Impact of Body Image on Mental Health #CauseAChatter

Body dissatisfaction is the experience of negative thoughts and feelings about one’s body and appearance , is a powerful and consistent precursor of a whole range of unhealthy body-related behaviors. These includes : unhealthy dieting regimes and problematic eating behaviors (starving, bingeing and purging), clinical eating disorder (anorexia, bulimia), cosmetic surgery, extreme exercising and unhealthy muscle-enhancing behaviors in men and boys (such as taking steroids or other supplements ). It is also linked to depression, anxiety, sexual dissatisfaction and low self-esteem. Therefore body dissatisfaction is a significant risk for physical health, mental health, and thus well-being. Any factor, such as idealized media image, that increases body dissatisfaction is therefore an important influence on well-being.

  • I am fat
  • I am too skinny
  • I would be happy if I was taller
  • I would be happy if I was shorter
  • I would be happy if I had curly hair
  • I would be happy if I had straight hair
  • I would be happy if I was fairer
  • I would be happy if I was………A never ending list of complaints about how I look.

Do any of these statements sound familiar? Are you used to putting yourself down? If so you are not alone. However these are not thoughts which crept overnight. It has been there sub consciously and this all started slowly when you were a kid probably at a age of 2 years plus, when others have commented about you. Lots of people have trouble adjusting and this can affect their self esteem. If I say body image and self esteem are inter related, I am sure many of you will agree with me. Self-esteem is all about how much people value themselves, the pride they feel in themselves, and how worthwhile they feel. Self-esteem is important because feeling good about yourself can affect how you act. For example a person who has high self esteem will make friends easily, is more in control of his or her behavior, and will enjoy life more. As far as Body-image is concerned it is how someone feels about his or her own physical appearance. Therefore, for most people, body image can be closely linked to self-esteem. That’s because as kids develop into teens and further adults, they care more about how others see them.

There are people who look into the mirror constantly. Forget about them, if I just ask why we look in the mirror? We are all more obsessed with our appearance than we like to admit. But this is not an indication of vanity. Concern about appearance is quite normal and understandable. But drawing a line is important before it becomes an obsession.

The bias for beauty operates in almost all social situations. Most of the experiments show we react more favorably to physically attractive people. We also believe in the “what is beautiful is good” stereotype- an irrational but deep-seated belief that physically attractive people possess other desirable characteristics such as intelligence. competence, social skills, confidence, even moral virtue. (The good fairy/princess is always beautiful; the wicked stepmother is always ugly)

It is not surprising that physical attractiveness is of overwhelming importance to us. Concern with appearance is not just an aberration of modern western culture. Every period of history has had its own standards of what is and is not beautiful, and every contemporary society has its own distinctive concept of the ideal physical attributes. Advances in technology and in particular the rise of the social media have caused normal concern about how we look to become an obsessions. Thanks to media, we have becomes accustomed to extremely rigid and uniform standards of beauty.

According to my observation ,people see and react to their reflection in a mirror varies according to their age, mood, gender, eating disorder, what they been watching on TV, what magazines they read, their marital status and also what kind of childhood they had.

All research to date on body image shows that women are more critical of their appearance than men. Up to 8 out of 10 women will be dissatisfied with their reflection, and more than half may see a distorted image. On the other hand men looking in the mirror are more likely to be either pleased with what they see or indifferent. Research shows that men generally have much more positive image than women, if anything, they may tend to over-estimate their attractiveness. Some men looking in the mirror may literally not see the flaws in their appearance.

But why are women so much more critical than man?

  • Because women are judged on their appearance more than men, and standards of female beauty are considerably higher and more inflexible. Constant exposure to idealized images of female beauty on TV and magazines makes exceptional good looks seems normal and anything short of perfection seem abnormal and ugly.
  • Also, most women are trying to achieve the impossible: standards of female beauty have in fact become progressively more unrealistic during 21st century.

Female dissatisfaction with appearance begins at a very early age. and puberty only makes things worse. Boys were found to be significantly less critical, but they too do go through a short phase of relative dissatisfaction in early adolescence, but the physical changes associated with puberty soon bring them closer to the masculine ideal. There is also a possibility that if a child is teased about flaws in their appearance, their body image may have become permanently disturbed.

Most of us are aware of our society’s emphasis on the importance of appearance, and we know what the socially sanctioned standards of beauty are. But not all of us accept or internalize these standards. Strong minded individuals who reject current standards are more likely to have a positive body image. If you have a positive body image, you probably like and accept yourself the way you are. This healthy attitude allows you to explore other aspects of growing up, such as developing good friendships, growing more independent from your parents and challenging yourself physically and mentally. Developing these parts of yourself can help boost your self esteem.

7 Steps To Enhance Body-Image

Body images are not fixed. Our body experiences changes as we grow older, and each stage in our life is associated with body image maker. Building a positive body image is a lifelong process. Changing body image means more than changing our body, it means changing how we think, feel and react to our body. There are many a way to remodel the outside, however, it also requires extensive inside changes in body-image. Some steps to enhance body-image are:

  • Explore your personal body-image with its strengths and limitations
  • Confront thinking distortions related to your body
  • Challenge misleading assumptions about body appearance
  • Accept and love who you are
  • Be comfortable with your body
  • Have positive experience with your body
  • Be a friend to your body with positive affirmations

This Post is part of Blogchatter’s # CauseAChatter

Pic courtesy / Edit : pexel / canva

#BlogchatterA2Z : “Z” – Zenith Of Fashion Curve (A2Z of Image Management)

Hi Everyone,

What an amazing journey from A 2 Z . Writing for #BlogchatterA2Z challenge has been amazing. In the process I have realized ,I have so much to share which I will continue as I believe sharing is caring. Kumari aka Lyrikal has rightly said “Knowledge increases by sharing and not by saving”.

Today is my 26th post , the last letter in an Alphabet ,but this post talks about Zenith in Fashion Curve…Truly wonderful. The zenith is the “highest” point on the celestial sphere and we are going to talk about highest point in fashion curve. At some time, most clothing styles pass through a fashion curve, cycle, or wave. You can observe the predictable stages a clothing style goes through during its time as a fashion trend. These stages illustrate the relative position of classics and fads, from start to finish. The average length of a fashion cycle is getting shorter due to mass media and fast fashion, lasting only three to seven years.

