Picking A Power Outfit

I don't know about you, but every year in the days leading up to the first day of school I would AGONIZE about what to wear!

You're going to be seeing your classmates for the first time since June, you might meet new people and want to make a good first impression

As you get older, this feeling never really goes away. The first day of school may be a thing of the past, but outfit anxiety is FOREVER! 

An interview, your first day at a new job, seeing an old friend, seeing an old boyfriend (and wanting to WIN!), weddings, date nights, annual salary reviews, presentations, important birthdays... the list goes on and on!

The one thing that all of these events have in common (other than the potential for stress) is that you want to look your BEST. You want to exude beauty, grace, confidence. You want to look 10 pounds skinnier and feel POWERFUL... powerful enough to overcome the aforementioned stress.

What you need to do, is pick a power outfit. 

Power outfits can be different given the scenario (I mean, don't wear to a date night what you would wear to a job interview), but they follow the same basic rules to achieve your goal of feeling your best.

Ditch the 80's suits (unless you love shoulder pads). Here are some of my suggestions for what you should look for:

1) Something that flatters your angles (Lessons Learned from "What Not To Wear")

Do you have fabulous legs? Show them off! Accent your waist, wear a blazer without lapels for a less bulky look. 

Try different things until what you see in the mirror makes you want to do a little dance. That's the sign of success!

2) A mix of classic and fashionable (Audrey Hepburn meets the Hadid sisters... Audrey Hadid.)

Some clothes go in and out of style, and some are timeless. 

I'm a firm believer that you should mostly ignore fads and go for timeless with all of your clothes, but adding something in a fashionable colour, or with a little more intrigue, creates a gorgeous look.

3) A colour that makes you look great (flatters your skin and your eyes!)

This goes without saying but, don't wear a colour that fades you out! 

This advice is NOT one size fits all because, well, we all have different skin/hair/eye combos! I'm fairly pale with brown hair and blue eyes, so when I want to feel powerful I thrown on something cobalt-blue. 

If I have a date night coming up? Cobalt-Blue.

Have an event and want to look my finest? Cobalt-Blue!

Shake it up with other colours every other day of the week, but when you want to look your best, lean on the colour that makes you feel AMAZING every time you put it on. Go out there and find your colour!

4) Simple makeup (Don't try to keep up with the Kardashians)

Simple doesn't necessarily mean "minimal", just don't overdo it! 

A powerful day might call for wearing eyeliner when you normally don't, but it's not time for "today I will spontaneously contour my face even though I don't know how!".

Stick with what you know how to do, stressing about new makeup techniques is not starting off on the right foot for your power outfit.

5) Fabulous (but few) accessories

As Coco Chanel said, "Before you walk out the door, look in the mirror and take one thing off".

Don't over do it on accessories, which are just as capable of taking away from your outfit as they are of adding to it. 

When dressing powerfully, pick a nice pair of stud earrings, throw on your favourite long-chain necklace, and finish with a gorgeous ring. Depending on the event (usually work related) choose to opt for a watch and forgo the necklace instead. 

My advice: always try to leave one of the "accessory zones" (neck, ears, wrists, fingers) free.

6) GORGEOUS shoes (that you can walk in)

Give a woman the right pair of shoes and she can rule the world.

I admit that I have a mild shoe obsession, so maybe this isn't on everyone's list. But the last thing you want is to have a perfect outfit and then throw on your dirty shoes, or shoes that make your feet hurt, or shoes that are just the wrong colour!

If nothing else, have a pair of 1" heeled nude shoes, and a similar pair in black that you can wear with nearly everything. Keep them well polished and ready for power outfit days!

7) Nicely polished fingernails (and toes if you can see 'em!)

I once met with a mentor who told me he didn't give a perfectly good candidate the job because her nails were a mess.

He had two qualified candidates, both women, both great.. but he picked the one who looked more polished because it showed she cared more about the interview than the one with chipped nail polish.

I was pretty mad about this statement at the time...I mean, keeping you nail polish nice is a never ending struggle that he couldn't POSSIBLY understand.

But let me tell you, I have NEVER since done anything professionally (interviews, presentations, client meets, etc.) without first making sure my polished nails look great... or I make sure they are unpolished and nicely shaped. 

Much like the scuffed shoes, chipped nail polish really does ruin your power outfit look. 

So tell me, what outfit is in your closet that makes you feel the most POWERFUL?! Is it because of the shape? The colour? Let me know in the comments below!

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