Fight the Frump: Accessorize!


It’s the last day of our Fight the Frump challenge! We’ve talked about the importance of looking as if you take pride in yourself, finding clothes that fit and flatter, and getting the right bra. Now we’re going to talk about how to put it all together.

NonFrumpyOn Day 1 I showed a picture of me that was “non-frumpy”, and said that it took me 3 minutes and 53 seconds to get like that. Today I want to talk not about the clothes, but about the rest of it: the jewelry, the makeup, and the hair.


You can wear awesome clothes, but if your hair isn’t styled nicely, you will tend to look frumpy. Hair is the most important accessory; there’s a reason God said that a woman’s hair is her crowning glory.

I understand wanting to feel feminine, and I know that many women just love long hair. My girls both have long hair, and it’s extremely thick. So I’m not against long hair at all.

It’s just that long hair has the tendency to look frumpy unless you do something with it.

Here’s a little tip: many women think that because they just grow their hair long and straight they don’t need to get it cut. However, when hair goes too long without a trim, it develops major split ends. Those tend to “fly away” from the head, so that your hair doesn’t look neat, even after you brush it. Loose bits are always floating up.

Even if your hair is long, cut it regularly. And my daughters found that when they thinned their hair and layered it, it became so much easier to make it look nice. They use hair straighteners quite frequently, and you can master the technique quite easily. It just keeps hair neater.

If you don’t want to do that, in my giveaway this week you can win a lovely Lilla Rose flexi-clip; go check them out (there’s a video, too). A little bit of hair jewelry looks lovely.

What if your hair isn’t long? My hair takes about 5 minutes from wet to ready to go. That’s it. I put gel and mousse in it, and then I blow dry it like crazy. I try to blow dry it very messy, so that it has a lot of body. Then I can just push it where I want it to go. A little hair spray and I’m all done. Even when I speak I don’t take much longer than 5 minutes. My hair pretty much always looks exactly the same, but I like it because it takes very little effort.

Finding a style that works for you, especially if you have little children and don’t have time to do anything with it, is so important. Get a hairdresser that  you trust and say to them, “do whatever you want.” Honestly. When I go to the hairdresser, I ask Jill, “what are we doing today?” I figure she knows more about hair than I do, so she knows what to do better.

If you go into the hairdresser and say, “I want an easier style, but please don’t cut very much, and no layers”, you aren’t giving the hairdresser much to work with! That’s okay if you’re determined to keep all of your hair, but just realize, then, that you likely won’t come out with an easy style.

So my main point: get a style that you can make look good in relatively short time. If you do have very long hair, trim it frequently, layer it if possible, and get some pretty hair jewelry for days when it’s easier just to put it up.


There is a time and place for everything, and the baby/toddler years may not be the appropriate time for hoop earrings, unless you like having the holes in your ears enlarged. :) I stopped wearing earrings when my girls were small because they were forever pulling them. I wish in retrospect that I had just kept in studs, because when I did decide to start wearing earrings again I got lots of infections from the holes growing over, etc.

It’s okay to do minimal jewelry, especially with babies. It just doesn’t always work. I find necklaces are wonderful, but if you are going to wear them and you have little kids, make sure you wear a thick chain (I’m about to order this locket, which can hold a lock of my little boy’s hair. The nurses cut some for us the night that he died, and I thought this was a nice thing to do with it. I’ve told my husband I want it for Mother’s Day!) You don’t want something which will break at the first little tug.

When  you’re over the baby years, have fun with necklaces and bracelets and earrings! I’m not a bracelet person, but if you are, go for it. Whatever your personal style is, have fun with it. If you don’t know how to wear jewelry, start with a few pieces that you like. Try to buy chains that have adjustable lengths so that they can work with more styles of top.

On many tops, especially those that are solid colour, a necklace adds that touch that makes it look like an outfit, rather than just something you threw on.

I keep my necklaces hung up in my closet, so that they’re easily accessible and I see them by my clothes. My oldest daughter just created this bulletin board for hers.

Necklace Board

If you can see them in the morning, you’ll put them on. If you hunt around in a jewelry box, you won’t.


I love belts, and they’ve come back into fashion in a big way. In fact, I knit several sweaters (I’m an avid knitter) back in the 80s and 90s when styles were wider, but I’m finding I can wear them again because I can just belt them! So buy a few belts: some wide, some thick, and have fun with them. (I normally wear this with a black one, but I thought I’d show you with a red one for fun).

Sweater Belt

A few people were saying on Tuesday’s post that they’re more “apple” shape and round, and don’t have a distinctive waist. You can also wear belts up just under the bust line to give you a little more definition, especially if they’re narrow belts. So try that.

I find belts just complete an outfit and make you look so much more put together. (UPDATE: Here’s what my daughter was wearing when she came downstairs to go to work today:)

Becca Belt 2

Without the belt, the outfit wouldn’t work nearly as well. (Note: no one is allowed to notice the dirty dishes in the background).

Start with a brown and a black belt that will fit through jeans loops–the basics. Then add a black belt that’s thicker. And then, if you find you enjoy them, buy thin belts in different colors. Again, you’re more likely to wear them if you can see them, so hang them on a hanger or on hooks in your closet.

Make Up

I’ve left makeup for last because it’s the most controversial. Many women said in comments earlier this week that their husbands don’t like them in makeup, and I understand. If that’s the case, and if you don’t like it, you certainly don’t need to wear it.

I would advise, though, that everyone wear a good moisturizer with an SPF of at least 20 in it if you’re going outside. It just is healthier, and it does prevent wrinkles. Start this when you’re 30, and your 50-year-old self will one day thank you.

I don’t wear much makeup on a daily basis if I’m at home, but makeup does not have to take very long at all. If you don’t know how to apply it or what to apply, go to a department store or an upscale drug store, and the woman at the makeup counter will  usually give you a free application and lesson. We’ve become quite friendly with one of the women who works at Shoppers Drug Mart near us, and I’m always going in for new lessons on how to do eye shadow. It’s free! We just try to buy all our makeup there to be fair.