Before moving to fashion curve lets first understand what is classic and Fads clothing.

Classic Clothing :

Classics are never on the cutting edge of fashion, never extreme, never glitzy, tight, or revealing. Their styling changes very slowly and only slightly. Classics may be updated slightly in terms of current trends—say, toward slightly wider or narrower lapels or pant legs. Updated classics can become more fashionable at one time or another. Classics, then, are needed most by people who want their clothes to last as long as possible, and by people in leadership positions or politics. In these latter situations, classic clothes allow the wearer to relate more readily with a larger segment of an audience or voting population—
people relate quickly and have more confidence in the long-term ability of the wearer. Present in any wardrobe as staple, core pieces, classics provide long-term, lasting value. Classic colors, fabrics, and patterns will be discussed.

Fads Clothing

Fads are short-lived, impractical, novelty, or high-fashion items, outdated within a few months because of more extreme lines and shapes. Fads feature design lines and shapes that are relatively extreme in some direction or size—very wide or very narrow, very long or very short, very fitted or very tight, and so forth, including extreme colors, textures, and
patterns. The more extreme the design, the more quickly it will come and go in terms of acceptability, popularity, or fashionability.

The fashion cycle is a natural cycle by which a fashion trend is introduced, rises to mainstream popularity, declines, and finally gets rejected.

Introduction Stage (Start): The introduction stage is when the high fashion designer introduces new style in the fashion world. Often these styles are extremes, original and exclusive. The style is usually only available in small quantities from a handful of different designers or retailers, often at a high price and gets complete trade coverage.

Rise Stage : The rise stage (also known as the “fashion acceptance” stage) is when the new fashion style begins gaining momentum and traction in the fashion industry, officially receiving the coveted “trend” label. During the rise stage, more fashion leaders and trendsetters wear outfits that incorporate the idea, from social media influencers to celebrities, increasing consumer demand. In response to this acceptance by fashion influencers, more retail stores will begin carrying the trend. Manufacturers modify the style, they are still expensive with high quality. People who are fashion conscious adopt this style and gets consumer magazine coverage.

Peak Stage (Zenith Of Fashion Curve) : In the peak stage, the trend has reached full saturation in the general public , and many everyday consumers begin wearing the trend. Most retailers will have identified and replicated the trend, and it will be available through mass production at a wide variety of price levels, especially at lower prices. At this stage local newspapers starts covering them and most fashion leader drops the style. This is the time when style gains the maximum popularity.

Decline Stage: In the decline stage, the trend will have become oversaturated in the market. During this period of time, the trend’s intense popularity will begin to turn off consumers who want their outfits to feel fashion-forward and unique rather than mainstream. Classic reached plateau where in style remained appealing, available, appropriate, affordable and in demand.

Rejection Stage : Once the trend has reached the end of the fashion cycle, it is considered outdated and out-of-fashion by mainstream fashion wearers, who have moved on to newer trends in the introduction or increase stages. Manufacturer cannot afford to produce it that leads to low sales and closeout sales. The fall occurs quickly. Reaching obsolescence doesn’t mean a rejected trend will never reenter the cycle. The cycle is in a constant state of repetition, bringing back “old fashions” to send them through the movement of fashion.

The fashion cycle serves as the most important guide for fashion merchandising. post is part of#BlogchatterA2Z challenge.

To read my previous posts checkout here A ,B ,C ,D ,EFGIJ, K,L,M,N,OPQRST , U , VWX, Y

@ Swati Mathur

#BlogchatterA2Z : “Y” – Yin and Yang in Clothing (A2Z of Image Management)

Hi Everyone,

Just one more post to go..yipeee!! This is my 25th Post for #BlogchatterA2Z challenge. Lets talk about Yin and Yang in clothing which is very interesting and fascinating too. The ancient Chinese concept of opposing characteristics or traits in nature is described with the terms yang and yin. The concept relates directly to dominance and subordinance, advancing and receding. Yang represents dominant, advancing, assertive traits. Yin represents subordinate, receding, receptive traits. More specifically, to the Chinese, yin means gentleness and softness—the grace of the willow tree, and the delicacy of the moon. Yang means strength and vigor— the sturdiness of the pine tree, and the force of the sun.

Importance and Functions of Yin/Yang Concept and Personal Style—Benefits
Describes opposites and classifies physical, psychological, and
clothing traits.
• Allows comparison based on similarity and differences in traits.
• Assists in discovering, developing, and refining personal style in
• Advances knowledge, awareness, understanding, acceptance, and
appreciation of the self and others.
• Becomes a tool for solving image-related problems and in creating
the type of appearance necessary to achieve goals.
• Guides the use of clothing as a means of visual communication.
• Guides the creation of powerful illusions about the individual.
• Provides a tool for adding variety and interest to your appearance.

Yin and Yang In Clothing

Yang and tailored can be positioned on one end of a continuum, while yin and untailored can be positioned at the opposite end. There are many degrees of difference on the continuum between tailored and untailored, between yin and yang.

It is somewhere in between opposites, on a huge middle ground, that you will find what design details or traits work best for you. It will be up to you to decide which design traits more nearly reflect your general needs and preferences, or where they appear to be on that
continuum between opposing traits. You will learn to borrow and blend or mix selected traits from one side or the other, depending on your mood or purpose. This is a matter of delicate balance and therein lies the art of successful dressing and personal style.

There are numerous ways you might need to plot yourself. You might plot your body and personality consistently yin, or consistently yang. That makes for easy dressing when you decide to keep clothing traits consistent. Visual and psychological conflict can result when you don’t. You might, however, plot your body as yin and your personality traits more yang. Or, you might plot your body as yang and your personality traits more yin. This requires a compromise in clothing traits to present both the body and personality harmoniously.

The concept of yin and yang in clothing can be understood better if we identify physical, personality and clothing traits of both yin and yang.

