Sometimes it can just be daunting, right? Nothing fits, nothing feels good and you just feel bad about it. Let me help you. Let’s take it down to the basics. Let’s talk about 4 items that you can get your hands on that will get you started on the right foot, feeling good, or at the very least, feeling better.
1. A Good Bra
First, you need a good bra. Seriously, when is the last time you were fitted by a professional and bought a new bra? If you don’t remember, it’s probably time to go. I know, they are expensive (and you need at least 2 so you can alternate and wash), but the thing about a good bra is that a good bra can even make crappy clothes look better. Not that we want to be wearing crappy clothes, but you get the point. The statistic is that between 64 and 80% of women are actually wearing the wrong bra size. I always heard that it was 80% but from doing a quick search it seems that may be a little off. Regardless, that seems extremely high for something that we are wearing every single day.
Now, I’m not a bra specialist so I’m not going to tell you all the things that your bra needs to do or needs to not do, but I will tell you that a good bra will support the girls, help reduce the appearance of back fat (from personal experience), maybe even reduce back, neck and shoulder pain, and again, just make your stuff look good. So go on, go get yourself fitted and get some new bras. Don’t try to do it yourself and become part of that statistic above. Get some guidance. One of my favorite places to buy bras is Soma. They have sizes that are bigger than what you may find at Victoria’s Secret and places like that, but really, it doesn’t matter where you go, just go and seek assistance!
Ok, now you need a good pair of jeans or basic pant that will be your go to. I know that this is hard, but again, it’s something we need to take care of! Now, all judgments aside, I’m not going to tell you the cut you should be wearing or what you can or can’t “pull off” since you’re a mom, BUT, and I mean this with as much conviction as I can express, you shouldn’t be showing anyone your butt crack when you bend over. Let’s be real. Mom or not, no one actually wants to see that, right? Right?! We are chasing after kids, we are busy, we are multitasking, we need a jean that will be supportive and will also keep our (literal) assets covered. This is another area that I suggest you seek assistance because we just don’t know what we don’t know. Just because you couldn’t find jeans you liked at a certain store 5 years ago, doesn’t mean they, or you, are the same, today. Give them another try. Give yourself a little time to talk to the store associates with what you are trying to accomplish and give it a fresh set of eyes. Leave the kids with your other half or a babysitter and take your time. Learn from my sneaker buying experience, last weekend, and go alone (or with a friend – that’s even better) for the most benefit.
Try a few places and see how you feel. But please, PLEASE, do not go shopping in the Juniors section or at American Eagle or Abercrombie or any other places you shopped at when you were in high school or in college. You are a woman now and need to shop accordingly. That doesn’t mean you shop in the “old lady section” but more that you find clothes that are actually made for your body, now, as opposed to your body before kids. I promise you when I say that trying to shop at these places will only make you sad. And we are going for happy and confident, here, not sad.
3. Basic Shirt
Third, you need a good, basic shirt. Sounds simple, right? I mean, it sort of is. Don’t overcomplicate it. I personally, prefer a v-neck, but you could also go the route of crew neck or even boat neck if that’s your preference. One idea is that the V shape is automatically slimming and flattering. I like to simply utilize that in my shirt so I don’t have to think too much. Another way you can achieve this is by adding a necklace to one of the other styles to help suggest the same thing. The point is that this shirt is a basic piece and even though it may not have a lot going on, it fits you, it feels good and it looks good. I also feel the need to mention that the V on your shirt need not dip into your cleavage to be flattering. We really don’t need to show off those new bras you just picked up. But, it’s a fine line. Find the place you feel comfortable. And when you find a shirt that you love, that loves you back, maybe even pick it up in a few colors.
4. A Good Shoe
We need a good run around shoe. Long gone are my days of high heels and wedges but if you’re still sporting those, then more power to you! My kids are little, so I need something supportive and easy (and if we’re honest, even supportive and easy still trips me up sometimes, ha ha). Since summer is right around the corner, I’m going to suggest a sandal, here. I’ve had foot issues for a good while now so I personally have to look for something that has a little more structure than just a solid, flat bottom with some cute straps attached. I need arch support. I feel old saying that, but it’s true.
Last summer, I found Vionics and I love them. They are a little pricier than some of the basic shoes out there, but again, the arch support and therefore the leg and back support really makes up for it, for me. I will say that they took a little bit to break in. I could only wear them for short periods of time for the first few weeks, but since then, we have been practically inseparable. Birkenstocks were my sandal of choice the summer before, and I do have mad love for those as well, but I like that the Vionics are a little more feminine and pretty. I would go for a neutral here – a white or a beige or even something metallic or an animal skin – something that you can get away with wearing with almost anything. So that means no neon purple or bright fuchsia, unless of course that’s your jam and what makes up your wardrobe. You get to decide! Just make it function – a stiletto is not your ideal choice, here. I don’t care if you’re Carrie Bradshaw. Even she didn’t wear those shoes as often as she led you to believe. AND she didn’t have kids. Wearing uncomfortable shoes is just one of the stupid things I did before I had kids. If you really want to wear a heel, there are ways to do it and we can absolutely discuss that, but even if you do love a heel, I’m still betting that it’s not your everyday go to shoe. And that’s what we are looking to achieve here.
So, if you’re feeling stuck in a style rut, or struggling being in a new size with nothing to wear, these are some basic pieces you can pick up right away to get back on the right track.
Check out my FREE guide to see the other 8 items that can help to really round out your collection: