Skin Deep: Festive Fun

The holidays are here again, and with them comes sparkle. But tinsel on trees and lights in the windows shouldn’t be the only things that dazzle. This is a time for ladies to “bring it” with beauty and style. Before you rock around the Christmas tree, these beauty tips can help every woman rock the holidays.

Colors of the Season
Fashionistas will never go wrong with reds for Christmas or blues for Hanukkah. Gold tends to match better with the warmth of red, and blue with the cool of silver. Deep colors, such as forest green and burgundy, are also a hit in the winter. Do not be afraid to ditch the normal little black cocktail dress for something a little livelier.

When it comes to makeup, red lipstick is always in fashion for holiday occasions. The effect helps teeth look whiter without breaking out a commercial bleaching product. For bolder looks, go for deeper shades of red. To add a little “oomph,” try using a red-orange lip color and then feather in a blue-red lip color in the center. For sexy sizzle, match the lipstick with red fingernail polish.

Smoky Eye
Mysterious and chic when done properly, the smoky eye will turn heads at parties. A smoky eye with nude lips makes an even bolder statement. There are several “in” base colors for the look, including browns, golds, violets and blues. Always remember to complement the look with dark mascara. Several companies produce smoky eye makeup kits complete with instructions for those not sure how to achieve the effect.

Pampering is Perfect
The hustle and bustle of the holiday season is enough to run a person down. Do not be afraid to give yourself a gift to help you look your best or just to relax.

Head to a good salon or spa to look for a stunning new hairdo. Manicures and pedicures can help bring some of the rough edges back to life or set the tone for a formal party. Taking a relaxing break at a spa will relieve stress, and can help keep skin looking young and stop the onset of those five or 10 holiday pounds that come from anxiety nibbling.
Get the Right Lingerie
Having the most flattering, beautiful attire will mean nothing if a bra is running across your bare back or if you spend half the evening fiddling with your unmentionables. Most department stores have someone who can correctly measure you for the best bra for your proportions and also give pointers on which style will match a dress. This is a great time of year to find a swanky set of undergarments; consider buying one set in lace.

Keep the Sparkle in Check
The holidays are a time to experiment with the sparkly accessories on your vanity. Try a little glitter spray in your hair for going out on the town. A little glitter nail polish will make hands pop. Adding a silver or gold shimmer to regular foundation will also add luster.

However, this is one area where you can have too much of a good thing. Choose one or two areas to sparkle, such as a glitter eye shadow and a sequin clutch. Wearing shimmer makeup all over plus a sequined dress will make you look like a neon sign.

Leave the Kitsch in the Closet
Unless your party invitation states that the hosts are having a contest for the flashiest get-up, leave the cardigan with snowmen and dancing reindeer at home.

Matching a red top with green slacks will put people in good cheer, but not for the reasons you hope. Wear the Santa Claus earrings your grandmother gave you to her house, but not out on the town. Dressing up for the holidays – or any time of year – is about wearing a style that flatters you. An outfit should not be a costume, and kitschy clothes can give off that notion.

Know Your Audience
Not everyone celebrates the holidays for religious reasons, but many people do. It is also a time of year during which people experience others’ religions and customs. Be respectful of your hosts’ customs and tastes. For example:

In temperate climates, women may be able to wear a sleeveless dress in the winter, but cover shoulders if it’s an event or wedding in a church or synagogue.

A smaller, family-run business may have different standards for an office holiday party than a large corporate setting. Jeans and a sweater may be perfect for the small office party, but formal attire is more appropriate for large companies. Look at the invitation for a hint at how to dress.

There is a time and a place to rock a sexy look during the holidays, such as singles’ mixers, evenings out with friends or romantic dinners for two. Overdoing it at the office party could make for awkward situations when everyone’s back at work.

The holidays are a great time of year to bring out the best in your wardrobe. When in doubt, remember that simple, elegant fashions will never go out of style.

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