Allure magazine, which I normally really like for beauty and product reviews and advice, has a recurring column called “10 Things Every Woman Should Have.” They have designers, fashion editors, etc., compile this list every month, and every month, it makes me laff and laff.
Here are my three favorite items from this month’s list, created by Peter Copping, some dude I don’t know or care about:
-A “Siamese cat.” (?!? seriously???)
-“A ladylike Nina Ricci Dress.” The one Allure chose to feature is priced at an affordable $1,635. You can get it at your neighborhood Neiman Marcus.
-A “Tiger Rug.” Blessedly, this is not an actual tiger, but at €1,370 (that’s roughly $1,700 to you ladies who don’t make regular trips to The Old World), it may as well be. Also, it’s f**king hideous.
Now lest you think I am exaggerating, some previous things EVERY woman should have include a $585 Jason Wu striped sweater (suggested by, shockingly, Jason Wu), a $5,530 ring (suggested by Olivier Theyskens), and a Diane von Furstenberg bracelet, priced at “$200 and up” (well go on and guess who suggested that). (As a side note, you know who was surprisingly vague and therefore affordable with her list? Donna Karan! You go, girl!)
Anyhow, I was thinking this month as I read this, I sincerely wish I could apply these ideas to my life. Some of them are clever and helpful, but there’s no way I am ever going to be able to spend $1,600 on a dress – my WEDDING DRESS set us back $600. After a bit of pondering, I thought, you know what I need to do? Make a list. A list of 10 Things Every NORMAL Woman Should Have. (And don’t snipe at me for the word “normal,” I know it’s subjective, but no woman I know regularly spends gobs of cash on the crap they’re suggesting. So it’s normal to ME.)
Without further ado, in no particular order…
10. A lipgloss you love.
Not surprising this is on my list, given the name of the blog, but I am quite seres. If you follow the blog, you know I go through lipglosses like nobody’s business, but one of my reigning champions – which, hilariously, has been discontinued – is Estée Lauder’s High Gloss in Blush. I have written about it before so I won’t go on now, but it’s the BEST, and you can get all sorts of other pretty colors besides Blush, so don’t fret. But of course it can be ANY lipgloss, as long as you love it.
9. An LBD.
I don’t care if it’s from Neiman Marcus or Target – you should have one black cocktail dress that makes you feel sexy, well-dressed, and presentable, and that you can throw on at a moment’s notice. My absolute favorites have come from White House Black Market, and I have worn them for all sorts of occasions. Well priced, well made, and they fit like a glove. Oh and hi? They go up to size 16. Love you, WHBM!
8. A fabulous pair of sunglasses.
I have a slight sunglasses addiction (nowhere near as bad as my product addiction, no worries) and it worsened when I discovered sites like Rue La La and Zulily. When sunglasses manufacturers discontinue a style, they often sell remaining inventory through these discount sites. What that means is you can pick up a pair of Fendi or Tom Ford sunglasses for less than half what they’d cost retail. As a result, I have designer sunglasses like whoa, but I can still afford to eat. And I get compliments on them all the time!
7. Shoes that make you feel sexy.
Again, brand is irrelevant. Nine West, Christian Louboutin, Merona, I don’t care. When you put them on, they should boost your self-confidence (if not your height). They don’t have to be heels, but you should be able to imagine yourself doing naughty things in them. Check out www.ninewest.com for inspiration – they have some of my favorites.
6. Sexy underthings.
Maybe you never even wear them under things. Maybe you just wear them to greet your someone special at the door. Or in bed. Or you just save them in a drawer for when that moment comes. Just having them will make you feel prepared. Allure’s always recommending these sets that cost hundreds of dollars but you know what? I like Frederick’s because they’re cheap and sexy and I usually don’t have them on for all that long. They just have to look good – my husband doesn’t care what the bloody tag says.
5. Yoga or sweatpants and an oversized tee shirt.
I don’t even need to explain this, I hope. We all have those days. Don’t deny yourself the pleasure of comfort. Comfort is way underrated in our image-obsessed society. Give yourself a day off. Enjoy.
4. Every-day eyeshadow.
You should own an eyeshadow you can put on any day, no matter what you’re wearing (even if it’s number 5), and feel good in it. The secret is choosing something that has a little color or shimmer but is easy to apply. I love Too Faced’s Glamazon, a buttery shimmery brown that I always get compliments on. It’s visible but never “too much.”
3. A favorite book.
This is a slightly weird one, I admit. But you should have (at least) one book you really love. Even if you don’t read, or prefer magazines, or whatever. Get an audio book. Find something literary you love and can talk about forever. Some of my favorites are The Catcher in the Rye, Valley of the Dolls, Fahrenheit 451, and The Great Gatsby. Girls who know something about literature are hot. Seriously.
2. A nickname.
Even if you have to give it to yourself. I decided I wanted to be called Sparkle, and that’s what one of my best friends, Michael, calls me. I also danced burlesque for awhile and am still known in some circles as Kitty Valentine. Choose it and own it, if no one’s given you one you like. It’s like having an alterego. (And also along those same lines, pick your bar name – the name you give to dudes at bars you don’t ever want to see again. I am Violet. If you decide on it ahead of time, it’s way easier to remember when they force you to introduce yourself.)
1. An opinion.
On something. On anything. Even if it’s just an Allure column that drives you crazy. And hand in hand with that opinion should go an idea of when and where the right time to discuss it is. You don’t need to cram it down people’s throats, but keep it there, inside of you. It will give you confidence, and that is something other people notice. And respect – much more than an atrocious $2,000 rug.