Pic Courtesy : Inside out Style


Physical Traits (Receding)
• Short
• Small-boned
• Delicate, rounded features
• Delicate, lighter coloring
• Fine-textured skin
• Softly curled or tousled hair
• Light movement
• Graceful walk
• Youthful
Personality Traits (Receptive)
• Gentle
• Dependent
• Impulsive
• Idealistic
• Pliant
• Yielding
• Subtle
• Shy
• Friendly
• Informal
• Warm
• Naive
• Open
• Fragile

Clothing Traits (Receding/Receptive/Untailored)
• Curved lines
• Broken lines
• Curved shapes and silhouette
• Small scale shapes and patterns
• Soft, light colors*
• Pliable fabric
• Lightweight
• Fine, smooth textures
• Less or weak, subtle contrasts
• Untailored

Pic courtesy : inside out style


Physical Traits (Advancing)
• Tall
• Large-boned
• Large, angular features
• Strong, darker coloring
• Slightly coarse skin
• Sleek, tailored, controlled hair
• Vigorous movement
• Purposeful walk
• Mature
Personality Traits (Assertive)
• Forceful
• Independent
• Deliberate
• Realistic
• Firm
• Decisive
• Direct
• Daring
• Reserved
• Formal
• Cool
• Sophisticated
• Closed
• Stable
Clothing Traits (Advancing/Assertive)
• Straight lines
• Solid, unbroken lines
• Angular shapes and silhouette
• Large scale shapes and patterns
• Bold, dark colors*
• Firm fabric
• Heavyweight
• Coarse, rough textures
• More or strong

Yin and Yang descriptive traits on Continuum :

Delicate: The delicate girl is shorter and small-boned. Hair color is generally light. She chooses more untailored clothing styles in soft fabrics and lighter, pastel colors, with smaller scale or dainty design details. She appears approachable, gentle, innocent,
youthful, and polite.
Sporty: The sporty girl is shorter and smaller-boned. Hair color is generally light to medium, including rusty-red. She chooses more untailored to casual tailored clothing styles in softer fabrics and medium to brighter colors. She appears approachable, perky, youthful, energetic, and casual.
Romantic: The romantic woman is average in height and curvaceous. Hair color may be light, medium, or dark. She chooses more softly tailored clothing styles in softer fabrics and
rich, muted colors. She appears more approachable, sensitive, charming, sensuous, and gracious.
Classic: The classic woman is average in height and proportion. Hair color is generally medium light to medium dark. She chooses more tailored clothing styles in firmer fabrics and neutral colors. She appears more authoritative, confident, mature, poised, and more formal.
Sportive: The sportive gal is taller and larger-boned. Hair color is generally medium to dark. She chooses more casual tailored and softly tailored clothing styles in textured fabrics
and earthy colors. She appears authoritative, strong, confident, determined, and less formal.
Dramatic: The dramatic woman is generally taller and more angular. Hair color is often very light or very dark. She chooses extremely tailored to bold untailored clothing styles with strong dark-light contrast. She appears assertive, sophisticated, theatrical, temperamental, and formal.

When you determine your positions on the continuum, you can better see yourself in relation to your clothes. Personal style in dress implies limits on the yin/yang continuum—the limits in dress design to which you are willing to go and still look and feel authentic, congruent, or comfortable with yourself in your clothes. It’s a matter of deciding if you are comfortable wearing clothing characteristics that are very yin, slightly yin, slightly yang, or very yang. In selecting clothing, it is a matter of saying to yourself, “That’s too yin (or yang) for me—for my height, for the way I move, for my personality or my mood, or for the occasion, etc.” You can substitute “too tailored” or “too untailored” and make the same point.

This post is part of #BlogchatterA2Z challenge.

To read my previous posts checkout here A ,B ,C ,D ,EFGIJ, K,L,M,N,OPQRST , U , VW, X

@ Swati Mathur

#BlogchatterA2Z : “X” – X-factor of Smart Shopping Skills (A2Z of Image Management)

Hi Everyone,

Here I am with my 24th post for #BlogchatterA2Z challenge. Having a Smart Shopping skill may turn out to be an X-Factor in Wardrobing. So here I am talking about What is a Smart Shopping Skills and steps to follow in order to become a smart shopper.

Open your closet doors for a long look. Don’t be discouraged if the contents look skimpy. You’ve pared your wardrobe down to the bones—to what really works for you. What you need now is an accurate mental image of what’s in your closet. This mental image will give you direction for planning, shopping, and purchasing wisely—for adding new pieces that will continue to work together for you to your advantage. Think of it this way. When you buy a piece of furniture, you envision your whole house, then the room and how that piece of furniture will look and work in that room. It should be the same with your wardrobe. Just as a piece of furniture becomes part of the interior design, part of the artistic composition; a piece of clothing becomes part of your exterior design and a part of your personal artistic composition.

You’ll know which stores cater to your clothing needs and personal style. Smart shopping skills keep you on target. Smart shopping skills simplify the shopping process. You’re less likely to be frustrated and exhausted. Smart shopping skills save you time and money. Te skill allow you to avoid the accumulation of “wardrobe orphans,” clothes that hand in your closet unloved and unworn.

When you have an accurate mental image of your wardrobe and shop with that wardrobe accurately in mind, when you see an item that catches your eye, you will know immediately if you need it, will really use it, and if it will fit into and contribute to your existing wardrobe. This puts you in charge. With an increased awareness and understanding of yourself and your wardrobe needs, you can feel secure in the knowledge that the clothing in your closet will present you attractively and appropriately wherever you go and whatever you do. As you implement your wardrobe plans, learn what stores and catalogs cater to your needs, preferences, and ability to buy.

Practice shopping strategies that prepare you to make wise purchases.

The first guideline for smart shopping is to buy only what you need. Make a list of items you need to complete your cluster or add on to your expanded wardrobe. Be specific about the item, its style, color, fabric, what you expect it to go with, and the estimated cost. Keep your list in your closet area, perhaps tacked to the inside of your closet door—or in your purse or planner. Prioritize your list according to each item’s importance.

Shopping can be distracting due to people, displays, and merchandise all around you. Your shopping list will:
• Keep you on target.
• Help you pass up tempting displays.
• Keep you from getting sidetracked into departments you don’t need.
• Prevent you from impulse buys that whittle away your budget and keep you from being able to buy the item you really need.

Plan Ahead
Whether shopping at regular prices, discounts, or sale prices, plan ahead. Armed with your cluster plansheet and shopping list you are ready to preplan your shopping trip. It’s easy to get tired when shopping, but having a cluster plan in mind makes all the difference in any shopping excursion. You don’t spend the entire day running around from store to store accomplishing nothing. Knowing the stores available in your area, and the ones that suit you best, you can zero in on the ones you think are the most likely to have what you want.
Further prioritize your list according to the stores and departments in stores, so you get to the most important, difficult-to-find, or fast-selling items first and save on retraced steps and zigzagging back and forth across town.

