The Chic List: The 10 rules I live and dress by

Fashion columnist and influencer Joanne Hegarty on her top fashion lessons.

Getting older is a privilege we can never take for granted. And I much prefer being the age I am now than in my 20s, wobbling down the path of self-discovery. There’s lots of wisdom – about life in general and style in particular – that comes with the passing of time, and because I love a good list I decided to write my lessons down. Let me know what yours are.


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  1. Know yourself. This is the best advice I’ve heard recently. When you do, you tend not to take yourself too seriously – and your relationships with other people become more straightforward.
  2. Don’t queue! These days I will never wait outside a store or a restaurant for the privilege of giving them my hard-earned cash. Our time is too precious.
  3. Only buy what you love. When shopping for something new, ask yourself whether you really like it. If the answer’s lukewarm, walk away.
  4. If you’re uncertain, go in-store, try it on, do a few twirls then leave. If it’s still on your mind a week or two later, invest!
  5. Nail your personal style. One simple task can help you – start a Pinterest board and pin looks that catch your eye. Your subconscious does all the work, and very soon a pattern of your likes and dislikes will emerge. Work with these images the next time you shop.
  6. Push your fashion boundaries. Just as it’s good to keep your mind open to new friendships, relationships and experiences, the same goes for your clothes. I love a curated wardrobe but you need a few style surprises tucked in there too.
  7. Treat others as you want to be treated. I have no time for mean-spirited people and when I feel I’m in the same sphere as one, I make a quick exit. Knowing when to pick your battles is important. Sometimes saying nothing is best. Small talk is a necessity but I struggle with too much of it. I start glazing over and have to adjust my face in the loo.
  8. Bag a pair of flats. I love amazing heels, but the way to make them last is to avoid walking far in them. From car to bar is a great rule. So is flats in the bag for walking.
  9. Jewellery is a great form of self-expression. The right pieces will stay with you for a lifetime.
  10. Approach the small details with great enthusiasm. From the lipstick you wear to the flowers you buy, these little things help to make life richer. Relish them.

The minimalist way to finish off an outfit. Bracelet, £250, bymalenebirger.com

Add some zing. Sandals, £49.99, mango.com

The cream of the crops. Trousers, £79, arket.com

This style is timeless. Skirt, £440, annamasonlondon.co.uk

A twist on the striped classic. Cardigan, £59, cosstores.com

Great paired with tailored pieces. Shirt, £160, Anine Bing, net-a-porter.com

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