Colours and Contours: Busting Through the Plus Size Myths

Black Dress
Busting Through the Plus Size Myths

One of the most enduring fashion myths that has plagued plus size women for decades is the completely misleading advice ‘black makes you appear slimmer’. First of all, it doesn’t, it makes you look washed out and dull, so unless you’re a Goth or an avid funeral attendee, it’s time to ditch the black and introduce some colour into your clothing. If your personality is bright and bubbly with just the right amount of crazy, then your wardrobe should reflect that, and bigger girls should never hide behind neutral colours and baggy shapes that only make them appear larger than they are. If you’re ready for a fashion overhaul, the following guide will help you select the best shades to maximize your features, and stand out from the black crowd.

The Perfect Shade

Whilst a black dress would certainly appear more slimming than a fire engine red version, that doesn’t mean that black is always the best option. Deep jewel tones in emerald green, sapphire blue, and amethyst will have a much more slimming effect, and can be used to accentuate different eye colours and skin tones. Colour blocking is also a fabulous option for larger ladies, as it can be used to bring attention to the parts of the body you want to highlight such as an ample bosom or voluptuous rear. Try combining an electric blue low-cut top with a pair of tailored black trousers for an instantly sexy look, or pull on some shocking pink jeans and team them with an elegant, flowing white shirt for a fun and flirty look.

Mix It Up

When combining more than one colour, it’s a good idea to choose an accessory such as a scarf or bag in a contrasting shade. Layering many colours on top of each other will have you looking like a traffic light, so stick to a single statement piece when experimenting with contrasting shades. Prints and patterns can also look fantastic on top of a bright colour, but opt for delicate, soft patterns, as opposed to chunky stripes or giant polka dots.

Some Things Are Never a Good Idea

No matter how much we miss the 80s, it’s not coming back and neither is its disturbing neon legacy. Fluorescent clothing received a brief revival last summer, but thankfully the trend died quietly before it managed to take hold. Whilst expressing yourself is always a good thing, some shades should be left to the professionals, and even they have a tough time pulling off yellow spandex. Avoid all forms of clothing that can still be seen when the lights are switched off, and any form of shiny metallic fabric and anything wet-look.

As long as you follow the aforementioned tips, you will have a wardrobe to be proud of that represents your personality in all its quirky glory. Many fuller figured women are wary of bright colours thanks to the fashion industry’s misguided advice, but there is absolutely no reason why every woman can’t wear any colour she wants, and look fabulous while doing so.

Tom Grant is a fashion aficionado. He enjoys sharing his insights on how every woman can look and feel her best. You can find the latest dresses, blouses, knit wear, trousers, jackets and even more.

Chic style: Biker jacket

Biker jacket
Biker jacket

Imagine riding a Harley Davidson through a winding road on a hill and the fresh forest air sweeps through your hair. You exude…Swagger? Check. Personality? Check. Rebelliousness? Oh yes, Check. There is something intriguing about a biker strutting his or her Biker jacket that sets the ‘coolness’ factor to a whole different level. No wonder the rest of the world and especially the fashion world has taken to embracing their style.

Biker jackets; the case in point are so popular and can be considered as a timeless garment to have in your closet. It instantly creates a chic, rebellious and modern twist to a simple outfit. Like every biker has a ‘road name’, each one of us needs to have a biker jacket that is unique and well fitted. And yes, even if we don’t own a bike, we can certainly pull off wearing a biker jacket if done so correctly.

Colors: The most authentic and perhaps, easiest color to choose is black. It flatters all skin tones and provides a slimming effect. But, there are browns, pale pinks and blues if you like to mix things up a little. Dual toned jackets (grey and black) are also available.

Material: Leather would be the number one choice for most people, especially if the investment is long term. However, if you prefer to go the vegan lifestyle route, there are so many ‘faux’ leather options to choose from. ‘Moto’ jackets or biker jackets have transitioned into cotton and denim for use in warmer months as well.