Do Your Homework
There is an incredible selection of clothing and accessories to choose from. It can be very confusing. To get a preview of what’s in the stores, shop through a few fashion magazines and catalogs , also on online shopping portals.

Shopping Alone or with a Friend
Take a very good friend or family member shopping with you only when you want a second opinion or need someone to stifle your impulse to buy. Even then, make sure that it is a person whose opinion you respect, someone who understands you, someone who will be objective and brutally honest with you, and someone who will not be a distraction. It may help if that person’s personal style is similar to yours. Shop alone on longer shopping trips. Your time will be spent more efficiently. Include children only on short trips for gifts or personal items of their own to avoid overexposure to the vastly tempting array of merchandise.

Knowing more about the many types of stores and clothing sources available to you will help you in finding your clothing needs.

Go to the stores where you generally shop and visit others in the area where you live. Do some comparison shopping. Compare the clothing styles and values. Ideally, choose one item carried by many clothing stores. Visit several stores, locating the item in as many as
possible, noting its price and quality. Compare the same item in the same brand wherever possible. Compare the same item in different brands. Determine which stores carry the most variety, in the best quality, at the best or widest price range. There are scores of different types of stores to visit. Some are recognizably different. Others are
becoming increasingly difficult to differentiate between, as distinctions
have become blurred in recent years. Through this process of comparison shopping, you will discover which stores suit your personal style and provide the type of clothing you want at the price you are willing and able to pay. With each store you scout, consider the following points:
• The type and variety of merchandise carried in the store.
• The amount of money you have available to spend on clothing.
• The convenience of shopping at that store location.
• The type of sales associates the store employs.
• The types of services the store provides.
• The business practices of the store or retailer.
Be a comparison shopper, but don’t over-compare at the expense of gas, time, and energy. Shop for the brands you have been pleased with in the past, but be open to new options. Finding the best bargain for your clothing dollar is a game of sorts, and you come out the winner. This is going to be a one time process, if done , you can relax every time you go for shopping.

Be a smart Shopper by following all these tips as end of the day you want your wardrobe to look attractive, affordable, appropriate and authentic.

This post is part of#BlogchatterA2Z challenge.

To read my previous posts checkout here A ,B ,C ,D ,EFGIJ, K,L,M,N,OPQRST , U , V, W

@ Swati Mathur

#BlogchatterA2Z : “W” – Wardrobe Strategies (A2Z of Image Management)

Hi Everyone,

This is my 23rd post for #BlogchatterA2Z challenge. And today I will be taking you through some of the wardrobe strategies which can helps you to have a closet which is attractive, affordable, appropriate and authentic. When you open your closet and see it filled with clothes, yet feel you have nothing to wear, it’s likely the clothes don’t work for your life style, your personal style, or work together in ways that reflect you the way you want to be seen. The typical tendency is to go out and buy more”stuff”- to buy into the latest “must have” list. The opposite tendency is to stop buying anything, assuming that what you want is not available or cost too much. In either case, seize the moment and overcome the fear of fashion. Look at yourself and your clothes in the light of What all wardrobe strategies you need to adopt?

Rely on clothing as a resource, a tool that can control and use to help you meet your needs and achieve your goals.

A resource is anything available to use to your advantage, as an aid to meet a need or achieve a goal. Time, money, property, energy, food, and clothing qualify as resources.

As a resource, your clothing becomes a tool for meeting needs and achieving goals, takes you where you need to go.
Virtually everyone can afford some clothing of value as a resource.
Carefully selected, this resource can have positive effects on the wearer.
Prepared with clothing as a resource, you/we feel more confident, capable, and credible.

Rely on your clothing as an art form-fitting personal pieces of wearable art.

Clothing is a product of artistic visual design and therefore an art form you can see, touch, and at times even hear. Clothing can stimulate your senses every bit as much as a painting, a piece of sculpture, or a song. Just as the beauty of the painting, sculpture, or song can lift your spirit, so can the beauty of well-designed clothing that meets your needs serve to lift your spirit. Because you can wear this art form, clothing can be seen as wearable art.  Some of the benefits of “The Art of Dress” are:

Dress, like any art form, enriches our lives.
Dress as an art form includes the “how to” guidelines.
Dress as an art form leads to individuality.
Dress as an art form leads to harmony and beauty.
Virtually everyone can afford to approach dress as an art form.

Rely on basic style, clothes that are simple in line and shape, that you can dress up and down or mix and match in a variety of good looks for menu miss and occasions.

The more complicated our lives become, the more variety we need in our clothes and the more important basics become. Simple, plain, uncluttered styles with clean lines are the key to creating a variety of versatile outfits and good looks with your clothes. There are various benefits of basic style to name a few:

Basics do not attract a lot of attention to themselves.
Basics have few design details and no decorations that would limit
possible clothing combinations.
They make good background pieces, easy to combine with other
pieces of clothing and accessories, including those with many details
or decorations.
Basics take you anywhere—from day into evening with understated
elegance. People don’t quickly tire of basic styles.
They are money savers, since they’re easier to dress up or down.
Virtually everyone can afford to buy basics; style is not a matter of

Rely on classic style, clothes with design lines and shapes that are not scream, that fit and flatter most figures, and are appropriate for many occasion.

The more complicated and costly our lives become, the more wear we need from our clothes and the more important classic clothing styles become.

Once a new clothing style is introduced, it becomes a classic if it meets the following criteria:
• Classic styles satisfy many clothing needs for many people.
• Classic styles fit and flatter most figures.
• Most people have places to wear classic styles.
• Most people can afford to buy classic styles.
Clothes with classic styling are worn and seen often, causing them to become accepted in good taste by virtually everyone. At that point the style becomes a classic, core piece, retaining its appeal and ability to be worn for seven to ten years or more, without looking dated.

To determine if a style is classic, look at the garment and ask yourself if the styling is extreme in any way—very wide or very big, very fitted or very tight, and so forth. The more moderate the design, the more classic it becomes. Generally, classics are never on the cutting edge of fashion, never extreme, never glitzy, tight, or revealing. Their styling changes very slowly and only slightly. Classics may be updated slightly in terms of current trends—say, toward slightly wider or narrower lapels or pant legs. Updated classics can become more fashionable at one time or another.

