15 THINGS EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW
Forget “The Rules.” When women are looking for tips, they don’t want to know how to play hard to get – they want to know how to avoid having a double chin in pictures. Luckily, we have “How to Walk in High Heels: The Girl’s Guide to Everything,” a new book by British fashion journalist Camilla Morton that collects useful advice for women. Like how to send food back in a restaurant without coming across like a raving lunatic, or how to poach an egg.
She even enlisted some bold-faced friends: Manolo Blahnik tells you how to go shoe shopping, Vivienne Westwood explains how to appreciate art, and Heidi Klum gives tips on how to enhance your finer, umm, assets.
Here are 15 ways Morton says you can get ahead. And none involves making him wait to have sex.
1 How to look good in a photo
By supermodel Gisele Bundchen
The most crucial thing is lighting – you don’t want it below you or above you, you want it to shine directly on you.
Learn what angles work with your face. You can practice in a passport photo booth. Tip your neck to elongate it, try different directions. Always make eye contact with the camera.
For long legs, point one leg toward the center of the frame and get the photographer to shoot looking up at your body. Keep your shoulders back.
Always have your mouth slightly open – enough to put a penny between your lips, as this will make your lips look fuller. Tilt your eyes down and look up just as the shutter is clicked for full eyes.
And, of course, delete any less-than-perfect photogenic moments – everyone has off days.
2 Dishes and scenarios to avoid on a first date:
There are the obvious ones – spaghetti, slurpy soup, corn on the cob and drenched racks of ribs. Also, try and avoid snails and other potential flying objects, blood-dripping meat and baguettes, bananas and anything that could be construed as a double entendre.
3 How to fit everything in your handbag:
It’s preferable to have two bags – a Mary Poppins’-style bag that can carry everything you will need, and within it a dainty frivolous number that you can carry into dinner.
Always try to carry these bag essentials: cellphone, wallet and money (enough for coat check), a notebook (because inspiration can strike anywhere), pens or pencils for scribbling down someone’s number, lipstick, perfume, a compact which can also be used for an unplanned escape (“I’m just going to powder my nose.”)
You should also always have lip gloss, safety pins, sewing kit, road map, address book, diary or agenda, business cards, spare pair of shoes, Band-Aids, comb, tissues, aspirin and mints.
The evening bag can only accommodate a fraction of the all-purpose one, so streamline the contents- lipstick, mobile and keys will do.
4 How to pick a shoe by shoe designer Manolo Blahnik:
“I think you must always show some toe cleavage. Toe cleavage is very important, as it gives sexuality to the shoe. But be careful you only show the first two cracks, you don’t want to give too much away – you’re not that type of girl. As for the heel, honey, it’s got to be high. The transformation is INSTANT. The height of the heel should depend on how dangerous you are feeling.”
5 How to swim in shades:
Wearing sunglasses while you’re swimming means you don’t have to worry about your mascara, plus you look glamorous in the pool. To make sure they don’t fall off while you’re in the water, wrap an elastic band around each arm of the shades. Twist and twist and then, just before the last twist is too tight to take any more, thread a strand hair through the loop. This will “superglue” the shades to your ears and will, in theory, leave you looking like a modern-day Ursula Andress.
And, they might get wet, so don’t use one of your favorite pairs. Every girl should have a few options anyways: swim shades, beach shades, shopping shades, posing shades, morning-after shades, etc.
6 How to use toilets at concert venues:
First, try to sweet-talk your way backstage and into the VIP toilets. If that doesn’t work, take a deep breath, open the port-a-potty door and do not breathe in. Don’t touch anything, get a friend to stand in front of the door so you don’t have to lock it and risk getting trapped in the toxic coffin. And, as unladylike as this sounds, squat and pray – you’re still not breathing, so be as fast as possible. When you leave, disinfect and slip your shades over your eyes as you recover from this dignity loss. Pretend it never happened.
7 How to hold court from your sickbed:
Depending on what you have, you don’t always have to disappear from society. Visitors bearing gifts – like magazines, flowers and news from the outside world – can stop by if you aren’t contagious.
Wear a nice, covering nightie; negligees are not suitable for receiving when sick. Light a scented candle, because even if you can smell nothing you always have to think of others, and the flickering dim light can add to the overall effect of your sick setting. And, keep the guests at a distance – you don’t want to pass on the flu, nor do you want them to see how red your nose is.
