Monday, December 8, 2008

The Power of Color

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Sunday, November 30, 2008

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Friday, November 7, 2008

Friday, October 31, 2008

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Style... On The Street

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Thursday, October 16, 2008

Monday, October 13, 2008

Metallics are back!

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Sunday, October 12, 2008

New and fun for fall


It is time to put away your hard core summer items and look toward fall trends. I love finding things that I enjoyed wearing last year as I pull out my fall and winter pieces. Get current by adding touches of metallic, lace jackets and vests and patterned stockings. Large handbags are bigger than ever and the matchy-matchy look is definitely not cool.
Stay tuned every Friday for my Style Podcast showing you all the latest trends and fashion and beauty finds in DC.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Think again!

There should be a “rule” book for fashion
As I go about my day, I can’t help wondering if some people actually look in the mirror before they leave the house. I am disturbed when I see women who otherwise look “put together” wearing things that derail their credibility.
Three things that I saw today:
1. A fabulously dressed woman wearing chipped, grown-out nail polish. Come on ladies, even if you do not have the time to get a fresh manicure, at least remove the chipped polish.
2. An otherwise beautifully dressed woman wearing tired, old - fashioned shoes. I know, they are all broken in and comfy, but there is no point in spending the time and money to dress well and then ruin it by stating you do not care by wearing old standby’s. With all the shoe choices today, you can absolutely have comfort and style.
3. A high level female official chewing gum as she walked on stage.
Do not, DO NOT chew gum in public. Regardless as to whether you think it is fine to do so- others do not. Trust me on this - it’s a small sacrifice for a huge gain in credibility.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Having fun with accessories

The right accessories can really pop an outfit. Less is always better and classic or traditional pieces are best in corporate environments. Larger, more dramatic fashion pieces are good for less conservative environments or for evening. Remember, there is a language to your accessories. Quality is the word that should come to mind when dressing for traditional or corporate workplaces. Do not wear earrings, a bracelet and necklace all at the same time. Remember scale when choosing new pieces. Have fun, be adventurous and keep your receipt in case you change your mind once you get home.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Save time in the morning...

Several people have asked me how to get dressed for work without having to think or make decisions. It seems that many women want to look great everyday but they do not want to put in a lot of effort making decisions about “what” goes with “what.” A great alternative to putting together ensembles from separates is to move toward wearing suits.
By having five or more suits, you can easily solve this problem. Couple them with different blouses, shells or sweaters and jewelry, and you can create many looks without a lot of thought.
TIP: Always plan on having your “off the rack” suit tailored. Nothing is more powerful looking than a woman in a perfectly fitted suit. Ill-fitting suits under-mind your credibility.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

I just saved time and money!

Every once in a while you pop into a store expecting to find nothing but luckily find everything you need. I hit the jackpot last week when Karen, a superb sales associate, helped me consider some new looks at the Chico’s in Friendship Heights, Maryland. I was desperate to find white and beige sleeveless shells to wear under suits. I wanted them to have a scoop neck, but I did not want them to be low-cut. I had tried 7 stores with out results. Not only did I find the shells in a rainbow of colors, I also found some new jackets. Chico’s has added some fitted items that are very flattering. I have always loved the fabrics at Chico’s but hated the boxy cuts. Now I have four new items to pair with my great fitting Chico’s pants.
And just to complete the look, Karen showed me some fabulous jewelry. I saved so much time and money (many items were on sale). If you are in the DC area go see Karen at Chico’s and then TRY ON the items she suggests.

You just might be pleasantly surprised.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Do you look tired at the end of the day?

You get a call to join a group of friends for dinner after work. You take a quick look in the mirror and you look like you need a complete overhaul. Don’t worry! Here are a few tricks that will have you looking great in no time.

1.If you have mascara residue or concealer that has creased under your eyes, dab a bit of any moisturizer under your eyes and wipe gently with a soft tissue.
2 Even your skin tone with a swipe of powder foundation and then apply some blush.
3.Freshen your liner
4.Apply your favorite lip color

There you go… a two minute, fresh look for your fun night out!

Monday, August 11, 2008

Is it safe to get a manicure or pedicure?

It may be time to rethink your health when you drop in to get a manicure or pedicure. Do you really want to breath those noxious fumes for 30 minutes? I haven’t found a nail salon that has enough power in their exhaust system to completely clear the air. Another health hazard is the transference of serious illness (Hepatitis, HIV, etc.) from nail files and cuticle nippers used on infected people. Don’t want to give up your favorite treat? Here is a solution: Take your own manicure tools and ask that they be used. If they refuse, go elsewhere - your health is too important.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Do you need a concealer?