I want to show  you, though, why even a little bit of makeup can make a big difference (and can protect your skin).

Here’s me with nothing:


Here’s me with a moisturizing foundation with SPF, some blush, some lip gloss, and some mascara:


Hardly any color at all, and very natural, but it looks so much more even and sparkling. Often when people say, “I like the natural look” or “I don’t like makeup”, what they really mean is “I don’t like blue eyeshadow or heavy eye liner”. And makeup does not have to be that at all. If you want no colour, you don’t need to put on colour. But taking just a few minutes (and this really takes a minute and a half maximum) just makes you look more put together.

Again, makeup is your personal choice. I’m not trying to say that every woman needs to wear it. But it does even out the skin tone and helps us look more intentional about our appearance. If that would give you a confidence boost, why not try it?



  1. I love my short pixie cut it takes two minutes to blowdry I put some mousse on it and then just kind of scrunch in place!

    Because I still have a slight roll of fat below and above my natural waist, I tend to avoid belts at all costs. I just don’t like them they don’t look right on me at all. And I great alternative to foundation is using the BB creams. there are lots of different variations in different price ranges. I like the Garnier BB cream at Walmart it’s like 11 bucks and it’s got an SPF 20! Even if a woman doesn’t want to wear make up, it’s important to at least Moisturizer with SPF in it to prevent skin cancer and premature aging.

    Now I want to go shopping for some new clothes there are a couple of consignment shops in my area although they tend to be higher-priced than Thrift shops but I guess it doesn’t hurt to look

  2. No short hair in my house. Straightening takes a long time – anybody got it down to 5 minutes?
    Leanne recently posted…A day at our crazy homeschool houseMy Profile

    • KellyK(@RNCCRN9706) says:

      I’m an RN and work full-time. When my hair was longer, it was always pulled back into a ponytail and was breaking near where the scrunchie was holding my hair. Nobody wants a nurse’s hair hanging down onto them while I’m listening to their lungs…lol. Even on days off, I’d just pull it back into a I decided to cut it.

      People I know who have curly hair…it takes them an hour or longer to straighten it.

    • I answered in my post 😀

    • My girls can do it in 10–but not 5!

    • I don’t have it down to 5 minutes but I only do my hair once or twice a week. Hair really doesn’t really need to be washed everyday. It dries it out when we do that, especially if your flat ironing on top of all the shampooing. So, yes it takes me about 20 minutes to do my hair on the days I wash and style, but on the other days no time. It all evens out then, huh? :o)

      • A lot of us have really greasy hair and HAVE to (unfortunately!) wash it every day. Seriously, it will look like an oil slick the second day. And I don’t like the spray on dry-shampoo. But my hair is also really fine so it takes 2 minutes to blow dry and a few minutes of straightening if I even bother to do that.

        • laurie siebler says:

          Instead of using shampoo, try the no poo challenge for a while and see what you think ! I tried it, because I was so greasy, and have not gone back–it’s almost been a year ! much better for your hair too !

    • Anonymous says:

      I’m not sure what kind of straightener you have, Leanne, but when I switched from a less expensive to a salon quality one, it made an amazing difference! I’m as frugal as you can be, but the $100 I spent (it was on sale!) saves me a tonne of time! I have very thick, extremely wavy hair, and I can straighten mine in less than 10 minutes! And, as Amy mentioned, if you have the type of hair that needs straightening, it likely doesn’t need to be wash daily and therefore your hair care time sort of balances out over the week. I also wash, dry and straighten my hair before bed, so it doesn’t add to my morning routine!

    • Hey Leanne!
      I have thick long (down past my shoulder blades) wavy/curly hair. Anyway, It’s layered. I’ve always had trouble straightening my hair until I got a great flat iron. And now it takes 5 minutes to get my hair straight and smooth. I wash it at night (every 3 nights) let it dry naturally and iron it in the morning. Then for the next 3 days, All i have to do is brush it and it’s still straight and smooth! It’s a Remington Pearl Ceramic 2″. Here is the link…..You can get it at Wal-mart 39.95
      And it is far less expensive than the Chi and others like that….and my hair looks awesome. It heats up quickly (about 30 seconds to get to 420 degrees) and the wide plates and the rounded edges keep it from catching and breaking my hair and so i can just swipe it through and I’m done.
      I recommend it to everyone who has trouble getting their hair straight and smooth. And just for more info…my hair is not only thick and wavy/curly, but it is coarse and has a tendency to dry out easily, so often it has looked unhealthy and dull….but now it looks shiny and smooth, and i love to run my hands through it!

    • Thanks, everyone! I wish I could wash my hair at night, or let it air dry to save time, but it turns into a puffball if I do that. :-) My sister can flat iron hers the night before, but I must move too much when I sleep or something. Steph, I will try upgrading my flat iron again to the one you’ve posted. Maybe the one I have isn’t getting hot enough any more. I have tried both expensive and cheap ones in the past and it still takes a while. My hair is not thick by any means, but it is very curly.
      Leanne recently posted…Book review: Raising Financially Confident Kids by Mary HuntMy Profile

      • A hairdresser once told me to dry flatironing it when it’s ALMOST dry, but not completely for curly hair. And hair spray it as you’re hot ironing it.
        I don’t know if that really works, though. :)

    • Do you have any natural curl in your hair? If so, put some DevaCurl Set it Free in your hands, rub together and scrunch your hair. You can be done then and it will dry to “crunchier” curls or blowdry it for softer curls. I’m sure there are other similar products – this is just the one I happen to use.

  3. I love my BB cream too and I even splurged and bought the Stila illuminating one from Sephora, yes it’s pricier but if I use it everyday it’s worth it! Especially if it’s only one product … I found the ones from Walmart (Loreal)to be gritty compared to Smashbox and Stila BUT that was when they first came out, a friend who’s an esthetician loves Aveeno’s. (this is a good article about what to look for — supposedly the CC creams are even better but I haven’t seen them yet.

