When we admire the way a woman is dressed, chances are her clothes and accessories enhance everything wonderful and unique about her, from her personality to her body language and facial features. No one is better than Dressing Your Truth® when it comes to giving every Type of woman the tools she needs to look—and feel—sensational. Once you’ve mastered Dressing Your Truth’s beauty and fashion philosophy, you’ll never have a bad outfit day ever again!
Now one lucky FOF will win the empowering DYT online course and get $200 to spend in its online store. You’ll discover which of the 4 Types of beauty you are and learn how to reflect it through your wardrobe. And you’ll get a head start on looking sensational for spring.
Couldn’t make it to Beauty Bash? Below, see the fab before-and-after photos and read a breakdown of how the experts achieved their new and improved look.
FOF Karen Hansen
“I grew up in the no-makeup, jeans-and-t-shirt generation,” said Karen, a retired CPA who lives in South Carolina in the winter, and Brewster, N.Y., in the summer. “I’ve never been great at putting myself together.” Prior to her makeover, Karen told us her hair was “balding at the top” and she was “confused” about her personal style. “I feel 24, my body acts 80, and my birth certificate says 58,” said Karen, who also told us she hoped to look “younger” by her 59th birthday in November. Could a makeover help achieve that goal?
Her transformation broken down:
Hair: Hair expert Elline Surianello of LeMetric Hair Solutions addressed Karen’s thinning hair with one of her custom hair pieces. Prior to the makeover, Karen had light, reddish-blonde hair. Elline designed the hair piece in a deeper shade. “There is no better or faster way to change how you look than wearing the right hair in the right color,” says Elline. “Look how powerful this is.” Karen agreed. “I knew my hair was thin but didn’t realize the difference [fuller] hair makes. It’s fantastic. I feel like a new person.”
Colors: Once Karen had her new hair, “guru of hue” Jill Kirsh was able to recommend her most flattering shades. Jill’s color matching system is based on a simple concept: your most flattering shades are dictated by your hair color. “Your hair is what frames your face,” says Jill. She breaks us up into four categories, golden browns/red heads, deep brunettes, ash blondes/platinum/grey, warm blondes and has assigned a palette of colors to each group. Since Karen’s new hair falls under the “golden browns/redheads” category, she looks best in earth-tone colors such as camel, ivory, warm greens and browns, according to Jill. Jill did Karen’s makeup and picked an outfit for her in her new palette. “When you get your hair, clothing and makeup the right shades, everything is in sync,” said Jill.
What did Karen think of her new look?
“The makeover has changed my life by giving me more confidence, especially now that my hair doesn’t look so thin,” says Karen. “I never thought I could get up in a room full of people like that. All the attention and compliments really made me feel good and upped my self esteem. I just wish I could have someone fix me up everyday!”
FOF Cathy Furegno
“I always dreamed of being a model” wrote in FOF Cathy Furegno, a secretary at a high school in Middletown, N.Y. “I raised 4 children, worked two jobs most of my life and just feel it is time to do something for myself.” Cathy said she doesn’t spend much money on her clothes and that “it would be really nice to be pampered for once.” The Beauty Bash makeover was Cathy’s chance to do just that.
Her transformation broken down:
Hair: “Cathy doesn’t have thinning hair but she may want to have fun with it without making a big commitment,” said Elline. She created a custom hair piece for Cathy in a darker, cooler hue (Cathy was a dark-redhead prior to the makeover.) The hair piece was also longer, which Elline said is a more modern look than her old style. “Look how much younger she looks with longer hair. You look hot…How do you feel?” asked Elline. “Hot,” said Cathy.
Colors: A new hair color for Cathy, means she needs to change up her colors, according to Jill Kirsh. “With the red gone, her hair is much cooler,” said Jill who said that Cathy now falls into the “deep brunette” group of Jill’s 4-category color system. Prior to the makeover, Cathy’s most flattering colors were the earth tones, but now, according to Jill, she looks best in gem tones such as emerald green, ruby red and sapphire blue. Her best neutrals are black and white. Jill did Cathy’s makeup and picked an outfit for her in these shades.
