Whether you're a glasses wearer or not you can apply these exact same tips to sunglasses so this blog is still relevant. 
I was due an eye test back in March.I like choosing new glasses. I get excited. As a dramatic style personality I like to make a statement with them. I understand the importance, as a glasses wearer, that you are happy with your choice. 
 
Especially if you need to wear them all the time. They need to suit you; your colouring, face shape, features and personality all need to be taken into consideration. 
 
There are so many styles to choose from it’s difficult to know where to start. 
 
I often get asked about how to choose glasses, so I thought I’d share a few tips to help you next time you need a new pair. It really can make a massive difference to your image and speaks volumes about your Style Personality. 
 
Always choose to suit your colouring. A good tip is to replicate the colour of your eyes, cheeks or lips. 
Choose silver frames or cool colours if your skin has cool undertones (pinkish hue). 
Gold, tortoiseshell or warm colours if you have warm, peachy undertones to your skin. 
Think about the type of clothes you like to wear; do you prefer bright or muted colours in your wardrobe? Your specs will look better if they are harmonious. 
 
 

Remember the Hair Bear Bunch on TV when we were kids? Or Ken Dodd? That’s how I feel with my hair just now having missed a couple of my appointments. 

I've been 'accused' of still having nice hair despite it being lock down several times over the past few weeks – a couple of people have looked at me very suspiciously. 
 
Imagine how we’d all be looking if we had weekly appointments for a shampoo and set like our mothers did back in the day. I remember my mum nipping round to Doreen’s on a Friday. Doreen had converted the front room of her two up, two down terraced house into a salon and had 3 of those big hood dryers in a row. You stood over her kitchen sink to get your hair washed. She had a plastic shower hose attached to the taps – well risky for scalds if the cold pressure was too high and it popped off the cold tap. Thankfully those days are no more. 
 
As you can imagine the news this week has made me very happy. I can't wait to see Brian my hairdresser again, it's just THE BEST THING that he is be able to open from 4th July. I’ve got everything crossed that my appointment goes ahead on the 8th. I've been seeing him religiously every 6 weeks for over 20 years and prior to lock down I had my appointments booked in up until March 2021! 
 
He knows my hair really well and cuts it accordingly. I.e. the style is designed to go with the way it grows. This, I'm incredibly thankful for, because it's precisely why, despite not being cut since February, it still looks ok. 
 
 
If it's not too personal a question - how IS your knicker drawer looking? Actually, before we start on the detail what do you call them? 
In Lancashire, where I'm from, pants are trousers (like in America) and you wear knickers as underwear. Having lived in Nottingham for most of my adult life I've gone native and now call knickers pants (and trousers are trousers). There are lots of names for pants - bloomers, drawers, apple catchers, undies, briefs, knickers, keks, grundies all of these are ok.... But NEVER panties, that just sounds so sleazy. 
 
I'm writing to you about knickers this week as it's my belief that your underwear can affect how you feel as you go about your day and ultimately, it can be a marker of your self-image. 
 
If you get the foundations right and your clothes hang better, you'll look and feel the business. There are so many shapes and types of knickers, how do you choose what type you prefer? Does it depend on what you are wearing on top? Thongs, g-strings, boy shorts, Brazilian, high leg, midi, mini, waist whopper armpit warmers. 
 
It's ALWAYS about comfort for me. If your pants are not comfy, digging in or going up your bum or whatever then it can affect your whole day. How can you focus with a wedgie? Always full backside coverage, I like to get my money's worth in the fabric department. 
 
 
 

Do you dye your hair? This week I'm explaining why it might be ageing you. 

The main thing to understand with colour if you want it to be flattering for you, enhancing your skin and making your eyes sparkle is, whether you suit a warm or cool palette. So, for example if you’re blonde with pale skin and blue eyes and red is your thing there will be a red to suit you it just might be a different kind of red to your friend who has dark hair, olive skin and brown eyes. 
 
There are warm and cool hues of every colour except orange. This is because all colours are mixed from the primaries, red, yellow and blue. Red and yellow are warm colours, blue is cool. Depending on how much of each primary it takes to make the colour will determine its level of warmth/coolness. Orange doesn’t have a cool version as it’s made from red and yellow mixed together, both warm primaries. So orange is ‘double warm’. 
 
Once you understand your 'rules' it makes it all so much easier to create visual harmony across your wardrobe. When I do a colour analysis, I am looking primarily at your skin undertone, followed by your hair and eyes. 
 
The way to tell if your colouring is cool or warm is to check your veins near your wrist. If they appear green your undertone is warm. If they appear blue your undertone is cool. 
 
Obviously, we can change our hair colour with dye. I get asked a lot if your colours change as you get older, especially if people want to stop colouring their hair and embrace the grey, especially through the transition stage. 
You’d love to take good selfies and get a picture of yourself that you’re happy with. 
You just want to look nice but end up with three chins. You don’t want to appear vain, but it would be nice to have a flattering photo for once instead of avoiding the camera. 
 