    There are great tutorials on Pinterest on applying makeup … I love this girls (she does spiffy stuff but explains it all and why she used the products she uses plus gives budget options):

    Hair wise — my mother has a THING against long hair so I grew up with a pixie cut and it’s many variations (anybody remember the mushroom look from the 80’s?! Well I rocked it … lol). I think it’s great to have a stylist who is honest and will tell you “your hair won’t do that”, plus if you find a good one stick with them if you can! That’s one of the banes of being military and moving as much as we do – finding a good dentist, doctor and beautician! …. I had a chin length bob for years and loved it (may go back to it eventually) but now in my mid 40’s (eek!) I am growing my hair out because I want to say I had long hair once in my life! It’s now collar bone length with long layers (I have a LOT and it’s THICK, slightly coarse), and I have NEVER gotten so many compliments on my hair in my life! 😀 (although my mother is still telling me to cut it lol) … I’m having fun trying out all the pinterest styles, I even bought a hair “switch” (Dancing with the Stars ponytail wrap) for those days when I just don’t want to mess with it but I still want to look pulled together! … several stylists have said long hair tends to be the most flattering as you age if it is shoulder/collar bone length or bra strap length and layered/piecey. I’m not great with a straightener (80’s remember, curling iron! lol) so my thoughts on long hair is it’s not good to straighten everyday and it does take awhile especially if your hair is thick, so I would invest in bobby pins, cute headbands, hairpieces (that match!), etc and mix it up!

    I refuse to be one of those Mom’s of adults/Grandma’s who look dumpy! 😀

    Thanks much for the posts this week!

    • oh and a ps … a great hairspray is a pain if you have my hair type, so far I really like Big Sexy Hair (another splurge and yes my hair can get BIG) and Bumble and Bumble. Aussie is a good budget one … I do find as I get older I am more willing to spend a little more on me

  4. Thank goodness my long hair is wash and wear. I don’t even have to blow dry it. It’s mostly straight, but it has a little bit of wave and I have slight layers in the ends. Blow drying just makes it frizz so I do it wet and hairspray it into submission. It doesn’t take very long most of the time. I usually have a clippie in it or a ponytail. My husband says he likes me in a ponytail – says it shows off my neck – and he always requests a ponytail if I ask him what I should do with my hair. That’s easy enough to do, so I can’t complain. I do like to have it look neat and stay out of my face. Every once in awhile I do something a little fancier with it like a bun with a ponytail through the middle or I’ll twist or braid the sides and hold them with clips in the back.
    Lindsay Harold recently posted…Announcement!My Profile

  5. Christina Rice says:

    When I had long hair I loved the steam curlers. It takes about 5 minutes to put them in ( longer if you want smaller sections for more curl). Just put them in and then get dressed, have devotional, eat breakfast, start laundry, whatever your morning routine is. Then pull them out and finger shake. Beautiful soft waves! I find when I straighten (and my hair is pretty straight naturally) it just gets static and stands up all over the place.

  6. I don’t do well with either make-up or jewelry because I never learned how to wear either the “right” way. I do wear a small amount of eyeliner and a bit of mascara every day, but no foundation and no colors. Lipstick sometimes. I rarely wear necklaces or earrings, mainly because I don’t remember or don’t make the time.

    Maybe I’m just a naturalist!

    I picture myself with a bulletin board holding my gear … draped with dusty cobwebs! :) I like the idea, I just don’t do the extras. My husband doesn’t feel the necessity of any of it, and perhaps that’s why I don’t usually bother. He does notice clothing, and that’s more my focus for him.

    This really tells me why I don’t have any Pinterest boards that promote make-up application or jewelry. Mine are all knitting, crafting, DIY and cooking, with a few hairstyling tips and, I think, ONE exercise post!

    You see where my allegiances lie! :)
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  7. Stephanie in Arkansas says:

    All great advise. My daughter is 14 I have always cut her hair and lately she has been letting it grow out. its a little above mid back now. I always think it looks blah. I see a hairdresser visit in her future for a good trim (shes due) and some layering. Time for a Teenage hair cut! lol

    I cut my hair too but its just at shoulder length and layered and easily managed. I can go curly or straight and niether takes me long to style!

    I have been looking at the BB creams and guess since today is payday… a purchase is in order! lol

    on a side note. Im sorry I didnt know you had lost a child. I have 4 children the last were twins. One developed Leukemia and passed just before their 7th birthday. I dont have a lock of hair but i have many other things. I think your locket will be great! I just bought a corner curio for several of his things. its been 7 years. I finally found what I wanted. :)

    • Stephanie in Arkansas says:

      oh and i have a foam poster board attached to the outside of my sliding closet door and all my jewelry is tacked on there! makes it much easier to remember to accessorize and to make decisions.!

  8. I have a hair problem I’d like you to address. My hubby likes my hair long, but I’d prefer it a bit on the shorter side. He thinks short hair doesn’t look good on me and I think long hair makes me look frumpy. I’m a bit plump and I think he’s worried about short hair making my face look plumper than it is. I understand his point, but I’d really like something that’s easier to manage (especially with 3 young children). Any thoughts on how to negotiate this problem?

    • I don’t know about negotiating necessarily, but I’ve got a plump face (or at least, my oval face shape is the same but I’ve got a bit of a double-chin) and I’ve chopped my hair off to bangs a little above chin length and short, layer-y (new word, yay!), and all I had to do was get some goop/wax and mess it up like crazy in the back and I don’t think it made me look plumper.

      You do have to be a bit careful, but chubby/plump/non-skinny ladies can rock the short hair!

    • How about asking him if he minds you cutting your way once and if he really doesn’t like it you will grow it out again.

      • Good idea! I wonder, too, about compromise: say shoulder length? Shoulder length can still look “longish”, but you can do layers so you can have curls, etc.

