Red. Can You Wear It?

February has us seeing red all month long with Heart Health Month and Valentine’s Day. But due to it’s popularity, I receive numerous questions about the color all year long. So, with love in the air, I thought this would be an ideal time to talk about my favorite color, answer some common questions and help you embrace this fabulous color and say “YES!” to wearing red.

1. Is Red Your Personality?

Red is my favorite color and I wear it in numerous ways; either as an accent color or dress, pant, coat, top, shoes or scarf. However, in nature, as in business and life, red can be an emotionally intense color.

A woman wearing a red suit stands out in a crowd of grey, black and navy.

Red is associated with blood, fire, energy, desire, power, danger and love, all at the same time!  As such, our brain and eyes are drawn to pick up the color instantly, which means if you are wanting to stand out and boost your confidence, then red should be your color of choice.

On the other hand, if you’re hesitant to call attention to yourself and prefer not to be noticed, then I don’t recommend you wear it as the focal point of your outfit. You will not project correctly. 

What do I mean by project? Well, while you may not realize it, people can tell if you don’t feel good about what you’re wearing. The way you walk and talk as well as the your non-verbal body language, will communicate this. However, if you really do like the color, choose to wear red as an accent as opposed to the focal point and feel great about it. REMEMBER: Your subconscious will project, so this is a color where your feelings must align with your outside image.

2. Are You Wearing The Right Shade?

Color blocks showing examples of warm red and cool red

Perhaps your issue with red centers around its various shades.  This is where having a color analysis to determine your palette is helpful.  Don’t worry if you haven’t done a full analysis (yet). You can still figure out the best red for you and your skin complexion.

Red comes in two shades: warm and cool. Look at the warm and cool red side-by-side. It clearly shows how warm red has more yellow as its base while the cool red has blue.

People who look best in warm reds also look better in warmer colors like browns, oranges, yellows, and rust.  Think “fall” tones. People who look better in cool reds also look best in jewel tones like magenta, royal blue, bright purples and black.

You can hold swatches or a blouse in both shades close to your face, to determine which shade looks best on you.  With proper lighting, you will see and feel it instantly.

Get Help From Metallics

Another quick tip is to use your favorite metallic, such as silver or gold jewelry, as a guide. If silver is most flattering on you, then most likely you look better in cool red.  If gold looks best on you, then a warm red is the answer.

There are some skin tones that can get away with wearing either a warm or cool red. (Especially darker complexions). I’m in this category. Even though I wear a lot of cool red with blue undertones, I can just as easily wear a warm shade.  In this situation, choose the shade you prefer and accessorize accordingly, with gold for warms and silver for cool.

3. How Much Red Should You Wear?

In addition to feelings and skin tone, also pay close attention to what your goal is for the day.

Red is my favorite color. I wear it socially and professionally. In business situations I wear it when I need to be in a position of leadership and present new ideas. It evokes a feeling of confidence in me and others see it. However, if you have a sales call or plan to negotiate for something you want, you may want to reconsider.

Red is a power color. Studies have shown it can increase your heart rate. It can raise metabolism and increase blood pressure, which means it has the potential to make the other person uncomfortable.  However, if this is what you desire, then go for it!

Again, the important thing to consider is how you feel when you wear it. Once this battle is conquered, you can figure out the right shade you should wear.

If you truly don’t want to wear red, try these colors instead:

White or Creme – This color is a winner anytime of the year. Wear monochrome from head to toe, for a chic, classic look. Pair different shades of creme to be totally lux and glam.

Blush – Blush is a romantic light pink that represents feminine, delicate qualities.

The Duchess Megan Markle in red coat and purple dress.

Purple or Royal Blue – Both colors symbolize luxury and royalty. Notice in this picture, how the color blocks of purple and red compliment Duchess Megan Markle’s skin tone?

Custom Color Analysis

The key to wearing any color is to know that it looks good on you and that it enhances your eyes, hair and complexion. While using swatches is a temporary and quick fix, knowing your full color palette makes getting dressed and shopping so much easier. If you would like to learn more about color analysis, contact me at Brenda@FirstImpressionsMatter.com or click the link below.

Custom Color Analysis

Fall 2018 Trends to Watch


Fall has arrived and it’s time to pay attention to the best fall trends for 2018.

I love Fall clothing. It’s something about the weather cooling down and snuggling up in to warmer clothing.

But knowing your color palette is crucial during this time due to all the new colors that show up for fall.