Do you have dark circles, broken capillaries or dark age spots on your face?
You should consider checking with a cosmetic dermatologist or plastic surgeon to see if laser treatment can eliminate you problem. But until then, try using a good concealer that perfectly matches your skin tone, to hide these pesky but common problems. My favorite is Glo Mineral, ,but so many companies have perfected their concealers, giving us lots to choose from. I use a dabbing techniques opposed to a wiping stroke. Tap, tap, tap to apply more or to blend. Concealer can be worn alone or under your foundation. Set with a bit of powder and your skin will look even and younger.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Are you a shlumpadinka?

I love that word, and in case you do not watch Oprah shlumpadinka means ”frumpy.”
Yes, we all feel like we look frumpy at times but just what is it that really takes us from vibrant, cool women to an over - the - hill frump? Our hairstyle, our clothing are big contributors to the frump factor but, THE MOST IMPORTANT GIVE AWAY IS: extra weight. Extra weight not only makes us look older, but it also inhibits the way we move. We are not a light on our feet, and flexible when we are not fit. In addition, our knees and feet often hurt keeping us in a catch 22 when it comes to increasing movement. Losing those extra pounds can be tricky but ever person I know who has done an organized program such as Weight Watchers, Diet To Go or Jenny Craig, have lost weight and kept it off. Once you really commit and have support, your odds greatly improve for your success. You can do it!

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Accessorize!

So many women ask me how to use accessories. Here are some do's and dont's that should be mentioned.
1. If in doubt, wear less-elegance is impossible if you have too much going on visually.
2.If you have a short neck or a double chin do not wear chokers or very short necklaces.
3.Avoid perfectly matching earrings and necklaces. Items should coordinate but tend to look more creative and individual if they are not a perfectly matched set.
4.Avoid chunky large necklaces if you are under 5'3" or on the thin side. Large jewelry will over-power and distract from your overall look.
5.Before purchasing inexpensive pieces, ask yourself if it looks worthy to be part of your whole ensemble.

Just some tips to help get you strated on using accessories to pop that fabulous outfit. Don't get in a rut, try some new things and see the reaction. Remember accessorese tell a story , they can be funky, sophisticated, tailored or elegant.
Have fun!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Younger looking skin fast!

Yes, it is important to moisturize , moisturize, moisturize even in the summer, but we also have to exfoliate. I have been seeing so many clients with dry, mottled skin. With summer just half over, it may be the perfect time for you to exfoliate and hydrate. Nothing looks worse on mature skin as makeup settling in the fine lines. Here are some remedies to try:
For an at home facial, try using a homemade scrub with sugar to help shed dead skin cells without drying out the skin. Massage gently and remove with a warm wash cloth. Follow with a your favorite serum or night cream. For an even more dramatic result have a micro-dermabrasion at your dermatologist's office. Either way, you will see a refreshing improvement to the surface of your skin.

Friday, July 11, 2008

I love pretty shoes, but my feet are rebelling

Lets face it, if you are dressed well but have frumpy or tired shoes it absolutely reduces the impact you were trying to achieve. After years of standing all day in high heels, my feet suddenly feel tired and worn out. Every shoe seems to hurt, and I noticed some rough calluses on the bottom of my feet. Maybe I should get a pedicure? No, that just won’t work for me. Every time I try it I can’t stand all that touching on my feet. I am apparently very ticklish. Now that it is summer and everyone is in sandals or flip flops, I started looking at everyone’s feet. I‘ve been wondering how I can keep my feet from becoming unattractive with corns, bunions and calluses and I have to learn how to keep these poor, little tootsies from hurting.
I decided to consult a podiatrist and get their opinion on prevention and foot care.
I was dreading my visit, afraid that he would hurt me, or worse, tell me I can’t wear my heels anymore. To my surprise it was a delightful experience. First he analyzed my feet and told me the reason my feet were hurting so much is because of my high arch. He suggested foot inserts (orthotics) to support my arch and take pressure of the ball of my foot. He also said I could but the over- the- counter, Super Feet brand at Nordstom’s. They make many inserts including some that are thin to wear with dress shoes.
He then removed the dead skin and buffed my heels with a sanding tool. The result is a soft pliable foot that looks and feels better. He recommended that I apply moisturizer to my feet every night before going to bed (not between the toes).
I went right out and bought New Balance sneakers for walking the dog and various arch supports for my shoes and now these feet feel good as new. I can’t believe that it took all these years to find out that people with a high arch may need some help in caring for their feet. I had only heard about people with flat feet having issues.
Now I smile instead of frown as I don my red patent leather pumps!

