I was watching my favorite new fashion makeover show the other day, Girlfriend Intervention, and a couple of tips for shopping were mentioned by Tanisha Thomas. One of those tips was wearing the right undergarments, which is so very important for looking your best when trying on clothes, or when wearing anything! Another tip mentioned was to do your hair and make up, nothing is going to look good on you if everything above the clothing is a mess. I agree, I think a lot of us go out in a rush to find one item and end up on a shopping spree with our hair pulled up in a loose bun only suitable for at home watching TV in bed or exercising!
I wanted to add some tips of my own, which I am sure Tanisha and the lovely ladies of this show already know, but you know how shows are, limited time to tell us everything, so I am giving you a few tips that I have thought of.
1. Wear, or take with you the proper shoes. Especially if trying on dresses for special occasions, or jeans that you are considering wearing with those new pumps, or a special pair of boots. You can’t see the whole picture without the right pair of shoes. You would not want to try on the perfect little black dress and not have the perfect nude pumps now would you? I have been known to shove accessories, scarves, and a couple of pair of shoes in a large tote before when going shopping! I want to know that I can pull an entire look together, not just pick out a dress!
2. Do not eat a huge meal before going shopping and trying on clothing. We don’t want to feel bloated when we try on new styles! Eat a salad, or something that will give us an energy boost to get through the shopping experience, something that makes you feel healthy so you feel thin, and feel good when trying things on. No one wants to go shopping after eating a heavy greasy fast for meal! You simply won’t feel as good, will get lethargic, feel bloated, and give up.
3. Speaking of food, don’t go shopping on an entirely empty stomach! We need fuel to help keep us going! Also take a healthy snack along with you such as some carrots, or granola, or nuts to snack on.
4. Before heading out, put on something that is easy to get in and out of. I know we want to look good when we go to the mall, but if you are out for a day of shopping, especially if you will be trying on clothes, the last thing you need is an accessory laden outfit, tons of buttons, belts, ties, and gadgets getting in between you and that awesome find! Wear sweats! Who cares who you run into, you will have your hands full of bags to cover up your not so fashionable look anyway because you will have so much more time to try things on rather than getting the outfit you wore off! Oh and for the record, there are some rather pretty looking sweats you can find if you really must look fashionable while shopping.
5. Some shopping locations offer totes in which you can carry around potential purchases, some do not. If your shopping location does offer a tote, or even a cart, by all means grab one and use it! It is far better to stroll around with a big tote or care with only a couple of items than to end up with an armful and no hands left to look through the racks with. If you pick up even one purse, or pair of shoes, you are not going to be as easily able to look through the racks so be sure to take advantage of the totes and carts provided by shopping locations.
6. For the life of me I have still not figured out why shopping centers do not do something more positive in their dressing rooms when it comes to the mirrors and lighting, not to mention the cramped space! When we try on clothing we often feel cramped, rushed, hot, confused, restricted, and then we look in the mirror! Okay maybe not everyone has this issue but I swear to you that nothing looks good on me in a dressing room! The lights are too bright, the space is too small, there are items of clothing hanging and laying everywhere no matter how organized I try to be. Half of the time I need a different size than I selected and I am questioning if I need to get dressed again, or go out in the wrong size to hunt the other size down. Do I leave my stuff and risk it being stolen, do I take it all with me and look like a deranged idiot? Just what is a woman to do? Where are the so called dressing room attendants? Do they really exist anymore? Where AM I shopping anyway? Unless I am at one of my beloved boutiques where I get all the attention I need, in good lighting, with super big dressing rooms, and comfy seating, this is how I feel. And when I do shop in these boutiques I pay the price, literally, as the clothing is obviously more expensive, but often I feel the price is worth it due to the luxe feel I get in them. So my advice to you is the following … and if you have followed my suggestion of easy wear outfit for shopping days, such as sweats, this will be much easier! Slow down, take your time, make two three piles. One pile is “it fits and I want it” pile two is “it fits and I don’t want it anyway, or it does not fit and I don’t want it anyway” basically pile two is anything you need not do anymore considering of. Then pile three, pile three is “this is still a contender, I like it, but I need to get a different size”. The only pile you need to worry about is pile three. After you have got pile one and two worked out, put pile one back in your shopping tote, if you were lucky enough to be in a store that offers them. If not, just fold everything up in a neat stack and put it aside for now. Pile two has to go and get out of your life asap! Get it out of your dressing room! Hand it off to a clerk, put it in another room, or put on a table they may have for their employees to go through to hang back out on the racks, just get rid of it all. Now back to pile three, this is where your focus needs to be, here only. If you can not find an employee to go get the correct sizes for you, which is best case scenario, then put your own outfit back on, this is where those sweats will help tons! Take all your “I am buying items” and put them in your tote or bundle them up in one arm. In the other arm gather all your “I need another size items” and start your trek back into the store. Don’t forget to take all of your personal belongings! It is insane how fast your stuff can “disappear” in a shop! Now, calmly, collectively, get the proper sizes in everything you need in one fell swoop.
I do realize this seems like common sense but if you are the average woman shopping, common sense can easily get tossed to the wind when in a shopping frenzy! This is amplified if you have kids with you, or are in a rush for time. Sometimes you have to remind yourself to hurry up and slow down!
7. Speaking of dressing room mirrors … don’t be afraid to walk out of the dressing room! There are usually mirrors very close to the dressing room in the main part of the shop, which will have far better and more complimentary lighting, also you will be in a larger space so that you get a truer look of yourself! Do take your purse with you of course, but I generally feel at ease that my selected items that I am trying on, and sweats will be fine for a few moments at least. Looking at yourself in the mirrors out of the dressing room will make you feel much better about yourself, and the clothing you are considering!
8. My final tip is less of a tip and more something for you to consider. It is about who you shop with, if you shop with anyone at all. I realize we can’t always control this, and when we have younger kids, or grandkids we care for, we can’t help but bring them with us sometimes. It is always a great idea to bring along some easy to clean up, unflattering toys, and today we have iPads and electronic gizmos to entertain the kids, but I am speaking more toward if we shop with a friend or not. Shopping with a friend can be a good thing, or a very bad thing, depending on the friend, and our self image. If you are feeling overweight, unhappy with your appearance, never shop with your skinny, overly attractive friend, same goes for your voluptuous friend if you are feeling too thin! Yes some women do feel too thin as well! Don’t shop with that friend who hates everything, is not into shopping, or seems to always pick on your flaws. We tear ourselves down enough, and you may want to rethink that friend being a friend at all if they act this way toward you. You do want a friend who will be honest however, and let you know in a direct but non cutting you down way if something just isn’t working for you. Yes the girls on Girlfriend Intervention can be quite direct, but they do it with love and guide a person toward what does look great rather than just cutting for the sake of being mean. And please do not take advice from the friend who never shops, and is daily walking around with rollers in her hair! Again, we are hard enough on ourselves, we need to be wise about who we take with us, and what type of advice they can offer to us. Sometimes it is best to just go it alone but be fair to yourself, remember the lights, the mirrors, the stress can be unforgiving. Shopping can be a joyful experience when we take our time, and organize our shopping journey.
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