Maybe it’s so bad and you dislike photos of yourself so much that always end up being the one taking the pictures of everyone else. 
 
Perhaps you would’ve loved to have joined in my 5 Day Shop Your Wardrobe Challenge this week and got as far as signing up but when you saw that it said “post selfies” it had you recoiling in horror because you just can’t face looking at pictures of yourself. 
 
For you to take good selfies and get those flattering pictures there are a few things that you can do to feel comfortable and confident in front of the camera. You’re smiling, got the best angle to minimise those double chins, no dark circles or dodgy shadows that age you beyond your years and you look like the best version of yourself. 
 
The problem is you don’t know where to start. How come some of the women you see on Facebook and Instagram are so much more photogenic than you think you could ever be. 
 
If this sounds a bit like you then you then you’ll be pleased to know you’re in good company. I hear this kind of story often. 
I know that you want to look good and feel amazing in your clothes. 
You want to look on trend but worry about looking like mutton dressed as lamb. You aren’t ready for a twinset and pearls or wearing those Velcro fastening shoes from the back of the Sunday supplements. Neither do you want to dress like your daughter. 
 
You are somewhere in the middle, you’re young at heart and want to look nice but aren’t always sure that you’ve got your outfit 100% right. It doesn’t seem that easy to get things feeling perfect; so that you look great and walk out of the door feeling self-assured. 
 
For that to happen you need to feel comfortable and confident that you’re expressing your identity authentically. You’re saying something about who you are – happy in your own skin and have your personal style nailed. You always know what to wear. You can get dressed without the stress. 
 
The problem is you have a wardrobe full of clothes but still feel like you have nothing to wear and this makes you feel frustrated. You get cross with yourself because you’re an intelligent woman. This should be easy for someone like you, a successful career woman in the prime of her life…why can’t you manage to be one of those women who always look effortlessly stylish? 
 
If this sounds a bit like you then you then you’ll be pleased to know you’re in good company. I hear this kind of story often. I created my business because I believe that you deserve to look good and feel amazing regardless of your age or body shape. 
Are your standards slipping as we continue in lockdown? While, during ‘normal’ times you won’t see me out and about in public without my face it doesn’t feel as necessary for online meetings. It actually seems a bit odd to be sitting at home fully made up. 
I reckon I’ve had more make-up free days in the past few weeks than any other time in my adult life. 
 
I’ve always loved make up and wear it most days. It’s part of my identity and I wear it for me, not for anyone else. I like the way it changes my appearance. 
I actually find the process of applying it quite meditative. My full routine takes me about twelve minutes and that’s the full works: foundation, eye make-up, lipstick, the lot. I play around with colour on my eyes but mainly stick with the same application process. 
 
I have a 3-minute version and a 5-minute version too – it depends on what I’m doing that day. This is what I’m sticking to more and more these days – very light, just a couple of products yet still adding a bit of definition to my features. 
If I were going ‘out out’ in the evening, then I’d make my eye makeup more dramatic.  
For other occasions when I need it be long lasting then I’ll take more time and apply it, in layers, so it lasts all day without needing to be reapplied. 
Whether you love it, hate it or fall somewhere in between, there’s no denying the fact that make-up can help some of us feel more confident. 
 
I often find, though, that many women would like to wear make-up but aren’t sure how to apply it. They feel intimidated by the store assistants and don’t want to ask for advice or sit on a stool in the middle of a busy store while they have several layers applied – a primer for this, a primer for that, etc. 
My tip to share with you this week is to help you buy less but wear more of your existing wardrobe by exploring the concept of Capsule Collections. 
One of my favourite things to do with clients is help them shop their wardrobe and create a capsule collection. This is basically playing around with what is already in your wardrobe and mixing and matching exploring new combinations, so you create lots of new outfit ideas from stuff you already have. 
 
It’s said that we wear 20% of our wardrobe 80% of the time, sticking with the same things despite our wardrobes being stuffed to the gills with clothes that never see the light of day. So my challenge to you this week is to make some time to give it a try. 
 
Here’s my step by step guide to Shopping Your Wardrobe for a Capsule Collection 
 
Have a wardrobe weed and clear out anything that doesn’t fit. Then hang things by colour so you can easily see what you have. You can get my Wardrobe Weed guide here. 
Think about what type of outfits you want to create e.g. work/leisure/smart casual 
Choose a couple of neutral colours to start with and a couple of interest colours to work with. 
Maybe take inspiration from one of my colour inspirations videos that I’ve been sharing on social media. Or use a scarf, necklace, flowers in the garden or a painting or design you like to take ideas from regarding colours. 
 
