Apr 15, 2012

Two Things Every Woman Should Know

I was getting a manicure about a week ago and reading the Glamour issue with Lauren Conrad on the front (topless) (she looks fantastic) and one of the articles was about a book called "30 Things Every Woman Should Have and Should Know by the Time She's 30." Plenty of celebrities gave their two cents, and I didn't see either of the two items I'm going to mention in a minute.

However, it did say things you should have and should know, like:
A decent piece of furniture not owned previously by anyone in your family <-- Needs work. 
A purse, a suitcase and an umbrella you’re not ashamed to be carrying <-- Purse? Check. Suitcase? SOS. Umbrella? I don't know where any of mine are, and I'd probably be ashamed to carry them if they were found.
A set of screwdrivers, a cordless drill and a black lace bra <-- Dad hooked me up with enough tools to put Tim "The Tool Man" Taylor to shame, minus the cordless drill, and I as depicted by the time my sorority sisters took every bra I owned and created "decor" for the trees outside the Theta house with them, I'm doing just fine in the lacy black bra department.
How you feel about having kids <-- One day I think I'll have a very strong maternal instinct. Especially when I find the right guy. But children terrify me right now.
When to try harder and when to walk away <-- I know this like the back of my hand now. Even though I don't like giving up.
Lastly, there was something about having a relationship that was bad enough to learn from and a relationship that was good enough to learn from too. Check and check.

Over the past week, that book has stuck out in my mind, and there are two additional things that needed to be added. You should know both of these things by the time you graduate COLLEGE. Turning 30 is a little too late in the game for these items, in my opinion.

So, what are they?

1. Know your CORRECT bra size
2. Learn to fill in your eyebrows

Man. Let's start with bra size. I know this can be a taboo subject but I'm about to be the second-coming of Oprah right now. Let's be real here. Most of us waltz into our favorite store, try on a bra and think we know what's up and buy the one that we think looks the best and feels the best. And I'm going to take the possible TMI factor to the next level because I don't think I was ever fitted for a bra, and up until yesterday, was wearing the same size I was wearing as a 17 year old. YES, that's correct. Just typing that out makes me cringe. I mean, I wasn't even a woman then! Moving on...

Remember when, a few years ago, Oprah had a chick from Nordstrom on her show to professionally measure people in her audience for their correct bra size? It became a huge trend in the U.S. and after a year or so, it was reported that women around the globe went UP A BRA SIZE. I don't know about everyone else, but if someone is going to show me a way to make my bra more comfortable to wear and help me go up a size? I'm sold.


This started on Thursday as my friend (who I'm keeping anonymous) called to tell me about this magical bra fitting she had at (surprise) Nordstrom. She was going in to find a new bra and told the associate her size -- what she thought she was -- a 34D. Let me tell you something: she waltzed (I actually envision her skipping on the tile) out of that store a brand new woman: with a form-fitting, comfortable bra that not only felt good to wear, but lifted and "perkified" her breasts (my word not hers). This might sound like nothing special but let's be clear: bras are pretty much torture devices that restrict us and are only good for covering up. They move, bunch up and wreak all kinds of havoc on our backs. But not the bras she bought that day. Also, the best part of this story is that she told me she felt like she'd had a boob job because of this fitting -- because the bra helped her posture and lifted her boobs (which apparently had never happened before). 

She's telling me this and while I'm laughing hysterically, I'm also plotting when I can get to Nordy's to figure out all of this. Actually, I lied earlier. The best part of this story is that girlfriend THOUGHT she was a 34D, and thanks to the informative sales associate at Nordstrom, she now knows that she is a 30DDD. YES. A 30DDD. AS IN, A 30F. I'm sure many of you men (if you're reading this) are probably dying to get her number, as I'm sure many of you women are wondering how she doesn't topple over when she stands up. But apparently this was the ticket to helping out all of her bra issues and she couldn't be happier. (Yes, these are her natural, God-given breasts.)

I went in and got fitted and the whole time I was thinking to myself, "I truly hope they don't tell me I've gone DOWN A SIZE" because I really can't take that kind of humiliation. Going into a store and thinking I'm a larger size than I really am? Kill me. Anyway, I got fitted and (just like my friend) I went down a size around (which is normal for everyone) and went up a cup size. And let me tell you -- it makes a difference. You will appreciate your bras if you get fitted correctly.

Wise tidbit the Nordy's girl told me: always clasp your bra on the loosest, or first, clasp. That way, as the bra stretches, you can move the clasp "in" every three months. Bras are supposed to last you about nine months. WHO KNEW? I didn't. I feel so much more informed. 

So next time you walk into a lingerie section and some woman asks if you'd like to be fitted for a bra, don't scoff at them and walk away.

Secondly, ladies, I really can't stress this to you: if you're going somewhere and know photos will be taken, for the love, fill in your eyebrows. This magical trick was something I resisted for awhile, and my mom was so persistent that I tried it out and it made a huge difference. Your eyebrows frame your face. They make such a huge difference in how bright or structured you look. If you're wondering why you look like an alien in photos, it's because we can't see your eyebrows. They're too light. FILL THEM IN. I've seen all too many Facebook photos where I'm like, "Honey, do you have Alopecia? Clearly not, you have a nice head of hair. Fill in those eyebrows!"

There are some women out there who have naturally bushy, full eyebrows -- LUCKY YOU -- but most of us have sparse areas that need some extra love. 

Be wise though. Don't go nuts with an eyebrow pencil. In fact, I tell all my friends to stay away from eyebrow pencils because I feel like half of women have no idea how how to use them correctly and they end up looking like a cartoon character, with too-dark brows that aren't natural looking at all. So I suggest using a brow powder, and finishing with a tinted brow gel if you want (but you don't need). I fill in my sparse areas and help to lightly shape my brows, especially on camera, with this little guy from Benefit. The powder matches my color perfectly and looks natural but put-together. If I want my brows to stay put, I'll use an old toothbrush, spray it with hairspray and lightly brush through the brows to coif them. If you don't want to buy a brow powder, you can use eyeshadow, but it can't have sparkle and it can't glimmer at all. It needs to be matte.

So take it from me: don't be a boob! (I couldn't resist a pun.) Before you're 30, you should know how to do your brows and know your correct bra size -- they'll instantly improve your life.
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