    • Maybe you could keep in longer in the back, but do some shorter face-framing layers in the front. That way you feel like its shorter, but he still has the length.
      Stacy recently posted…No ‘Poo- Week 3My Profile

  9. One pet peeve of mine is older women with unkempt hair. I believe they think that long hair makes them look younger, I’ve never noticed that. I think its important to be aware that hair does age. If its frizzy huge with lots of gray that won’t go where you want it, a shorter cut would probably make you look years younger. Its the cheapest face lift possible! :) I have long hair now, curly so i only brush it after each shower and let it dry with some Herbal Essence mousse. But I do straighten my bangs to the side. Hubby loves it straightened but I don’t do it very often :S it takes like 15 minutes! But once summer summer I’ll have to straighten it again…

  10. If you’ve seen What Not To Wear on TLC, you’re likely familiar with Carmindy. She is famous for the “5 Minute Face” which is like watercolor for your face, to play up your natural beauty without looking made-up. I checked out her book “The 5 Minute Face” from our local library and highly recommend it. I went from no makeup to spending just 5 minutes a day, and hubby appreciates it, and I feel more confident.

    • I didn’t see this before I posted but suggested the same book! :-) I had the problem of taking too much time on my face and this helped me to narrow it down to the important things and be able to just put a little makeup on for days I don’t feel the need to be “all made up”.

  11. Yay for accessorizing! This is my favorite thing because I don’t have to have a battle over whether something is fitting or not. Also, since I am not usually able to spend much if any money on new clothes, accessories are a good way to add some pizazz to an old outfit. Sure I have had my fair share of bad hair days and makeup not cooperating, but it is fun for me to play around with and try new things. I did try a shorter hairstyle once and it looked good for a little while but I couldn’t keep up with the constant trimming it required so I normally have shoulder length or longer hair. A website that has really helped me with my hair is Kate is a professional hairstylist and she posts awesome hair tutorial videos. Also, for makeup, Carmindy from what not to wear has a book called the 5 minute face that transformed my makeup routine! I checked it out from the library a couple of years ago I think. Oh and I wanted to add too that a cute scarf is a great way to add some color to an outfit. I don’t have a ton of colorful or patterned shirts, but adding a pretty scarf can make an outfit for me. I think I love accessories, hairstyles and makeup because it helps me feel good about my appearance without worrying if something is fitting right or being upset that a pair of pants I use to wear doesn’t fit anymore. I am working on the body image thing and am doing better with it as well as trying to be healthier but for anyone who struggles with their body image and getting clothes to fit right, accessorizing can really help.

  12. I realize that some women may not like to wear make-up or that some husbands don’t like it, but I think people think that means that you must look made-up or fake with lots of it, rather than using make-up to accentuate what God has already given you. I feel better about myself when my hair and make-up are done and when I am dressed nicely. While I know that my husband doesn’t REALLY care at this stage of life with little kids, I also know that he appreciates it when I take care of myself. And I also know that when I feel better about myself, I am a better wife and mother, which is a “win” for everyone. I have avoided jewelry for so long because of little ones, but I am trying to make a more conscious effort to at least put some studs in. I also try to compliment my other mom friends who rarely do hair or make-up and tell them how nice they look when they do. It really does make a difference without having to be over the top.

    • Feeling good about yourself is such a win, and I find taking a little time for myself also makes me more energetic too — I think I even make better decisions. As a side note, and for the sake of processing/sharing I think I just figured out my my issue with make-up. I feel like if I do it sometimes, then it becomes something I *have* to do to be happy with my face, rather than just an option. I don’t ever want to feel like I can’t leave the house without make-up. Thanks for letting me process in this reply. Also, I looked at your website for a moment, and you seem like a really cool person. :)

  13. Hi Sheila! Thanks for this really non-judgemental post about accessorizing. I have noticed in my life a tendency, both in myself and in those around me, to judge about the decisions other people make about wearing/not wearing make-up, doing hair, dress, etc. I tend to fall down on the less “made-up” side of the debate, and speaking from that side, it can be frustrating to feel like less of a woman, or shamed, for not pursing a super put-together look. At the same time, I’m working on not counter-judging…saying that spending time on hair or make-up is somehow less “real” or “genuine” or something like that. There is a lot of room for differences of opinion, for enjoyment in different degrees of dressing up, and I am working toward really embracing other people’s decisions and great skill in doing hair, applying make-up (I have this one friend who’s just amazing at it), or picking out awesome outfits. I am even open to being more stylish myself :) But I think it’s really important here to encourage and affirm one-another, and not expect everyone to make the same choices we do. And I think you’ve done a good job of that. So thanks again!

  14. I love this series!

    I really like wearing a tinted moisturizer with a dab of blush, a little shimmer on my lids and some mascara. Like you said, it’s so quick and makes a huge difference in how I treat myself and my day. Investing the time is so worth it!

    I’m also instagraming with hash tag #fightthefrump this week to hold myself accountable to dressing appropriately every morning. Anyone else who wants to join totally should!
    Carrie recently posted…Fight that FrumpMy Profile

  15. Ok….accessorizing is where I find my challenge! Particulary with jewelry. I’ve finally got the hair thing down, thanks to a great straightener (as mentioned in a post above)…and I do wear scarfs occasionally, but for some reason it’s like I have a mental block with jewelry and how I should wear it, how much I should wear, the size, the proportions to my neckline/clothes/body, etc… I see these women who have on a put-together outfit and it most always includes cute neclaces, bracelets, and earrings…and most of the time they match or have some color theme….but when I try to do it, I don’t look near as put together like the women I see at church and work. I think I look a little awkward with it. So most of the time I go without and occasionally will wear a pair of earrings. Is something wrong with me??? LOL :)

  16. I admit to being so surprised by the number of women in favor of short hairstyles. I’m a long hair gal myself, and I think a lot hubbies prefer longer hair. I’m not saying that women shouldn’t have short hair, and some women wear it very well. But I don’t think long hair is hard at all. IT’S ALL ABOUT THE CUT. I will pay for a great hairstylist to cut my hair, knowing that she will give it shape and it will be easier to manage. With a better cut, I don’t spend as much money on product and I get my hair cut less frequently. I do cut down on styling time but letting is air dry for a while and then just blow-drying into a style. Also, buy a good styling brush; that makes a difference too.