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Is your hair brassy or sassy?

Those of us who color their hair (and there are many) may need to learn the difference between the term "brassy" and "golden." It seems that as we get older many women go lighter and unfortunately many women allow their hair to have an ash tone. This is usually due to a desperate attempt to avoid going brassy. Lets clear this up once and for all. Brassy is orange, warm golden tones are just that.
Imprint this permanently in your brain: going “ash” only serves to make you look older. Warm blonds and browns look much younger and richer than the drab, ash tones that so many women are drawn to. Wonder if your color has the wrong tone? Ask a few friends that you think will tell you the truth if your hair looks drab and gray…and if you do color your hair make sure not to wait until the roots show to do your touch up. Remember, if you see gray roots in the mirror, others can see them too.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

My face doesn't match my body

I have just returned from a wonderfully relaxing week at the beach and even though I use sunscreen, my body gets tan, but my face is very white. I always cover my face with sunscreen and wear a hat in the sun to have double protection for my face. This looks odd, so I tried a variety of ways to make the color look more balanced. Here are the results:
1. Self-tanning creams for the face.
Not a good resolution for me- it settles in the fine lines and it also darkens the “age spots” on my face making them more prominent.
2. Gel or stick bronzers – These products are difficult to apply evenly and sometimes grab on dry areas of skin. In addition many of these products seem to produce either a orangey color or a color that resembles mud. They also sometimes contain iridescence. I absolutely do not want little sparkles all over my face.
3. I finally found a brush –on, matte powder bronzer, by Bobbi Brown, that gives a totally natural tan look to the skin. I apply it with a large brush and can give myself just a hint a color or a deep, rich tan.
Problem solved, now I love my summer look and I didn’t have to damage my skin to get it! I love the look so much I just might use it all winter too!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Do you ever feel like you are disappearing?

I get many emails asking questions about various makeup and wardrobe issues. I received one this past week that I could personally relate to. It seems that this reader saw a recent picture of herself and her teenage daughter. She was shocked to see that she seemed to look washed-out and "faded" in the photograph. She said she felt like she was going to disappear. Then she asked her teenage daughter to come stand in the mirror with her so she could see why she looked bad in the photograph. That was when she realized that she really did look like she was disappearing. She wanted to know what she could do that was not to involved to look better.

Well, it is true that we lose pigment in our hair, eyebrows, eyelashes, iris, and lips as we get older. This is why so many women who haven't used makeup when they are younger find that they love it as they get older. The single most important technique you can do to look better is to use mascara or eyeliner or both. It needn't be dark and severe, but enough to define the eyes. My favorite mascara is KISS ME by BLINC. It will not come off under your eyes like traditional waxy mascara. I also love the gel liner by Bobbi Brown. Ask the sales associate to teach you how to apply the liner with the special brush. These two products takes seconds to apply and will stay put all day.

Do you have a beauty or fashion dilemma? email me at:kim@kimfoleystyle.com

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Labels do not tell the whole story

I was talking with someone recently about “what I do.” It became clear to me that sometimes the label of “what we do” is not always clearly reflected in our job title. I am known as a television stylist/image consultant/ makeup artist, but what I do, is make men and women look and feel better. When it comes to improving or fine-tuning image, it gets complex dealing with the nuances of each individual. There is no one right way to improve your appearance and maximize your confidence. Each day with each new client, I have the opportunity and the privilege to help individuals develop a new understanding of aesthetics. I can't wait for tomorrow - It is so exciting to watch people get excited about what they see when they look in the mirror. No matter what you call it, it is the perfect job for me.

Friday, June 6, 2008

For less than perfect skin – I use an airbrush

How would you feel if you were 17 and you were asked to speak at your graduation and your skin was red, blotchy and, shall we say, less than perfect? I got a frantic call from an old friend trying to find a quick fix for her daughter’s skin on her big day. Covering pimples and making it look natural is tricky. Lucky for her I have the perfect tool - an airbrush. A few drops of this and a little of that, and I was soon working my magic. I was able to give her flawless looking skin in minutes. When I held up the mirror for her to have a look, I saw tears well up in her eyes as she said. I didn’t know I could look this good.” WOW! I work with some of the most famous people in the world, but nothing feels as good as helping a young person see themselves as beautiful.

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

It is time to re-think business wear

There are two worlds of fashion:
1. Fashion for the masses that is based first in functionality and second on style
2. Fashion focused on detail, line, form otherwise known as Haute Couture. It is fabulous. It is art and it is definitely not for the masses.

