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Design & Style

Tan France’s 6 Tips for Online Shopping

Written by MasterClass

Last updated: Sep 21, 2020 • 4 min read

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Tan France Teaches Style for Everyone

With a breadth of online shopping sites and options available, shopping for clothes on the internet can seem more overwhelming than going to a physical store. However, there are a few strategic ways to tackle shopping online to make finding new clothes and styling your look easier and more efficient.



Tan France Teaches Style for EveryoneTan France Teaches Style for Everyone

Queer Eye cohost Tan France breaks down the principles of great style, from building a capsule wardrobe to looking pulled together every day.

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A Brief Introduction to Tan France

While some were first introduced to fashion expert Tan France on the Primetime Emmy-nominated Netflix show Queer Eye in 2018, the prolific stylist has been in the fashion and styling business for over 20 years. Before the fashion guru appeared in the hit makeover show reboot along with the rest of “The Fab Five,” co-stars Bobby Berk, Antoni Porowski, Karamo Brown, and Jonathan Van Ness (JVN), he had helped thousands of people find their personal style and find a look that makes them feel like the very best version of themselves. Since the breakout success of Queer Eye, Tan has become one of the most visible, sought-after personal stylists in the world—making history as the first openly gay South Asian man on television. In 2019, he published his memoir, Naturally Tan, which became an instant New York Times bestseller. In 2020, Tan co-hosted the fun and fast-paced 2020 Netflix fashion design competition series, Next in Fashion, with Alexa Chung.

Tan France’s 6 Tips for Online Shopping

Buying clothes online is a great way to search for and gather your dream looks—especially if there’s an easy and free return policy. If you want to find new fashion items without the hassle of driving to a dozen different clothing stores and traipsing in and out of dressing rooms, you can shop at an online store from the comfort of your own home using these tips from fashion expert Tan France:

  1. Use your mood board. A mood board gives you an image to work with, making it easier to shop because you can use the board as a reference point. The mood board helps keep you on track, which can hopefully reduce any impulse buys or distractions. The mood board also makes it easier to shop because it serves as a reference point and a guide. If it doesn't tie in with the mood board, it probably doesn’t fit the look you are trying to achieve.
  2. Start with keywords. Finding suitable clothes at online retailers—like Asos, Macy’s, Nordstrom, Old Navy, Zappos, and Zara—can be easier than in-person shopping because you can simply type what you’re looking for into your search engine and receive thousands of viable options. For example, if your style is “boho style,” you can type that into your search engine and find a variety of options from many retailers. Click on the shopping tab to find the ones that speak to you.
  3. Get specific. After you nail down your general aesthetic, use filters to whittle down your options until you've found the look you want to achieve. You can search by brand, by fit, by color, and by price. For example, if you’re looking for a neon pink slim-fit T-shirt, use keywords and filters to narrow down the search to find this item. Online shopping can be a lot easier than trolling around a mall for hours, desperately trying to find that specific item that meets your needs.
  4. Buy two sizes. One of the main disadvantages of online shopping is that you can never be sure if an item will fit. Tan suggests that you purchase two sizes. Even if you’ve followed the sizing chart for a pair of denim jeans and they seem like the perfect fit, you should always try on the next size up or down to make sure you’re wearing the proper size. Most online stores offer free returns, and some with physical locations allow you to buy online and return in-store.
  5. Shop strategically. When you’re visiting a department store website, first search through new arrivals, then visit the other departments that peak your interests. Select the items you want and add them to your cart, even if it's beyond your budget. Once your shopping is complete, open the cart and go through each item and decide whether you love it or whether you need to remove it from your cart. Whittle your list down to meet your budget, then make your purchase.
  6. Look to influencers for unique options. If you’re looking for unique boutique items, you can find these options online. If you’re unsure where to find inspiration, check out your favorite influencer’s social media pages. They usually work with much smaller brands, which can sometimes help you save money. If you have a fashion influencer in mind that works with the aesthetic you're looking for, tap their picture or read their captions. They will usually tag the brands they're working with, and then you can look for those brands online. You can occasionally find trendy, good-quality options that are more affordable than big designer brands, so you can keep your fashion chic without maxing out your credit card or draining your bank account.
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Want to Learn More About Unleashing Your Inner Fashionista?

Get a MasterClass All-Access Pass and let Tan France be your very own style spirit guide. Queer Eye’s fashion guru spills everything he knows about building a capsule collection, finding a signature look, understanding proportions, and more (including why it’s important to wear underwear to bed)—all in a soothing British accent, no less.