What did Cathy think of her new look?
“This makeover made me realize you don’t have to be 20 or 30 to look your best,” says Cathy. “We all need a little boost and self-confidence like this, in our lives. Oh, and in addition to the makeover, I made a new friend… Karen (fellow makeover winner), she is a very nice woman.”
“Although I’m 63, my body looks 45 because I exercise every day. But, my boobs belie the rest of my appearance,” wrote in Harriet Brand in response to our call for FOFs in need of a bra makeover. “I could really use a professional to help lift my ‘girls’ and my spirits.”
“Your breasts have a mind of their own,” said Linda, when Harriet met her at her New York City store. “They’re like two bad kids. If you don’t control them, they’re out of control.”
According to Linda, Harriet’s breasts were just that — out of control. When she came in to Linda’s Bra Salon, Harriet was wearing a size 36C bra from Steinmart, which Linda called “totally dead” because it was so worn out that it offered no support. She also said the band was much too loose. “[Her breasts are] low, her nipple should be halfway between her shoulder and elbow. We’ll pick your girls up,” Linda assured Harriet, after she determined that her true size is 34DD. “The last time I had a bra fitting? Never,” said Harriet. Linda trashed Harriet’s old bra and replaced it with three new and perfectly-fitting bras including the bestselling Body Sense Back Control Bra by Natori in Nude, 34DD. “It’s what I call the back fat bra,” says Linda. “It’s wide on the sides so it gives you a really smooth look in the back. It’s a really basic, comfortable bra.”
SO how did Linda find Harriet’s perfect bra? And how can you find yours? Read on to find out . . .
How do you know if your bra fits correctly?
Your nipple should be halfway between your shoulder and your elbow. When your breasts are low they make you look shorter, heavier and older.
How often should you get new bras?
Every six months. No one is the same size their entire life. There’s too many things that go on — you exercise, you have babies, you gain weight, you lose weight, you take medication that can make your breasts bigger, you go through menopause…
Should you wear a bra when you sleep?
Your breasts never know what you’re doing. They have to be supported all the time – whether you’re cleaning your house, sleeping or going to a wedding. You can wear sleep bras to keep them uplifted through the night.
Is a more expensive bra necessarily a better bra?
You can get a great fitting $29 bra. The difference is in the fabric. For instance, you get a better lace in a $129 bra.
What are your favorite bra lines for FOFs? Different companies are specialized in certain things, Simone Perele makes really pretty, well-fitting bras that minimize you. Chantelle is a fabulous bra company that is making their cups bigger and bigger, which is great. Panache specializes in double D and higher. Wacoal are great fitting bras for FOFs at great prices.
Do different brand bras fit differently? Yes. You should always be fitted when you buy a new bra. You should never go into a department store and just say, ‘Oh, I’m a 34B.’
Can I figure out my own bra size? I’d recommend having a professional fit you. There are so many intricacies and as I mentioned before, different bra brands fit differently. You may be one size in one brand and another size in a different brand.
Next weekend (Oct 1 & 2) at The Beauty Bash, FOFs will be stunned to see the total transformations of Cathy Furegno and Karen Hansen, last month’s makeover winners. Both will receive $3,500 transformations including new clothes, new makeup, new hair and a color consultation. Meet them, below.
Why did you enter this contest?
I thought ‘why not?’ I am a bit on the shy side and never had much self-confidence. I felt if I won, this would be my 15 minutes of fame. I always dreamed of being a model.
How has your appearance changed since you turned fifty?
My weight is about the same, although I do have a tendency to fluctuate by about five-to-ten pounds (but don’t we all?) My face is a bit longer and I have ‘parenthesis’ but no wrinkles. My eyes also look tired at times. I have some gray hair but I dye it. I’ve always had baby fine hair.
Describe your self-image.
I am not ashamed of how I look, but I don’t spend much money on myself. I have 4 children and a husband and always felt guilty if I put myself first.
Describe your style.
