Submited by: Big Little Wolf
One of my rules to live by?
Don’t make major decisions under stress or duress. And post-divorce life certainly qualifies on both counts. When I was newly single again, I realized that I wanted a new look for a new life, but I wasn’t sure what that might be. I did know that I should take my time, that I was vulnerable, and needed to ease into a brighter, shinier, different me.
What did I do?
I grew my hair. I went to a sexier, slightly artier style. I changed my glasses, my perfume, and took up some healthier habits I had let go by the wayside. I also treated myself (over time) to very fine lingerie – and to be worn every day, not just for special occasions.
What might suit you?
If it’s been six months, a year, two years since you’ve re-embarked on the single life, chances are you’re pondering possibilities a-plenty, or already have. They range from the symbolic (a new perfume or replacement ring) to the exotic (relocating to another country) to the more sensational – like cosmetic surgery. But does the Big D really necessitate Double D’s? Is it the time for extreme measures, if you have inner work to focus on along with a desired update to your appearance and personal style?
If you’re looking to shake things up a bit, consider options beyond the surgeon’s knife. Am I saying not to go for the tightened abs or naughty knockers? Not at all. But health and well-being are fundamental; self-esteem is built on more than a surgically altered outer skin.
Many of us want – and need – a post-divorce makeover. For ourselves, to encourage new attitudes and potentially new friends. We may be starting out on new career paths, as well as looking to re-enter the dating waters. We’re often more motivated to take risks, to spread our wings, and a makeover may help us do the trick.
I love mini-makeovers, when it comes to personal appearance or style, as well as for my wardrobe and my surroundings. Naturally – we all have financial, professional, and parental responsibilities that form the framework for what is reasonable. So here are some suggestions to add a touch of style to your single smile, and just in time for Spring!
Mini Makeover Suggestions:
If a day spa is handy – treat yourself! You’ll feel like royalty after a little bit of pampering. And if it’s not in the budget (or you can’t get a babysitter), do-it-yourself spa time is very affordable, and schedule it for when you have an hour to yourself. Try an herbal tea facial (steam and one tea bag), or a few bath products you can pick up at the local supermarket or superstore. Then light some candles for ambiance, soak in your tub, and unwind.
Drab color? A little bit of gray? Just bored with what you’ve got? Chat with your hairdresser about a new style, a weave or extensions, or a new color. Switch it up – go red, go blonde, go sultry brunette! Nothing lightens your mood or changes your look quite so much as a dramatic hair makeover.
A touch of brightening goes a long way on most women, and if you haven’t changed your makeup style since shoulder pads were the rage on Dallas, you’re certainly overdue. And that doesn’t mean you should overdo it. (Do you really want to resemble the makeup messes à la Real Housewives of Orange County?)
Head to the nearest department store where you can try any number of products – and have fun doing it. The older you are, the more a light touch will let you shine. Have a makeup artist show you how to apply products, and suggest the right ones for your skin and your lifestyle. And you’ll need a new look to go with the new hair!
Do you associate your perfume with your ex? Or has it been some years since you’ve tried something new? Our sense of smell is powerfully linked to memory, and fragrance is incredibly seductive. That department store where you’re having your makeup done? Don’t forget to stop at the perfume counter. Dab a little on each wrist. Take some samples home to try at different times. Enjoy choosing just the right one, and imagine leaving a new fragrance lingering on a gentleman’s pillow.
While many may lecture on the pros and cons of dressing your age, my personal feeling is you should dress to please yourself. But ask a friend his or her opinion if you’re really uncertain, and use a proper mirror when you’re trying on new clothes, a new style, or a new color scheme. Do remember that professional attire is one thing (be suitable for your workplace), but when it comes to socializing, why not cut loose a little?
Whatever you do – I strongly recommend you treat yourself to beautiful lingerie that fits properly. Wear it for you – and enjoy how deserving you feel.
If you’re going to invest money in maintenance, there’s nothing so wonderful as a lovely, healthy smile. Does that mean blindingly white choppers or veneers? Not unless you’re headed to Hollywood. More likely, it’s as simple as regular visits to your dentist, whitening strips on occasion, and remembering the warmth and welcome that a smile exudes.
Makeovers on a Budget:
Like most of us, I live on a budget. I have a few classic, quality staples in my wardrobe, in blacks, neutrals, and jolts of color (reds and purples). A few pieces of bold jewelry, a variety of scarves (like French women), and I admit – way too many shoes!
Did I mention the importance of a gorgeous pair of heels? They don’t have to be four-inchers (though if you can pull it off, why not?); I’m all for comfort, and even a low heel for a high time is elegant when you go out.
The point in all this?
You need to take some risks. Try new things and get outside your comfort zone. Does that mean you can’t date until you lose 30 pounds, fill your forehead with Botox, or drop five figures for the combo tummy tuck, face lift and breast implants? Of course not.
If you feel that you must have cosmetic surgery to compete in the dating market, I hope you take the time to get to know yourself first, and be realistic about far less invasive and expensive alternatives.
But if you’ve always wanted those bodacious tah-tahs, or any other procedure, then do your homework, line up your resources, and keep in mind that there is no panacea for heartache, and no magic path to loving or being loved again.
Be healthy, be financially responsible, and enjoy refashioning your single life. It’s really all about you – your choices, your confidence, and feeling recharged and renewed.
These days, Big Little Wolf (”Ms. Big”) reflects on life and her Daily Plate of Crazy, where she writes essays on everything – sometimes serious, sometimes fun – whatever strikes her on a given day as interesting, unusual, entertaining, or of concern.