Attention all designers, clothing manufacturers and retailer- we, (the masses) need better business wear! Many of my clients are seen on television. As most people know, line and drape can magically make you appear ten pounds thinner or ten pounds heavier (this is true whether you are on camera or not). Well who wants to look heavier than they are? Those of us who have a “ less than perfect” figure, crave sleek, tailored styles that help us look taller and thinner.

Color is also critical- black and navy blue are power suits, but a girl has to have some alternatives. Mid-tones, other than gray, would be spectacular. Ditch the fabrics that will not drape over our soft curves and place the pockets strategically for slimming, not for style. The discussion of form and function will never end, but detail, flair and style need not be compromised for functionality.
I am very particular when choosing the style of my jackets. The jacket is the symbol of authority and it is the one article of clothing that has the capability of creating a look of power and sophistication or diminishing you into a clueless fool. I recently worked with Condoleezza Rice and the first thing she said to me as she entered the room was, “I love your jacket.” (Bingo!)

My dream - to design a fabulous line of business wear for women using all my experience of what works and what doesn’t, to create suits that are flattering for all shapes and sizes.
LISTEN UP DESIGNERS: WE WANT GREAT FABRICS, VARIETY AND FUNCTIONAL BUSINESS WEAR- AND OH, BY THE WAY, IT CAN’T BREAK THE BANK!

Monday, June 2, 2008

Take time to assess you wardrobe, hairstyle and makeup

Clothing, hairstyle and makeup are three elements that project an overall impression about who you are. Some women develop or focus on one of these three elements and never pay attention to the other two. You have probably noticed this unfortunate trend in a friend or colleague. They spend time on their hair, but have clothing that is unflattering, or they spend time having their nails done every week but pay no attention to their hair color, or style. It is so hard to be objective with ourselves. We all do things out of habit. Take a look at your hairstyle. Is it the best style and color for you? Be bold, ask two friends you really trust to tell you honestly what they think. What about your makeup? Do you think you wear too much or too little? Ask someone you trust about your fashion and beauty dilemmas, and then listen. When picking out new glasses, try on the styles that the sales associate recommends. Usually they are right on when it comes to the best style for you.
Open your mind to some new possibilities. You don’t have to adopt a new style you are trying on, just be willing to try to see yourself differently.
You just may be surprised!

Sunday, June 1, 2008

What are you going to wear to your reunion?

Summertime brings all kinds of situations that cause anxiety when it comes to choosing the right clothing. I’ve had many emails asking me what to wear to high school and college reunions. Usually reunions have casual events and one evening with dinner and dancing. The invitation will indicate if your event is casual, dressy, dressy casual, black tie or black tie optional. Geographic location also plays a part in choosing your wardrobe. You may be from the northeast where colors are more subdued and evenings are cool, but if your reunion is in Miami you should consider wearing bright colors or tropical prints and lighter weight fabrics. One of the most annoying situations is when you have a black tie event in the summer and you wear a fabulous dress but spend the whole night shivering under your husband’s dinner jacket because the air conditioning is too high.
Plan ahead – Check the web for the 5 -day weather forecast before you pack.

Know what styles flatter your shape – This is not the time to experiment with a new style. Be true to your self and dress in clothing that makes you feel good. This is the time to be confident and comfortable. If you want to try a new hairstyle or haircolor, try it out a month or two before the event.
Wear shoes that don’ t hurt your feet – Yes, I know you found the most adorable pair of shoes, but if you can not stand or dance for three hours without complaining, then those shoes stay home!

Smile - Remember, people who smile easily are always perceived as being more attractive than those who don’t.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Should you color your hair?

This is a loaded question. No one can decide for you what steps you should take when it comes to your hair color. This is a very personal choice. Some women look fabulous with salt and pepper or silver hair, while others just look older, significantly older. Yes, I know, I hear it all the time: “Most men let their hair go grey so why should we have to color our hair?”
We don’t, but since women are living longer and working longer, the marketplace has become more competitive. Unfortunately, ageism is alive and well. Speaking strictly for myself, I see haircolor as another tool in my toolbox that helps me feel young and vibrant and more attractive.
Haircolor is not for everyone, but going gray can add 5-15 years to your perceived age; and using the wrong haircolor shade can be worse than using no hair color at all. Drab, ash - tones, harsh, dark colors or bleached - out blondes are simply not flattering to older skin tones.
Getting older is inevitable. Why focus on a number? The important issue to consider when making decisions on your appearance is to think about the goal. In other words, what can hair color, specific clothing or makeup styles, do for you? Often, women’s choice to color their hair is a reaction to the fear of being seen as invisible, matronly or out-dated. Whenever I consider not coloring my hair, images of Aunt Bea still linger in my head, propelling me to run, not walk, down the closest haircolor isle.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Some writers are rethinking their image