Rely on wardrobe neutral colors, dulled or muted tones of every hue, as well as black, white and gray.

Considering the pace of life and cost of clothes you need all the versatility in a wardrobe you can get. Wardrobe neutrals work to meet that need. Black, white, and gray in their true form are neutrals without any hue or color and are called achromatic. As wardrobe neutrals, they may contain a slight amount of warm or cool hue—such as the warmer umber black or cooler blue-black. Dulled, muted tones—such as the very traditional navy blue, burgundy, brown, tan, ivory, taupe, olive, forest green, teal, and plum—are wardrobe neutrals that coordinate easily to create a variety of versatile outfits and tasteful good looks with your clothes. Dulled, muted tones result from a mix of complementary warm and cool
hues—colors that lie across from each other on the color wheel. Every body can wear them.

Some of the benefits of wardrobe neutrals are :

Dulled tones are less intense and are able to coordinate well with a large variety of other colors, including personal coloring.
Wardrobe neutrals do not attract a lot of attention to themselves.
Wardrobe neutrals take you anywhere with understated elegance.
While some may be more fashionable at one time or another, they are always well received.
Wardrobe neutrals are subtle communicators, allowing the widest
range for moods, occasions, and personality traits.
People don’t tire of wardrobe neutrals quickly.
Wardrobe neutrals are money savers, since they combine easily with other colors.
Everyone can afford to buy wardrobe neutrals; good taste is not a matter of money.

Rely on all-day season fabric, light to medium-sized weight woven and knit fabrics that you can wear at least the seasons or about nine months of the year.

When you build most of your wardrobe with all season fabric, decision making gets easier, your clothing dollar goes further and fashion options increases. It keeps more clothes in use, rather than in storage. Fabric weight and texture are keys to comfort and versatility. There are numerous vendors Of All season fabric to lust a few:

All season fabric are the most comfortable most of the time. These fabrics are versatile for all season wearability. Medium weight and medium textured fabrics do not attract a lot of attention to themselves and can be worn by everyone attractively.

Rely on solid colors and classics patterns, in small to medium scale prints, stripes and plaids.

Plain, solid color fabrics provide a foundation for your wardrobe and combine easily with other solid colors, but don’t stop there. You can count on classic patterns,  in prints, stripes and plaid design on clothing to add the interest and variety needed to enliven what might otherwise become a full wardrobe compares entirely of solid colors. To list done of clay classic patterns are:

They are key to flexcibility, versatility and individuality in a wardrobe. They are always in good taste and do not deserve from you. Classic pattern retain their fashionability and therefore their wearability for years. Virtually everyone can afford to buy classic, style is not a matter of money.

Rely on tailored looking clothes when you need to feel and appear authoritative, capable and credible.

Many basic and classic clothes are commonly referred to as “tailored.”

In terms of the elements of design, tailored garment designed with:
• Straight lines
• Angular or tubular shapes
• Dark, slightly dulled colors, with strong dark/light value contrast
• Firm, smoother fabric
• Geometric traditional patterns

Psychologically, tailored clothes are perceived of as strong and stable, communicating formality, authority, capability, and credibility. All design elements are interrelated. In the case of tailored clothing, they are used to reinforce the more authoritative effects of one another and hence, the tailored image— traditionally associated with leadership and professional roles. You, too, can rely on tailored looking clothing to influence you with the feeling and appearance of strength, authority, and ability in leadership situations in the home, school, church, community, and in the workplace.

Rely on a cluster, or clusters of clothes to meet all of your wardrobe needs.

Deciding what to wear each day is a real challenge for many people. And to many people think they need a lot of clothes to dress well. Not so. You don’t need a large quantity clothes to have a very workable wardrobe. To many clothes becomes confusing time and space consuming and expensive. To many or to free clothes complicated your life. What you need to do is a simple wardrobe strategy, ready to remember and easy to use. And that is clustering, to know more on this click here.

Rely on a periodic wardrobe evaluation session.

Before revamping your entire wardrobe, take time to evaluate your wardrobe,  a phase in the controversies and powerful five part process of Wardrobing. The five phase in the Wardrobing cycle include

  • Inspiration
  • Dedication
  • Accumulation
  • Evaluation and
  • Elimination

Click here to read in detail.

Rely on proper clothing care to increase the value of clothes as a resource.

The wear life and appearance of your clothes depends on how carefully you handle and hands or gold your clothes ready day,  repair your clothing whenever needed, sort, clean and press you clothes and how often, store limited occasion and out of season clothes and pack your clothes for travel. These are not favorite tasks for most of us. Nonetheless, the value of your wardrobe depends in large part on care it receives. To maintain an attractive and appropriate appearance, you must maintain your clothing. This is part of clothing management process.

This post is part of#BlogchatterA2Z challenge.

To read my previous posts checkout here A ,B ,C ,D ,EFGIJ.K,L,M,N,OPQRST , U , V

@ Swati Mathur

#BlogchatterA2Z : “V” – Visual Communication ( A2Z of Image Management)

Hi Everyone,

Here I am with my 22nd post for #BlogchatterA2Z challenge. Visual Communication is the key to manage positive image. As you all know Image Management is all about developing your inner strength and at the same time reflect them on the outside through appearance. While reflecting the inner strength outside one needs to create powerful first impression with stronger visual communication through appearance.

Verbal communication depends on words and sound. Nonverbal communication occurs through sight and touch. It is silent, visual communication,  an immediate and important communication skill that plays a major role in everyday interaction. Call it what you like, your visual image, personal appearance or self presentation communicates to one and all within view, as well as to yourself. You cannot NOT communicate!  Your clothes make a statement without saying a word. Your clothes speaks before you do.

By its very presence, the visibility of clothing is accessible to others. Purposeful or not, this allows clothing to make statement, to project or reflect message about the wearer and the situation, occasion or activity. There is no such thing as neutral appearance.

