’t wear a belt when shopping for pants or jeans.

Lucky you, when you live in a climate where the motorcycle jacket shown in this post would be enough to stay warm. Shopping in winter for spring or summer is always a hassle in cold climate regions because of the bulky coats. I wish they had lockers at the mall to put the coat in while shopping. Anyhow. Better having to deal with the bulky coat than having to shop in a hurry because of feeling cold 😉 . Wearing an original style pea-coat allows to move fast. To keep the head warm, opt for a beanie or pom-pom hat. It can stay on in the fitting room 🙂 .


Example Look for Skirt Shopping

To illustrate the idea take a look at the following three photos. It’s perfect when a work straight or pencil skirt is on your list. A black twinset works with everything. The booties are easy to pull off. Boots could distract from what you see in the mirror or better selfie.


shopping outfit with tweed skirt and cardigan
Side look of outfit for skirt shopping


influencer in skirt, cardigan and booties
Back view of above look
stylist in twinset, skirt and tights with booties
Outfit details: Halogen tweed skirt with GNW Luxe sweater, Isaac Mizrahi cardigan, GNW tights, Harley Davidson booties, own Baroque pearl necklace, and Akoya pearl necklace c/o The Pearl Source



More Looks to Run Errands

Here are further outfit inspirations to try when you are going to the mall.

Casual polished weekend look suitable for browsing at the mall
Cashmere turtleneck sweater with Loft boot-cut jeans, statement belt, booties, and Akoya pearl necklace c/o The Pearl Source


older woman in casual outfitShopping Look with Russian scarf, ducks, GNW Luxe sweater, London Jeans and statement belt


style blogger in stylish outerwear
Marc Andrews jacket, London boyfriend jeans, ducks, gloves, Russian scarf and Philip Lim 3.1 tote



What to Wear for Clothes Shopping in a Nutshell

Here are seven tips what to wear to make your shopping trip a fun and successful one.

  1. Before you hit the stores think about what you are looking for and dress accordingly. For instance, when you shop for a skirt, pants or a top wearing a dress is not helpful. You can’t assess how the new pants/skirt looks with a typical top of your wardrobe or the top looks like when worn with your typical bottoms. When shopping for pants keep in mind the heel height of the shoes that you plan to wear with them. Have them in your shopping bag if they are too high for the shopping trip. Most important, stick to browsing for the planned item. Never buy a statement piece when you need a workhorse.
  2. Speaking of shoes – wear comfy well broken-in shoes. You don’t want blisters on your blisters at the end of the day. The shoes should also be easy to slip on and off. Recall you hate to wait for ever in line to get into the fitting room. Lacing up boots or shoes just takes too much time. The next gal is already waiting!
#over50fashion mature woman in casual clothes for shopping
Graham and Spencer winter white leather motorcycle jacket over cashmere turtleneck sweater, Loft boot-cut jeans with booties, and Akoya pearl necklace c/o The Pearl Source


  1. Don’t wear anything tight as dressing rooms are small. This includes trying out pieces that are too small. Ignore the size tags; they are just for broad orientation. Instead, go by fit not size. Check the measures of the piece. Only try on items that are your measures plus about and inch for ease. And recall never to buy just because a size tag claims to be your size. Chances are high that you will have to return the clothes.. To save time always try the piece on that you intend to buy.
  2. When you go to a flea market, make sure that you wear items under which or over which you can try things on. For instance, a wide skirt with a T-shirt allows you to try on pants underneath the skirt, and shirts, jackets, or sweaters over the T-shirt.
  3. Only wear a dress when you are shopping for a jacket to go with that dress or when you are shopping for another dress.
  4. Have your cell phone as your most important accessory on that day. Take photos with your cell phone as mirrors lie! Ask a friend or sales person to take photos from the back and side. Who on Earth would only see you from the front?
  5. And now just a shopping tip: Also try out typical movements that you will do in the new clothes. When I buy a new dress for Argentine tango dancing, I make typical steps outside. When people start starring I just explain why I do it and they understand. Learn how to recognize too tight clothes. When, for instance, you want to buy a pencil skirt for work, sit down. If it rides up, it will be too tight.
#fashionover40 leather motorcycle jacket
Zoom-in on Graham and Spencer winter white leather motorcycle jacket over green cashmere turtleneck sweater (all own) with Akoya pearl necklace c/o The Pearl Source


Stylist tip: When trying out clothes, also check the fit how it behaves when you do typical movements.


Have you started your looking for the holiday gifts? When you need some gift inspirations check out my Holiday Gift Guide. Did you know there is a coupon and promo codes page? What do you wear when you go clothes shopping to update your wardrobe?


Ageless Style Linkup

Now to the Ageless Style Linkup. Let’s see your ageless style for doing the holiday shopping.

Please follow your hostesses, visit some of the linked up blogs and spread the word about the party for more Ageless style inspirations. Please follow us on at least one of our platforms each.

Ana ~ Mrs. American Made

Daenel ~ Living outside the stacks blog

Diane ~ Fashion on the 4th floor blog

Jennie ~ A Pocketful of Polka Dots

Shelly ~ The Queen in Between instagram

Tania ~ 50 Is Not Old blog

Yvonne ~ Funky Forty blog


Get the inspiration, support, motivation, and tips to look to your best in life. Get a subscription to High Latitude Style. Deep inside you know when I can do it you can do it too.

Photos: G. Kramm

© 2013-2022 Nicole Mölders | All rights reserved

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