8 How to dress for a funeral:
Wear black daywear; not eveningwear and never too tarty. Think demure rather than black widow- soft makeup and waterproof mascara work, too. Hats are always good but better still, a black tulle veil. Look to Jackie Kennedy at JFK’s funeral or Princess Di at Versace’s funeral for style advice. And take tissues – if you don’t need them, someone will and handkerchiefs are unhygienic and disgusting to share.
9 How to take a decent picture:
by fashion photographer Alexi Lubomirski
Consider the whole frame; try to put the head near the top of the photo, and fill the whole shot. A head in the center of the picture could lead to images with large expanses of ceiling.
When taking someone’s photo, have them slightly tip their head down. Never have them turn their head up – it’ll give them a double chin. Also, don’t get too close, you do not need to see every pore. And be careful of hands and feet, fold them in delicately, especially on women – anything nearest to the camera will be largest.
Always keep a camera handy. If you just take picture at Christmas or to capture a view from your window, you will never have an exciting variety of shots.
10 How to apply red lipstick and get it to stay:
First, always keep lips well moisturized and conditioned.
For extra durability, apply lipstick with a brush. Line and rim lips with a matching color lip pencil. Then, apply color to the bottom then to the top lip. Rub your lips together to ensure the color is even. Finally, blot with a tissue and softly kiss back of hand – if there’s a stain, blot again.
11 What to sing at karaoke:
Girls should try to sing “I Will Survive”, “Lady Marmalade” or “Baby Love.” Kylie Minogue, the Bangles and Destiny’s Child and other “girl” groups are also fine. Do not, however, sing any Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, Christina Aguilera or Britney Spears tunes, which are surprisingly difficult. Basically, avoid anything with too many vocal Olympics.
12 How to be very busy doing nothing:
To come across as very hardworking, keen and efficient keep your desk tidy, paper sorted, Post-it notes updated, pens with tops on and your stationery drawer full.
To keep noisy people away from your desk so you have enough time to polish your nails properly, mutter under your breath (audibly) “Oh, I’ve got so much to do,” or “Won’t be able to take any time for lunch today.”
Use Melanie Griffith in “Working Girl” as your inspiration.
13 How to eat alone in a restaurant:
When dining alone, you should always have a book, a notebook, a magazine and a mobile phone in your bag. You may be able to gaze off in to the sunset happily, but always have tools of distraction. The book is for pre-order and pre-food only; there’s nothing more frustrating than a piece of sticky rice concealing a vital bit of vocab.
While eating, read the magazine or the paper and it will also act as a shield, protecting you from strangers who may want to catch your eye and talk to you. And, try not to drink too much. It’s a horrid sight to see a lonesome diner losing clarity.
14 How to blend in at Home Depot:
Here’s the deal- if you teeter in wearing the latest trends you will be in danger of alienating the staff who could assist you. In this context, high fashion can make one appear to be merely a Barbie doll. Being thought of as a bimbo is never to be encouraged. A pair of jeans, sneakers and a sweatshirt should do. You don’t have to look horrid, but there is no point snagging a favorite cashmere on a shelving unit to an unappreciative audience.
And, if you’re painting wear a hat or bandanna. You do not want a crown of white emulsion after the money you’ve invested in your cut and color. A bandana is more stylish than wearing a shower cap, which frankly will look (and feel) so dreadful you won’t be able to concentrate.
15 How to talk to your tailor
by fashion designer Stella McCartney
The most important thing when going to see a tailor is to know that if you are ordering a suit you can have anything you like. You are the designer, if you like, and the suit is tailored to your mood and personality.
Ask questions and follow your fitting- does it fit under the bust? Are the shoulders tight enough or too tight? Can you move your arms? What part of your silhouette do you want to enhance? And what do you want to conceal?
After you get your suit, and if you aren’t happy with it after three fittings, a tailor will keep going till it is perfect.
I recommend that you get a single-breasted jacket with two varieties of trousers, say a low-slung hipster pant and a more classic style. Women can look powerful as well as sexy in a suit; think Bianca Jagger in her white pantsuit, or Madonna.
15 THINGS EVERY WOMAN SHOULD KNOW