I have had an influx of writers seeking out my services this year. Their reasons vary, from wanting to become media savvy for their book tours to learning how to “fine tune” their appearance for meetings with potential clients.
Clearly, people in different industries have different issues that they want to address when thinking about the images they project. Writers often talk to me about the conflict they feel in reassessing their image as they get older. For many, as young women, it was easy to embrace the totally natural look, rejecting certain styles of clothing, hairstyles, and makeup.
This was the frame of mind that intellectual women embraced in the 1960s and 70s; today, many of these women look in the mirror and wonder if their credibility is being sabotaged because they don’t know how to improve their image. It is usually around age 40, that women look in the mirror and realize that what worked for them at 25 no longer serves them well. They used to be vibrant and attractive without having to use makeup or think very much about what they were wearing; and that’s just not true anymore.
Once women come to this realization they often feel conflicted about what they perceive as an abandonment of their values. I grew up in the 60’s and 70’s, and I understand these feelings of ambivalence.
It can be hard to break through this impasse. Some women feel foolish asking for help; others feel that it’s hopeless for anyone to help them. They feel they are torn between being true to themselves and their basic values, and their dawning awareness that by adopting a few simple skills and techniques from the world of fashion, they could look less out-dated, tired, or washed-up.
As a stylist specializing in credibility, I understand that looking glamorous, younger, or thinner isn’t necessarily everyone’s goal. I know what women mean when they tell me they want to look intelligent, memorable, and credible without sacrificing their authentic selves.
After a certain age, a relaxed, attractive, and natural look may require a little help. Together we can brainstorm the options before you, and take the actions to help you look your personal best.

Sunday, May 25, 2008

My work is always confidential

When I go to informal gatherings or parties it is always predictable what will happen about 1 hour into the event. Once it "comes out" that I am a television stylist, I am slowly cornered, surrounded by curious women who want to know who my clients are and what I do to help them with their appearance. I am terribly disappointing speaking about others since I do not reveal the names of clients if they have asked me to keep our time together confidential, plus, even if they have not asked for confidentiality, (as the old saying goes) I do not tell stories out of school. I am quite sure you wouldn't want me telling someone anything about you if you were my client. Whether I am helping a client "fine tune" their appearance or completely revamping someone's image, our time together is so intimate, it must remain private. What makes me so different from other stylists (besides my expertise) is that I am a safe place to land. I see the potential in each person and I feel that it is so very profound and personal to help people evolve and reflect on the outside what they always new was there on the inside.

My work as a stylist is not just about looking younger, thinner, more memorable or more powerful. It is about the possibilities, and about looking in the mirror each day and loving what you see.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Invite me to speak to your organization



I love speaking to groups and this week I had the opportunity to speak to the sisterhood at Beth El Congregation in Bethesda, Maryland. The topic? How to look 10 years younger and ten pounds thinner. We drew quite the crowd and had a lot of fun discussing wardrobe camouflage techniques, haircolor options and makeup products.
I am always amazed to see accomplished, professional women who are 40, 50 or 60, that do not know how a pair of pants or a jacket should fit! Well, we cleared that all up and now hopefully this information will be passed down to their daughters. Think about it-who teaches us this? Women (and men) watch others and emulate the mistakes they see and assume they are doing the right thing. There are so many things we should each know about ourselves: Are you long-waisted or short-waisted?
Do you know which style trouser, skirt or jacket looks best on you?
What are your 5 best colors? What story do you tell the world about yourself each day through the clothing you wear?
Do you know the symbols of authority, the language of clothing, shoes and accessories?
Could you be sabotaging your best efforts by your appearance?
These are the issues that need to be answered so we can soar in confidence while pursuing our dreams.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Helping new grads go from intern to young professional

As a television stylist I primarily work with high profile men and women, but recently several people have given a day of shopping with me as a graduation gift. Students usually have very little to choose from in their wardrobe when it comes to professional attire. Suddenly after years of living in flip flops and jeans, these young women need to look like young professionals and not like interns. Often they panic, not knowing how to bridge the gap between looking too old and looking professional. They are usually relieved to have someone they perceive as objective, guide them in exploring clothing options. I start by having them pull together pictures of ensembles that they would like to emulate and then we discuss what those clothing items say about the individual wearing them. Few people ever stop and think about the story they tell through their appearance. It is critical, before we begin shopping, that individuals clarify what they want to project with their clothing choices.

