How to Dress During Mercury Retrograde, by an Editor Who Feels Your Pain

As long as the world keeps turning, there will continue to be stretches of time where we spend our lives feeling upside down and in a spin thanks to Mercury retrograde. And a few days ago another dalliance with this time-warped, life-warped bringer of chaos began. How did your first Mercury retrograde day start? Mine kicked off with a startled 5 a.m. wake-up call courtesy of Scotland Yard banging down my door (well, ringing the doorbell). The reason shall remain undisclosed (it’s actually pretty scary), but suffice it to say they were not looking for me. It destroyed my morning full of good intentions and kicked off this retrograde’s first day with the weirdest initiation I’ve experienced yet…

How to dress during Mercury in retrograde


Style du Monde

So when everything else hangs in the balance—technology going haywire, contracts and promises falling through, poor purchasing choices—how does a style-conscious girl keep her cool? Well, for all of this period’s obstacles, there are silver linings and many of them can be used to your sartorial advantage.

Scroll down to see how you can get through the next few weeks (you can breathe easy after December 22) without totally fluffing everything up…

1. This is a great time for a closet clear-out.

Mercury’s strong influence will mean you inherit a ruthless, cut-cut-cut attitude that is required for a truly beneficial cleanse. If you feel apprehensive, do this with a friend. I do mine with my mum as I know she’ll be truly honest (in a nice, constructive way) about what suits me and what doesn’t.

Many astrologers say it’s good to revisit some really old pieces and light a fire for your style of yore (even Leandra Medine admits to wanting to dress today how she did three years ago) and to give your wardrobe a face-lift, too, so buy some nice new hangers or restock on anti-moth sachets.

2. Invest in a loud phone case to avoid losing it.

Now comes the black hole of forgetfulness where everyone loses everything—even those who are usually meticulous about guarding their property (me). Mercury in retrograde is often connected to tech, so I’ll be looking for a new phone cover that cannot be missed: This glittery Coca-Cola number is surely an obvious choice, right?

If you are really concerned then invest in the ingenious wireless locators that can be slipped into wallets, phone cases, handbags and onto your keys. And whilst you’re on Amazon, grab a portable charger for on-the-go juicing up, too.

3. Use this time as an opportunity for fashion research.

If you are looking to make a big buy—and this is unusual behavior for you—then please do your research. (Ask us anything!) Check prices across different sites. See if it’s new in-store and therefore not likely to hop into a discount zone just minutes after you put down the cash. You could even still shop from the sales with our top tips from fashion insiders.

Make sure this is exactly the item for you. If you aren’t 100 percent set, don’t go there. There are some pieces, however, that will never date, disappoint or go into sale: Chanel bag. Chanel bag. Chanel bag.

4. If you can pack a suitcase, get outta here!

Making a break for somewhere far, far away can be difficult during this time due to miscommunication and technical slip-ups, but if you can escape then it’s actually an excellent idea to leave normality and the retrograde-related things potentially dragging you down at home. Leave plenty of extra time to travel, monitor your flights and be sure to capsule pack for every eventuality—that cold night-cardigan may come in very handy.

If it’s not possible, then at least take up swimming or spend some time checking out, say, Olivia Palermo’s insanely chic holiday wardrobe on Instagram as inspiration for when you do get to jet off.

5. Invest in some quality loungewear and chill out.

It’s okay to have a few low-key moments here and there, even if your resolutions include a rigorously healthy approach to exercise and eating. In fact, there’s great pleasure to be taken out of a cosy stint, so make them extra special with the right garms. Ugg Australia slippers are a personal favourite and pajamas from the likes of Sundays London and Yolke are on the very top of a fashion editor’s list.

6. Be prepared for every dress code.

Mercury can meddle with your calendar like no one’s business, so it’s best to be dressed to impress at all times—where possible, of course. This doesn’t mean going all-out fabulous every second of every day (in fact, it’s very wise to make sure you’ve got a bag big enough to carry around some sneakers, just in case), but stay smart, stick to classic combinations and maybe don’t use this time to try out the wackiest, hardest trend you can think of. Save that for February when it’s the fashion week marathon anyway.

How will you navigate this mercurial period? See the season’s definitive shopping list for some trusted fashion buys.

This post was originally published at an earlier date and has since been updated.

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