By Chi de Jesus
Are you tired of flipping through the magazines and going through people’s OTD’s just to get an idea of what to wear or what to shop for yourself? Here are some fashion essentials that will get you through this year. We’ve interviewed fashion experts and clothing aficionados to get their recommendations on what a stylish woman would need to be “in fashion” in 2022 (at least).
A WHITE SHIRT – buttoned-down, blousette, or crew neck, this versatile piece can go well with any clothing item. Former print and runway model, Aileen Santarinala says fabric and fit are key to making this item go with any other fashion item. Asia’s Next Top Model alumni Jodilly Pendre, says it’s her go-to item because it’s a “no brainer” – it fits any look and fashion item.
A PRINTED BLOUSE – can be the centerpiece to any solid colour combination or a break to any colour blocked look, be mindful of the size of the print though and make sure it works for you (more of this in an upcoming article). Your printed blouse can be an accent to your streamlined look.
CASHMERE KNIT – with a cowl or a turtle neck in light breathable fabric can easily transition through any season – wear it easy or with a classic look, it’ll work wonders for you… light cardigans and cozy sweaters can also work as long as it’s not fabric heavy
Comfort and style rolled into one item that may add sophistication to your style.
BLACK BODYSUIT – it’s like a leotard but with snap-ons at the bottom for easy access when you go to the little girl’s room. This is perfect for night-outs where you can move freely without worrying about what’s-untucked-where.. Perfect with low waist denim or dress shorts.
BLAZER – double-breasted or three-buttoned, tapered or oversized, this item can make the transition from casual to casual chic, from chill to corporate, and can be an emergency item that you can “pull out of the hat” when the need arises. Work with earth tones to make this item more versatile.
SILK SLIP DRESS – by itself with sexy pumps can be as captivating as wearing it with white runners and a denim jacket. It’s an item that provides a great contrast between fabrics and accessories and a good canvass to express your whimsy. Innerwear as outerwear brings us back to the design concept of Coco Chanel.
A JUMPSUIT – an item that you can literally “jump into” combining top and bottoms in a sleek design – it’s classic enough that it goes through seasons and timelines all you need to do is accessorize. Can work with or without an inner shirt.
BLACK TROUSERS – straight cut or bootleg, this goes well with almost all fashion items and it streamlines the look especially if you are bottom-heavy. If not, there is always the white option.
Make sure that cut and length complements your body proportions.
DENIM JEANS – how can you get more classic than that? Robby Carmona, multi-awarded Filipino Fashion Director says it’s a staple for daily activities and travel. Fit is key and an understanding of your body structure allows you to choose the best type for you because there’s always a denim pair of jeans for any shape or size. Proper accessories can glam this number ready for the clubs.
CLASSIC COAT COVER-UP – an easy choice to transform your look from laid-back to travel chic without breaking a sweat … make it more versatile by choosing water-repellent fabric for the rains and you will look smashing. All-weather, all occasion.. a necessary item for your wardrobe.
They’re VERSATILE, CLASSIC, and FUNCTIONAL – three qualities that make all these items essential to your wardrobe. Watch out for the rest of the “Fashion Essential Series” where we discuss accessorising and how to handle your biggest fashion essential – your skin!
Source: The Australian Filipina
Defining beauty as a concept is akin to holding sand in your hands. You can grasp at it and you certainly can seem to understand what it looks and feels like, but it is by no means solid. They say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder and this cliché certainly holds true. Approach anyone in the street and ask him or her to explain their ideal of beauty and you will undoubtedly get substantial variations in response. What you might come to discover is that defining beauty is closer to “I know it when I see it”.
It becomes very obvious then that defining beauty is as subjective as one’s taste in music. The search for it has spanned centuries – a relief in the tomb of the Egyptian nobleman Ptahhotep (who lived around 2400 BC) shows him getting a pedicure. Cleopatra wore kohl, a precursor to the modern eyeliner. Incarnations of what is considered ‘beautiful’ has ranged from breath-stealing corsets in the 19th century to achieve a tiny waist to our modern-day gravity-defying, ankle-threatening stilettos.
And that search is an expensive one! According to National Geographic, in the US, billions get spent on makeup, hair and skincare, diet products and services, and billions more on health club memberships and plastic surgery.