Another challenge encountered while working with those new to wearing and purchasing professional attire, is teaching them how clothing should fit their specific body shape. Men assume that their new suit has to be tailored to fit them, but women do not realize that they should be willing to do the same. No one tells us that very few women can buy items that fit well, right off the rack. A good tailor is to be treasured just like your favorite hairstylist

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

April in Paris

Paris in April was fabulously delicious in every way- the food, the fashions and the beauty of the city itself. Planning a trip abroad anytime soon? Well, plan well when it comes to your clothing and shoes! I knew I was going to be walking non-stop so I was worried about which shoes to take. Last trip to Paris I splurged on an expensive pair of European shoes that were designed for walking, but, they lasted only 1 day before they were retired to the “3 hour” bin. This time I went for the Munro flats that were chic and comfortable-12 hours a day on my feet-no problem. These shoes were so perfect I want to buy more styles. Maybe I should buy stock?

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Spring Is Here!

Spring is here and it’s a perfect time to revamp your closet. Check out your favorite spring items that have been stored away for the winter. This is called: shopping your closet. Take an inventory of what you have and what you need to get for the summer months ahead. Take close look at each item with a fresh eye. Is that white blouse looking a tad yellow? Are there loose threads or tears on any item? Does each item fit properly? Which items need to be passed on and which ones need to go to the tailor? Check for stains and missed buttons too.

This season you can wear your summer cardigan with a wide patent belt for a fun trendy look. Consider changing the buttons on an otherwise boring jacket and pick up some colorful flats for a little flair. Nurture a new perspective when putting together old ensembles and you will be amazed to see how many new looks you can achieve.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Frumpy To Fabulous In Seconds

I saw a woman at the mall today who apparently did not get the memo: leggings are not pants. My guess is that she came straight from the gym…not a good decision. She was slim, late thirties and she had her daughter tightly by the hand as she rushed past me. Leggings are comfortable and perfect for yoga or workouts, but denial has set in once you think that they are a substitute for trousers. On the positive side I thought how confident she must be to parade her backside around in such a very public place. Then the negative thoughts crept in: she is either clueless as to how she looks, or she just doesn’t care. All “sporty mom” had to do was slip on a thigh length tunic and trade the shoes for some cute flats and she would have gone from frumpy to fabulous in seconds.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Fun Jackets and Tops at Stein Mart

Yesterday, I took a new client shopping. She wanted to update her wardrobe and get some fun colors for spring. She also wanted items that would coordinate with black pants and black skirts. Surprisingly, we found many ideal options. Whether a size 6 or 14, this is an inexpensive and fun resource for trendy additions to your closet.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Looking Great for Their Fun Night Out

Awards shows are fun because we see our favorite stars in what they hope, is their best light. Glam is back! Feminine hairstyles, minimal jewelry and sophisticated dresses created some of the loveliest looks I’ve seen in years. Did you notice all the trains this year? They look so elegant but can only be worn when practicality is not an issue. If you take one step backward and you are going to take a fall.
Red (my favorite color) was a popular choice and more men than usually donned earrings. All the glitz made me wish I had someplace festive to go.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Five must have wardrobe items

I love watching other stylists on television do what we do best-radical transformations! Oprah had a great show today which was particularly good because it showed women how to create great casual ensembles without spending a fortune. Truth be told, must women do not need a radical transformation, just a few changes to really show them off in their best light. The one question I hear most is, “ What are the must haves in my wardrobe?” Of course that answer is different for each person since it depends on your lifestyle and where you live geographically, but generally speaking, the items below will serve you well.
• Great fitting black pants- I recommend 2 pair, one hemmed to wear with flats and the other to wear with heels.

• A black and a white (or cream, depending on your coloring) v-neck shell or sweater. Turtlenecks look great on those with long thin necks but most women will look much slimmer and younger in a v-neck top.

• A fabulous crisp white collared blouse. Look for one that is fitted, no- iron and not transparent.

• Classic flats in various colors and textures. These shoes do not need to cost a lot but they do need to be comfortable.

