Monday, April 22, 2013

Prom Promises and Memories

It’s that special time of year again.  Prom season!  It’s stressful and wonderful all at the same time.  There are many decisions that go into making your night something to remember.  Which shoes, dress, jewelry, makeup, bag, even which date to bring?  You want everything to be perfect on that night and most importantly, you want to have fun.

Dress:  Most proms are formal, which means you need a floor length gown.  I know there are trends of short dresses, but those are better for other semi-formal events.  Find a material that you can breathe in, it moves with your body and you are comfortable.  You will be doing a lot of moving and shaking, and sweating so keep that in mind when trying something on.  If you are going strapless, invest in a high quality bra.  This isn’t the time to scrimp.  With a higher quality bra, it will last longer making it worth the purchase.  Remember to stay in the nude hues when it comes to strapless bras.  Even if your dress is lighter in color, do not buy a white bra.  Even if your dress is black, do not buy a black bra.  This rule goes for all shape-wear too.  It should blend with your skin, not contrast.  That way, if there is any issue, no one will notice it – they will just notice how great you look.  

Look for a dress that will flatter your shape, not what is trendy.  I am not a fan of the empire waist style because it does nothing but create more folds than necessary.  Also, remember you girls are young.  You do not need anything that is too revealing or sexy.  Try to access magazines or online material to figure out which styles you like and bring those ideas with you to the store to help find the perfect dress.  This way you won’t get stressed out spending hours trying on dresses that you hate or grow to hate the process which should be a special moment for you.  Also, do not feel as though you have to spend a lot to get a lot.  If budget is a concern, consignment shops have a great selection of second hand dresses.  Sometimes they will throw in alterations for free.  Most places, if they have a seamstress on hand, will give you a discount on their services.  If they don’t, find a local dry cleaner.  They usually have someone there who works fast, cheap, and they will also clean and press your dress for you as part of the price.  

Hair & Makeup:  Keep it simple, soft and classy.  This is not the time to let your friend’s sister’s cousin twice removed practice their artsy makeup tricks on your face.  Clean face, clean hair and great natural makeup go a long way.   Less is truly more.  

Accessories:  Jewelry, shoes, bag should correspond but not overpower your outfit.  Small clutch, beautiful and tasteful jewelry and great heels or flats will complete the outfit. 
Whoever you decide to go with, remember the most important part of all, to have fun.  These moments are the ones that stick with you through your life and eventually, you will want to share them with your own children.  Make the most of the time you have and take too many pictures!  

Me (on right) and my good friend Julia at our Senior Prom June 2002

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Marathon Makeup

This past week it was warmer than usual here in the North East part of the US.  Summer is sneaking up on us and I do worry that we are in it for the long haul.

The best way to beat the melted face look is:
  • Invest in waterproof makeup 
  • Skip foundation unless you are staying indoors in the A/C or going somewhere formal.  
  • Don't cake on the eyeshadow.  Even the best makeup will get creases in it due to the heat and humidity.  
  • For beach days or pool days, opt for clear mascara or skip it altogether.  I love to go swimming and hate having my makeup smudge then get in my eye. It can be really painful.  
  • Use a good lip balm to prevent your lips from drying out.  I prefer to use Vaseline on my lips if I'm not wearing lipstick.  It works much better than anything else I've tried.  
  • Drink LOTS of water!  Skip the soda, booze, most juices and shakes.  Stick with the basic, classic H2O (water).  
  • Remember to wash your face twice a day with a very mild cleanser. 
  • Remember to smile.  This is your best asset and comes free.  

Try to skip your usual makeup routine a few days out of the week and remember to stock up on sunscreen. 

Have fun out there and stay beautiful!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Dear World

    I see you are upset and offended by Target’s choice in name for a color of a dress.  The same store that I obsessively shop in and I’m sure most of you shop in as well.  I want to remind you that the sad reality of the fact that high school never really ends.  You have to find which battles are worth fighting over.  There are still bullies on the playground, and yes, that guy in accounting can be a real dick.  I get it; I experience it and see it for myself every day of my adult life.  The reality is this, you have to stop letting these words hurt.  You are more than a word on a page, no matter how dirty and dark it is.  You are worthy of love, acceptance and happiness.  When the aggressor knows their arrow has stung you, where do you think they are going to strike again?  It’s time to thicken our skin.  

   I’m a plus size woman, and no matter how much I diet and exercise, I will always be in the realm of being plus size.  This label is what I use because I don’t see the dirty in it.  My bones will never shrink my frame down to the size 8 so many women aspire to be.  I’m also tall.  I’m almost 5 ft 8 inches tall.  I’m just me – that’s all I know how to be.  When you learn to love yourself and accept that you are enough for the world, things like being referred to as “fat” will pass over you as casually as someone saying it might rain today.  If you are empowered to get healthy, I commend you on your new life choice and empower you to do it for your own gain, not because someone told you to put down the fork.  Discrimination exists only because we allow it.  Rise above this cloud of stupidity and work on being you in all of your glory.  We need individuals to keep the Earth moving forward, not sheep.  

   If you are deeply offended by this, I want to run and give you the biggest hug!  There are so many people out there who kill themselves over the bullying that goes on, especially when they’re being called “fat” all day at school, work or anywhere.  Please know that you are loved by many people and those who hurt you are hurting the most.  If you feel there is no way out, please talk to someone or talk to me – find an outlet somewhere in your life.  Your life is worth more than their ignorance.  
              I love you and you should love you too!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Pedicures & Promises

It is that time again.  Time to break out the cute sandals, espadrilles, and wedges.  I'm very anti-flop flop.  I think they're annoying and the fact that some people will knock each other for the last pair of cheap plastic flip-flops because they're on sale for 5 cents is annoying.  The best part of this time of year is indulging in a relaxing pedicure.  I love them and get them once a month through the warmer months because you should be kind to your feet.  They hold you up all the time, why not let someone rub them down for you? 

This is one procedure that I encourage you to save up and go to a better salon or spa.  In between treatments, utilize your tub to soak your feet in warm to hot water that has epsom salt in it and peppermint (if you can stand the smell).  It will help maintain how soft the skin on your feet are after a great pedicure, or between pedicures.  Also, if you are a beach bum, rub your feet in both the wet and dry sand.  This is a good way to soften your feet as well.  I do it every time I'm at the beach.  Between listening to the waves crash and doing this, you will feel very much at ease. 

I highly recommend that you look around whenever you go to a salon or spa and check to see how clean the place is.  If their shelves are dusty, turn right around and leave!  You can bet the tubs you were going to soak your feet in aren't clean either.  The smallest details matter when it comes to you and your skin.  A small cut on your feet or legs can be a gateway for bacteria to enter your body and you end up sick or worse.  I don't want to see that happen! 

Try to choose a new fun color each time you go.  I love a French manicure on my toes but I do love changing things up and putting on a pretty coral, pink, blue or yellow too.  Step out of your comfort zone, this Spring and Summer season.  I encourage you to try nail art too.  Take inspiration from your favorite holiday or pattern as an starting point for your toes.  Remember, they don't have to exactly match your finger nails color.  I often have coordinating colors but not the exact match color on my fingers and toes.  Why not, right?  Live dangerously. 

Remember that indulging in this is allowed and you deserve it.  So many of us work so hard that we forget to take time for ourselves.  This is something worth giving yourself, or tell your other half to treat you to the spa versus having them guess at buying you a gift that you will have to return when they don't notice. 

Be you, be beautiful!