When I catch a sideways glance at myself, sometimes it’s just after coming out of the shower on the way to my closet. Most of my body is exposed. Under my eyelids and around my hippy section, I see evidence that my Mommy body is changing. Yes, as we grow up, our bodies prove that no living thing is exempt from the effects of the universe’s gravitational pull.
Bu more often than not, when I see my reflection staring back from the mirror’s glimpse, I am not so exposed. I have dressed for the morning, or maybe even for the day ahead, and I see myself clothed. Sometimes, I celebrate very simple accomplishments. I changed out of my pajamas…into my favorite sweatpants. And then there are days that I discipline myself to pull up my favorite jeans and choose a happy pair of earrings to accompany my grey V-neck. With or without makeup to brighten my skin tone, at least I’ve chosen to get dressed.
To be completely honest, I’ve noticed the clothes I’m wearing predispose how I see myself in the day ahead. Why is this the case?
I think this is true, not just for me, but for most of us: The clothes we wear impact how we feel about our bodies.
Specifically, the color and style of the clothes we wear impact how we feel about our bodies.
Over the last year, I have scrutinized the process of “knowing your colors.” After witnessing a dozen or so friends complete their color analysis with House of Colour, I can say this. It’s not hogwash. I’m not rolling my eyes when I hear them mention buying something from their color palette. I’ve seen them simplify and simultaneously improve their wardrobes after having completed the analysis. It’s proven. By knowing their colors, these women know how to do the work that leads to loving what is in your closet.
And you know what? They’re not enjoying the clothes in their closets more because they lost weight. Not one of them is shopping better because she suddenly has more glamourous facial features or a fresh, younger-looking hairstyle.
What has each woman chosen to do? She has chosen to invest in Herself — without changing any thing about her body.
Convinced she was right, I found a sitter and made my appointment. Throughout the two hour consultation, I learned how to see color in a new way. There are certain colors that make my face look more yellow (not the look I’m going for), and there are another whole set of colors that make me look older which, at forty, is not the look I’m going for either. But taking the time to clearly see how over 100 color swaths look against my face changed the way I see color. Color changes my appearance. Color can be my friend or my enemy.
Knowing the colors that compliment my natural skin tone has changed my approach when getting dressed, whether for the homeschool day or for an evening formal event. The color analysis equipped me with the tools I needed so that I can love what is in my closet.
- It helped me decide what needs to go. Like donated and OUT! There are so many clothes in my closet that I don’t love once I get them home. Once they make the hanger, they just sit there, taking up space. Knowing “my power colors” helped me eliminate pieces of clothing that do not compliment my skin tone.
- It helped me see how to shop. I can peruse shopping aisles in minutes because I know how to scan the racks for what colors look great on me. Knowing how to shop helps me only buy pieces that make me feel beautiful and confident.
- It helped me save money and time. I only buy from the color palette in which I thrive, and I don’t waste money on clothing pieces and makeup that look good on the Pinterest model but, well, don’t compliment me.
Hiding behind clothes isn’t a solution for negative body image. Choosing to forgo shopping until you feel better about yourself isn’t helping build confidence either. But what I learned in this “color appointment” — it reinforced something in me. It reminded me that there are a lot of people who want to sell me things to help me change myself, and for now, that’s just not what I’m looking for.
I’m searching out ways to see myself as beautiful, as I am. And since I am going to buy clothes on occasion anyway, why not choose to buy pieces that make my eyes sparkle and my cheeks brighten? Why not invest in seeing myself in the colors that make me radiate?
****I’m choosing to feature Lindsey Benda and her local business because the mission of improving personal image links seamlessly with the message of celebrating how we were created. Personal body image affects most people, whether we work in our home, work outside of our home, or work, straddling both spheres. I feel confident suggesting this as a great gift for that friend (or Mom) who has everything!