Shopping in virtual worlds can be a little hit and miss. It's often hard to judge an item based on a 2d picture of it, and if you want to use that item as part of an outfit, you need to try and visualize what the whole ensemble will look like together. There can be a lot of regret after the fact if it doesn't quite work out-- and that's as disappointing as it can be expensive. That's exactly why Blue Mars' Try On feature is a great tool for discerning virtual fashionistas, however, just like anything else there are some subtleties and tricks to using it efficiently.
You'll find the Try On button immediately under the Buy button when you're examining an item for sale. Of course if you can't buy an item you can't try it on either, so if you've already bought something or it's for the opposite gender you can't use the feature. As I mentioned, being able to try on is something very useful if you want to see if something will coordinate with an outfit that you have in mind, and in addition to that it's a great way to inspect both the quality of an item as well as the fit of it on your avatar's body. this can be quite important in Blue Mars because the fit of mesh clothing can vary a lot depending on the style of the designer, so being able to try before you buy is a big bonus. Additionally, the ability to try on body shapes and skins ensures that you can really perfect the look you want without a single BLU$ going to waste.
The real trick to getting the most out of the Try On feature is what you wear while shopping. When you try an item on, it will automatically replace anything in the same category that you might already be wearing. hairstyles will replace hairstyles, tops with replace tops, underclothes will replace underclothes and so on. This means that if I try on a close fitting undershirt while I'm wearing a more voluminous top or dress, I won't be able to see the undershirt. On the left is an example of a really inefficient shopping ensemble, versus an efficient one. As lovely as that big red dress is, almost anything I try on will get lost beneath it. I hardly want to run around the cities of Blue Mars in underpants, however, so I've chosen a close fitting tank top from Fashion Esplanade (Blink Teleport here) and a pair of sleek leggings from irkmade in Caledonia (Blink Teleport here) and layered both quit close to my avatars body so that any clothes that I do try on should either replace or sit neatly over top of them.
Are you a cautious shopper or are you more impulsive? Leave a comment or email me to tell me what you think of this fashionista-friendly feature!