Style guides. Shopping deals. Street Style blogs. Designers. Clothing retailers. Guess what? There’s an app for that! The only trouble is that most of the apps are primarily for women shoppers, so rather than having you sift through hundreds of apps, I’ve done the homework for you! Check out, these 8 FREE apps that can help the average guy make better style choices.
#1 STYLE.com app
This is by far my most popular fashion and style tool resource. This app is great to keep up on trends and designer collections. You can search specific men’s collections from Milan to New York. Style.com provides slide shows of the collections with commentary on each collection. This app is the next best thing to sitting front row under the tents.
How is it going to be useful for a regular guy? Well, tt is a good resource to visually assist in defining an individual style. It’s like having a palm full of styled mannequins. If you see a look that you really like, you can take the picture(s) to an appropriate store to achieve the desired look. Just remember that the men in the pictures are professional models, so the looks might need to be adjusted to your specific body characteristics. Guys don’t be afraid to ask for help when shopping. Just make sure the advice is coming from a reputable member of the sales staff.
#2 GQ Style Guide app
The GQ Style Guide app is a great extension of GQ magazine. If you don’t subscribe to men’s magazines, go ahead and do that now too. The style guide highlights GQ editor’s pics, to assist in purchasing fashion pieces for you closet. It also gives advice on style and grooming for men. The Editor’s pick is the feature that I personally turn to the most when I’m researching what editors are selecting for the season’s “must haves”. I don’t always agree, but it is good when working with diverse styling projects.
The “How to dress” section of the app is also very helpful. It showcases garments and tips for significant social events that most guys will attend. It is an easy go-to when shopping in a hurry.
#3 Street Style blogs
Technically my number three choice is not an app per se, but style blogs are a great style resources. Some phones offer the option of adding websites to your home screen. (I am coming from an iphone background so adjust accordingly) Adding your favorite street style blogs to your home screen is like creating your own app. A street style blog is often filled with pictures of people wearing their own style on the street. It is great to use as a resource to identify how other people are interpreting trends and styles for the season.
I have two street style blogs that always have solid content. The first choice is The Sartorialist . The Sartorialist is probably one of the most famous street style blogs. The site tends to be a little more sophisticated in fashion choices. The Sartorialist highlights a pretty even mix of men’s and women’s street style from around the world. My other choice is Street Peeper. Street Peeper is a little more directed to the young urban street crowd. The bonus aspect of Street Peeper is the ability to select world wide city destinations to view. Both resources are great to identify how others are expressing fashion trends in everyday life.
#4 Store or Brand specific apps
Many stores and brands/designers are jumping on board with creating apps for their customers. It is a great way to consistently give customers connection to the store or brand. These apps typically let customers know when stores or designers are releasing new merchandise. The bonus to most brands having apps is the use of special promotions that are offered.
Express has an app that offers multimedia ads, editorials, fashion videos, and the ability to shop from within the app. When you shake your phone an “Express Perk” pops up on the screen. Instantly you have a coupon to use in store. This isn’t the only company using the app to offer special benefits to it’s customers. H&M rolled out an app that offers style ideas for men, women, and children. The app also has a mystery perk when the phone is shaken. The benefit of the H&M app is the ability to save specific overlapping promotions. I recommend going to your favorite store’s website to see if they have an app for download.
#5 Twitter app
If you are not on twitter yet go ahead and join. It is a great way to at connect to and support local designers, stylists and retailers in Indianapolis. You can also connect with your favorite designer or fashion event too. The great thing about twitter is the ability to share content quickly and interact with people of the same interest. I downloaded and have used the Echofon app since I have been on twitter and it is my favorite.
Why do guys need to be on twitter? It is a great way to find out what local people from Indianapolis are doing. Some citizens might be surprised to learn about the growing fashion culture in Indianapolis. So to kick you off I am recommending that you follow @Indianafashion. @Indianafashion is the official twitter account for the Indianapolis Fashion Collective. It is a great way to get diverse fashion information in Indianapolis. Feel free to also follow me @_jeremiah_ for continuing the fashion conversation. It is a great way to get a heads up on my regular Men’s fashion and style post. I also share events and articles related to men’s fashion.
#6 Foursquare app
You might be wondering why I selected the Foursquare app for stylish men. It really comes down to one specific benefit of the social site. More and more retail places are offering special promotions when you check-into their business. If you haven’t heard of Foursquare, check out their site for a detailed description. It pretty much works like a Facebook check-in.
When you walk into a store, you pull out your smartphone and open the Foursquare app. You then choose to check-in at the store. If the store participates, a coupon/message will pop-up on your screen offering a special promotion to be used that day. I imagine an increased number of retailers participating as competition for customers increase. FYI: This app is also useful for dining out.
#7 Gilt app
I was introduced to Gilt a few years ago. Gilt is an app that offers special discounts on designer items for a specific amount of time. The Gilt app offers products for all aspects of life, and nicely organized by topic.
The great thing about this app is the discount on designer items. You might find a specialty guys watch for 60% off. Since the Gilt app is an online store, it operates on a first come, first served principle. I personally find myself checking the app for product more than actually making a purchase. If you’re consistent with this, I promise that you will find some good statement pieces at a great discount.
#8 Ebay Fashion app
Like most good pieces for men, you have to find them online. With fall collections highlighting retro styles for men, ebay fashion is a great resource for vintage finds. To use the app I would recommend having a knowledge of how ebay works. The bonus of shopping ebay is the ability to find one of a kind statement pieces not available in your area. The added benefit is the chance of getting a great purchase at a great price.
The one thing that really stood out in this app was the “closet” feature. Guys as you are shopping you can select garments to be saved to your closet. Once you are done searching for items, you can return to your closet and create an outfit with your saved searches. This might sound a little too complicated, but if you’re working with a limited budget and want to make sure that you put together an outfit that really works, this is a great tool to do so. Think “head to toe”!
If the idea of using the app this way gives you a headache, you can always ask a fashion savvy lady friend to help you out! 🙂
So there you have it! 8 great, free apps that can help you shop smarter and cheaper and look more put together and stylish. Have at it and let me know if you have any favorites that I did not include here.