Length: Cropped, waist-length or tunic lengths are some options to play with. It is all about balancing the proportion of the outfit. Cropped lengths look great with flowy skirts or dresses and waist-lengths look good with most jeans’ styles. Tunic lengths balance out skinny jeans or leggings to keep the outfit compelling.

Pairings: Biker jackets work mainly to take an outfit up a notch when you want to add an interesting element to your outfit. A floral dress can be teamed with the rugged jacket to bring about a paradox. A Simple jeans and tee outfit can be made very stylish with a biker jacket and matching (or not matching) boots.

You may draw inspiration from actual bikers or scout for pictures of your favorite celebs.

The choices to pair biker jackets are endless. Whichever way you wear it, you would portray a fabulous, tough and a stand-out style that has everyone’s eyes on you.

6 Vegetables You Should Be Eating

Vegetables You Should Be Eating
Vegetables You Should Be Eating

Sometimes we’ll stick to the same routine when we reach for a salad or snack because we know what tastes good—or at least we know what won’t go straight to our thighs. However, many women are not getting all the nutrients their bodies need to prevent cancers, maintain a healthy weight, and make us feel good about our bodies. Sometimes the veggies we opt out for are the ones we need the most.

BEETS—You may not be the biggest fan of beets but its plethora of health benefits may help you to decide otherwise. Beats are a wonderful cleanser for the body as it aids in the blood’s purification, acts as a tonic for the liver, and is a preventer of a number cancers. Not only are they packed with vitamins and minerals such as vitamins A, B, & C, fiber, potassium, and iron, beets are also a high source of energy in that they are low in calories and high in sugar (a form of sugar that is released into our system gradually versus a candy-like sugar).  Beets are also beneficial for your mental health and libido. Beets are comprised of betaine, which is a substance used to treat depression. They are also made up of high amounts of boron, which is a direct producer of human sex hormones, so they act as a form of Viagra!

CAULIFLOWER—This vegetable is a great addition to any salad as it is low in calories and is an aid in weight loss diets. Its richness in folate is a wonderful treat for pregnant women, as well as its contents in niacin, riboflavin, and thiamine (other great B vitamins. Cauliflower is also a heart healthy vegetable as it protects our heart from many diseases, can help lower cholesterol levels in the body, and reduces the risk of various cancers including prostate, breast, colon, ovarian, and bladder. Its high level of antioxidants aid in the acceleration of aging and its omega-3 fatty acids acts as an anti-inflammatory. 

MUSHROOMS—Though this is technically a fungi and not a vegetable, it is still a highly recommended addition to any food intake. Mushrooms have absolutely no cholesterol or fats and have very little carbohydrates. The fiber and enzymes that make up the fungi help lower cholesterol and are recommended as a low energy food source for diabetics. Mushrooms are a great source of vitamins and minerals essential in building a strong immune system as well as are great for losing weight (due to its low fat and high fiber).  This fungi is also very effective in preventing breast and prostate cancer due to its level of Beta-Glucans and Linoleic Acid have anti-carcinogenic effects.

EGGPLANT—Not being one of the most appealing-looking vegetables on the planet, eggplant have such a great taste and health benefits. Its levels of fiber help with digestion and colon health. Due to its low level of calories, this too is a great addition to any weight-control diet. Eggplant acts as one big powerful antioxidant for the body while simultaneously helping to lower cholesterol levels 

BRUSSELS SPROUTS—In addition to being a preventer of a plethora of cancers, Brussels sprouts are also a huge supporter of cardiovascular health. They help prevent and reverse the damage made by blood vessels. Recent studies show that this vegetable helps to maintain and stabilize DNA within white blood cells by blocking activity of sulphotransferase enzymes. Its level of vitamin K regulates the body’s inflammatory responses along with its level of vitamin A, which boosts immunity, protects the eyes, and maintains healthy bones and teeth.

SWISS CHARD—This is more of an all-around healthy treat for your body. Swiss chard promotes hair health, since its rich in biotin, while simultaneously regulating your blood sugar.  Its levels of lutein maintain eye health while its level of iron provides the body with healthy blood circulation, preventing anemia. Its source of vitamin K and magnesium is crucial to brain and bone health—all while being a huge preventer in colon cancer.