For example, in her book, The Language of Clothes, Allison Lurie explains,  “Long before I am near enough to talk to you on street, in the meeting, or at a party, you announce your sex, age and class to me through what you are wearing, and very possibly give me important information or (misinformation)  as to your occupation, origin, personality, opinion, tastes, sexual desire, and current mood. I may not be able to put what I observe into words, but I register the information unconsciously, and you simultaneously do the same for me. By the time we meet and converse we have already spoken to each other in an older and more universal tongue. “

There is something called as universal elements of visual image. These three distinct elements combine to create personal appearance or the visual image and the message to be perceived :

  • Clothing including accessories
  • Grooming including body hygiene, hair, slim, nail care and makeup
  • Body language, including figure out body type, personal coloring, posture, eye contact, facial expression, gestures, manners and  etiquette.

Together ,these elements create a unique and memorable image of you, either as a first impression or an image that comes immediately to the minds of those who know you. Impression formation based on assistance is automatic and instantaneous. We form impression and make assumptions or judgements in seconds.

Semiotics is the science is signs. Clothing functions as a system of signs. Specific characteristics, traits or design details in clothing serve as signs, symbols, cues or clues to make a statement, to communicate a message. The meaning of specific clothing cues depends on the meaning of the total outfit. Any and every detail speaks out, although the meaning of the be unclear and the interpretation may be inaccurate.

For example, some individuals may wear a Geek cross to symbolize religion belief, others however, may wear a necklace with these symbols out of pure aesthetic interest.

Clothing and image cues are not static but ever- changing. The specific statement message or meaning changes according to, the characteristics cues or combination of cues, the people involved, the social context or the historic period in time.

Many people do not even notice non verbal cues, do not understand them and therefore do not value them. This lack of awareness in called Dyssemia. Different people notice different cues depending on their background, and historic position in time. Until you have a need,  an interest or need to know, your may miss the cue.

Learn to read or listen to what a person’s nonverbal image cue are saying, then compare with their verbal words. You are looking for harmony, agreement or consistency between the two. Research reveals that when there is a difference between what we say and how we look, people tend to believe the image cues, not the words.

Something called the halo effect occurs when one or a few noticeable cues create a bridge to the assumption of additional cues, positive or negative. The greater the difference in dress and grooming the more contrary the impression formation.

The best you can’t be a fake or phony. You don’t have to create a façade or pretend to be someone you are not. You have got to be yourself and project or reflect the real you. You may simply have to be yourself more consciously , purposefully and continuously that you have been in the past. A successful image is an invitation to become acquainted with the person inside.

This post is part of#BlogchatterA2Z challenge.

To read my previous posts checkout here A ,B ,C ,D ,EFGIJ.K,L,M,N,OPQRST , U

@ Swati Mathur

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#BlogchatterA2Z : “U” – Utilize Face Shape Evaluation to Accessorize (A2Z of Image Management)

Hi Everyone,

This is my 21st Post for #Blogchatter A2Z challenge and as promised today I will be sharing tips to accessorize according to your face shape. Please checkout my previous post on Face Shape Evaluation , to know your face shape. One thing I would like to share before I begin with the tips, there are many faces which are of a combination, making typical shape name impossible. Identify whether the face is rounder, straight, longer, shorter, wider or narrower than ideal.

Once you have determined your face shape, you can start to determine what looks best on you. From glasses and earrings to hair and makeup, these are the ideals to help you look your best!

There are general rules that apply to any face shape that can be extremely helpful:

  • Every face shape has beautiful qualities! Through hair, makeup, and accessorizing, you can highlight the most beautiful and unique parts of your face!
  • You should use accessories to counter the shape of your face and avoid creating too much sameness.  If your face is round, you should look for glasses that are more squared in order to avoid making the face appear even more round. If your face has a lot of angles, you should wear earrings with softer shapes to offset your angular face features.

Oval Shape

Pic courtesy : Shutterstock

If your face is oval, congratulation!   Your face shape has been deemed the most desirable. Your face shape is extremely versatile and can accommodate most accessories and hairstyles with ease. Your face is oval if it tapers from top to bottom with a forehead that is wider than your chin. You may or may not have prominent cheek bones as well.

While the opportunities may seem endless, the only thing you should really avoid is doing anything dramatic that would make your face appear anything other than oval. Avoid haircuts that create too much bulk at the top of the head, which can elongate your overall face shape. Basically you can carry off everything with an ease.

Round Shape

Round faces tend to have soft features and people probably think you’re younger than you actually are. The most flattering glasses and earrings for round faces will be those that are more rectangular in shape.  Since your face is likely on the short end, you should avoid sunglasses that are too tall and take up too much space on your face. For hair, shorter lengths look great on you as well as longer cuts. Avoid hairstyles that create width (bushy at sides) including cuts that are one length, too blunt, or too short, rounded bangs or straight bangs and voluminous.

For makeup, you should do contouring on the outsides of the face and highlighting on the lengths in the center of your face to make it long elongated. Eyebrow arches can also add length to the face.

Pic Courtesy : GlamBox airbrush cosmetics

Oblong Shape

Oblong face shapes does follow the general rules as you face shape isn’t really round or angled like the others. Roundness is generally encouraged to help create width. Glasses should have some roundness to their frame. Long earrings should be avoided, but round studs and hoops are your best friends. Avoid long, straight hair as it repeats your face shape. Cover some of forehead with bangs, add width at cheeks and light tagging at the sides.

Your makeup should highlight the widths of your face and contour the heights of your face to reduce length of your face . To counter and create illusion of oval shape your neckline, collar or necklace should lead attention outwards line horizontal, wide and square.

Pic Courtesy : Informative mart

Square Shape

The most flattering accessories for your face are round or oval. These shapes create softness and you should avoid the harsh edges of square or geometric angles.

Glasses should be rounded or curved while earrings can be long, but should remain feminine.

The goal of your hairstyle should be to create softness and avoid blunt or boxy cuts. Cover hairline and jawline with softly waved or curled hair. High side part and if you want to go for bangs go with diagonals .As far as makeup is concerned to create an oval affect by draw more attention to the center of your face while softening the edges. To counter and create illusion of oval shape your neckline,  collar or necklace should lead attention down like, vertical, V-neck, open collars and narrow lapels.

Pic Courtesy : Shutterstock

Inverted Triangle Shape

Accessories should be focused on complimenting width at the top of the face, and creating more width at the bottom of the face. Necklaces that are horizontal wide, rounded design and square or round bright bold earrings will compliment . Glass frames can be soft features and round, avoid predominant frames, preferable rimless and write frames. Go with the horizontal wider, scoop, bateau, square, rounded necklines.

