One of the best things I learned during my Colour Analysis training was How to wear black if you don't suit black. Black clothing is so easily available in the shops and the Fashion Industry pushes it as THE colour to wear. They claim it goes with everything. While it might suit some of us, for a lot of women (and men) it's too bold, intense and ages us. So, how do we wear black when it doesn't suit us?
I used to wear a lot of black and one day my Aunt commented that it really didn't suit me. She wasn't being mean, she was being honest.
I was in my twenties with dewy, youthful skin and soft/muted and warm colouring. Even with the advantages of youth, I could see it aged me and it wore me. For me, it's too strong, bold and intense a colour. This gorgeous lady has the most amazing hair and that'll go a long way to breaking up the black which is far too strong for her.
If it's a dress or a top, lower the neckline so the black isn't too close to your face or neck.
A V neck, Scoop or Cowl neck that is further away from your face can make all the difference.
If you feel there area looks bare, try the next tip and add a statement necklace.
Wear a statement necklace or creamy pearls for warms and white pearls for cools, it'll be closer to your face and negate the impact of the black.
If you prefer, choose a necklace in one or more of your best colours. It'll draw the eyes up to see your face first and not the black of your outfit.
Wear a wrap, scarf, shawl or pashmina in one of your wow colours, keep this between your face and the black outfit so your face looks youthful, lifted and healthy. It really can take years off you. I promise.
Instead of matt black, try textured black or black with a pattern (houndstooth checks in a tiny pattern) to break up the impact of the black and soften it. Something like this Tweed fabric uses a lighter colour to soften the black. In a larger pattern with high contrast that would be too intense for someone who is soft/muted but could be fabulous on a Bright Winter or Spring.
Make up helps, but lipstick can be an absolute godsend. Wear a lippy to suit you and your colouring, it'll work wonders. You'll notice the dark, almost black nails on this lady and they're too strong for her, but the nude lipstick, textured faux fur hat and print wrap break up the deepest colours in her outfit.
Do you wear black even though you know it's not your friend?
If any of these tips on How to wear black if it doesn't suit you have been helpful to you, I'd love to hear from you.
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I was watching a film on Netflix, Brené Brown – The call to courage, where she talks a about courage, shame and the weight of societal expectations. She made some really interesting observations about how men are judged on how successful they are, expected to always be strong and to defend their family at all costs. While women are judged by their appearance and in particular their body image and weight. We’re shamed for being too fat, too thin, too tall, too short and so on.
A friend posted an image on Facebook, all these women weigh 11 stone / 154lbs / 69.85kg which is the average weight of a British woman. It made me think about weight and I’ve decided it’s just a number.
The image will take you directly to the article if you click on it.
The ladies range from 5ft 2in tall up to 6ft 1in tall, have different body shapes and lifestyles. Some exercise, some walk, some don’t. It’s important to remember that a pound of muscle takes up a lot less room than a pound of fat so weight isn’t always the most accurate measure of health, neither is BMI or body mass index.
My Ex husband is 6ft 4 1/2 in tall, his BMI has often been pointed out as high but the ratio based on height isn’t the most accurate and doesn’t take into account the muscle mass or skeletal mass of the person. He was never overweight, never had any belly fat, so his BMI and weight weren’t an accurate measure of his health.
You could be skinny-fat, slim but with more visceral belly fat hidden in your system than someone who weighs more but is more active and eats a healthier diet.
Building up muscle as we get older can make a positive impact on your metabolism, your inch loss, your energy and your long term health. That muscle will help increase your metabolism and help you look leaner, stronger and feel better.
So next time you weigh in, remember, it’s just a number. It’s not the measure that changes who you are, it’s doing something about it.
I’m 51 now and 5ft 4in tall, like Angela in the article, lady on the left of the photo. I weigh more than she does but I’m following a Rosemary Conley plan from her Hip & Thigh diet, it’s easy for me to remember and works for me. I’m a way off 11st but it’s my goal to get there by March of 2020. To keep myself on track I’ve set up non-food mini rewards along the way for each 7lbs lost.
Body shape makes a difference, I’m a pear shape or triangle with my weight in the lower body, but in recent years due to hormones and menopause I’ve been carrying some belly fat. Belly fat is more dangerous than leg, hip or bottom fat and it’s something I need to deal with to avoid health complications. See this article on the BBC website for more information.
I have added in some bodyweight training, 3 times a week for just 15 minutes per session. It’s easy to fit into my working day and hard to find an excuse not to do it 🙂 I can feel more muscle after just a few weeks and there is definitely some inch loss even on weeks when the scales say otherwise. See, weight is just a number 🙂
I’m working my way through the Couch to 5k programme from the NHS in addition to my daily dog walks. I’m on week one and I can already feel a difference to my energy levels. I’ll let you know what changes that makes to my weight and measurements as I go along.
What’s my point? I guess to say that weight is just a number, it means different things depending on your lifestyle, how active you are, how you eat and isn’t the only measure of health or success in life.
If you’re overweight now, don’t put off changing your life. If you want to have your colour analysis session or have a style consult, do it now. You have the right to feel gorgeous every day and your weight doesn’t define that. Learn to love yourself the way you are and your whole world will change.
Next month I’m adding in a five minute, no weights workout each day to tackle those jiggly upper arms, check in end of July for more info, maybe you’d like to join me?
Let’s talk today about the 6 Body Shapes. There are some body shapes we share, even if our proportions and scale differ.
Any scale of person (petite, standard, plus) can be any body shape.
I’ve worked with ladies who just recognised three body shapes, straight, curvy and full figure. I prefer to expand on that a little and feel the following covers most of us.
In order, the six body shapes are Triangle (often called a Pear), Inverted Triangle, Rectangle, Hourglass, Diamond and Oval (often called an apple shape).
Typically a Pear/Triangle body shape will have shoulders which are visibly narrower than hips.
An Inverted Triangle body shape will have shoulders which are visibly wider than the hips.
A Rectangle body shape is usually proportionate, in that hips and shoulders are equal width with no obvious waist.
An Hourglass body shape has a defined waist, hips and shoulders are equal in width.
A Diamond body shape tends to carry any weight about their middle but is a more angular shape than an Oval might.
An Oval/Apple body shape tends to carry any weight in the upper body, usually with a higher waist.
Knowing which body shape is closest to your body, will allow you to highlight your bests best and minimize the bits you’d rather no one noticed. There are lots of simple tips you can use.
Many people will be a combination of body types. I’m a pear or triangle shape but have a little belly padding which has raised my waistline so it is similar to an apple or oval shape. I wear tops that are fitted in the back with shaping to show off my waist curve at the back but straight at the front to allow some ease for a curvy tummy. I wear bootcut trousers to balance my wider hips and skim my curves. If I wear a skinny jean that would make my hips and legs look much wider.