It’s on the conservative side, although I admire flamboyant people because they are not afraid to wear what they want. I don’t spend much money on clothes.
Do you have a fashion icon?
Jacklyn Smith. Her taste is simple, yet she always looks wonderful. She was and is one of the most elegant women in the world.
What are you looking forward to most about your makeover?
Learning how to bring out the best in myself. I know I will enjoy all the attention. A dream come true!
Why did you enter this giveaway?
I’ve always wanted a makeover. I grew up in the straight hair, no makeup, jeans and t-shirt generation and have never been great at putting myself together. My kids always said I was ‘hair and makeup challenged.’
What do you wish you could change about your appearance?
I wish my thinning hair was nice and thick. I’d like to get rid of the wrinkles starting under my chin and neck. My biggest wish is weight loss.
How would you describe your personal style?
Confused. I love the preppy look, like the “hippie” look but also like my jeans-and-T-shirt days. It all depends on my mood and activities.
How do you want to look on your 60th birthday?
Younger — like 50 on my 60th. I feel 24, my body acts 80 and my birth certificate says 58.
What do you hope to get out of this makeover?
How to look my best. I want to learn how to accentuate my best features and how to play down my flaws.
FOF Lauri Ward built her business, Use What You Have Interiors, on the theory that anyone, on any budget, can have a beautiful home using the furnishings they already own. A few months ago we put her theory to the test!
The challenge: Help FOF Marcia Robinson by making over her entire living room in three hours… with a $350 budget. Did she do it?
“Tired and uninspiring,” is how FOF Marcia Robinson described her living room when she entered our room makeover contest in January. Marcia has lived in her one-bedroom, Manhattan apartment for 25-years. Ten years ago she attempted to furnish it in one-fell-swoop with pieces she loved. “Everything went wrong,” says Marcia. “The glass came cracked on the coffee table, the wall unit was too small. It was a big hassle.” Frustrated, Marcia took to decorating the apartment piecemeal over the years. However, her mother’s Alzheimer’s diagnosis, and a forced-retirement from her job at a management consulting firm, has put a hold on any recent updates to Marcia’s living room.
And as for the actual “living” that goes on in this room…there’s not much. “I spend most of my time in my bedroom where my computer is,” says Marcia. Lauri says the room’s “visual chaos,” is why Marcia might not find it relaxing. “When I look around, there’s no blank space to rest my eye,” says Lauri. “The good news,” she tells Marcia, “is that by correcting a few common design mistakes that most people make, you can update your living room without buying all new furniture. Your home should look as up-to-date as you do.”
Read on and discover the mistakes and quick fixes Lauri found for Marcia’s living room.
“You can never have two many pairs,” says Lauri, who swapped Marcia’s mismatched lamps for a pair of lamps from IKEA ($69.99 each). She also added two IKEA throw pillows ($14.99 each) to the couch. “The more pairs you put in a room, the better it looks. You need the balance.”
“The couches were set up in an L configuration with two chairs in the corner. This is probably the worst setup there is for comfortable conversation,” says Lauri. “Plus, the chairs were too far from the coffee table.”
“We took away one couch, and set up the furniture in a U-shape. Now, everyone can sit and face each other. You can put out hors d’oeurves on the coffee table and everyone can comfortably reach.”
“You collect so much stuff over a lifetime,” says Lauri. “It’s nice to have all these things, but you need to edit what you own and accessorize effectively.”
“Reevaluate what you have,” says Lauri. “Keep the pieces you love. Donate everything else to charity and get a write off.” She grouped similar accessories together to create collections and got rid of pieces that were misfits. Marcia’s plants are important to her, but the mismatched pots weren’t working. Lauri moved the plants into window boxes to conceal the pots and repositioned them under the coffee table creating an terrarium-like effect.
“People think they should hang art at eye level,” says Lauri. “There’s no such thing as eye level since we are all different heights.”
“Follow the three inch rule,” says Lauri. “Hold art up where you think it should go, then lower it three inches.” By swapping the chaotic gallery wall for one striking picture, Lauri says the viewer’s eyes can focus.