My palette is Autumn and I love it during this time of year when the colors of my season appear, such as gold, mustard yellow, orange, red and bronze. This year you will be able to find these colors in paisley and floral patterns and don’t forget animal print, it’s back again but in a modern form.

Here is the round-up of the best fall fashion trends for women over 50.

Embroidery

Embroidery is everywhere for the season. If looks beautiful on all the clothing I’ve seen. I especially love it mixed with the western look as seen in the picture.

Think of your style and what your brand represents. Is this something you will wear or are will you buy it since it’s in style?

For instance, my style is classic, traditional, with a little bold. So when see something like this my first thought is, will be around next year? If I have any doubts, I will not buy it. I like to buy clothes that last and build my wardrobe rather than just buying clothes that last only for a season. I like clothes that last for as long as possible.

The details of embroidery on an outfit is very pretty and can be found on a variety of pieces. You will notice it on dresses, jackets, jeans, shoes and handbags.

Floral/Paisley and Prints

Striking, bold colorful florals, paisleys and prints are in full force this year. The impact of the large and beautiful colors display a more modern and fashion forward look.

Keep in mind how you feel in florals especially the size of them and this year they are larger. They are not for everyone even if it is in style. Sometimes it’s better to not wear full body florals and wear either the top or bottom and mix it with solids to balance it out.

Make sure to also consider you’re your color palette when choosing patterns, it makes all the difference with how it looks on you.

The Color Purple

Pantone selected Ultra Violet as the color of the year for 2018, so the shade will dominate fashion.

You will find darker and lighter shades of purple for the fall and winter seasons such as Hyacinth Purple, lilac which is considered in the purple family.

Pant Suits are Back

Look for matching pants with the style, fabric and patterns as the jackets. You will find them in solids, plaids and paisley.

2018 is the year of Women Empowerment and women in suits are even more prominent. Whether you are in business, starting your own business or delving into the next chapter of your life, women are looking for clothing that expresses their confidence and power.

Velvet

Velvet was strong last year and it’s stronger this year. Super soft and perfect for the cold weather and holiday months. You will also find embroidery and beautiful colors for the season. You will see blazers, kimonos, dresses, scarves and shoes.

Faux Suede or Leather

Faux suede and leather are back this year long with authentic leather and suede. Personally, faux has really improved since it’s first introduction years ago. It’s hard  to tell the difference between the real and the faux (fake). I have always been a component of the real but truthfully, I love the faux and a big reason is because how it looks and you can wash it. I have a couple of real suede jackets hanging in my closet that need cleaning and I have had a hard time finding a cleaner. I can find cleaners that will take it and send it to another cleaner for cleaning, but you will pay two fees, although they won’t say that. It gets expensive for cleaning.

Look out for faux suede and leather dresses, skirts, scarves, and shoes and all in so many beautiful colors.


Animal Print 

I know animal print is a usually on the fall list. The good news is that you probably have something in your wardrobe already. This year designers have added bolder animal patterns such as tiger and zebra instead.

Or, you will find the leopard print with a brighter background such as tan, pink, red, or other colors. If you prefer not to wear it head-to-toe print, you can choose one item, such as a clutch bag, sweater, or shoes.

Fall is my favorite time of year to purchase clothing. You will find very nice pieces along with colors during this time. Try adding one new piece to your wardrobe to update it.

Which is your favorite from the fall 2018 trends? Is there one new item you will be adding to your closet this season?

Find out how to identify your personal style and brand. Learn how they impact your professional success and sign up for my 11-page workbook @ www.FirstImpressionsMatter.com

Five Easy Ways to Refresh Your Look in 2018

I always feel the New Year is a great time for getting a new perspective on things and improving our outlook on life. Is it time to refresh or update your look in 2018?

Do you feel like you have nothing to wear? Would you like a new appearance, improve your image or gain more confidence? What about your hairstyle? Do you wear it the same way all the time because you don’t know what to do with it?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then it’s time to update or refresh your look.

If you have no idea where to begin, don’t worry. I’ve got you covered with the basics.

Here are 5 easy ways to refresh your look in 2018 that will embrace your style:

 

Revive your eyebrows

Well-groomed brows shape the frame of your eyes and highlight your best facial features. In fact, your brows can make you look put together even on a makeup free day.

Make sure your brows are shaped to your face. Locate an experienced brow specialist in your area, which you can find in hair or nail salons. Make sure to read the customer reviews and ratings on the place to ensure you pick an experienced professional. Eyebrows have the power to transform your face so you want to make sure they’re in the right hands!

The right eyebrow shape will brighten your appearance and make you look youthful. The trick to finding the best brow for your face is to first figure out your face shape.

