If there’s one preconception that most people have about fashion editors, it’s that we all live in designer clothing. As much as I would love to wake up each morning and have a wardrobe full of Chanel, Prada and Gucci to choose from, the reality is that not only does my bank account not support my lofty dreams, but also that the quality of the high-street is at an all time high, and there’s simply no need to spend £500 on a plain white tee when I know exactly where to get an excellent one for £25.
And, therein lies the secret. As it’s our job to know the new-in sections like the back of our hands, after years of tried and tested research, industry insiders have a list of reliable go-tos for just about everything. I know for example if I want to find a great dress, I’m heading for H&M first. Jeans? It’s got to be Zara. Comfortable, fashion-forward shoes? Only Marks and Spencer. But, if you’re looking for premium quality and luxe design, there are three high-street stores that influencers, editors and even designers have come to rely on for the very best in affordable clothing–COS, Arket, and Mango.
A cursory scroll through my Instagram feed reveals a tally of around 70% of all of the outfits I saw featuring at least one element from the big three, proving COS, Arket and Mango’s status as the bonafide style trinity. That trench coat you thought was designer? Likely it was Mango. The tanks, tees and blazers that everyone rushes to buy in summer are always from Arket, and the leather crossbody bag you’ve been spotting everywhere? Yep, COS.
So, if you’re looking for some exciting new pieces to add to your wardrobe, or just stocking up on some sensible basics for the new season ahead, I’ve rounded up the very best that the big three have to offer. For tops, trousers, dresses, skirts (and some covetable accessories that no one will believe are high-street), keep scrolling for an edit that I’m confident you’re going to love.
Naturally I want the matching top, too.
This cropped jacket is about to be everywhere. You heard it here first.
This is exactly how I would style it, too.
The ankle detail puts these cargos a cut above the rest.
There’s no way anyone will think this is high street.
This colour looks so premium.
To wear with absolutely everything from now on.
Knit dress season is upon us.
I love the drape of this pair.
I would wear this with a brown knit dress.
Style with either neutrals or pops of green or butter yellow.
The colour, the shape—everything about this bag screams premium.
The chicest neckline.
Trust me, this will sell out so fast.
This top + jeans + loafers = easy outfit simplicity.
You can’t beat a great pair of black ankle boots.
From the colour to the intricate cable details, I’m sold.
Outerwear is another area that Arket excels in.
I’m so into the relaxed fit of these jeans.
Of course the long sleeved styles are just as good as the iconic heavyweight T-shirts.
Fashion people always come back to timeless stripes.
Love, love, love!
Yes, editors find their winter coats on the high street.
Silver shoes go hand in hand with denim.
A great pair of tailored trousers is always a wardrobe win.
The balletcore trend continues.
Mango always does great bags.
There’s so many ways to style up a pleated midi.
This story was published at an earlier time and has since been updated.