I'm 30-Something and This Is How I Shop H&M

Emma Thatcher's dos and don'ts for the high-street retailer.

With all the talk of fast fashion and the damage it’s doing to the environment (not to mention our bank balances), I thought I’d do a bit of research on the best ways to shop H&M. Even though it’s a store offering trend-led, affordable fashion, we don’t have to treat it as throwaway. All of your shopping—no matter how high- or low-end—should still be considered, and you can get some great pieces at H&M that will stand the test of time.

I went to H&M to try a heap of new-season pieces on (plus I’m sharing a few of my favourite-ever H&M purchases below) to give you the lowdown on what’s worth investing in right now. Some of the items are yet to drop online and in stores (and we’ll update you ASAP on those), but for now, here’s my guide on how to find these killer items, along with some alternatives. Keep reading to see how to gain maximum leverage the next time you shop at the Scandi superstore…

Check the new-in section regularly, change the “Sort By” tab to “Newest” (rather than recommended) and you’ll be sure not to miss a hit. My particular chosen LBD isn’t available quite yet, but there’s a seriously good sleeveless version below. It’s the kind of piece you can pull out party season after party season and style up differently.
Following H&M on social media is another good way of not missing something. The retailer adds pieces daily and sell out quickly. I bought this bow blouse a while back, but there are some very chic-looking new iterations that have just landed.
H&M nails the trends, and there’s no other more significant trend this A/W than leopard print, which it's got covered. From a midi dress to a faux-fur coat to pyjamas, if you’re looking for animal patterns, go there ASAP. My pictured jacket isn’t in stores at the moment, but my other top option is below…
If you like it, don’t hesitate to buy it. The best pieces do sell out fast. I will forever kick myself for not checking out on a checked coat a few years ago and missing the boat. I’ve since bought a similar version, but the horror has stayed with me ever since. (Me, dramatic?)
H&M listened when so many shoppers recently made it clear that the retailer’s sizing was way off, and it has completely changed its sizing structure. Sizing needs to be reliable, as few things are more frustrating than finding and buying the perfect piece only to discover it doesn’t fit (and then seeing that it’s sold out).
H&M takes sustainability seriously. Along with other projects (like the Conscious collection), H&M stores have garment collection boxes where you can hand in clothes/textiles from any brand and receive a voucher to spend in store. The unwanted goods can then be re-worn, reused or recycled.
I prefer the more “designed” denim at H&M, as the simpler pieces (like really basic skinny jeans, for example) don’t feel as right for my wardrobe these days now that I’m a bit older. I’d rather invest in a slightly more expensive pair like these flares that go the distance and fit really well.
Buy a coat from H&M this winter. I have four now from over the years. A check coat, a black puffer coat that I was desperate for, a faux-fur coat and recently, I picked up a parka that is not yet online but will be my winter saviour. It’s super cosy, stylish and practical for a great price. To me, you can’t beat H&M on the high street for coats.
H&M often ends up offering certain previous styles in numerous colours. I bought the cream version of this blouse last spring, and I still love it. It’s a classic piece that won’t date, and now it comes in three other hues.
If you’ve bought something recently from H&M, chances are you’ll find it on Instagram under the #HMxME. You can always use its page to check out some different ideas on how to style your piece for maximum wear. Similarly, I use Pinterest for this. Say I was to buy a new-in leopard print dress. I’d type “leopard-print street style” into Pinterest and then find some killer outfit inspiration. My exact jacket isn’t available, but I’d always recommend investing in a leather biker jacket, as it’s a regular part of my style uniform.
With so many pieces, H&M can often be hard to navigate, but once you’ve broken the pieces down into the various concepts it becomes slightly easier to find what you’re looking for. There is something to cover all your wardrobe needs in H&M, but its Trend section is always my first port of call.
Good cashmere on the high street is something I’m endlessly searching for, and I love the fit of H&M’s offerings this season.
So good.
My new way to do jeans and a tee.
H&M is a great source for blazers.
This looks much more expensive than it is. I’ll be wearing this with a leopard-print skirt.
My favourite blouse in a new colourway.
This is everything I look for in a skirt. It’ll be getting worn to death in the run-up to Christmas.
Obsessed with this colour. See more of A Style Album’s fashion adventures over on @astylealbum.

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