Top 5 Tips: How to wash a Swimsuit

So, we are in the middle of summer and since we all have worked hard for bikini and speedo worthy bodies (right?…right?); its seems logical that we know how to care for our bathing suits  ;-).

Here are my 5 top tips!  And check out this fabulous swimwear designer: ANDREA IYAMAH Swimwear.swimwear

1). Under no circumstances are you to put your bathing suit in the washing machine!

 It seems like putting swimwear in the washing machine on a gentle/delicate cycle would suffice; but I am here to tell you that the washing machine is simply too harsh for swimwear.  Not only will the spandex start to give out, but so will the color.  Therefore, hand wash only!

2). Don’t wait!  

As soon as you are finished swimming, take off that bathing suit and hand wash it! Leaving a fabulous bikini in chlorine soaked water will only damage said fabulous bikini.  Same goes for swimwear covered in salt water, sweat, sand and sunscreen (and G-d forbid, oil from sunbathing).

3). Mild hand soap is all you need.

Yup, save your detergent for regular clothes.  Even gentle detergents will fade colors from the delicate spandex of your swimsuit.

4). Avoid wringing, dryers and drying in direct sunlight.

Wringing stretches out the spandex.  Bathing suits should not be baggy! Of course, if the washing machine was too harsh for your swimsuit, the same can be said for dryers.  Drying in direct sunlight will fade vibrant colors.  An absolute no no!

5).  You should own at least 2 swimsuits.

Many of you know that I believe in small, well curated wardrobes with minimal redundancy.  That being said; if your wear the same swimsuit two days in a row, it will stretch out the fabric.  Every other day (or longer ) is ideal to keep beautiful beachwear intact!

Let me know if these tips are helpful and feel free to comment on suggestions for future blog posts!

xoxo 

“I’ve got 99 problems, but a Bra ain’t one…”

bra
One of the best things you can wear to look better in your clothes is not visible 99% of the time.  Yes, I am talking about undergarments, specifically bras!  If you are a woman and think you have had bras fitted properly, chances are you are wrong.  Sorry, but a “fitting” at Victoria’s Secret just does not cut it.
         When you do have a proper bra fitting, it changes your posture and can change your life!  And yes, I literally said this the first time I was professionally fitted for a bra.  The bra size you think you are and the bra size you actually are, are usually vastly different.  It’s not just about the bust measurement and cup size.  It’s a more intricate measuring system.  Specifically, there are 6 problems a proper fitting bra can help fix.  No more Bra-lems!
1. Slipping Straps
2.  Band riding up
3. Straps digging in
4.  Quad boob
5.  Side boob
6. Cup gaping
Check out the easy solutions!  Need more help?  Looking for the right bra?  Check out http://www.thirdlove.com where you can try a bra before you buy it!
“WANT A DISCOUNT?!!?!?  Use this Promo Code: BRABLEMS and it is for 15% off! and be sure to check out all their bra styles they have to offer!”
No need to fret! I will have more bra and undergarment tips in the near future.  Every lady deserves support in every way possible 😉Bra-blems (3)
Please leave a comment, I would love to hear your thoughts!!!
 

“Nude. Like on me.”

This is a pet peeve of mine.  Every time I try to buy something in nude (shoes, dresses, undergarments, stockings etc), the sales person inevitably comes back with an item that clearly isn’t nude.  I usually have to utter the words “Nude. Like on me.”  The sales people always look confused, as if the word nude and white skin are synonymous.  As if it is an odd request to want something that resembles my skin color.  I love how I constantly see celebrities, bloggers and fashion people go on and on about having a “great nude pump” as a wardrobe staple.  If you are a dark skin woman, the quest to find the great nude pump will still elude you.  Unfortunately, I usually have to ask salespeople for a brown shoe, and of course it doesn’t come close to matching me.

