First Week of College Outfits: What to Wear Your First Week Back to School

The only syllabus you need to be reading right now.

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This post will show you 5 cute first week of college outfits for 2021.

I don’t think there’s ever been, in the history of schools, a more anticipated first day back to school.

Remember when we were all excited that classes were cancelled? When we thought this would only be a few weeks and we’d be back for the last few weeks of our sophomore year.

And now, here I am, going into my last year of college.

For any college senior, I imagine the last first day of school is both exciting and emotional. But for those of us who have now spent the majority of our college careers online, it’s an even bigger deal. And I keep my fingers crossed that we will move to increasingly fewer cases and hospitalizations so we can spend the rest of the year in person.

What I am, without a doubt, most excited to return to, is dressing up for class. I mean I’ll give it two weeks and I’ll start showing up to class in sweats again, but for the time being, I can’t wait.

I feel we all did so much shopping during the pandemic for no reason at all but now we have a chance to wear it out.

Related reading: 15 First Day of College Supplies You Need to Have on Hand

What to Wear for the First Week of School:

While I wish I could say that I’ve been around the block a few times and am now here to offer some advice I’ve only been around the block four times but that’s still more than anyone else going to college.

So here are a few things to keep in mind when planning your first week of college outfits:

  • Comfortable shoes: While we would all like to think that the hallways to lecture hall B are the streets of Milan fashion week, they are anything but. I like to wear sneakers or flat shoes that allow me to easily walk around campus and go up and down stairs.
  • Your backpack is a part of your outfit: Whether it’s a bag or a backpack, remember that whatever you get, it should be something that easily goes with most of your wardrobe and your style. I would also steer clear of carrying a bag that only fits one pen and your University card, you don’t want to be carrying everything else in your hands.
  • Don’t be afraid to re-wear outfits: For many people, wearing the same outfit multiple times is a fashion taboo. However, as far as I am concerned, it is one of the best ways to make the most of your wardrobe — just switch a couple accessories if you want. And, if you’re afraid of people noticing, don’t be, as chances are that they’re doing the same thing, too! After all, who on a college budget has the money to buy a new outfit for every day?!
  • Shop your closet/mix and match: College is the perfect time to get creative with your wardrobe and try new styles, so make the most of what you own by combining pieces that you might not have thought to put together. Not only will this help you to familiarize yourself with what you already own, but it will allow you to put together brand new looks without spending a penny! Finally, don’t be disappointed if an outfit doesn’t end up looking as good in real life as you imagined it would in your head — it’s only fashion, after all, and you’ll have countless opportunities to try again!
  • Plan outfits the night before: This is perhaps the easiest way to ensure that you don’t fall into a fashion rut; in fact, there are entire apps dedicated to outfit-planning, if you’re interested! By planning your outfits the night before, you’re not only saving yourself time in the morning, but you’re also preventing yourself from simply putting on whatever happens to be clean/available the at the moment, which is one of the easiest ways to unintentionally fall into the boring/sloppy-outfit trap.

Having said that, here is some inspiration for what to wear on your first week of classes. I understand people start on different days; I start on Wednesday so adapt this to your liking (and your style).

First Week of College Outfits – Monday: Picnic After Class

The first day of school is all sunshine and rainbows. Unless your teacher is going through a midlife crisis and thinks it’s acceptable to give you any material other than your syllabus like a sadist. But either way, it’s exciting, and especially now being able to see so many people you haven’t seen in over a year.

For your first day of college outfit, choose something casual but cute that you can wear to your classes, then to hang out with your friends. Don’t forget to snap a cute first day of class picture.

Tuesday: Catching Up with Friends

“OMG, the first day was so fun, I’m so excited for day 2”. That is, as long as you don’t see the same teacher from Monday and actually have to do work.

Day 2, you probably have plans to meet up with some friends after classes, so wear something that allows you to go out after for some coffee. I love this cute-meets-casual look with a printed skirt and sneakers for the first week of college.

Wednesday: Too Lazy to Dress Up (aka Model Off Duty)

Odds are you have to bring a pen to class today. You’ve run out of outfit ideas. You’re hoping you can go back online. You are thinking of dropping out. The situation is dire.

Well, you know what models do when they don’t want to dress up? They wear leggings and a top and we call it model off duty. So welcome to “student off duty.”

While going all black is always perfect, tan colors are very in, so opt for a monochrome tan athleisure look. Bonus points if you put your hair into a slick middle part ponytail a la Kendall Jenner.

Thursday: Day to Night Outfits

First week of college outfit for Thursday night: Flare pants, one-shoulder top, pink sweater vest, black tote bag, gold jewelry, black ankle boots

Products: Vest, Rings, Top, Earrings, Pants, Bag, Boots

For every school it’s a different day, but at my university, bar night is Thursday. So, if you’re 21, there’s bound to be a day that you’ll want an outfit that seamlessly goes from day to night.

The secret? Just throw on a cute knit piece on during the day, like this cute pastel vest and take it off to hit the bars at night. So easy!

Friday: Morning After Cozy Outfit

It was a long night. You hadn’t seen your college friends in a while, and you were out of practice. That’s okay. And it’s exactly why we bought so much loungewear clothing. Also, you get to wear Uggs!

Pull out your cute rib knit sweat set, pull your hair into a ponytail and you’ll look put together, despite being insanely comfy. “You saw me where? Last night? I don’t think so. I was at home reading the syllabus.”

Image from Pexels

After we exhaust our first week of school outfits, we can get back to wearing nothing but our college wardrobe essentials for the rest of the semester. Except for that one friend who always looks like she slept for 8 hours and ate breakfast.

In all seriousness, I honestly can’t contain my excitement for the first day back even though I’m sad it’s my last go at it. Good luck to everyone in the coming semester, and to Freshmen and Sophomores, don’t worry — you’ll be in the majority in looking lost on campus.

What are you going to wear for the first week of college?

What’s your favorite outfit? What are you most nervous about going back to school?

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