    And you’ve reminded me, Sheila, that I need to upgrade my belt collection. I have a tendency to wear belts until they are falling apart.

    One more thing you didn’t mention, but I’ve thought about: WELL-FITTING SHOES. I see women ALL THE TIME with ill-fitting shoes that kill the look. If your toes are hanging over the edge, your shoes don’t fit. Don’t try an Cinderella’s Stepsister and squeeze your foot into shoes that don’t fit you. Ask a good shoe salesperson to measure your foot and get the right size. You’ll look and feel better.

    Great series, Sheila! Love it.
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    • I totally agree, J–it’s all about the cut. My girls have long hair and it’s fairly easy to manage because it’s cut well. It makes a world of difference.

    • KellyK(@RNCCRN9706) says:

      I have tried to grow my hair long. It’s Just NOT genetically programmed to be long. The longest it’s ever gotten was just TO my shoulders and it looks frizzy because I have a natural curl to my hair and I like to color and highlight it to help cover the greys 😉

      I don’t like my husband with facial hair. He INSISTS on having a goatee and moustache!! So, I keep my hair short. I’ve told him time and time again that I don’t like his facial hair. He was clean shaven when we married because I told him during our dating days that I didn’t like his beard and moustache. It pokes my lips when I kiss him so needless to say, I don’t kiss him much because of the facial hair and I’ve TOLD him that MANY times but he obviously doesn’t get it. As childish as it might sound, if he won’t shave his facial hair, I won’t grow my hair out.

      My coworker is going to be 60 in a few days. She has long hair down to the middle of her back. It’s straight as straight can be. I think it makes her look frumpy and ages her quite a bit but she won’t cut it because her husband likes long hair. I also know a 65yr old woman who also has long straight hair and dyes it JET BLACK. She looks like Morticia Adams.

  17. Here’s an LOL for you: after reading your blog all week, I decided to throw on a long necklace over my solid coloured tee yesterday. It took all of 2 seconds, after grabbing it off the jewelry tree on the way out of my room, and I did it while holding baby in my other arm. Funny thing is, when hubby came home, the first thing out of this mouth was, “You look nice today” even though I was still in my usual jeans and solid coloured long-sleeved tee!

  18. I love all these tips, Sheila. You look beautiful with and without makeup!

    I have super curly hair and I normally let it air dry, but because it’s just above my shoulders now it gets too curly for my liking. I’m tempted to let it grow a bit or get a pixie cut, which I’ve had before and love.

    I keep hearing about the Mod Cloth store and just clicked over from your site. They’ve got some very nice clothes! I just love their vintage dresses!

    I’m leaving here inspired to do something with myself today. I’m realizing my husband might not like coming home to me in sweats and a t-shirt every day.

    See you at She Speaks…I think I’ve registered for your session.


  19. Do any of you ladies have suggestions for eye makeup? I ask because I usually can’t wear mascara, eyeliner, or eyeshadow because I have a serious problem with styes that don’t heal and turn into chalizons. It’s a constant headache.

    • What brands have you tried? You may need to use a natural, chemical-free brand. They cost a little more but used sparingly they last for a long time. Go to a natural grocery store if you have one nearby. And instead of using eyeliner, you might need to use a wet angle brush and eyeshadow to line your eyes.

      I’ve gotten styes before and I discovered it was because of what I was using to clean my eye makeup off. I cannot use those little wipes that come in a jar or anything that requires me to rub my eyes with some kind of pad. I use warm water and a nice glob of fragrance-free baby shampoo, and my own fingers. Suuuuuper gentle.
      Melissa recently posted…Trauma at the Hand of FictionMy Profile

      • My daughter uses Norwex facecloths–they’re amazing. They take off everything, but you don’t need to use soap or any kind of a cleaner. It’s a special kind of microfibre that just sponges up everything. Yes, maybe try something like that?

      • Stephanie says:

        Physicians formula makes a natural, chemical, paraben free mascara that’s all I wear on my eyes. I have had problems before with itchy eyes with regular mascara, and he ingredients in that stuff? Not good. Also, coconut oil takes eye makeup right off and it’s completely natural.

    • Hi Rachael. Would you be able to have your eyelashes tinted, or might that also inflame your styes? I get my eyelashes tinted at my local beauty salon for £10 (about $15). It takes 15 minutes and it lasts about three weeks. I have lovely long-looking lashes night and day, never have to think about mascara, no clogging, and no spreading it over my face when I rub my eyes! Might be worth looking into?

    • If you can’t wear mascara, make sure you get a good eye lash curler and curl them really well. It will open up your eyes, but you won’t have to deal with the styes!
      Stacy recently posted…No ‘Poo- Week 3My Profile

  20. Here’s a tip if you have curly hair, ladies: GET A DIFFUSER. It’s an attachment that goes on the end of your hair dryer. Using a low speed setting, it will dry your curls with more body, more definition, and less frizz. Use a good curl cream – CREAM, not gel – on wet hair and use just a touch of hairspray where you need it once hair is dry (like for me, I use the hairspray to tame the layers around my face). Straightening my hair takes me around twenty minutes, but with a diffuser I can be wet to dry in about five!
    Melissa recently posted…Trauma at the Hand of FictionMy Profile