• A black dress that can be accessorized for evenings out or for business. Get a conservative black dress that fits your figure perfectly. Remember, seldom can you find a dress that will fit perfectly without a trip to the tailor.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Confidentiality and Your Personal Stylist

I had the honor of working with a presidential candidate yesterday. It is interesting to have a career where your skills are in demand but your clients’ identity must be confidential. No one running for office wants the focus to be on his or her makeup, hairstyle or wardrobe. Most people know that both men and women need makeup before a television appearance, but they never see or hear about the stylist. Most stylists follow an unspoken code of ethics: we do not draw attention to ourselves or capitalize on the coat tails of high profile individuals. We understand that the attention needs to be on the politicians and the issues of the campaign. We are there to secure an image of leadership and credibility. Our job, if we are really good at what we do, is to make wardrobe decisions, use our experience to apply makeup that keeps the candidate looking vibrant and healthy and tend to hairstyling issues. With high definition becoming the standard, television stylists now have even more challenges to ensure the candidates’ image enhance rather than detract from their message.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Make your manicure last longer

I wash my hands about a dozen times a day and it really takes a toll on my manicure. Clean, well-groomed hands are an important part of looking professional so I try all kinds of products to extend chipping time. I choose to wear a very light, natural nail color to minimize the distraction when the polish starts chipping. I have tried the $1.99 top coat, the $22 top coat and everything in between, and I can’t tell the difference in performance. The key to performance seems to be more related to how often and how you use the top coat. My technique: apply a thin coat about 4 days after the manicure and continue to add a coat every 2-3 days. With this technique you can keep the chipped polish at bay for up to 10 days. Saves money and time because now I only need a manicure every 10-14 days!

Give it a shot and let me know how this works for you.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Women in media

Have you ever noticed that the majority of women who are reporters or news anchors are usually under 35? Ageism is alive and well. Do we, as viewers, only want the young and beautiful delivering the news of the day? There are exceptions, but overall it is hard to believe that so many women flee the airwaves as they approach forty.

Today I worked with a women who is a news anchor for German television. She was in town reporting on Super Tuesday. She is over 40, fit and attractive and has no plans to retire. We discussed the fact that Europe has a different attitude about "aging women."

Instead of the frantic rush to hide all signs of aging the European women seem to age gracefully, staying fit as they embracing their wisdom, experience and even their smile lines.

Sounds like a plan. I 'm all for aging gracefully. I am also not opposed to getting a little help from science, but this trend to wipe out all signs of aging is just plain creepy.

That said, now I think I need to go slather on some anti-wrinkle cream.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Image and Credibility

News articles abound commenting on the image of each presidential candidate.
Their appearance gives us cues as to how they perceive themselves and how they want to be perceived by others.

For both men and women, the business suit is the accepted attire for the most powerful, credible and successful individuals. The jacket in particular symbolizes authority and gives the appearance of leadership and of being in command. A softer, more approachable look is chosen when the candidates want to be seen as a fellow citizen fighting to address the county’s problems.

The subliminal cues of gesture and body language coupled with overall appearance play a huge factor in the American public ‘s opinion about whom they can trust and who has the knowledge and temperament to lead our country for the next 4 years.

We are fond of telling our children that to care about appearances is superficial.
They might be better off knowing the truth from the start: fair or unfair, like it or not, we are all being judged by others all the time.

• Do you look tired and worn out, or energized and engaged?
• Do you look old-fashioned or current; giving those you meet the confidence that you are well informed?

This is powerful information. Once you are aware of the language of clothing you can make sure the messages you are sending through your appearance are ones of choice and not ignorance.

Friday, February 1, 2008

3 quick ways to become more memorable

• Sharpen up your body language. Slouching when you stand or walking with your head tilted down screams I LACK SELF ESTEEM. Not only is it better for your bones and joints to stand up straight, but you can command more authority just by changing the way you stand and how you move your body. Look people in the eye. This powerful tool tells people that you are interested in what they have to say. When you look people in the eye, you connect and it tells them you are listening and that you can be trusted. Smile! This universal gesture of acceptance is critical when meeting new acquaintances, courting new clients and it can even help with negotiations.

• Take an objective look at your image. Does your wardrobe need rethinking? Dated, stained or ill-fitting items which have served you well in the past now have to be retired. What do you need to change to really show the world how capable and professional you really are?

• Reassess your attitude? Your attitude about your yourself and your work are screaming out to the world. Do you move with a sense of urgency? Do you dress like you are running the show? Do you speak with a passion about your work? Your appearance and your actions tell the world how you really feel about yourself and your work.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Are your cosmetics safe?