 For clarification, here is one of the definitions of nude according to Webster’s Dictionary; “having a color (as pale beige or tan) that matches the wearer’s skin tones <nudepantyhose> <nude lipstick> .”  So if the dictionary classifies nude as having skin that is pale beige or tan, what does that make my skin?  I might break the internet here, but brown and black skinned people also have skin, but apparently “nude” doesn’t apply to us.Have companies started to make items that are “nude” on everybody?

nudes

 Yes!  Christian Louboutin has his famous “Nudes Collection” featuring ten different nude shades!  I was elated.  Except those came out in Fall 2015 and good luck finding them after that.  If someone can figure out how to order a pair on the CL website, please let me know.  I guess if you are dark skinned, you only get offered your kind of nudes once in a while.  I missed my opportunity.

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 Well, there is a lingerie company that caters to having #NudesForAll. Nubian Skin makes a variety of undergarments that will actually be nude on darker skinned women!  Unfortunately for me, they don’t come in larger bra sizes; but that just means I need to eat better and exercise more 😉

frangi

I am also happy that my styling kit has a new addition! Frangi Pangi is nude hosiery company, “designed for every woman of colour, by a woman of colour.”  Yes, you read that correctly!  Every woman of color deserves to have hosiery that matches their skin tone.  I never really wore hosiery, because it simply wasn’t an option to walk around looking like I have legs 5 shades lighter than the rest of my body.  Problem solved.  

kit pic

A few companies are trying to make #NudesForAll a reality, and it is much appreciated.  The real issue is that the mainstream needs to acknowledge that everyone has skin and white/light skin isn’t the only one that matters.  What are your thoughts?

#BlackModelsMatter, Don’t They?

zac1

I was quite elated this past week when I looked at my Instagram feed and saw that @FashionBombDaily made a shout out to Zac Posen’s NYFW runway show.  His latest 2016 collection featured predominately black models. #BlackModelsMatter!  I quickly searched the hashtag to view more images and I was emotionally moved.  As a stylist, I have been accustomed to seeing mostly white models with a rare sprinkling of black models.  It was refreshing to see a highly respected fashion designer take the risk of having multiple models of color cast in his show (and yes, the fact that this is a “risk” is sad in and of itself).  No doubt that Mr. Posen met many a nay sayer along the way.  The images were phenomenal.  Representation is validation!

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Young black girls and women have the opportunity to see multiple models of their skin tone, who have their hair type and stunning features strut down the runways of NYFW.  That being said, it was only one show.  The rest of the shows were business as usual.  I do recognize brands that do cast models of all colors, but they are in fact a rarity.  I then went on to my other fashion and style news sources and saw a lack of response or acknowledgement of #BlackModelsMatter.  FashionBomb Daily, The New York Times, CNN, Refinery 29 and CFDA discussed the event.  But, shouldn’t this be THE story of the week? It’s barely a blip on the fashion week radar.

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In order for #BlackModelsMatter to have meaning, we as fashion lovers and consumers (essentially anyone who wears clothes) must first acknowledge the systematic and consistent devaluation of black beauty in the fashion and beauty industries.  The relative lack of acknowledgement of the Zac Posen show says a lot.

And if you believe that #AllModelsMatter, then you have issues.  Clearly #BlackModelsMatter is a part of the #BlackLivesMatter movement.  And if black models, black people actually matter to you… feel free to acknowledge it.

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NYFW F/W 2016 : Women Who Work

It’s about that time again! It’s New York Fashion Week. This is a great time to see what designers are presenting and incorporate new trends into your own life.  Many of my personal styling clients want to be “more fashionable” but find that the fashions aren’t practical for the average person.  While some looks are pretty out there (I personally wouldn’t wear the Yeezy F/W 2016 collection anywhere but yoga class); if you look closely enough, there are many items that transition from #RunwayToRealway seamlessly.