“Before, the rug was distracting and competing with the fabric on the sofa,” says Lauri. “This rug introduces a color that’s in the sofa’s fabric. When you have a patterned sofa you want to look for solids for everything else.”
Mission accomplished! The result? A living room that Marcia can live in! “Now, you can sit in here and read,” says Lauri. “You’ll finally be comfortable.” What does Marcia think? “It’s quite a change!… I like it.”
“I had to sell my house in a bad housing market,” writes Rosie on her website. “I had a broken-up relationship, a lost, messy floundering business, topped off with seemingly insurmountable life issues… All of this toxicity evidenced itself in the most obvious symptom of a lifestyle gone awry, an overweight, uncomfortable body.”
In an effort to get her confidence up and her body in shape, Rosie tackled a life goal: compete in a body-building contest. In four months, she toned up, lost 35 pounds and placed in the competition.
How’d she do it? Rosie took on an intensive dieting and training program and developed a system of nutritional “tricks” to keep herself on track.
1. When cooking and eating, remember these simple rules: The simpler, the less ingredients, the easier, the cleaner, the lighter, the purer — the better.
2. Three things to have in your fridge at all times are: a bowl of leftover brown rice, 3 or 4 baked sweet potatoes, a container of homemade applesauce. It will take about one hour of your time to prepare these items but having them ready will help you get healthy meals together in minimal time. Designate a few hours each week to prep for the next week.
3. Ezekiel breads are the only way to go. Ezekial is one brand of sprouted bread and contains no flour or refined sugars. You’ll find these breads in the freezer section of your grocery store because there are no preservatives or processed flours, making the shelf life short. The bread will last weeks in your freezer.
4. You may think “hippy” when you think “hemp” — but, actually this small seed is a nutrient rich powerhouse and a great source of fiber, magnesium, iron, zinc and potassium. Use this super seed mixed in to granola, yogurt, soups, smoothies or baked goods.
5. Dark leafy greens are the best and only way to get the phytochemicals and plant nutrients we need for ultimate health. One way to get these greens into your diet is to use collard leaves as sandwich wraps.
FOFs Janet Prensky and Anne-Marie Aigner have been best friends since Anne-Marie was Janet’s voice teacher at Emerson College. Over the years they’ve shared a radio talk show in Boston and a flourishing marketing agency, Aigner/Prensky Group.
In 2009 they launched “The Boomer Broads,” a hilarious web-based talk show “for and about grown-up women!”
To help them get camera-ready, FOF teamed up with Soft Surroundings and gave the sassy, brassy, hilarious duo… a serious beauty do-over.
Farukh Shakeel, Soft Surroundings makeup artist extraordinaire, came armed with her bag of foolproof flaw-fixers from Sue Devitt. “Sue Devitt products are particularly fantastic for FOFs,” says Farukh. “They provide great hydration and contain nylon 12, an ingredient that bends and moves with the skin so the product won’t settle in lines and creases.”
Flaw: Wrinkles and deep lines from spending summers on Cape Cod.
Fixer: “Microquatic Anti-Aging Primer (1) fills in pores and wrinkles so the makeup doesn’t set into fine lines,” says Farukh. “Primer is the most important product for FOFs.”
Flaw: Redness around the cheeks and nose.
Fixer: “Ruddiness can become more pronounced after fifty,” ” says Farukh. 70% Triple Seaweed Gel Foundation in ‘Tanami’ (2) covers the redness in Janet’s nose and cheeks, but it’s very light–70% water–so it won’t look heavy.”
Flaw: Pale, “unfinished” lips.
Fixer:“Balanced Sheer Lipstick in ‘Villefranche’ (3) is a beautiful, pinky-nude that’s not at all overpowering,” says Farukh. “It gives a slight bit of color, so her lips don’t overwhelm.”
— Flaw: Sparse eyelashes.
Fixer: “Lash Intensifier Treatment and Lengthening Mascara (4) makes Janet look awake and alive. It brings so much definition to her eyes. And if she uses the conditioning treatment every night, she should see significantly longer lashes in a few weeks.”