  21. Here’s an interesting thing: I read a piece of research that claimed that when men have affairs, it’s almost always with a woman who has longer hair than his wife. The rationale was that long hair is associated with youth, beauty (and all that goes with that – sexiness, fertility etc). Now obviously studies like this are to be taken with a pinch of salt, and there’ll be another study somewhere that shows the opposite, But I do know a lot of men who really mourn the loss of their wives’ lovely long locks. They see their wife cutting off her hair as her desexing herself, and saying, “I’m no longer your lover – I’m now older, a mother, responsible, practical, matronly, etc…” I know my hubby would be devastated if I chopped off my long hair (suitably styled and regularly trimmed etc), but I’d have no intention of it anyway – I’d feel a lot frumpier and middle-aged with shorter hair, so I’m hanging onto it as long as I can (I’m 41, by the way). I’m a bit nervous of pressing ‘send’ on this in case it upsets any short-haired ladies reading – I hope it doesn’t. But I’d love to hear some men’s thoughts on hair – although I imagine quite a lot of male readers have opted out this week while we talk about make-up and hair straighteners and all that girlie stuff… :-)

    • Kitty, your post is interesting, because I feel the same. And this is coming from a girl who has cut her hair short numerous times and let it grow back. My hair is now long again….and my husband has always said that he didn’t care how I wore my hair as long as I was happy with it. But I know he likes long hair better. I must say thought, when I was pregnant with our first child I went and chopped off my hair…spiky short! Not sure what I was thinking, but I look back at those pictures, I was 23, and at 32, now, I look younger with long hair than I did at 23 with the short frumpy mom hair cut.
      There are lots of women that look adorable with short hair….I’m just not one of them!!! I have a wide square shaped face, and layered long hair looks best on me. Not sure why I did that…even my daughter tells me that my hair was awful! LOL

      All that being said, I have never felt sexy with short hair! There’s something to be said about being able to ‘swish’ my hair actually have it falling in my face and on my shoulders….kind of like those old Herbal Essences commercials when they shake their heads shouting “Yes!”…..

      • I did the same thing! I cut off all my hair and it was spiky short when I was 24 and pregnant with my first. What was I thinking?!? I just don’t look good that way. Some women can pull it off (Halle Berry?) But I can’t.

    • I love having long hair too, and I think my husband really enjoys it. I like swishing it too. On the other hand, my mom grew her hair out for a bit and has now cut it pixie short again, and it looks way better short, and she feels possible 100X more comfortable. So I feel like it’s important to live and let live, and celebrate our differences here — no need to find extra things to call people out on.

      • Except for those women who have thinned hair on top, the only women I ever see who look terrible in long hair are those who are allergic to combs and brushes.

  22. I too love BB creams and they come in all brands and price ranges…spf built right in and because of the light diffusing particles, skin looks soooooo smooth! Another 2 things that I think make a big difference are groomed eyebrows (I tweeze any strays under the brow bone) and REMOVING your makeup/washing your face at night…it does take a bit of extra time but your skin will thank you for it!

  23. Stephanie says:

    I don’t wear any foundation or blush. I’ve found spending a little time outside gardening gives me a great sun kissed look. I also don’t put sunscreen on my face as it is full of chemicals. In my research I have found that good nutrition has much more to do with how well we age than modern advice about skin products. People ask me about my skin and tell me I look so young. I always tell them “it’s the butter!”. Lol. I believe very much in God-created, unfactoried food.

    Hair: ugh! My hair! I have baby fine, very soft, curly hair that does not do well long. It just becomes flat and see through. So I keep it around the bottom of my or top of my shoulders. I wish I could have Long hair. Thankfully, hubby likes my hair the way it is.

    Sheila, thank you so much for the encouragement this week. I appreciate the minefield you maneuver through with this blog (who knew dressing and such could hit such a nerve!). I may have my own style, but I so needed the reminder that I need to actually get dressed everyday. 😛

  24. Stephanie says:

    Also, let me ask…..with jewelry and stuff….I think there is some BEAUTIFUL stuff out there. I love 31bits and stores like that. But I just frankly feel….stupid wearing the stuff. It’s so very impractical and it just feels….like superfluity. I know I’m allowed to be a girl, but necklaces and scarves and such just serve no practical purpose and I find I just feel silly wearing them. Is there a way to get over that? Something wrong with me? Lol. I LOVE color. Just not….frou frou.

    • Perhaps a necklace that has meaning for you would help with those feelings. I don’t wear jewelry very often, but my husband bought me a simple necklace for my birthday and I love wearing it because every time I look in the mirror I am reminded of how much he loves me. I wear a lot of colorful scarves. Maybe something functional like a scarf – there are tons of ways to tie them and they keep your neck warm! – would also help you!
      Stacy recently posted…No ‘Poo- Week 3My Profile

  25. Hair is my one good feature! I have long thick straight hair that I usually curl every day. I can do it in about 15 minutes with a spiral curling iron and my husband loves it. I have no idea why women with naturally curly hair straighten it. I think curly hair is so much prettier than my poker straight hair. And I am thankful to have long hair. Short hair only makes my chubby face look super fat!

    But as for make up – ugh! I have no clue! I get frustrated, because there are about 482 shades of make up – how do I know which one is mine? I can’t even tell if I’m cool or warm. Ugh! So I got excited when the bb creams came out – until I tried to find one and – you guessed it – 48 shades! How can anyone possibly know? I don’t have the money to spend $11 a pop just to try it. I could buy a tube if I knew what shade, but I can’t buy 30 tubes to see which one works. How else can you possibly tell? Make up is more frustrating than shopping for clothes!

    Thankfully, I’ve been blessed with nice skin, so I don’t really think I need make up. The older I get, the more I’d like to try a tinted moisturizer to even out my tone, but until they invent a way to know exactly what shade you need – I will probably still be makeup-less! :)

    • For foundation/power/etc., you basically just hold it up to your skin and see if the color looks kinda right. For me, it’s easy because I ALWAYS have to find the lightest possible shades. 😉 For eye makeup, a safe bet for eyeliner and mascara is black or brown-black. I’d try both to see what you like best. For eye shadow, browns are good — just a tad bit darker or lighter than your skin color… I usually just use a light shimmery brown because it’s pretty subtle. For lipstick, same deal as foundation… hold it up and try to get kinda close-ish to your own lips, maybe just a little different. For blush, maybe consider whether you look better in a pink shirt or an orange shirt… then go for a blush that has a *little* of that tone in it. You don’t want it to be super obvious.

