In a beauty obsessed society, how you look matters, but appearance goes way beyond your dress size, whether you have the perfect pout, natural or otherwise enhanced, and the brand and price tag of your blue jeans.
What matters most is how you put yourself together and how you carry that self.
As is often the case, the devil is in the details. Before dismissing the following tips as common sense, consider the last time you really inspected your clothing or got dressed leisurely, making sure your entire outfit was in tip top shape. If you want to be one of the chic and smartly dressed persons out and about, read on.
Check clothes regularly and in natural light for stains. Getting ready in dim early morning light, you likely won’t see stains unless they are really prominent. But a stain is a stain and by midday, everything is extra illuminated. There is no greater distraction when talking to someone than a stain on the front of their shirt or dress. Carrying around a stain removing pen in your handbag is also a good idea.
After laundering, check clothes for tears and mend immediately or keep them apart from wearable clothes. Pay attention to seams and especially hems; they are notorious for being compromised by errant toes while pulling clothing on.
Press or steam clothes after laundering. Wearing rumpled clothing is the ultimate sartorial sin. Unless your position is that you absolutely do not care about anything, including yourself, then take the extra time to remove unsightly creases. Invest in a steamer that is quicker and more versatile than an iron. I keep an upright steamer in my bathroom and after showering while i’m waiting for my face mask to work its magic, I use those few minutes to steam my outfit. When I step out to greet the day I can hold my head high knowing I’m walking the stylish straight and narrow.
Reject the idea that you need to buy new clothes every season. As long as your clothes are clean, well fitting, undamaged and unwrinkled, there is still life left in them - even if the color was more brilliant in days gone by. So what if your previously brilliant navy blue linen shirt is now the color of washed denim, wear it with pride! Either embrace the weathered shade or dye it to return it to its glory days. Fabric dye is easily available at craft stores and the process can easily be done in a plastic basin.
If you don’t have a best friend, get a lint remover and keep her close. When wearing black, or fabric like wool that loves to attract lint, do a quick once over with a lint brush before you leave the house. Then consider carrying around a small lint roller in your purse to use as the day progresses. The same goes for if you have pets or if your hair is prone to shedding. Many times I see people wearing black sweaters the backs of which are covered with strands of hair. Maybe they don’t realize it is even there, but everyone else does, and it makes them look unkempt. For wool and cashmere clothing that is prone to pilling, check areas where a handbag may rub against you and remove any pills to maintain your polished look.
Polish your shoes an keep them clean. For leather shoes, a quick wipe with a wet cloth is good to remove any dust. And every now and then, polishing and a shine will keep them in good shape and will keep you looking keen.
Do you have any tips to share on how you keep yourself looking chic?