You have one of the rare face shapes that can pixie cut, but can also have long hair with the right layering. Avoid heavy hairstyles such as thick, short bangs or short bobs. In makeup contouring under the cheekbones and towards the temples will help narrow the widest part of the face.

Diamond Face Shape

Accessories should work towards narrowing your and cheeks widening your chin. Avoid narrow-framed glasses and focus on bottom-heavy earrings that create the illusion of width near your chin. Soft square, cat eye and oval with light frames will go well with your face shape. For your hair, a deep side part can help offset the sharp angles of the forehead and chin. Avoid close cut out pulled back add it exposes scream angles of face.

For make up apply matte blush to the apples of your cheeks and contour your temples. This will narrow the widest part of your face while also making your chin appear wider. Wear neckline which is wider, to make you look fuller at the bottom of your face.

Rectangle Face Shape

Going back to the basic rules we outlined, the most flattering accessories for your face are round or oval. These shapes create softness and you should avoid the harsh edges of rectangle or geometric angles. You should apply makeup to create softness. Repeat the same make up rules of square face shape.

To give the illusion to bring your face shape closer to oval, have a hair cut of short to medium length, low side part try covering some part of forehead with bangs which will reduce the lengthen of your face. Accessorize with neckpiece that are horizontal wide, rounded design with short to medium length. Go with rounded to oval gold frame avoid repeating you face shape.

Pic Courtesy : Pinterest

Triangle Face Shape

As other face shape the aim is to bring your face shape closer to oval which is so called ideal, accessorize with long vertical neckpiece, small studs or sleek long earring which will not let you look wider at the bottom of your face. Hairstyle with low side part to make it look little wider with short to medium length. Go with rectangular, oval and aviators glass frames. To bring attention downwards wear vertical, v shaped or u shaped to open Collar necklines.

Leverage makeup to narrow the widest part of your face and widen the slimmest. For an everyday makeup look for this face shape, a little bronzer and blush can really enhance the other features on your face and create some instant dimension, but to turn it up a notch with contouring, we’ll need to strategically highlight and contour different areas of the face. Same rules can be applied for someone who has Trapezoid Face Shape.

Hope these tips can help you leverage your beauty quotient!!!!!

This post is part of#BlogchatterA2Z challenge.

To read my previous posts checkout here A ,B ,C ,D ,EFGIJ.K,L,M,N,OPQR, S, T

@ Swati Mathur

#BlogchatterA2Z : “T” – Time to know your Face Shape (A2Z of Image Management)

Hi Everyone,

This is my 20th post for #BlogchatterA2Z challenge. Today I am sharing with you different Types of Face Shapes. All those who are reading my post do analyze your face shape by reading my guidelines. Once you are done..stay tuned to my next post where I will be giving you tips on right kind of accessories, neckline, eye wear and haircut for all types of face shapes to look appropriate and attractive.

There are some things about your body that you should know for example: your blood type, things you are allergic to, and your face shape, to name a few. The last one may seem like no big deal, but knowing if your face is oval, square, or round can help you get a more flattering haircut, look more natural when you get fillers, find perfectly fitting glasses, accessories that suits you and makes you look more attractive and neckline in your clothing which looks more appropriate.

Typical Face Shapes ( Characteristic Traits)

Oval / Ideal face shape

Softly curved ideal, face is longer than wide. Proportions considered traditionally ideal. Length about one and a half times the width at cheeks.

Oblong face shape

Curved at forehead, jaw and chin. Face is longer than wide. Equal width across forehead and jaw. Looks longer and narrow than ideal.

Round face shape

More curved/rounded than ideal. It is as long as it is wide, equal width, equal length and width. Rounded at forehead, cheeks, jaw and chin. Shorter and wider than ideal.

Rectangle face shape

More angular/straight than ideal. Loner than wide. Equal width across forehead, cheeks and jaw. Squared hairline and jawline. Longer and narrower than ideal.

Square face shape

More angular/straight than ideal. Face is as long as it is wide, equal length and width. Equal width across forehead, cheeks and jaw. Straight at side, squared hairline and jawline. Shorter and more antidote than ideal.

Triangle face shape

More angular/ straight than ideal. Narrower at forehead than jaw. Narrower forehead than ideal. Wider at jaw and flatter chin than ideal.

Inverted Triangle face shape

More angular/straight than ideal. Wider at forehead than cheeks and jaw. Narrower at jaw and chin than ideal. (With widow’s peak hairline, may be defined as “Heart” shape)

Diamond face shape

More angular/Straight than ideal. Narrower at forehead, jaw and chin. Wider at cheeks. Narrower forehead, jaw and chin than ideal.

Trapezoid face shape

More angular/straight than ideal. Narrower at forehead and wide at jaw. Relatively straight, angles at sides. ( May be defined as “Pear” shadow).

Knowing your face shape can also show you which parts to deemphasize. If you have a square jaw, you can use contouring makeup to soften the edges and help create more roundness. In order to determine the shape of your face, begin by brushing back your hair so that your bone structure is exposed. Stand approximately twelve inches from your mirror and remaining still. Follow the guideline I have provided here and find out your face shape! Viola!!


This post is part of#BlogchatterA2Z challenge.

To read my previous posts checkout here A ,B ,C ,D ,EFGIJ.K,L,M,N,OPQR

@ Swati Mathur

#BlogchatterA2Z : “S” – Style Scale – Personal/Professional (A2Z of Image Management)

Hi Everyone,

This is my 19th post for #BlogchatterA2Z challenge. And I am really excited to share with you all, “The International Style Scale” which was introduced by Judith Rasband . It shows the art and science of dress with style and integrity. This style scale helps to know that there are differing degrees on a continuum or scale between dressing up and dressing down, between formal and casual dress in work place.

We need to become aware of the factors or variables that account for difference in dress and the statement or message that clothes communicate to you and to others. These factors are the elements of design,  lines, shape, colors, texture and patterns.

It is a fact of life. We have expectations about people’s clothing and appearance for specific times and occasions based on what is socially and culturally acceptable for the time and place, or upon experience alone. For example,  you would interpret a man dressed in tuxedo seen on the occasion of wedding differently than if your see the man wearing a tuxedo on the occasion of an informal backyard barbeque, and still differently if you saw him in a tuxedo and mask on the occasion of Halloween party.