How sad it is that the health of millions of women could be jeopardized because of the use of some cosmetics and body products. Check out this web site where you can find articles that raise that very important question: Are my cosmetics safe?
(http://www.safecosmetics.org)

Logic tells me that if trans-dermal absorption is a problem for humans when it comes to products we use to clean our home, then why shouldn't we be concerned about the unregulated cosmetics that we use every day? The ingredient list doesn't say "small amounts of lead or mercury" so if you are not a chemist, how would you know? I am grateful that some companies have made a financial commitment to creating formulas that work without causing potential harm. We all know that we will not die from using cosmetics, but the exposure over time has a cumulative affect that could be making you sick.

I am wondering why the billion dollar cosmetic industry has been allowed to create potentially harmful products in the first place. We should demand that testing by independent companies be done to ensure the safety of products. We need regulation if we want this to stop.

What can you do? Take action! If sales plummet, these companies will be forced to reformulate their products.

• Stop purchasing products from companies that use known irritants or carcinogens
• Write to these companies and tell them why you are no longer using their products
• Write to the women’s magazines and tell them to stop accepting advertising from these companies, cancel your subscription or stop buying the magazine
• Call and write your congressperson and ask them to mandate funding for the FDA to do testing of cosmetic and body products.

Friday, January 25, 2008

How to pick the right foundation for you

Several people have asked how to pick the right foundation. Keep the emails coming at kim@kimfoleystyle.com and I will continue to answer all your style and beauty questions.
First, decide if you want a powder foundation (great for oily or combo skin), or a liquid. Also consider trying mineral foundations they come in both powder and liquid.

Picking the right brand is a matter of personal preference when it comes to texture, coverage and harmful ingredients. Now that we know thatharmful chemicals can be absorbed, you should consider reading labels and being aware of the hazards of some commonly found ingredients in popular cosmetic brands. Some brands have less pigment and are more sheer, while other brands have more pigment and offer a more opaque coverage. Look at the packaging for key words such as "sheer coverage" or "maximum coverage" for clues to the amount of pigment. I use powder foundation in the summer and liquid in the winter.

The purpose of a foundation is to even your skin tone, not to make you look tan. The goal is to match the most prevalent color on your face. The easiest way to get a good match is to apple a small amount on your neck, close to the jawbone. Smooth and blend. If you see the makeup, then it is too dark. This is easy to do in a department store but impossible if you are buying at a drug or discount store. If this is the case, buy 2 or 3 choices in the shades you think are close. When you get home see which one matches and return the others. Check with the store first to be sure they will accept open returns for cosmetics. Most drug stores have a liberal return policy, just be sure you have the receipt.

I have been experimenting with foundations made from "natural" ingredients. The liquid mineral foundation by Shaklee is one of my favorites for several reasons:
.no harmful ingredients
.not tested on animals
.good coverage
.easy to apply
.beautiful shades
.spf 15

Kim

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

The $64,000.00 question?

I have been getting emails with the same question lately, "What is the one thing I can do to have a better appearance?"
Some people want a total revamp on their appearance while others just want to take incremental steps in that direction.
Unfortunately, the answer is different for each individual. Think about it, for one person it might be getting a more flattering or current hairstyle, and for others it may be a clothing or makeup issue. Getting a more current pair of glasses might be the answer, working on your posture or body language could al be possibilities. There are two questions you need to ask yourself:

1. "How do I want to be perceived?" Current, professional. artistic, approachable, smart...be specific.
2."What is driving my look?" ie, comfort, style, credibility...
When you honestly answer these questions you will begin to understand why and how you have created the image you now have. Does your image reflect who you are on the inside?
Remember: you are telling your story through your appearance. This is why intentional dressing is so important particularly in the workplace.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Happy New Year!

Now that it's 2008, it's a great time to think about TRANSFORMATION. At the beginning of each new year I feel as though I am turning a giant page in the story of my life.
Intentions and resolutions are circling my mind as I contemplate my dreams for the next twelve months. My New Years wish for you is that you LOVE WHO YOU SEE IN THE MIRROR.
My mission in life is to help you with that. If you need some new techniques on illusion dressing get the my DVD, "Look Ten Years Younger and Ten Pounds Thinner", or if you want to become more memorable and powerful don't miss my ebook, "The Credibility Factor". I created these resources for any woman who does not have access to a stylist. If you want to schedule a consult with me just email me and I will call you.
Also, I am available by Skype for those of you who do not live outside the DC area or overseas. Skype is a free way to video phone someone on your computer. You can see me and I can see you. This is a great way to get a 2nd opinion on that dress you just bought to wear to that wedding, reunion or special occasion.
Send your questions on image, makeup or fashion at kim@kimfoleystyle.com
Best wishes for the New Year!
Kim