I think we all now by now that this year’s big Summer trend is neon and candy colours. While most of my life I’ve been the kind of girl that flips through photos on magazines and thinks “Oh wow that’s gorgeous but I could never pull it off!”, a recently-acquired sense of self-confidence has led me to think otherwise. Just because you’re not 1,90m and too thin to be real doesn’t mean you can’t wear bright pink eyeshadow or neon orange skinny jeans. It’s all about how you wear it, especially how much.
It is true; if you have even a shred of what could be called “good birthing hips”, your backside is going to be the focus of everyone’s attention. Like many other women (let’s be honest, most women) I am like that. But whether you can or not wear a pair of strawberry-sorbet skinny jeans depends on your attitude, your self-confidence and how you carry yourself… as well as what you wear on top.
For example, if you’re like me and have wide hips and thighs but a thin waist (the pear shape or even the hourglass shape), a nice way to pull off a neon accent could be:
- Sorbet-pink skinny jeans with a longer white top or shirt, straight or nipped at the waist (even a long tank top, like the regular cotton ones from GAP are perfect) that goes slightly past the widest part of your thighs
- A neon-coral loose, collared shirt with regular blue jeans (medium or light wash); tuck the shirt into the jeans but pull it out a little. Yes, I know what you’re thinking – tuck in a shirt if you have wide hips? But trust me. It’s not going to look good if the whole shirt is loose and then tight and stretching at the hips.
If you go for neon/sorbet pants or jeans, either make sure they stop at your ankle or roll them up. It’s Summer, girls! Rolling up your jeans at the ankles is always going to look good, unless you go too far and reach your calf. Two or three turns should be enough – show your ankle, not your leg. Another note about jeans is don’t go for dark wash jeans. It’s Summer. The sun is out. You’ve had 6 months of Autumn and Winter to wear navy, midnight blue and black. Give it a break and leave them for nighttime.
Another colour that I really love and has sneaked into the neons trend (somehow) is mint. A long while ago I bought a mint-coloured loose collared shirt from Next.co.uk that has finally been put to good use. If you want to wear mint, however, the best way to go is with eggshell, cream or white jeans/pants. If you’re brave enough you can also go for the mint/pink combination for a true, full-on summer ice-cream look.
Remember! Nude, white or caramel-brown sandals are best for daytime if you’re wearing pastels or neons. Think about it: black bejeweled gladiators would pop out a bit too much, wouldn’t it? If you’re going out for dinner, then go ahead and wear your black sandals with dark-wash jeans and a mint jumper (yes I will never give up on the mint).
So a few final tips, clothing wise:
- Don’t be afraid to experiment with colour. Just because you’re wearing one pink blouse doesn’t mean you have to wear regular blue or white jeans… but don’t overdo it either. You’re not Katy Perry on stage.
- Keep shoes (ballerinas, heels, sandals) neutral but not dark.
- If wearing blue jeans, stay with light or medium wash, leave the dark wash jeans or black ones for dinner.
- A good pair of white or very light wash jean shorts will save your life on several occasions. Trust me.
- A pair of cream or eggshell pants is a safe bet. It literally goes with anything.
- For the love of god, buy something mint-coloured. Odds are next year you won’t be able to find this colour anywhere.
- Roll up your jeans at the ankle, or wear a slightly shorter/cropped pair.
- Go for coral. It’s a gorgeous colour and you can pull it off whether you’re a blonde or a brunette. If you’re a redhead, then damn you! (Kidding; red-haired girls look gorgeous in all sorts of light pastels and white & cream combinations).
As for the neon make-up trend sweeping the world:
- Lips lips lips! I cannot emphasize this enough. Bright orange or hot pink lipstick is a must.
- Go bold! Don’t pull yourself back. Experiment at home. The other day I wore hot pink eyeliner with hot pink lipstick and you know what? It looked awesome.
- Trade the black eyeliner for a brown one. Unless you’re going out for dinner, black eyeliner in the Summer…. well it isn’t a huge no-no, but it’s not very appropriate. Remember that talk about dark-wash jeans? Yeah. Unless…
- …You go for the bright red/hot pink eyeshadow. I do this a lot, ask any of my classmates. My favourite look is opaque bright red eyeshadow with a thick black cat-eye eyeliner.
- Bare face! Just because the sun is out doesn’t mean you have to go crazy on the bronzer, and too much blush is going to look off.
- No matte lips. That’s winter-exclusive. Besides, matte lipstick tends to dry your lips and if it’s 30°C outside the last thing you want is a lipstick that’s not hydrating. Go for high-gloss neon lipsticks or actual lipgloss instead.
- One or the other. Pink eyeliner with pink lipstick is okay, but all-over hot pink eyeshadow with pink lipstick and pink lipliner is just going way too far. You can wear the same colour all-over, but keep one of it more faded than the other. If wearing a layer of opaque hot pink eyeshadow, go for a sheer pink gloss; if wearing no eyeshadow and a bright line of hot pink eyeliner, you can go for the hot pink lipstick.
- HYDRATING FOUNDATION! Cannot stress this enough. Even if you have mixed or oily skin, remember it’s sunny and hot outside. So trade your thick, protective, pasty winter foundation aside and get yourself something light and fluid, if you use liquid foundation. If you use compact or powder, make sure it’s light or mineral. I’d advise MAC or BareMinerals for a good, hydrating powder foundation and the liquid one I’ve been using is the Pupa Hydra Luminys which is not expensive and is ridiculously good. If you dislike shiny skin, like me, carrying matifying powder in your purse will do you no harm as long as it’s the right one.
For both clothing and make-up, blondes and brunettes, hourglasses or size 0s:
Do not be afraid to experiment. Try things on. Try a LOT of things on. You will never know how something looks on you before you try it and more often than not you will be pleasantly surprised. This season is your yearly chance to go big or go home and, quite frankly, I’d rather leave my house every day looking like fireworks than hide myself in a crowd.