Category5 is a fabulous online fashion experience dedicated to truth in fashion, shopping, and all things style. Lauren is dedicated to giving women all the tools they need to come away with an insightful, honest, and humorous look at where their style truly resides.
By Lauren Deloach, Editor of Category 5
Before I start covering fall, I think it’s necessary we do a bit of a pep talk to get you ready for one of the biggest seasons of the year. Fall is a time of true beauty, when designers give it their best, when layering is a way of life and the colors of burgundy, gray, and navy will dominate the playing field. Leaves turn, cool weather comes, and you get that feeling like you need a bit of something to stay warm early in the morning and late into the evening. Fall is a true time of excitement, and with that excitement should come a time to really make a big push to take your style to the next level. As I see women every day that are facing different style challenges, the idea of style pushing doesn’t mean the same for all, as women can all find themselves in different style categories. For a Category1-3, the push is to begin and to continue to care, and think about what their reflection truly means to them. While for a Category 4-5, they are 98% sure they have their style figured out, but it’s the other 2% of uncertainty that plagues them, and hangs over their heads every morning as they ask “Am I doing enough?” Let’s break down the three key areas women have got to be ready to push as we get closer and closer to fall, taking into account Category of Style.
Beauty– I meet so many women that I have stopped counting who believe that putting on mascara and a bit of lip gloss is somehow a proper beauty routine. Meanwhile the real truth is that it’s the bare minimum! This is a reality I typically expect to see from a Cat1-2. Now don’t think I can’t hear you…”Lauren, I don’t have time to focus on makeup in the morning.” If your excuse is because you don’t have time, then it’s because you have yet to learn how to do an efficient makeup routine that will give you a polished look. As we move through the weeks and cover beauty, it will be key for you to analyze everything you’re doing and then agree to take it one step further. It’s like building blocks. If you’re a Cat1 and you do mascara and lip gloss now, add on a tinted moisturizer into your routine over a period of two weeks. Once your two weeks are up, add blush to your routine, and you will find yourself moving up in your Category of Style as well. Continue to build and push until you’ve mastered a routine. This will eliminate any sense of confusion as to what you’re doing in the morning, as you will have moved comfortably into a new routine (and category).
Shoes– While all the clothing hasn’t been released, I must say, some of the shoes I have seen for fall are mind-blowing. Absolutely beautiful, and quickly becoming one of those scenarios where you hope that’s the best of it, while deep down you know the budget games are just beginning. Now here comes the push, what is going on with all the bland and boring shoes I’m seeing women wearing as of late? I’m seeing a lot of taupe, a lot of black…a lot of blah blah blah boring (B4). It’s time to rev up ladies, as those clunky clogs are a bit of a nightmare! I’m talking about print polka dot pumps (think Kate Spade), glitter ballet flats, and patent leather shoes in shades we only dare to dream such as burnt orange and yellow suede. If you’re at bare bones style (Cat1-2) and just beginning, then you would keep your focus to the colorful ballet flats to get you going. If you’re at a point in your style when you’ve got more confidence in your choices (Cat3-5), then it would be the print shoes such as polka dots, stripes, and animal that you should gravitate toward. Picking up on my common theme here, everything I’m naming is either shiny, print, or a major pop of color. With fall there’s no time to play games with the ordinary, so get your mind set on only buying shoes that are so beautiful, it almost hurts to look at them. If you’re not constantly smiling about the shoes you own, you don’t own the right shoes…that simple.
Accessories– I was recently working at an in-store event with a fabulous group of women, and one common theme kept coming up: accessories. The idea of how do you truly push yourself to “shut down” your look to completion? How do you close your ensemble so you leave your onlookers only thinking words like ‘stylish’ and ‘chic’? Accessories! I don’t care how fab the crewneck houndstooth sweater you’re wearing is, you better have a chunky pearl necklace mixed with bronze metal accents to make it look like you know how to “layer” your neck (all the while carrying your blue blazer on your arm just in case the temperature drops). While it’s a Category4 woman that has mastered her accessories, you have to begin somewhere, so don’t feel overwhelmed with all of your choices. If you’re hoping to mix your prints and don’t know where to begin, shoot for scarves first. Push yourself to buy colorful polka dot scarves in shades of green with burgundy dots versus black with white dots. Refuse to buy a simple pair of silver studs, and opt for Huiyi Tan’s weather forecast studs on Etsy.com to show some thought and personality. I mean, what about an animal print scarf in brown and black to pair with your black and white striped top, with rose gold glitter flats for your feet? How about a large green statement necklace to off-set your papaya v-neck tee, with your beige polka dot patent leather pumps? If it sounds beautiful by description, believe me when I tell you it’s even more amazing in person!
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Push ladies! Before we really get to fall season, push yourselves every 1 to 2 weeks to get outside of your comfort zone. I’ve had women look me dead in my eyes and tell me flat out, “there’s no way I’m wearing colorful pants and most definitely not print,” and not only do they buy nothing but colorful pants, but they refuse to even consider leaving the store with anything khaki or gray, which would have been their comfort zone picks. Not to mention they end up getting the print pants to boot! It’s women moving up in Category of Style right before my eyes, as the light bulb goes on telling them “I can and should do better.” It’s all in the choices we make to push ourselves to try new things, and the last thing I want any woman to do as we come upon the biggest season of the year is to stay in their own version of ordinary. We ALL have the capability to have extraordinary style, no matter your age or budget!
The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.