10 New Style Rules to Try
Match Your Lips to Your Dress
True, being too coordinated with your clothes and makeup can smack of a faux pas, but there's an easy, super-stylish side step: Zero in on just your pout, and paint it a shade taken from your outfit. Best to stick with timeless reds or rich, deep tones; steer clear of bubblegum pinks and frosty hues, which could push the look into costume territory.
Let Your Ends Hang Out
A ballerina bun doesn't have to be picture-perfect. Gently fray hair tips from a topknot for "an easy, youthful style that won't look like you're trying too hard," says N.Y.C. hairstylist Benoit Moeyaert. Start by applying texturizer, like Redken's Rough Clay 20 Matte, to strands before gathering into a ponytail at the nape of your neck. Twist into a low bun, and secure with an elastic band and U pins, using your fingers to fan out the ends.
Go Strapless For Day
Pull out a versatile clutch to use from nine-to-five. "It's a fresh, modern alternative to an oversize bag," says Jimmy Choo founder and chief creative officer Tamara Mellon. Make sure the clutch is roomy enough to fit all your workday essentials and avoid materials that feel too formal, like dressy satin or allover sequins. Bright leathers or chic prints can transition beautifully from the afternoon into the evening.
Show Off Your Hem
Yes, an overcoat is meant to protect you from the elements, but unless there's a torrential downpour, forget the old edict that it must always be longer than your skirt. Instead, allow some edging to peek from underneath. The key is to keep the look polished: Choose a coat that nips in at the waist, and make sure its color is compatible with your skirt.
Rock Socks with Skirts
It's a playful trend that's all over the runways, so put away your opaque tights and try ankle socks with leg-baring outfits. Start out easy by matching them to the color of your shoes- it will almost look like you're wearing booties. For a bolder statement, choose ones similar to the shades in your outfit. Steer clear of noisy prints or ruffles, or risk looking too "schoolgirl."
Mismatch Your Prints
"This is a great way to highlight your personality," says Veronica Etro, head of Etro womenswear design. Her tips to make the look work? Pair a bold, decorative pattern, such as loud florals, with a geometric one, like clean polka dots, that's smaller in scale, so they're not competing for attention too much. For combinations that click, choose separates in complementary colors and the same tonal family.
Clash Colors to Make Eyes Pop
Wash lids with your favorite bright shadow, then offset it with a contrasting shade underneath. "A simple stroke of the unexpected looks really modern," says makeup artist Robert Greene. Winning mixes: cranberry with green, purple with bronze or teal with shimmery yellow.
Do Denim on Denim
No, it doesn't have to look like you're off to the rodeo. "The trick is to mix fabric weights and washes," says Gap's executive vice president of design, Patrick Robinson. Try a light chambray shirt with dark skinny jeans, and layer with a fitted denim vest. Inject some glam with a pair of towering heels.
Untame Your Tresses
After years of pin-straight locks and perfectly tousled curles, try letting your hair go wild and big-like, '80s big. "It's sexy," says Redken hair stylist Benoit Moeyaert. "Think Raquel Welch or Sophia Loren-it's a look that is associated with glamour." To get it, work a volumizer like Redken's Full Frame 07 Protective Volumizing mousse (we told you this was '80s-inspired!) into damp hair from roots to ends, then blow-dry in sections. Just before you reach the point where hair is completely dry, use Velcro rollers to create extra body, leaving them for a few minutes. Then back-comb and apply hairspray all over the crown, brush out waves, and mist with a finishing product, such as Redken's Quick Dry 18 Instant finishing spray.
Add Edge to Evening Wear
Forgo your faithful shrug and top your fancy stuff with a shrunken leather coat instead. The surprising play of opposites makes for a cool combo-trust us, your biker jacket looks just as appealing over a sparkly minidress or a floaty chiffon gown as it does with those go-to stovepipes.