      I think that’s basically how you can get a ballpark estimate of what will work for you. Most places will also let you return something if you get it home, open it, and realize that it’s not right… Walmart is good about that, and if one customer service person won’t let you return it, you can always try again later. Some of them are a lot nicer about it than others.

      • You can go on websites of many makeup manufacturers and they will often have a test you can do do find the best shades for you from their products. I often use covergirl because they have decent products and reasonable prices, especially since they put out coupons every month in the P&G fliers. That being said I do try to find whatever is the best price/value when I am makeup shopping. So if you have an idea of what works for you in one brand, compare it to something cheaper and go with that one. Another option would be to take a friend that you trust and who has some makeup knowledge with you. For example, f I am shopping for makeup and my husband is with me, he is absolutely no help because he is clueless when it comes to that stuff, but my sister can give me better advice about what might look good on me. I know that some department store makeup counters also would be able to help but be willing to shell out some cash for what they are selling. I also wanted to add that I have bought the wrong color foundation and returned without any issues. I hope that helps!

        • Wow! I had no idea you could return foundation once it’s been open. I usually just get frustrated, toss it in the trash, and count it as a loss. I may be willing to try again if it is possible to return it. Good to know – thank you!

  26. My favorite topic! Earrings and necklaces usually fit anyone regardless of body type or weight :)

    Mrs Annonymous recently posted…Book TimeMy Profile

  27. Here’s my top tip for jewellery and accessories. If you’re a larger lady (or even if you’re not), go for big, bold jewellery. A dainty little necklace or bracelet may be pretty, and I’m always more drawn to them in a shop, but they actually makes *you* look larger (ie a dainty chain makes your wrist look fatter). Choose bold, chunky jewellery and you look more in proportion. Someone pointed this out to me once, and I started noticing it all the time on other women. At the time, I was significantly overweight, so I took the advice on board – and it did help to not accentuate my larger frame. Now I’m of a healthy weight, I still go for bold jewellery for its slimming effect! If you don’t believe me, try it and see – optical illusions are a marvellous thing! :-)

  28. I wish I could do short pixie cuts! My hair is about shoulder length and it is naturally curly. No matter what I try to do to it, it just doesn’t look very good. If I straighten it takes about 20 mins if I curl it takes about 20 mins as well. It is also very frizzy. Depending on the weather…when I straighten it starts to curl and get frizzy. When I curl it goes flat and it gets all tangled looking like a birds nest. I have also tried to gel it and let it curl naturally but then it is even worse! I think the fastest I have been ale to do my hair is 15 mins. Even hair dressers have problems getting my hair to do what it is suppose to do! My hair has a mind of its own so it usually ends up in a pony tail, clip or bun. I have always had problems with my hair since I was little! If only I could do my hair in 5 mins! That would be a dream come true!

  29. I am a new follower and I often feel frumpy. This is a great topic to help people with. Thank you for doing it. I look forward to reading the others and catching up.
    Tammy recently posted…Something To Love ByMy Profile

  30. Oh and YES PLEASE groom the extra facial hair ladies! Keeping eyebrows neat and all those other hairs nobody tells you about at 16! Lip Chin, etc ….My mil, bless her, has issues with chin hair and every time I see her lately I just want to take the tweezers to her face! (shades of My big fat Greek wedding!)… I mean seriously I told hubby I don’t care how old I am if I can’t do it you better be paying for someone to come wax my face! …. and if you have real issues especially if it’s darker hair be sure to have your hormones checked!

  31. Why all the focus on straightening? I really think girls with natural curl look better when they leave it than when they try to fight it into submission, yes, even with the really high-dollar straightening irons.
    Amanda recently posted…Trip to DallasMy Profile

    • Stephanie says:

      Amanda, I agree. My husband hates my hair straight, so I guess it’s good I can’t make it look good and don’t really want to take the time. Curly’s not such a bad thing!

    • For my daughter it’s the issue of curly hair being frizzy and she doesn’t want to use all the product … I have a good friend with the most beautiful curly hair but she told me it took her years to embrace it and she definitely uses good product with it (Redken, Ouidad type stuff that costs more but is apparently worth the bucks if your hair is curly especially kinky curly).

  32. Stephanie says:

    Another note about makeup, if you don’t really know what you like or want to try and you don’t want to invest a lot of money into products that you will ultimately end up not using, and you don’t want to have your makeup done in the department store with random strangers watching you, call a mary kay consultant! They will come to your house and let you try everything before you decide whether or not to purchase it. (and they won’t pressure you into something you don’t actually want just to make a sale) They honestly want you to love what you get! I had multiple mary kay facials and makeovers before I finally made the switch to their products, which I totally love now. I do super simple makeup most days and personally feel so much better because of it

    • Great point!

    • I second this!! I used to sell MK before having my son and I can tell you that most of the women selling it truly love what they do and want you to look your best and won’t be offended if you aren’t able to buy much at all! They will personalize a look for you and are always there if you have questions!
      Stacy recently posted…No ‘Poo- Week 3My Profile

  33. I have always had a big problem with acne, since my early teens. I have been on tons of different prescription and OTC medications and washes for it. It never got better until I stopped wearing face make up and using harsh chemicals to wash my face. Now I cleanse my face with a combo of brown sugar and olive oil. I massage it into my face and then rinse it off. My skin feels oil for about 5 minutes then soaks right in and is super soft. No moisturizer necessary. I only wear eye makeup and occasionally lip gloss. My acne is gone and I get lots of compliments on my skin! If you are having skin problems like acne, oily skin, dry skin, dull skin, try this combo.