Value conflicts between people, such as parents and child or employer and employee can occur because the individual disagree on their expectation of appropriate dress. The workplace is known for attention to professional appearance. Not all people want to comply, and yet by dressing to meet the expectations of those you work for and with, you can create a more positive first and lasting impression about yourself and your abilities. You can establish or maintain your credibility and exert a more significant influence.

In general, there are four types of business or work enviornments, each with typical expectations about appearance. With thought and practice, you can create an attractive, appropriate appearance for both you and the workplace, an image that will help you achieve your goals and contribute to your continuing success.

At the top of the scale is the Tailored Level of dress,  or Level 4  with more formal looking clothing. They ate designed with straight lines, angular shapes, darker colors with strong dark/light contrast, firm fabric and small scale geometric patterns. They are traditionally more structured, form fitting, matched, layered and include a collar. They communicate authority, ability, stability and a more formal manner.

At bottom of the scale is Untailored Level of dress,  or Level 1, more casual looking clothing. These clothes are designed with curved lines, rounded shaped, lighter color with less talk/light contrast, soft pliable fabric and larger scale rounded pattern. They are traditionally unstructured, lose fitting, unmatched, unlayered and without a collar. They communicate authority casual, relaxed, friendly, informal manner.

Within the opposite even of Tailored and Untailored are the Softly Tailored and Casual Tailored levels of dress perfectly appropriate for business casuals roles and occasion.  They are mix the tailored and untailored design element mentioned before.

Softly TailoredLevel 3 clothes feature predominantly tailored design elements mixed and softened with some untailored design elements. The message they communicate are accessible, influential, capable, less formal and dependable.

Casual TailoredLevel 2 clothes feature predominantly untailored design elements mixed and strengthened with some tailored design elements. The look are more casual ,by degree. The message they communicates are approachable, functional, flexible, informal, relaxed and consistent.

At some degree within the four levels you identify your preferred style of dress, appropriate for your values, your personality, body build, coloring, budget and so on. You then adapt, modify and adjust that style according to your lifestyle, role mood and occasion, be it social or professional. People are smart to include a range of clothes in their closet that allows and encouraged a range of occasion within their own lifestyle. This makes life more interesting, more fun, more fulfilling, at all stages of life.

Message communicates first to the wearer and thank to the viewer, affecting the way the wearer think, feel and acts or behave and then the way the viewer reacts or respond. Within each level are choices of color, fabric and pattern used in combination to create subtle degree of difference in your mood and message. Each level allows for authentic, appropriate, attractive and affordable, classic and creative combination.

This post is part of#BlogchatterA2Z challenge.

To read my previous posts checkout here A ,B ,C ,D ,EFG, I, J.K,L,M,N,OPQ, R

@ Swati Mathur

#BlogchatterA2Z : “R” – Recommended guidelines for a Quick fit style selection for fabulous fit (A2Z of Image Management)

Hi Everyone,

Now here I am with my 18th post for #BlogchatterA2Z challenge. Today I will give you tips to get that perfect fit that you are looking for in dressing.

Where there is a will there is an “Attitude”!

  • Learn to accept yourself as you are, never let your weight get in your way.
  • Learn to dress the body you are living in now – today.
  • Learn that you don’t have figure flaws nor figure faults. You have figure variations, variations from that so called ideal that doesn’t really exist.
  • Learn to sit, stand and walk tall
  • Learn that it’s not just to look slimmer, but to look well proportioned and balanced.
  • Learn that it’s a matter of emphasis, how to counter and camouflage.
  • Learn that it’s not just the clothing style lines and shapes but fabric, and patterns as they interact to influence your goals.
  • Learn that it is not just the piece of clothing you choose, but how you put them together.

It is not what you wear, it’s how you wear it-it’s all in the wearing!

Fit begins when you select a garment style. If the garment style doesn’t accommodate your figure type in the first place, you have a little chance to achieve a fabulous fit. For example, an A- line skirt may not accommodate a triangular figure type with large side thighs, and an hourglass shaped shirtwaist dress with a fitted midriff yoke is not likely to accommodate a diamond figure type who carries her weight between the midriff and high hip, no matter what the size.

If the garment size does accommodate your figure type, it’s likely it will flow easily over later body area for a fabulous fit, and possibly workout alteration or only minimal alteration. Style that accommodate usually feature some design ease or added fullness in larger body areas.  For example, a flared skirt is more likely to accommodate the large side thigh of a triangular figure type and a float dress that features a loose empire waistline and soft hanging gathered skirt below offer a “safe” or “quick fit “style for a diamond figure type.

Save yourself time and frustration. Avoid those wardrobe orphans that hang in so many closets, unloved and unworn, a waste of precious time, money and effort. Learn to recognize the garment that matches most nearly your general figure type. This will be your “Quick Fit” style most likely to accommodate your figure type and generally without any alteration. Remember appropriate fitting ease is essential, so as not to expose your body.

Moving beyond “Quick Fit” style, “Smart Fit” and “Alternative Fit” style becomes an attractive option when carefully selected with design details to balance the figure and if altered to include enough ease in larger body areas.

Light weight layering is another option that works fabulously to camouflage and counter figure variations we don’t want the World to focus on. Some general guidelines:

  • For 2nd layer shirt, skirt, pants and dresses allow 2 or 4 incres of fitting ease around the bust/back and hip/buttocks areas.
  • For 3rd layer jackets, vests, sweater, tunics and dusters, allow 5 to 6 inches of fitting ease around larger body areas.
  • For 4th layer coats allow 7 to 8 inches of fitting ease around these larger body areas.
  • Fitting ease allowed around the waist in 1/2 inch, we seem to prefer a snug fit here.
  • Fitting ease allowed around the upper and lower arm is approximately 2 inches.
  • Fitting ease allowed below the underarm is generally 1/2 to 1 inch.
  • Fitting ease allowed below the crotch is generally 1 to 1/2 inches.

Hope these tips will help you in selecting clothes which fits you best and flatters your body.

This post is part of#BlogchatterA2Z challenge.

To read my previous posts checkout here A ,B ,C ,D ,EF, GIJ.K,L,M,N,OP, Q

@ Swati Mathur

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