Take a peak at this look from Jason Wu.  Perfect for a woman at the office!  Neutral colors, a visually stimulating off the shoulder ribbed sweater paired with comfortabe and stylish trousers.  Perhaps an exposed shoulder is too much for your work environment.  Top the look with a vest or blazer!  If the sweater fits loosely enough, you can even wear a slim fitting button down shirt underneath, a la Devil Wears Prada!  If you want to add some more visual interest, work in a belt or layered necklaces.  Need to go from #DeskToDinner ? Throw on a leather jacket and a bold red lip!  Your imagination is the only limit.  If you are still hesitant on how to incorporate the runway into your life; look into hiring a personal stylist.  A stylist can help you build an effective and well curated wardrobe and ultimately save you money.  Yes, you will save money with a personal stylist!  Stay tuned for more on the blog as I am revamping everything in 2016.  Anything typed in Bold and will click on a link to either a fashion collection or a website (so you can buy the item).  All questions and comments welcome!  xoxo  Dominique Aimee #ScriptForStyle

jason wu

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Remember this look from one of the BEST MOVIES EVER?!?!

Devil Wears prada

Take a look at this belt from Marni for $161 on Yoox.com.  You can literally wear this belt forever.

Marni belt $161

This leather jacket from Proenza Schouler is sick!  And on sale!  INVESTMENT PIECE! 

Proenza Schouler $790.50

Thigh Highs The Limit

Originally written for Composure Magazine Issue 7. Images courtesy of Getty Images.

There are five reasons why women should take a second look at the thigh high boot trend.  It’s the fashionista’s current obsession.

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  1. First, I will say that the must have item of the season are the thigh high boots seen on the Fall/Winter 2015 Christian Dior Runway. Patent leather high heeled boots can look very trashy, but when designed and styled well, it simply looks high class and elegant. It is an instant upgrade to your wardrobe.1
  2. Thigh high boots can be very figure flattering. Pair it with a short A-line skirt and your legs will seem super slim. Wear black or dark colored boots and streamline your look! 3
  3. They can be worn with skirts, dresses, skirts, pants, leggings, coats and jeans! Versatility is the key for any fashion splurge. Remember this iconic look from Sex and the City? It’s a Carrie Bradshaw do!4
  4. Thigh high boots are great when you are a good girl gone bad. Turn up your edge factor instantly. Even though thigh high boots are having an ‘On Fleek’ moment, they will keep coming back into style. So don’t throw them away!
  5. These Boots are Made for Walking! Thigh high boots look great even if they are flat or have a low heel. They give the illusion of ‘legs for days’. With a chunky heel, you may just want to spend a whole season in them.  Run (don’t walk) to get your very own today!5

Gingham Style

Gingham STyle

This article is an original article for Composure Magazine.  http://composuremagazine.com/gingham-style/

 There is a great trend that has re-surfaced, and any woman can pull it off! This wonderful style is all about Gingham!  Gingham is a woven fabric (usually cotton) with a checkered appearance. It is especially fresh and fun for summer!  A gingham dress is a more subtle way to show off the full on flirty gingham trend. Check out the street style of actress Emmy Rossum pictured in our article. Flawless!  There are many versatile ways to rock Gingham and here are just a few to start.

 Full On Gingham
For the bold fashionista, a stunning all gingham outfit is automatically worthy of a selfie.

 Gingham Separates
For those who are not bold enough to wear a gingham dress, separates are the way to go. There are several options that can be incorporated into your existing wardrobe. Gingham tops, blouses, blazers, skirts and pants are everywhere right now! Gingham can be worn in a variety of situations as well. At the office? Try a gingham blazer like this one from Girls on Film. The long length of the gingham blazer keeps this look eye catching and unique. Pair the blazer with a crisp white blouse and a great classic trouser.  For a more casual look, you can wear a long gingham skirt.  Add a simple tank top and sandals. Pair with some great eye catching jewelry and a cute cross body bag. Instant upgrade to an otherwise basic outfit!

Gingham Accessories
Gingham can also be incorporated into accessories. Going on a date? Wear a killer white jumpsuit with a pair of gingham print shoes like these from AMI CLUBWEAR. A blue & white or black & white gingham print are the most popular colors for gingham; but feel free to mix things up! Orange and white is a killer combo! Guaranteed to slay!

Gingham Accessories
Gingham can also be incorporated into accessories. Going on a date? Wear a killer white jumpsuit with a pair of gingham print shoes like these from AMI CLUBWEAR. A blue & white or black & white gingham print are the most popular colors for gingham; but feel free to mix things up! Orange and white is a killer combo! Guaranteed to slay!

