Friday, February 22, 2013

In the looking glass

I wish I could say appearance doesn't matter, but it does. Anyone who says otherwise is in denial. Today, I'm going to be talking about cake decorating, or the importance of your outward appearance.

Why are you not going on dates? Maybe it's because of your face! Just kidding! Okay, I'm only slightly kidding. Whether we want it to or not, our outward appearance is a reflection of who we are on the inside. Please note that I said reflection. Our looks should not create our self worth. We should create our self-worth and then appropriately display it to others.Think about the times you were sick. You spent all night throwing up and you are running a fever. You feel terrible on the inside, so what do you wear? Sweats and a t-shirt. Then you curl up in bed and moan until your roommate finally comes in to comfort you.You feel crummy and you want comfy clothes. Your appearance reflects how you feel.

So begin with an honest evaluation of yourself. Do you feel like a 10? No? Then start there. Yes? Then does your appearance reflect that feeling? No? Why not? (Honestly, I feel like this needs to become a flow chart or something. That might be forthcoming...)

I did this evaluation a few years ago. I'm a pretty confident gal, but I was unhappy with my style because it was so plain. I wore nice clothes and even got an occasional compliment, but I still felt boring. Solid shirts, solid cardigans, no colored pants, and no scarves or hats. My outside did not reflect how I felt. What are your issues? Consider the following reasons:

-Your clothes. Maybe they are too big or too small. Maybe you dress too casually or too dressy. Maybe you are getting older and need to try a new style.

-Your makeup. Do you wear too much? Too little? The wrong color? You don't know how to put it on correctly? (That last one was me and eyeliner for awhile).

-Accessories, like earrings, scarves, hats and necklaces. Did you know you can wear too many? My stylish friend Heather once told me that most girls should get ready for the day, then take off one accessory. They wear too many. But maybe you are like me and you don't wear enough and you feel boring.

-Natural causes. Do you have bad acne? Do you wear glasses and it makes you feel frumpy? Do you not wear glasses and wish you did? Do you want to lose weight? Should you gain weight?

Identify what makes you unhappy and then...are you ready for this.....get a pencil and paper to write it down....CHANGE IT! You are in charge of yourself! Change whatever makes you unhappy. In the case of my plain wardrobe, I learned how to mix in prints, patterns and accessories. Now, I love how I dress! Here are some of my specific suggestions:

-Ask stylish, honest friends to take you shopping. I have one friend who is a model and makeup consultant. I have another friend who has given several makeovers and she is brutally honest. They were more than excited to help. Keep in mind there are stylish people out there who don't know why they are stylish. They just are. Don't ask for their help. Ask someone who knows why. They can teach you rules and principles that will guide you when you have to make choices alone.

-Don't have stylish friends? You can borrow mine. They love giving makeovers! It helps them feel control in a world of chaos. Like going shopping solo? One time, I was shopping alone and I needed new heels to match a red dress. I couldn't decide and I noticed there was a super trendy girl also looking at the shoes. She looked like my ideal style. So I stopped her and asked her what shoes she would buy if she had a red dress. She pointed to a pair that I had not even considered. Three years later, I still get compliments on those shoes.

-Be willing to pay a lot the first couple of times, then go with cheaper substitutes. Take makeup for example. If you want to change your makeup, go to the MAC counter at Nordstorm's. They will match the your color and give you a makeover. They will teach you how to use makeup. Even though it's expensive, buy what they suggest. Then do it again, until you feel comfortable. Then buy cheaper Target substitutes. This way, you know how to use the product and you'll know when the cheaper blush looks wrong because you've used the right one.

-Pinterest and Google. You might feel kinda weird researching these topics, but I promise you there are so many good ideas out there. Fashion blogs. Weight loss programs. Color wheel diagrams (for matching your clothes!). 1-800 contacts. Save pictures of outfits, hair and make-up ideas you really like. Oh! You know how mannequins in stores always look great? Take pictures and copy their outfits.

-Don't be afraid to try new things! For the longest time, I was afraid of colored pants. I thought they would look weird on me. But every time I went shopping, I took a pair into the dressing room and tried them on. One day, I got the courage to buy a pair. Now, I have several! But everything deserves at least one try on. No commitment, just give it a try (this is also an excellent dating principle).

Remember, the point of changing your appearance is so you look as confident as you feel. Ask your friends and family for suggestions. If they say, "You are awesome! Don't change for anyone! " call them a liar and walk away. Everyone needs to change. No one is perfect. At the same time, if you genuinely don't like their suggestions, don't change. Over time, you might realize they are right and then you'll want to change. But it will be for yourself.

Okay, got it? Change whatever you must in order to look as confident as you feel. Guys will find you so much more approachable. However, if you don't feel confident, you must start there! But that is a topic for another time!


  1. I adore this post! It's so important to remember the whole package, if you will. I often think "I wish that I could just be a cool brain in a jar—the outside part is what makes me feel lame!" I think I'll take some of this advice to heart!

    1. I'm glad you liked this post Holly! You are such a beautiful person, inside and outside. I'm always surprised when you mention you don't feel like you look as beautiful as you are! So good luck with your changes!

  2. I love this post! I have been working on my style for a while and I'm finally starting to feel confident with my makeup but I am always looking for new tips and tricks. And I'd love to go shopping with you and your stylish friends. I need major help in the pants department!

    1. Heather, I was thinking about you and your search for a red cardigan today! I will let you know the next time we are going shopping or I'll even put you in contact with my friends. Also, pants shopping is my least favorite thing to shop for! It's so hard to find favorites. But when you do, it's totally worth it!