But what for? Experts from all different fields have weighed in to define beauty and why we search for it. Studies by anthropologist Don Symons at the University of California at Santa Barbara, and psychologist, David Perrett at St Andrews University in Scotland, all show that men consistently showed a preference for women with smooth skin, larger eyes, fuller lips, and a smaller nose and chin because “all these traits are reliable cues to youth, good health, and fertility.” Essential characteristics we instinctively know (honed over millennia) are vital for continuing the human race. However, that hard-wiring in our brain circuitry can be altered, especially by culture, according to Douglas Yu, a biologist from Great Britain whose studies, for example, found that indigenous tribes in Southeast Peru preferred body shapes regarded as overweight in western culture. “A fuller, evolutionary theory of human beauty must embrace variation,” says Yu.
So, who’s been shaping the modern definition of beauty? That modern definition that has us worshipping Victoria’s Secret models, A-list stars, and beauty queens, and has us comparing our bodies to theirs? That has us modifying our eating habits that in an ever-growing number around the world, has resulted in eating disorders? That has us losing our sense of self-worth and self-esteem? It’s so easy to blame the media – magazines, TV, movies – as the culprit. But who buys those magazines, watches those TV shows, goes to the movies?
In a twisted sort of way, we ourselves have been responsible. What we watch, what we buy has inadvertently shaped what modern society now considers beautiful. So, in recognizing that, can we then be the instruments of change?
I am an aunt to three beautiful little girls and I find myself sometimes terrified when I think of the challenges that face them when they grow up. I was fortunate enough to have grown up surrounded by strong, confident women and in that most essential stage – the teenage years, the high school years – when your perception of yourself in relation to others is shaped, I was blessed to have had a group of friends who couldn’t care less what anybody else thought of them. They were proud in who they were and in the dreams and ambitions they had for themselves. After high school, I again found myself, in the form of my two best friends and the women in my Christian youth group, with kindred spirits whose values and integrity meant more to them than superficial cares. I look back at those women, grateful that I knew them, and praying that my nieces will have women like them who will stand steadfast against today’s shallow perception of beauty.
When I was researching this article, I decided to have a look at the dictionary’s definition of beauty. According to Merriam Webster, beauty is:
– The quality of being physically attractive
– The qualities in a person or a thing that give pleasure to the senses or the mind.
Now that second part got me thinking… “qualities that give pleasure…” Isn’t that a healthier way of thinking about beauty? I mean, something can be physically attractive or ‘beautiful’ but deadly like a poisonous plant, and in that same vein, someone can be stunningly gorgeous but be a horrible person inside. So, I think instead of aiming to be beautiful, we should aim to be attractive. I mean, let’s face it, there is no way you can look like those models in the magazines. You know why? Because you don’t have the same genes they do, It’s as simple as that.
So, what do I mean about aiming to be attractive? Being attractive means that you’re the sort of person people are drawn to – like two magnets being pulled towards each other. Not drawn to you because of how gorgeous you look, but because they actually want to spend time with you. They are drawn to you because you are a person with a good heart, whose confidence and positive nature is just as irresistible as honey is to a bee. It’s a challenge, yes. And much more difficult for some to achieve than others but that’s what my circle of strong, confident women taught me – that my heart is more important than my face. Because ultimately, when I’m at my most unguarded when the only critic I face is me and I ask: “Do I love me?” and when I can say: “Yes”….that’s when I feel beautiful.
Life is full of unforeseen glitches. You’re running to a meeting and you snap your heel. You reach up and a button on your trouser comes loose, or your bra straps start to show while wearing your favourite cocktail dress. It seems like wardrobe malfunctions always occur at the most inconvenient times …. just ask Janet Jackson!
Here are the top 10 suggestions for solving your common fashion emergencies:
10. My poor pilled sweaters
Don’t just stand there pulling lint off yourself! These can be removed either with a lint sandpaper (rub across sweater to remove pills) or a razor. Sticky tape works well for this too. Leggings and coloured tights are in full force this winter, and it’s all about experimenting with patterns and different lengths. If you are starting out, you can find some cheap leggings from shops like Valley Girl or Hipster.
9. Oops, I snapped my heel!
As Mentos-sy (remember the commercials?) as it may be, snap the other heel off & dash to the nearest shoe store!
8. Eww, makeup stains!
Baby or make-up wipes are ideal for removing or reducing makeup stains on clothing. However, do not try to remove any stains from silk – go to a dry cleaner.
7. Can you see my pantyhose runs?
A small run-in pantyhose can soon develop into a full-fledged tear. Use clear nail polish over the run to stop it from spreading.