Next, decide what color brow suits you the best (usually I recommend sticking to the color of your roots or a shade darker than your current hair color) and then decide what features you want to highlight the most.

Purchase a nature eyebrow pencil or powder. I personally like to use Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Definer. It  is double ended, with a powder-like pencil  on one end that creates natural lines and strokes to fill in. The spooly brush on the other end helps to blend and comb your brows to retain their shape. You can fill in your brow and brush in an upward motion and you will create a well defined brow.

Incase you need help, there are plenty of tutorials on Youtube that guide you with filling in and shaping your eyebrows.

 

mix up your color PALETTE 

Sometimes it’s just so convenient to wear certain colors like black or grey and not have to think about coordinating colors. It’s been so cold the past few weeks and I found myself in this rut for a while and had to snap out of it. My energy became so low and I couldn’t figure out what was wrong with me. I determined it was the colors I was wearing. I needed a change in the colors I chose to wear to feel better.

Take a look at your wardrobe and make note of the clothes you wear most of the time. If you notice a repetition in the shades of color you choose to wear usually,  try making a conscious effort to mix it up. Once I started doing this, I felt so much better so I definitely suggest you give it a try.

You will put yourself in a style rut if you wear the same colors all the time. To refresh your color pallette, pick out some items from your wardrobe that are a different color to the ones you usually wear and make a decision to wear more of them. You will feel as though you’ve got a whole new style without having to buy new clothes.

You could also start out with small steps by adding a colorful handbag or bold color shoes. Since it is currently cold out, you could also use colorful layers of scarves or vests to add a splash of color. If you’re a monotone color kind of person, adding patterns to your look is also a stylish way to step out of your comfort zone!

 

EMBRACE ACCESSORIES 

I think the easiest way to refresh your look is to get a few new accessories and use them as a focal point for your new look. 

A cape or poncho is perfect, if you like them. The color of the year for 2018 is ultra violet (purple), so if this is in your color palette, try it or something like a crossbody handbag. Purple is a color you can use to colorblock outfits and you can wear it with red, navy blue, teal, black or cream.

Reading glasses is another way of updating your look. I love different color reading glasses to match my outfits. You can find them at peepers.com or Google other places. You will feel completely transformed and stylish at the same time.

Of course, shoes, scarves and jewelry are other options that help you to accessorize. It’s time to test out new styles and find out which new trends you’re willing to add to your wardrobe. Accessories are always a fabulous way to turn up any look!

 

CHANGE IN MAKE-UP

Is it time to change your make-up routine and have a different look? 

Sometimes your make-up is the hardest to change since you may not know what to do or how to go about it. It’s also challenging to try a new look when we’re comfortable with what works for us.

Changing up your facial look so that you don’t look the same everyday can take one simple trick without doing a whole lot.

Take a look at Youtube tutorials to help you with eyeliner application or eye shadow color combinations. They also have different seasonal make up looks with easy instructions. This is an excellent source to get started. Everything you need help with, you’re sure to find on Youtube!

I personally use Bare Minerals make-up and love the transparent and natural look. It’s light on the face and makes me feel like I don’t have any make-up on.  It’s also great for sensitive skin and doesn’t break you out. I suggest that you walk into a store location to get matched for your perfect color. Bare Minerals is located mostly in malls but their products can be found pretty much everywhere. 

Also this year it’s all about glitter, so figure out if you like it or not. Glitter is taking over for the eyes, lips and cheeks. If you want to use it subtly, I recommend using it on the lips, on top of your lipstick. It really looks pretty with a touch of glitter, which isn’t too much.

 

 

 

Get a Really Great Haircut

A new haircut always looks fresh and clean, but if you only get a trim a few times a year, this may be a dramatic change. Last year was more about the shorter bob styles but this year styles are longer and back to curls. 

While you may know what type of style you want, make sure it’s the right style for your facial shape. Google “The Best Hairstyles for Face Shapes” and you will be able to determine what style is best for you.

Make sure the hairstyle matches your lifestyle. If you are no longer working or on a part-time basis, you do not want a style with a lot of maintenance. You need a look that is easy to care for, is flattering on you and makes you feel amazing!

 

Go ahead, take a leap of faith and update your look for the new year! Try one of our suggested easy ways to help refresh your look and let us know how it made you feel.

 

Find out How to Stand Out from the Crowd and identify your personal style and brand. Learn how they impact your professional success and sign up for my 11-page workbook @ www.FirstImpressionsMatter.com.