Even though not all of these veggies seem tastefully appealing, there are so many great recipes to use in order to make them taste good while also keeping all of their amazing health benefits. Before you say no to the things our parents forced us to eat as children, give them one more try by throwing them in a stir-fry or adding a pinch of sal

Breathing Again After Divorce

After Divorce
Breathing Again After Divorce

Picking up the pieces and living again after divorce can appear to be an impossible feat to accomplish. Whether it’s amicable or tumultuous, the days leading up to, during and following the decision to dissolve the union can take an incredible toll, mentally/emotionally and physically. The good news is that there is life after divorce. That life will be what you make it.

Marriages end for a variety of reasons. They can end after short periods or they can crumble after many, many years. Divorce can be the result of infidelity, abuse, incompatibility or a host of other reasons. When there are children involved, regardless of their ages, the trauma can increase on a much greater level. Many times, children believe that the separation and the ensuing divorce is their fault. Marital dissolution has a ripple affect that can span far deeper than one can imagine.

The Children

Children can suffer greatly during the process of divorce. Although there may be obvious, glaring signs that point to the reasons a marriage is ending, many times, children are only aware that their home is in a state of chaos. They come to realize that they are going to live with one parent, either 50% of the time or some other percentage that represents everything new and different. They may feel like they have to take sides. They may feel that they are letting one parent down by wanting to live with the other. Young children have an especially hard time comprehending that these are adult matters. Teenage children will often try to “fix” the situation. Adult children can be equally traumatized as they wonder what will become of their parents “without” each other.

Regardless of the age of the child or children, they need to be reassured that they will continue to be loved unconditionally by both parents.

Taking Care of the Mind

The entire process of divorce can be taxing, to say the least. Talk to someone, whether its family, friends, your religious establishment or a professional. Often times, speaking a thing and actually hearing it out loud will allow you to see the situation for what it really is. Never be ashamed of needing help during this time. Resources are readily available so utilize them.

Regroup, Reset, Re-do

Although divorce represents a dissolution, it can also serve as a period of rebuilding, re-doing, and renovating. Perhaps now is the time to relocate to that city you’ve always wanted to live in. Maybe now is the time to change careers. Turn that long-time hobby into a money-making venture. Travel to all those places you said you would. Make it a solo venture or bring the crew. Just do it!

NOT the end

Life doesn’t end with divorce. Time heals. Take all that you need but don’t let it get away from you. Live life and live it on purpose!

The Mouth on Her

Gossip
The Mouth on Her

Gossiping (back-biting, bad-mouthing, telling secrets). We all know someone who participates on the daily. Participation comes in two forms: perpetration and/or listening. The two are highly dependent on one another – without one, the other cannot exist.

Gossiping is that idle talk about other folk’s personal or professional lives. Sometimes its sharing facts, most times, its sharing rumors and untruths. In the end, in most cases, that gossip is the root of slander and sometimes, unwarranted disgrace. Admittedly, I have participated in gossiping as the “carrier” of something I’ve heard. I never divulged other’s secrets – not that this fact made everything okay, but I just never did that. I have, more than once, also been the subject of gossip and bad-mouthing. On a  greater level, I have participated by listening to other’s assumptions, their guesses and unknowingly, the lies of  jealous women. Some of the things I’ve heard has been funny. Some of the things I’ve heard have been downright hateful.