“What’s Wrong with Expandable Pants?” – Adventures in Personal Styling

Question : What’s wrong with expandable pants?

#ScriptForStyle :  This was a question posed by my new personal styling client, Tracie.  ‘Jeans and pants don’t fit me well, so I just get bottoms with elastic in them.’  Tracie even wears pregnancy pants for the elastic waist! Oh my!

Given that my client is a size 2, it seems hard to believe that she has difficulty finding jeans. Tracie also loves  “expandable” type dresses for the same reason.  Lets just say that Tracie is well acquainted with American Apparel 😉

Although she is slim and petite, Tracie is a curvy girl and so her jeans always seem to be too big around the waist (even if they fit her backside).  Then I said something to my client which blew her mind.  “Have you considered tailoring your clothes?”  She had an epiphany!  Even if you technically wear the same size as runway models, clothes simply fit different people differently.  Investing in tailoring can upgrade your wardrobe.  With the right tailor, you can make $30 jeans look like $200 jeans. Same goes for tops, skirts, dresses, blazers and coats.  Don’t limit your wardrobe.  Explore, have fun and find a great tailor!  Still not sure where to start? Mention this blog post and receive a 20% discount off a 2 hour closet cleanse and outfit coordination (for those in the greater Los Angeles area).

Fifty Shades of Grey: Adventures in Personal Styling

#ScriptForStyle : I recently had a client named Gary contact me about a closet cleanse.  He felt like his closet was overwhelming and just didn’t know where to start to revamp his wardrobe.  This is the before picture.

gary before

In addition to the clothing, Gary’s bedroom closet was also filled with linens, suitcases and even a gas mask (in case of an apocalpse…hey, you never know).  He had a few closets in his downtown loft, and together we decided to put non wardrobe related items elsewhere.  Then we began to work.

gary gas

gary 2

gary tailor

The first thing that is very noticeable is that Gary’s closet is full of grey and blacks.  Given his upbeat and colorful personality; the wardrobe didn’t quite fit the man.  The few items with color were not particularly flattering colors.  Some faded sea-foam colored shirts were present that simply didn’t suit Gary.  I found out later that Gary is actually Red-green colorblind; which explained a lot!  Perfect opportunity for a personal stylist to help create a vision that the client literally can’t see for themselves!  Another wonderful adventure in closet cleaning!

gary after 1

Photography by Brittany Mendoza

No More Wire Hangers!!!

Question:   I have so many clothes in my closet that I am overwhelmed!  I don’t even know what I own!  Help!!!sf fan wine

#ScriptForStyle : This is my client, Laju.  She is a high powered litigation attorney in Los Angeles.   Apparently, she is also a football fan.  She needs great looks for work as well as for social events.  She has hired me to be her personal stylist.  First, we need to see what she actually owns.  One of the most important services a personal stylist can provide is a proper closet cleanse!  You won’t know what you need unless you know what you have!

After a free initial styling consultation , I went to work!  I went through every clothing item Laju owned and designated them to a specfic category. ‘Keep, Alter, Consign or Donate (to Good Will or Dress for Success)’.

With the closet cleanse, I was also able to perform outfit coordination services with Laju.  We created several new outfits with items that she already owns.  We will be recreating new looks by altering some clothes and even dyeing some shoes to bring new life into her wardrobe!

I was able to see that my client had a serious addiction.  To wire hangers ( #nomorewirehangers ) and cowl neck tops and dresses.  I counted 26 cowl necks.  26!!!! It is my duty as a style expert to write her a #scriptforstyle.  That Script will cure her of her ailments 😉

cowls

laju before 1.1Next, I will add some great looks to Laju’s wardrobe. Stay tuned.  Interested in personal styling services?  Mention this post and receive a 25% discount off a 2 hour closet cleanse.  If you live outside of the greater Los Angeles area, receive 50% off of a virtual styling closet cleanse!  

Book an appointment: dominique.aimee@gmail.com