6. Where did my hairpins go?
Dancing your head away in a concert can make your hairpins come loose and go missing. You can’t do much other than stepping out of the ball just to buy some new ones around the corner. So tuck those stray hairs behind your ears for a smouldering sexy look.
5. My hems have fallen!
For a make-do hem in a hurry, use Hollywood tape or Res Q tape. This is double-sided tape specially designed as a temporary fix for clothing.
4. Noo.. not my bra straps!
There is nothing more annoying than forever having to pull your bra straps back up onto your shoulders. Use some double-sided tape to avoid slipping straps. Cut and re-sew the back straps further in toward the centre of your back, or purchase bra clasps – these are attached at the back and pull the two back straps together, however you will need a second person to do this for you.
3. My most uncomfortable: Static Cling
This often happens with skirts. For a fix on the run, rub hand cream into your thighs (through pantyhose if necessary). The best way of preventing static cling is to spray “anti-static spay” to the inside of your skirt. You can buy this at supermarkets in the hosiery section and in the lingerie section of department stores.
2. My zipper is stuck
First run a lead pencil along the teeth, if this does not work rub a bar of soap or a wax candle onto the problem area. With a little manipulation, the zipper should come unstuck.
1. Can I leave my buttons loose/frayed?
A loose button can quickly turn into a missing button. Dab the top of the button with a little clear nail polish to prevent it from completely falling off. Re-sew it back on firmly ASAP.
Remember to wear your leggings as if they were tights…leggings worn as pants are not a good look unless you are going to the gym.
You can extend the wear from your summer wardrobe. Dresses and short shorts look great over leggings. Team them with a pair of boots (long leather or short slouchy are in right now) and a waisted belt for a truly hip look. Have fun with it and mix and match items until you find a look that says “You”.
For those who aren’t blessed with super skinny, toned legs, wearing leggings underneath shorter outfits can be much more flattering and you will feel more confident.
Leggings look great under long tops or shift dresses. Try a sweater dress with a cute scarf to keep you warm and looking great.
Let’s face it; it’s standard for fashion-conscious individuals to always look chic and fabulous. They simply want to stand out in society with their fashion statement. While it is true that Hollywood celebrities are the ones we copy our fashion styles from, but, we need not go to the point of imitating the brands of the clothes they wear! Of course, we will always see them wearing expensive designer clothes. But, if you’re a practical woman with a sense of fashion there are actually alternatives that will still make you look fabulous in a budget-friendly way.
Subscribe to Fashion Magazines
There are a lot of fashion magazines on the market today—Vogue, In Style, Vanity Fair, among others. You just have to be keen on observing the fashion styles of famous celebrities and get an idea from there. You don’t need to buy the exact brands that they are wearing especially if you are on a budget, but you can always visit sites like the budget babe who can show you where to get celeb outfits at a much cheaper price.
Mix and Match
Checking out various fashion magazines have given us an idea what clothes look trendy and fashionably hot. Do not be afraid to mix and match outfits. It is important that we take courage and enjoy doing this; otherwise, we might end up uncomfortable with the clothes we mixed and matched. If done correctly, you may be surprised at how it works wonders! Your old jeans might look new when paired with a different t-shirt or shoe style and your vintage shirts or blouses will have a new look once paired with accessories.
You don’t need to have a lot of clothes in your wardrobe just to flash a different look every time you go out of our house. All you need to do is buy neutral coloured clothes and heaps of accessories. Investing in accessories is much cheaper than buying lots of clothes. You will be in awe of knowing how accessories can totally change the look and style of your clothes…transforming them into another kind of style that you never thought was even possible before.
Dig In Thrift Stores
You can find a lot of clothes on sale in thrift stores. All you have to do is to have the patience and the eye for the right clothes that will match some of your old outfits. Moreover, big department store chains also sell clothes on sale on an occasional or seasonal basis. You have to be updated on those things in order to be the first one to buy the good stuff on sale. Needless to say, the best things on sale are the first ones being sold. So, the saying, “The early bird catches the early worm.” really fits into this scenario.
Change Your Hairstyle
Hair is our crowning glory…it can make or break us. So, if we want to look fashionably hot without breaking out banks, then, we need to do something with our hairstyle. Did you know that a different kind of hair colour or style can instantly make a fashion statement? Also, do not underestimate what hair accessories can do. If applied correctly to your hair, they can make you look a million dollar baby!