All The Fashion Tools You Will Ever Need

personal stylist san diego

Photography by Robin Dayley

I constantly refer my clients to products (or as I like to say, Fashion Tools) that will lengthen the life of their wardrobe, or fix a fashion problem. Here is the complete list of every fashion tool you could need…

Topstick – Fashion Tape

Don’t buy fashion tape, get Topstick. Topstick is toupee tape that has less allergic reactions than fashion tape. It is also more effective and cheaper. It can tape down a neckline, close the gap of a button front shirt, or tape down a bra strap. Basically every issue with potential boob exposure or “fashion malfunctions” are fixed by topstick. For a few Topstick how-to tips, watch this.


Ironing is not always necessary. Most of the time you just need a steamer. My all time favorite steamer is the model J-2 by Jiffy. I’ve had mine for 10 years now and still going strong. In San Diego, you can get it at Farkass.

Personal Steamer

If the J-2 Jiffy steamer is too big or unsightly for your home. Jiffy’s personal steamer is fantastic for a smaller home or travel.

Rubber Earring Backs

To prevent your earring from jumping out of your ear piercing, you need earring backs. Most earrings come with backs, but sometimes you lose them and need a spare one handy. I actually replace my earring backs with these spare rubber stoppers right away because they are more effective than the back that comes with an earring. You will never lose an earring again.

Stain Remover

Carbona Stain Devils are the absolute best at getting stains out of your clothes. They have nine different formulas that focus on the most popular stains we get on our clothes from blood and wine to rust and ink. I recently used #1 Formula to get a grease stain out of my new white jeans. Worked beautifully.

Leather Cleaning Tools

There are a few products that clean dust and dirt off your leather clothing, shoes and bags. I recommend…

A cobbler can also clean your leather items if you don’t want to be bothered.

Horsehair Brush

You use this to brush dirt or dust off your suede garments or shoes. You also use it to bring up the nap when cleaning your suede.

Nubuck & Suede Cleaner

You use this to clean your suede shoes and garments. Before spraying your item with suede cleaner, brush the shoe with the horsehair brush to open up the nap and eliminate preliminary dirt and dust. A cobbler can also clean your shoes if you don’t want to be bothered.

Nubuck & Suede Protectant Spray

You spray this on your shoe right after you buy it. This prevents stains and scuffs. Depending on how much you wear it, you will want to re-spray it a couple times a year. You also want to spray it after each time you clean your item.

Leather Protectant Spray

You spray this on your shoe right after you buy it. This prevents stains and scuffs. Depending on how much you wear it, you will want to re-spray it a couple times a year. You also want to spray it after each time you clean or lotion your leather.

Shoe Polish

I use shoe polish on my leather boots because their color dulls after a winter or two. Right before or right after the cold season I sit down and clean all my boots, polish them up if the color faded, and then spray them with leather protectant. Leather dress shoes, and heels will also need a polish perk up after a lot of wears. Your local cobbler can also polish your shoes if you don’t want to be bothered.

Heel Inserts

When you have that one foot that is bigger than the other, or your shoes are just a little too big, I love Foot Petals’ Heavely Heelz heel inserts. They have beige, grey, black and clear.

Shoe Stretcher

If your shoe is too tight, the Two-Way Fit Right Shoe Stretcher is amazing. It can stretch the length of your shoe as well as the width. It can even make room for a bunion or a bulge with adjustable pods you insert into the stretcher. I have to warn you though that this gadget is incredibly effective. Be slow and gentle with it. Don’t over stretch. A cobbler can also stretch your shoes if you don’t want to be bothered.

Blister Prevention & Protection

This waxy balm is a life-saver when breaking in a new pair of shoes. The minute you feel rubbing, rub this on the black of your heel, toes – wherever. This will cease the friction and prevent the rubbing that creates blisters.

If you feel yourself getting a blister this is the absolute best for proectign you skin. Better than a Band-Aid. It covers, protects, and prevents.

Moleskin can protect the part of your foot that is being rubbed wrong in a shoe. It’s like a fancy, customizable bandaid that prevents blisters.

Boot Shapers

A boot that is crumpled in on itself at the bottom of your closet develops wrinkles and creases. To prevent this you need Boot Shapers. They are inserted into a tall boot to maintain the shape of the boot. It also keeps the boot upright, which can save space and give a clutter free appearance.

Solemates Heel Caps

Solemates Heel Caps are for protecting your heels in dirt, grass and uneven streets. They come in two colors (clear and black) and three different sizes. You want it to be snug on your heel and be sure to really push your heel into it for a solid fit. These are essential for an outdoor wedding, or wearing stilettos in a city like London and New York.

Lint Roller

You need a lint roller to get animal hair, human hair, dust, dandruff, and fabric fibers of your clothes. You especially need this if you wear a lot of solid black.

Sweater/Fabric Shaver

This is an amazing solution for pilling sweaters. I often use it on my cashmere garments. I have also used it on my bedspread. My Evercare fabric shaver works very well, but I am sure there are other good ones out there. Maybe even better ones.

Tape for Itchy Tags

Undercover tape can be placed over tags that itch you. It is great for people with sensitive skin.

Miss Oops Dry Sponge

This will take off any deodorant stains, baby powder and other clothing marks. You don’t need to wet it, just brush it across the mark.

Nude Breast Petals

Skip the thick silicone petals and strapless bras. If you don’t need a big lift, just use standard breast petals. Apply by pushing the center pad of the petal onto your nipple before pressing down the sticky “petals.” You always want to press the petals down from the center out. Also, when pressing the sticky parts down, don’t press them down all at once or in a clockwise rotation. To be more clear, once you press down one petal, press down the petal directly across from it and so on. This prevents unevenness and puckering of the petal. This is similar to how you tighten the bolts when you change a tire on a car. For a more specific how-to watch this.

Vaseline & Neosporin

If you are having issues putting an earring into its intended ear hole, lube the post with Vaseline or Neosporin. The earring will slip right it. One caution for Neosporin: don’t overuse it. I have been informed that the body can end up relying on it and not fight germs on its own. Best to use Neosporin only once if your piercing is infected. The rest of the time, use Vaseline.

Seam Ripper

Use a seam ripper to cut out the thread that attaches hanger strings or cumbersome labels to a garment. By using a seam ripper instead of scissors, there is no residue tag or string to poke and prod inside your clothing, but use with caution. Sometimes a tag is sewn into the seam with the same thread that closes the seam. This means if you seam rip the tag out, you also open up the seam – this means you now have a hole in your garment. Look at how a tag or hanger string is attached before seam ripping.

Safety Pins

I recommend you do not use safety pins to close your shirt or hem your pants. A safety pin is a great temporary fix, but go to the tailor and get those issues fixed permanently. I mainly added safety pins to this list because I use them to safety pin my socks together. This way you will never lose one sock in your drawer or in the laundry again.

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