A Girls Essentials: The Review Edition

Dear Diary,

Now, every girl has wardrobe “staples”. Those items you purchase as investment pieces due to their flexibility within your wardrobe to be worn numerous ways- we love them! Our boyfriends? Not so much. However, we can always justify the purchase of them and seek out to prove how many ways they can be worn and how often!

So here I share with you my wardrobe staples, where I got them from, what their use is to me. I will give you a full review after each item for Price, Value for money & it's staple level- how essential is this in my wardrobe? (i will try rate this as honestly as i can but as a serial online purchase justifier- it will be tough!). Each rating will be out of a total of 5 ⭐.


I got this bag just before the shops closed and we all entered lock-down and, it saddens me that it has not been taking for enough walks! Early on lock-down I would bring it on the essential shop just to show it off and use it. As soon as I laid eyes on it, I was instantly reminded of a £1,500 Louis Vuitton bag and, considering this bag retails for just under £50… I think I know which one I would rather. The design of the bag is faultless and well designed. It is eye catching, secure, evenly balanced and roomy.

So, lets break the bag down.

The straps: I LOVE the concept of these straps and wish more bags were designed like this. Pull through the extender bag straps can be really flimsy and ruin the overall shape and balance of the bag (we have all had that bag half up, half down experience). This bag has a belt-like strap were you simply put it into the hole that is your desired level making it extremely easy to go from long to short and fool-proof. The bag also comes with the ideal tote-like feel making it a perfect companion for both arm wear and shoulder.

Storage: This bag offers more than I realised when I bought it. It comes with a middle zip-lock section and 2 magnetically shut side sections- so satisfying! When I switched from the bag I was wearing to this; my previously struggling to close bag (and its reached capacity of items considering my boyfriend’s pockets were stuffed with my hairbrush and selfie light..) I put ALL of my items into the RI bag zip section and there was still a huge amount of space! That was not including the 2 handy side bits of the bag for items you want easy access to perhaps, for me that was my phone, my purse and in current pandemic times- my hand sanitiser! This bag really is perfect.

Shape/Design: The bag is sturdy and balances well when placed down like any other tote. It has been well constructed and should be way more expensive than what it is for all it

delivers. The “RI” pattern over the bag makes it stand out and the colours of it make it so easy to pair with items in your wardrobe- it will go with absolutely anything!

To add to this bag's overall lux feel I bought a cheap bag scarf off eBay for under £5 to tie around this all rounder tote and take it up a level- which it definitely has! Bag scarfs are such a good and inexpensive way to instantly upgrade and bring to life an existing bag or add a layer to a new bag and you definitely need them in your life! I can’t wait to make this my new go-to bag when lock-down is over and I’ll never have to ask my boyfriend to pass me my hairbrush under the table dining out when I need to go to the toilet again- bonus!

River Island are known for their high-quality dupes of designer items. It has become the norm for high street retail brands to dupe designer items commercially and for me, no brand does that quite as well as River Island. Since my teens, I was always obsessed with the “RI” logo and the brands ranges of bags and purses. Nobody can deny the quality of a RI bag. From the gold RI branding giving it a more expensive feel, the construction of the bag, how faultless both inside and outside the bag is put together. The overall design of the bag; good and sturdy straps. Secure and strong clips to close the bag whether magnetic or close yourself. The pattern on the front giving it a higher-end feel, the vibrant colours and luxury patterns. It’s a guarantee your bag will be seen from a distance for all the right reasons! RI bags definitely look more higher-end and more expensive than they are/and are priced, their new takes on designer dupes are no exception.

Price: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Value For Money: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Staple Level: ⭐⭐⭐⭐


Once seen as just for just boys and boys alone unless you were a tomboy, I barely ever seen a girl wearing one of these caps… but that is a thing of the past and rightly so! These caps are my ultimate fave and I want any colours I can get. They are comfy unlike a lot of cheaper caps that actually give you a headache (looking @ you Primark!) NY Yankee caps now have ones made for girls however, I favour the ones in the guys section as a personal preference due to the fact they hide your face more on low-key days (essential requirement xo)

They are extremely easy to style and wear. When you are having a bad hair day or are going out au-natural and don’t want to be seen- they’re perfect for it! I have one in black (which I stole off my boyfriend and fell in love with it from there) and my recent edition is the grey.

The grey one differs from the black as it has more of a dome shape, has mesh at the back and also has a clip-like adjuster for easier use as opposed to the black, which is more of a buckle slider. The dome shaped, bigger version of the caps such as this grey one is definitely worth the price. I don’t think I would have paid the same price for the black one as, despite it being comfortable, it doesn’t look that expensive. The grey one looks like good quality upon first glance and, besides the cheaper feel of the adjuster at the back, still looks generally attractive.

These are by far the comfiest caps and are so easily styled, too. I dress it with jeans, leggings, any comfy clothes and also cute dresses and converse! To see both the grey and the black cap featured with my outfits click here to be taken to my lock-down looks video on how you can style yours!

Price: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Value For Money: ⭐⭐⭐⭐

Staple Level: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐


Every girl really does need a staple oversized and/or knitted cardigan in her wardrobe as a go-to piece. This one I got on eBay for around £16 and I was really sceptical due to eBay’s rep for clothes images not being what they appear to be (we all know those images that seem to have been imported from China along with the clothes and sold for double the china price) so I was buzzing when this cardigan arrived and looked just like the picture, apart from being more slightly off-white/cream than the picture suggested, however, when choosing the cardigan it did say cream on the menu so i can forgive. The sizing started at an 8 and is very accurate. It gives that "oversized" look without swamping you and, on the opposite end, isn't too short nor too tight- the sizing is perfect!

I had been searching for a cardigan for quite a few months but with no luck,.

They were either too expensive, knitting wasn’t great, sizing wasn’t great and colour is way off in comparison to the image on the model or doesn’t look right when worn and sometimes, you just simply find one and it is out of stock in your size (we know that rage!). Finding that right cardigan for you can be a bit of trial and error but when you find yours, It’s definitely worth the wait. I have now purchased this one in black and, whilst it came with a few loose threads which was frustrating, they were easy to cut off and avoid the hassle of eBay returns. Colour, sizing etc is all just the same.

Wear it with: denim shorts and converse, lounge wear, black jeans and a crop top, grey joggies with a grey bralette and, to really make this multi-purpose, dress it up for a date night look with black jeans and a pair of heels and with this particular cardigan, put it off the shoulder and make it into a Bardot style wrap top! Perfect.

Price: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Value For Money: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Staple Level: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