Why You Should Ditch Your Black Dress Now
That classic little black dress hanging in your closet may never go out of style, but you’ve been taking that same look from morning to evening for years now.
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Fortunately, spring 2014 is all about embracing color.
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You may not be wowed by glaring yellow or migraine-inducing fuchsia, but it’s time to give that basic black outfit you’ve had for years a much-needed break. And with so many jewel-hued shades to choose from this year, the possibilities for easily revamping your wardrobe are endless.
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And if that’s not enough to make you cross over from the dark side, stylists say there are numerous benefits to wearing more bold, look-at-me shades in 2014.
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“Color psychology tells us that cobalt blue is a great staple to have in your closet because it gives off the appearance of capability and confidence without being threatening,” explains style expert Hilary Kennedy. “Red is a color that has the power of attraction and men consistently rate it as the sexiest color on a woman. Green and yellow are colors that instantly lift our moods, so keep a beautiful mint green sweater or a pair of lemon yellow pants in your closet for days when you need a boost.”
“And if you are feeling especially sassy, orange and tangerine are ‘notice me’ colors that always attract the right kind of attention,” she adds.
We understand the fear of going brighter. Some women may feel certain colors age them or stack on the pounds, while others believe black is just easier to dress up or down for any occasion. However, we beg to differ.
READ: How to Wear White with Slimming Results
Find out why you should add a pop of color or two your closet this very second, as well as which Hollywood stars are rocking it best:
Not a fan of wearing bold colors? There’s no need to empty out your closet just to be on-trend. Simply give your wardrobe a much-needed pick-me-up by slowly incorporating bright shades to your overall look. “Especially if it’s new to you, add color as accents,” says Anne Riley, wardrobe stylist at Share Some Style. “Add color to accessories, like with a new purse, a funky shoe, a fun hair accessory, or in the form of big, colorful earrings, bangles, or a statement necklace. If you are wearing a bright colored dress, let that be the statement maker and do minimal jewelry."
We know, black can instantly make you appear slimmer without going on a crash diet, but stylists say colors in general, not just this usual go-to shade, can create a similar effect. How? It’s all about highlighting to enhance the parts you want to flaunt, as well as hide. “Dark colors tend to be slimming, but there are so many great options for wearing colors in flattering ways,” explains Melissa Liebling-Goldberg, fashion & beauty director at POPSUGAR. “If you want to minimize your lower body, try black pants or dark washed jeans with a brighter top so all the attention goes to your smaller torso, or vice versa. Wherever the color is, that’s where the eye goes so you can really highlight your favorite features.”
Why bright, bold shades will be a major hit this upcoming spring season now more than ever? According to New York City-based stylist Kirsten Angeli, it’s the easiest way to make eyes pop and skin appear more glowing without baking under the sun. “Spring 2014 will bring these incredible shades of fuchsia, tangerine, peach, and watermelon mixing with color blocking and blooming floral prints,” says Angeli. “This year, it’s going to also be all about gorgeous electric blues, radiating, wild tulips, and the emerald sea.” Make yourself look like a work of art and look for colors that best suit your personal taste to truly shine.
Reserve for Special Occasions
Just because color is a major do for fashion, it doesn’t mean you should channel Rainbow Brite for the office. “Don’t wear too many bright colors when you want to be taken seriously or are doing formal business,” warns designer Angela Dean. “There are certain colors that can be worn to drive emotions, but try to find colors that work well with your skin and hair color instead.” You can reserve more work-friendly hues, like navy blue and dark grey, for the day, which will also provide an extra perk. “Navy blue and dark grey will make you look thinner,” adds Dean. “Darker colors will always make you appear smaller.”
Be Mindful of Skin Tone
Not every color will enhance your natural gorgeous features. To find out which shades will do exactly that, it’s important to keep your skin tone in mind. “Olive or darker skin tones can wear light and dark shades of color, but the darker the color, the more drab skin can appear,” says Kennedy. “Pale to medium skin tones look especially pretty with mid-range to darker bright colors, but neons can make their skin appear sallow. The best bet for your dollar is to buy jewel tones in pretty colors, like blue, purple, green, and red.”
Don’t just focus on finding the right colors for you. Keep a look out for prints and patterns that are different from what you normally wear that also happen to bring out your more confident side. From florals to sequins, don’t be afraid to jazz up your wardrobe. It’s the easiest way to remake your entire look without splurging away. “Solange Knowles wears prints and color just to have fun,” says Riley. “That is the real key!”
Go for Instant Attraction
“Pick colors that appeal you!” says Goldberg. “At least think about whether you look better in cool colors or warm, and then start by pairing them with a neutral piece. Bright colors look great with black, khaki, navy, or white, so don’t feel like you have to go head to toe in color. And even easier is to try it as an accessory. A pop of color in your bag or shoes goes a long way towards making an LBD or work suit look fresh.”
Lengthen Your Figure
Want to appear longer and leaner this spring? A bright shade without dizzying patterns can create this affect, and you won’t need to rely on accessories to stand out from a crowd. However, this doesn’t mean you should stay away from other looks. “To appear learner you want to avoid breaking up the body too much,” says Angeli. “Think stripes, vertical lengthens. You want to match your shoe to your pants, as opposed to your top, which would break up the line. When showing off bare legs, try a nude shoe or a color similar to your skin tone.”
Heat Things Up
Want to sizzle on a date night? Forget the usual little black dress everyone else has already seen. A fiery red outfit is also a classic staple that never goes out of style, and one that tends to particularly attract the opposite sex. “Red is a color that can really make all the right curves pop in the same way black does,” insists Kennedy. “Plus, it instantly creates sex appeal!”
Radiant orchid is the official shade of 2014, but not everyone will be won over by it. Fortunately, there are many other colors to consider when it comes to amping up your personal style. Riley says hues, such as raspberry, golden yellow, sapphire, and tangerine are just a few of the many worth exploring this year. “Once you start wearing color, it’s addictive,” she adds. And when in doubt, consider the complete opposite of boring black and try a shocking, yet more demure white ensemble.