 
Having a colour analysis is a great start to your colour and style journey. You get a swatch of 50 colours which are perfectly matched to your unique colouring taking your skin, hair and eyes into consideration. 
I use the Absolute Colour System which provides the most accurate readings in my opinion and there are 18 definitive categories for me to work with. 
 
The next thing is to identify your Signature Colours – you can actually do this without having a colour analysis reading. E.g. Wearing the same coloured top as your eyes has immediate impact; there are such things as eye, skin and hair enhancers and intensifiers. I provide tips on this in my e-book called 5 Powerful Ways to Apply Colour Magic.  
 
You can get this as a bonus section to my newly launched Scarf Selfie Lockdown 2020 e-book £5 with 20% profit going to NHS charity.  
 
 
Once you know which colours actually suit you it’s then important to explore HOW you like to wear colour. This is defined by your Colour and Style Personality…and this is where it starts to get interesting. Even though colours suit you it doesn’t necessarily mean that you like them or feel excited by wearing them.  
 
 
I've been pondering how I could help you as we continue in the state of lock down and you might have a bit more time on your hands to sort out your wardrobe. It led me to thinking about this statement..."I have loads of clothes but don't seem to have many outfits." 
Sound familiar? I hear it a lot. 
 
So, I want you to put the lock down to the back of your mind for now and use your imagination that we are in normal times and read on... 
 
It’s Karen’s birthday in a few weeks she’s having a party for her 50th and you want something new to wear but you’re not sure what. You go out shopping without a plan or any ideas in mind of what you might be looking for, just browsing.  
 
You see a lovely top you like, you can’t be bothered trying it on because you can’t be bothered with the faff of changing rooms and the lighting is always awful anyway…You buy it thinking you’ll return it if it’s not right. 
 
You go to the next shop and same thing happens. This time you’re not sure if the style is right for you or the colour is a bit different for you, it’s a step away from your usual black.  
 
You’ve never worn navy because it reminds you of your school uniform, but you read it somewhere that navy suits everybody. And also, you saw Sandra wearing navy in a photo on Facebook the other week and she looked amazing in it. Her eyes were sparkly, and her skin look fab. In your bag it goes. 
 
 
Remember a few weeks ago when I was talking about wardrobe weeding? I mentioned hanging your clothes in colour groups and the first time I did it I realised I had over a dozen black and white tops. This was the start of that collection. This tunic was bought from Tesco late summer 2007. 
It is a symbolic item of clothing for me and today I’ll share the reason why. 
 
I really liked it, the tunic was a new style for me, I’d never owned anything like it before. I loved the shape of it, I found it flattering; it fitted around my boobs with a gentle flare that skimmed over my belly and long enough to cover my bum. Great with leggings which were something I’d rediscovered after a 20-year break. (We lived in them at uni in the 80’s but in those days, they didn’t have lycra and went baggy around the knees very quickly.) 
 
What seems really unbelievable now is that I felt very conspicuous in it at first because of the, what I considered to be then, BOLD pattern. Seriously, I thought this was so in your face! It was so extremely far removed from the ‘slimming black’ baggy tops I’d been hiding away in for a long time. 
 
You see, I’d been in quite a negative relationship with myself on and off for a few years. My self esteem had slowly been ebbing away over time as I’d spiralled in and out (to varying degrees) of a clinically depressive state during the previous 10-year period. I was first prescribed anti-depressants after serious road traffic accident in the spring of 1998. (My on/off relationship with those lasted about the same amount of time as my first marriage coincidentally.) 
 
Not long after the first car accident I got married and we had a son the following year. It was during this pregnancy that I gained a lot of weight. Around 5 stone to be precise. 
 
 
15th April 2020 marks a momentous day for me…my hair cut was due on this day. 
If you’ve been following me for a while, you’ll know that my hair is my non-negotiable me time in my diary so I'm having my own little wobble about this. It will pass, I know. I'm being dramatic. 
 
I have been going to my hairdresser Brian for the past 23/24 years religiously EVERY 6 weeks for a haircut. My appointments are booked in 12 months in advance and NOTHING takes priority over this hour of time. 
 
Before Brian I used to see a guy in Loughborough who I started using in 1986 during my student days. That’s how loyal I am to my hairdressers – when you have short hair and you find one who is really good you don’t mess about 
 
In all of this time I have only ever once let someone else cut my hair and what a disaster I felt that was. It was actually probably not that bad in all fairness, but I felt that instead of my usual textured spiky cut it was a lot more even and uniform. A bit like a toilet brush or that drummer guy, Eric Faulkner from the Bay City Rollers (Google him). 
 
The reason I missed my regular appointment with Brian was unavoidable, trouble was he couldn’t fit me in again until my next appointment came around. Like me, ALL of his clients are booked up a year in advance too, to get in with him you essentially need a cancellation, or for one of his regular to pop their clogs. 
 
 
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