When I started this blog, I wanted to be true to myself and what I was putting out to my readers as I possibly could. The outfit you see is always the outfit I wear that day. There's no photoshop besides getting rid of the occasional pimple. But I only post the days when I leave my house. The days when I wear an actual outfit - as opposed to some mess that is one step up from pajamas on a Nutella run to the grocery store. Basically, I don't always dress nice. Ask the lady that runs the convenient store underneath my apartment. She'll tell you some stories that will curl your toes.
I say all this because people say the loveliest things to me about how I dress nice all the time (not true) and how they can't pull off the things I wear (also not true). But I do have a few tricks up my sleeve that help me to looked polished and pulled-together even though 10 minutes before I left the house I was: wiping mascara off the inside of my eye (how did that happen?!), screaming into my phone at some stranger that I don't speak Korean, and trying to save my keys from the dust bunnies under my bed. Not to mention my apartment ends up looking like Miley's Wrecking Ball went through it.
So here are my tips on how I get through a busy work while still managing to look (mostly) stylish 50-90 % of the time.
1. Play dress-up.
Ohhhh, it's my favorite thing in the word. Always has been. When I was 8 and wanting to play dress-up outside in wintery Chicago, my mom wanted me to put on this ugly, puffy, pink coat. I refused so ferociously because that coat would cover up my beautiful ensemble. She responded with "Life is not a fashion show, Lindsey." I believe I very aggressively rolled my eyes at her.
20 years later and I'm still at it. Every time I get something new to wear, I run home and try it on with the rest of my clothes. It gives me an idea of what shirts and shoes will work with it, what won't, what I have in my closet that matches and what looks terrible. Playing with your clothes when you have the time gives you a visual about how it fits into the rest of your wardrobe. This cuts down on time when you need to get ready in the morning. If you have a few options of nice outfits in mind, you won't be as tempted to just grab your ol' t-shirt and jeans and run out the door.
2. Only Have Clothes You Love
I have too many clothes, y'all. But I love every single piece. If I wear something and it doesn't make me in some way feel good - I get rid of it. This ain't Project Runway. You don't have to make it work! So when I'm running late and I need to grab a dress, it doesn't really matter which one it is, as long as it's appropriate for the occasion and the weather. Because I'm going to feel good in it either way. No need to second guess. I have no choice but to grab something I love. I do admit I do have some ratty t-shirts, sweatpants, other work-out clothes and pajamas. But you know where those go? In a 35 cm x 35 cm cube.
3. Start Small
If you want to habitually look fashionable, start with the classics. The basics that fit you great. If it's a classic look, you're going to look chic and put together. A great oxford-button up with flats and skinny jeans - you might not necessarily stop traffic but you will still look stylish. A little black dress with nude pumps. Think Coco Chanel, Aubrey Hepburn or Jackie O. Once you feel comfortable, step up your game. Add one extra thing that gives your outfit personality. A pair of wild platforms. A statement necklace. A bold-print dress. After that, challenge yourself with a trend that you're not sure you can pull off, but you're dying to try. I promise, you can do it. It's not as hard as it looks.
4. Have a Go-To Signature Look.
When you're in a time crunch and don't have time to question whether the crop top and/or camo is work-appropriate, go to your go-to. For me, it's A-line skirts, with a belt and flats. As long as it matches, this look usually works well for me. Know what looks good on your body and what you feel pretty in. Know what you are comfortable with wearing. There are some days I think I'm going to look like a Guess model in my jeans and quelle surprise! I just don't. So after I spent all that time trying to struggle my large derriere into some hateful jeans, I give up and head straight for what I know works best for me. My go-to.
5. Don't Be Lazy
This is one of my favorite quotes: "There are no ugly women in the world, just lazy ones." I honestly believe this. I've never met a woman I wanted to run in the opposite direction because she was hideous. However, I've met plenty of women who are so beautiful but they don't even realize it. And I just want to grab those ladies and slap a little lipgloss and mascara on them. I want to pull down that boring ponytail and give them a lady-like ballerina top knot (just as easy to do as a ponytail). Because it's these small details that make a huge difference. If you want to look polished, take that extra minute to put on a great lipstick - even if you don't have time to put on any other make-up (heck, half the time I put on my lipstick on the bus to work). If you're going to meet the girls for a cocktail after work, switch out your sneakers into some funky loafers. All of these things are small, but if you make a little bit of extra effort, it gets noticed.
These are my two cents on how I try to put my best foot(wear) forward when going out into the world. What are some ways that help you to feel like a fashionista? This is my first "advice" post so I'd really like your input - whether you agree with me or not! :) Thanks for reading.