    1 cup packed brown sugar
    1/2 cup olive oil

    The consistency should be like sand castle sand. I keep mine in a covered tupperware container in the shower and just scoop out about a teaspoon’s worth onto my finger and massage into my skin, avoiding my hair line (just because olive oil is a hassle to rinse out. :) I hope this helps someone like it helped me!
    Stacy recently posted…No ‘Poo- Week 3My Profile

  34. Sweet Ma says:

    OK, I have always had long hair except once when I tried short. Cut to Shelia’s length….. I personally hated it and it took me longer to style, than my long hair. My hair is very wavy to curly. The shorter it is the curlier it is and that didn’t look good short (made me look very grandmaish in my twenties) so I had to straighten in and that took time. So I grew it out again…
    Ladies, learn to embrace your curly! I love my curly hair but had to learn how to care for it. No more shampoo. (Or very little, very seldom) It dries your hair out and is not needed. Dry curly hair is frizzy it needs moisture. Now, I wash with conditoner and comb with wide tooth comb usually while in the shower, scrunch some coconut oil or leave in conditioner in and let dry. I’ve learned if I am sleeping in wet hair that if I put in in a very loose braid it keeps it from getting frizzy at night and still can dry.
    :) that’s my experience.

  35. Christine says:

    Thanks for the post! Which makeup products do you use, Sheila? My husband likes the no-makeup look, but I am wondering if he would like a little bit like you have done. I do feel better with makeup. And he likes long hair, so I have been growing it out for a while. Thanks for the nudge to actually style it instead of just letting it air dry every day.

  36. unmowngrass says:

    How do you all get your hair to stop tangling? I have very curly/frizzy hair and it got reallyreallyreally tangled… like, I cut off the majority of it myself and then went to the salon and it was still the worst tangle they ever saw. That was nearly a year ago. I asked them what caused it and they said sleeping on it when it’s wet. I do find a shower before bed relaxing, but I have switched to washing my hair at other times during the day, and brushing it more often (brushing curly hair makes it go frizzy, so I didn’t do it every day. I decided to start, though, and accept ‘frizzy’ as a step up from ‘tangled’ — babysteps!). The problem is, my hair is STILL gets really tangled!! I have slowly (and painfully!) been trying to loosen the tangles, and it works… a bit. About 3/4 of my hair is now nice, or at least, not a birds nest. But, the other bit is tangled so badly I don’t know how I’ll ever get it out :( (Usually I just shove all my hair up into a pony tail, which can kind of disguise the tangle a bit…) When I had my hair cut, it came to chin length. I’ve been growing it since then, and it’s just below my shoulders. I want long, nice hair. So, I can’t really afford to get it cut again and loose all those months of growth for it, especially if it’s just going to keep getting tangled. I am aware I need to do more with it. Maybe even straightening it some of the time (that would take about 4 hrs when it’s really long!). But the fact that it keeps getting tangled is just so disheartening :(

    • You need more conditioner, more moisture. When you wash, don’t use shampoo more than once a week. Just use conditioner worked in, leave on for 5-10 minutes, and then rinse out. I have wavy fine hair but my sisters have thick hair that would get so tangled when we were kids! My mom would have us brush each other’s hair after the bath to prevent the snarls and tangles in the morning and then my sisters would have to do it again in the morning!
      Switching to conditioner every time they washed their hair has really helped now! You should get a bottle of spray in leave in conditioner too and a big wide toothed “shower comb”. After you put conditioner in your hair, gently work the wide toothed comb through the tangles. Always start with the ends and then move up 3-4 inches and gently work down again. When you’ve gotten them all untangled (or most), rinse out the conditioner. Towel dry using a hair towel wrap. Just wrap up and go about your day for about an hour. DO NOT rub a towel over your head! It makes horrible tangles and frizz! Now take the hair wrap off (btw they’re less than $5 at Walmart) and your hair should be 75% or more dry. Rinse your wide toothed comb under some running water and spray some leave in conditioner over it. Then spray some leave-in conditioner on the worse of the tangles and snarls and gently work the comb through.

      It may take you some time every day for a week but it will get better the more conditioner you use! :)

    • I forgot three more tips!

      Never use a brush on tangled wet hair or hair that gets frizzy. Always use a comb. It’s gentler and pulls less. I only ever use a styling brush when I dry my hair (once a week) and I comb it out first to be sure the brush isn’t catching on tangles or snarls and making it worse.

      Second, braid, twist back, or bun your hair before bed if you have problems with frizzy/knotted curls or waves. When you wake up it will be easy to comb and style. :)

      Third, you need the right products and method. I love Shea Moisture products. I use the Raw Shea Butter or the Coconut Moisture lines and it makes my hair so happy. Plus it’s cleared up my scalp eczema and dandruff. 😀 They are pretty expensive though! $10 a bottle. But because it is a higher quality product I can get the shampoo to last 6 months or more and the conditioner to last 4 months or more.
      If you have curly hair that is hard to control try the ethnic section of the hair styling products! Curly/wavy/textured hair needs much more moisture than straight hair and those products are specifically made to give more moisture.
      Also you can do a web search for the “Curly Girl Method”, it explains why you should use as little shampoo as you can when washing curly/wavy hair and add lots of moisture instead. I currently wash every third day. So shampoo and conditioner, let air dry and style, just conditioner or spray in conditioner and style, and then the last day I style my hair up/back to hide any greasiness. You can also just wash with shampoo every other day but use conditioner on the other days to help with oily hair.

      I hope one of these help!

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  1. […] can be online! We can spur each other on, and we can be places to ask advice. Even if you think of Fight the Frump week last week, if you just scroll through the comments on each of those days, you’ll find […]

  2. […] you like perfume, spray a little on yourself in the morning. Accessorize. Put on some lipstick and a bit of makeup! Make the effort to take pride in your body AS IT IS. The […]

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