Flaw: Dark under-eye circles
Fixer:Bermuda Triangle Undereye Corrector(1) works universally on all skin tones,” says Farukh. “The peach undertones camouflage the blue-green of dark circles. It has orchid extract which helps hydrate the under-eye area and fight free radicals. It starts off very creamy and works down to a powdery finish.”
Flaw: Too much mascara and overly lined eyes.
Fixer: “Anne-Marie shouldn’t use mascara on the bottom lash because that creates a younger, doe-eyed look,” says Farukh. “When all the mascara is on the top lashes, the eyes appear lifted. The Eye Intensifier Pencil in ‘Ava’ (2) goes on creamy so it doesn’t create a hard line around the eye, and the deep purple shade brings out the green specks in Anne-Marie’s eyes.”
Flaw: Uneven lip color
Fixer: Ann-Marie’s lip line looks heavy, and too dark for the inside of her lip. “Long-Lasting Lip Liner Pencil in ‘Safi’ is creamy, not hard, when applied, so it won’t create a hard line and it won’t feather and bleed. Use it to fill in the lip–not just to line.” says Farukh. “Balanced Sheer Lipstick in ‘Hollywood’ (3) is a dusty-rose, perfect to match the pencil and finish the look.”
Flaw: A dull winter complexion
Fixer: “Triple Touch Light Reflecting Bronzer in ‘Beausoleil’ (4) has graduated color, from light to dark, to prevent a flat, streaky tone. Just brush it lightly over your t-zone–where the sun hits–to liven dull winter skin.”
Thank you for entering. This contest is now closed.
You may love the color baby blue, but does baby blue love you?
“Before Jill Kirsh came to the FOF offices to explain her color system, avocado was the last color I would have ever worn,” says FOF Founder, Geri Brin. “After she left, I literally ran to H&M to buy an avocado shirt.”
Jill’s system is based on a simple concept: your most flattering shades are dictated by your hair. “It’s not your skin color,” says Jill. “Your hair is what frames your face.”
She breaks us into four hair color categories: deep brunettes, warm blondes, ash blondes/greys, golden browns/redheads. Each category corresponds to a palette of 30 colors you can wear, either alone or in combination, and to a complete set of makeup.
Of course, “there’s no law that says, you can’t wear other colors,” says Jill, but she promises that these colors look best.
Since her color consultation with Jill, Geri takes her treasured swatch book everywhere. “She even takes it to Starbucks,” says her sister, Shelley.
Enter to win Jill’s complete color system by visiting her page on Soft Surroundings to determine which of the four hair color categories fits you best. Then tell us which one you are in the comments below!
We were intrigued, but skeptical. What about skin tone or eye color? “No, no” says Jill. “The hair rules the day.”
“We’ll believe it when we see it,” we said, and put Jill to the test.
The challenge: Take 4 FOF celebs and tell us, were their Golden Globes dresses a hits or misses? If it was a hit, show us why. If it was a miss, work your color magic and help that star shine.
The results: Ta-da! 4 show-stopping color transformations.
She missed. “The warm champagne tone of the dress that Helen wore to the Golden Globes takes away from her silver hair and drags her down. Icy blue would have been a better choice for her. It lifts the attention up to her face and makes her look more vibrant.”
She hit…sort of. “Black is great, it’s basic and we all love it,” says Jill. “The black dress Melissa Leo wore to the Golden Globes works. But, eggplant should really be her new black. The eggplant dress brings out the warmth of her face and auburn hair.”
She hit. “Catherine Zeta Jones nailed it with the forest green dress she wore to the Golden Globes,” says Jill. “Since she’s a deep brunette, she really pops in forest green. If the dress were a different shade, such as olive, she would fade right into it.”
She hit. The marigold that Kyra Sedgwick picked for the Golden Globes was a great choice for her warm blond hair coloring. She looks vibrant and alive,” says Jill. A taupe would have grayed her out and made her look older.”