Several years ago, I realized that being the perpetrator, listener or victim all result in the same feeling – pain. Once again, by definition, gossip is idle talk. Gossip is the result of another person’s decision to tell another’s secret, to talk about a friend or stranger behind his/her back or to bad-mouth him or her out of jealousy or anger. Sometimes, its the result of lies. I was the victim of the latter. Although I didn’t know the perpetrator on a highly personal level, she had been a co-worker. I would have never known the things that were being said about me had another co-worker not been fired. Long story short, both the perpetrator and I had moved on to much better jobs, with her having obtained her position on my recommendation! I had no clue she had been talking about me behind my back. I only came into the knowledge when the fired co-worked applied for a position at the same place I (and the perpetrator) was now employed, and a supervisor came to me asking if I thought the woman should be hired. Almost immediately, the perpetrator came to me, trying to find out, on the sly, if I knew what she had done. Eventually, I found out, and as you would expect, I was extremely angry. I had never done anything to either of them and was crushed that I had been cast in such an ugly, untrue light. It was around this time that I had been giving lots of thought to the fact that some of the things I had carried to and fro over the years could possibly have been untrue. It had just happened to me. It sickened me. I regret the fact that it took being the victim to make me understand that the consequences of something I had previously considered harmless, could be devastating.

These days, in my eyes, gossip is for those who have nothing else to do or too little to do. Even though I had plenty to do back in the day when I thought it was funny or acceptable, clearly, I wasn’t focused enough. My son is headed to college, I have a new grand daughter, I have a blog to write, I have a life to live. Equally as important, I spend my time loving and helping my friends and as many strangers as I can, so I have no time for gossiping and bad-mouthing. Life is too short to live it in the negative.

Move over black, it is Navy boots this season!

The autumn leaves have left their branches and crisp white snow will be here soon. Ever wondered how lovely mustard leaves or little flakes of snow will look when they gently caress your beautiful navy boots? You read it right, Navy boots are ‘in’ and here to stay.

Navy has been seen on runways world over, courted by top design houses like Dries Van Noten, Chloé and Céline. Often pitted as the new black for Fall/Winter 2013-2014, it has become the hottest color for the cooler seasons. Why not get in on the action, especially since it is navy’s time in the spot light… how boring has black and brown boots become!

You’re probably wondering what to wear with navy boots. Considering it is likely that you already own navy colored clothes in your closet, you can style your boots in the same manner.

Here goes the list:

  1. Neutral on Neutral: Navy,a dark neutral, pairs well with lighter neutrals. Throw on a pair of beige pants from summer over navy boots and you’ll be Fall ready in no time. Pair them with a white blouse, navy satchel and red lips to complete the look.
  2. Monochromatic chic: Very few colors exude elegance, class and sophistication like navy does, when worn as the only color in an outfit. Victoria Beckham strutted into the Royal Wedding wearing navy head-to-toe . Why not go all out with a fit and flare navy dress, navy cross-body and navy boots to paint the town red?
  3. Channel the Nautical: Work your navy boots with red pants and a white and blue striped top. Throw on a beige trench coat for cooler days and carry along a matching tote. You’re guaranteed second looks, for the right reasons of course.
  4. Rock the Color block: Brighten up a cloudy day by color blocking your navy boots with a hot pink skirt (don’t forget navy tights when it’s chilly) and a simple white tee. Tie the outfit together with a wide tan belt and bag.
  5. Back it up with black: Evolution taught us that it is super chic to pair navy and black; take it a step further and add grey to the mix. Wear your navy boots with black leggings and a grey slouchy sweater. Top off the uber-cool outfit with a navy tube scarf and a black bag.

Popular brands such as Impo, Steve Madden and Nine West carry their own version of stylish navy boots in casual or dress styles. Inexpensive pairs can be found online at zappos.com, dsw.com or in-store at DSW and Macy’s to name a few. Go on, get yourself a pair of this season’s show stopper!

5 Natural Ways To Cure Dry Skin On Hands

Cure Dry Skin
5 Natural Ways To Cure Dry Skin On Hands

Me and family live in a hotter climate and for us dry hands are a chronic problem that we have to address with great care. Out of the 4, my husband is the one who is most sensitive to this climate and that is why he always develops more patchy areas on her knuckles and palms and also has splits on his skin around the fingernails. However, we recently found out about several ways to deal with these problems and if you also live like us in a hotter climate area, in the following text we’re going to take a closer look at the natural ways to handle dry skin on hands. Continue reading