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Personal Style | Spring cleaning

Perspective is a funny thing. Not 'ha-ha' funny but the thought provoking kind. From the time I was 14, driven by sketch-filled scrapbooks and fashion movies, I knew what I wanted to do for the rest of my life. I envisioned the hallowed halls of a fashion magazine replete with glistening marble floors and whimsical paintings on the walls. Women would be striding through the corridors in stilettos, designer spectacles and fitted blazers—and I'd be one of them.
Of course when I did actually join one, that changed drastically. While many of them did resemble my vision of the modern working woman, I just wouldn't have it. Blazers, stilettos, spectacles—I wanted none of them and yet, I couldn't seem to put my finger on what exactly I wanted to wear. Even back then, I knew that clothes were a lot more than just garments to me. Years later, with a little more perspective and redefined personal style, the mark of a modern woman became as clear as day to me. She was refined, confident in her own skin and never afraid to stand out.

A female fashion blogger from India wears a pastel printed shirt with blue culottes and floral print high heels with dangling earrings, glossy lips and purple eye makeup for her fashion blog Style File

A female fashion blogger from India wears a pastel printed shirt with blue culottes and floral print high heels with dangling earrings, glossy lips and purple eye makeup for her fashion blog Style File

A female fashion blogger from India wears a pastel printed shirt with blue culottes and floral print high heels with dangling earrings, glossy lips and purple eye makeup for her fashion blog Style File

A female fashion blogger from India wears a pastel printed shirt with blue culottes and floral print high heels with dangling earrings, glossy lips and purple eye makeup for her fashion blog Style File

1 Like No Other printed shirt | Marks & Spencer culottes | Steve Madden floral stilettos | Kazo dangler earrings c/o | Aldo bracelets | Soap & Glory Sexy Mother Pucker 'Punch Bowl' lip gloss | 
NYX 'Lady First' nail varnish
A female fashion blogger from India wears a pastel printed shirt with blue culottes and floral print high heels with dangling earrings, glossy lips and purple eye makeup for her fashion blog Style File

A female fashion blogger from India wears a pastel printed shirt with blue culottes and floral print high heels with dangling earrings, glossy lips and purple eye makeup for her fashion blog Style File

A female fashion blogger from India wears a pastel printed shirt with blue culottes and floral print high heels with dangling earrings, glossy lips and purple eye makeup for her fashion blog Style File

 Photography: Leo Alemao

The idea of boardroom chic dressing, with its pencil skirts and starched shirts always appealed to me. However, once I was in the throes of it, there was nothing I wanted less. With a change in scenery and the wisdom of my early twenties in hand, I learned that it wasn't the style of dressing that dissuaded me, it was my state of mind. So with the scorching sun as my backdrop, I decided to do a bit of physical and mental spring cleaning to give my version of the modern career woman one last shot. With new perspective in the right direction, this was my complete look.

Summer meant I couldn't stay away from pastels and so, I literally strutted in from top to toe. While culottes weren't always my cup of tea, this linen beauty in powder blue changed that for me. I even went all out with a glossy pink lip, a purple eye makeup look and on-point printed sandals to bring it all together. In a breeze, boardroom dressing went from stuffy and bland to sophisticated and chic. Now who would have thought it could look this phenomenal!


xo
Dayle

Beauty | How to get the haircut you've always wanted

Being experimental with my hair has had its perks—I've found hair care products that do magic for me, I've discovered a comfortable length that works for my face shape and I've even found lowlights that are subtle enough to sport at work. However, not without its failings. While experimenting led me to my new bob a few summers ago and helped me find a friend in dry shampoo, it also led to some disastrous experiments that took place behind the scenes.

Image of a young woman wearing a grey outfit and plaid scarf with red lips and a wool beanie hat over a straight lob hairstyle on a brick background


The most scarring of them have been bad haircuts. Yes, I say haircuts in plural because were multiple times when my hair looked like something Edward Scissorhands would have been responsible for. I've had a too-short fringe that belonged on a 60's pin-up poster, a shaggy crop that made me look like a teenage boy and a fantastically styled 'do that unravelled minutes after I left the salon.

Even for someone who isn't very attached to her hair, they cut deep. However, through the awful cuts and awry trims, I learned that it is possible to get a good haircut and it doesn't just depend on your hairstylist. Yes, a truly good, 'makes-me-want-to-kiss-my-reflection' kind of haircut. It took years of hair trials and tribulations to create the list of how I did it, which you'd want to know about of course—what self-respecting beauty lover would you be if you didn't!

Know your hair

Before you step into a salon, understand you own hair. Is it straight, wavy or curly? Is it prone to breakage, split ends or frizz? Is it thick or thin in volume? These are questions that will shape your hairstyle. Next, find your face shape and the hairstyles that suit both, your shape and texture. Together, they'll help you form an idea of what you want when you speak to your stylist.

Illustrated motion image of a woman sitting in a salon chair and getting her short hair cut by a hairstylist with a scissors and comb
source


Find the right hairstylist

When it comes to this one, the struggle is real. Hairstylists can be intimidating to the extent that you come out looking completely different because you got coaxed into a hairdo you didn't intend. They can also be extremely uninvolved and just eager to get it over with. Unfortunately there's no easy to way to find the right one other than testing and trying them. Ask everyone you know with covet-able hair who they go to and try a trim with them for yourself. If you're pleased, go in for the whole shebang. Find out what area of expertise the stylist specialises in; short crops, styling, layers etc so that you can select them based on their speciality.  Exhausting, I know but what works for someone else may not work for you. Play the field for the right hairstylist and with a little luck, you'll find them.

Expensive need not be good

I've come to learn that a high price being equated to an excellent service or product is the most illogical belief. While I say this from my experience of surprisingly spectacular restaurants and budget beauty products, hairstylists also fall under this category. While a more expensive hairstylist is meant to be more experienced and knowledgeable, this isn't always true. I've actually noticed that the more I shell out for a chop by the creative director/head stylist/other fancy designation, the less attention my hair gets, which results in a strictly mediocre cut. Regardless of whether a stylist is fairly new to the hair game or has been in it for years, don't let price be the sole factor in choosing them. Look for someone who understands your hair and is receptive to opinions.

Image of a woman sitting in a salon chair covered with a salon cape getting her long curly hair cut by a hairstylist


Stand your ground

When you're finally in the stylists chair, it's very easy to get lured into their recommendations. They throw around words like layering and glossiness which can easily intimidate you. They may even recommend an exorbitant treatment or unnecessary colour job which can make you look ridiculous. Save yourself the horror and instead, stand your ground on what you want. While it is important to take your hairstylist's input into consideration (they are the experts after all!), don't let it persuade you into doing something you aren't comfortable with. You're paying good money for a hairstyle you want so politely take their recommendation and assert your choice because you'll be the one sporting the style for the next few months.

Don't let styling fool you

Between the whirring of the blowdryer and wafting fragrance of fancy argan oil, it's pretty easy to think that your hair looks great once finished. But don't be fooled by the guise of clever styling. You'll be amazed at how a simple blowout can leave you thinking your hair looks a Victoria's Secret Angel. Unfortunately, that may all change a few washes later. While styling is great to add flair, at its base the haircut needs to be well done. Once it is, whether styled or not, it will look fantastic.

xo
Dayle

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