5 style tips to boost your mood and beat the blues
How are you coping with the colder weather? Is it bringing you down or maybe you’re feeling just a little bit flat? The cold seasons can absolutely be a time for most of us when we feel a bit down, not as bright and sparkly and in need of a pick-me-up. I had an email recently from one of my lovely clients who was in a bit of a funk, and she asked me if I had any style tips to instantly give a bit of a mood boost.
I loved this question for so many reasons! As women, we really live in a cycle; connected to the cycle of the moon, and our own cycles, and in so many ways this is linked to our mood and how we feel about ourselves. First of all, this is so normal and natural, and I think – especially as women – there can be so much external and internal pressure to be positive, and happy, and that the low periods are somehow “bad”. It’s important to be kind to ourselves and embrace ALL of our moods, because we need the low periods so that we can appreciate the good times more! If we lean into these times of feeling sad, or even angry with a sense of purpose and mindfulness then we can use it as a way to reignite that internal fire, to motivate us and to refocus on us, and self-love.
That being said, it’s also important that we have the tools and knowledge to help ourselves feel a bit brighter on our not so great days. I’ve personally gone through very low periods in my life, and the problem is if you get STUCK in a low mood. That’s when you need a toolkit, and style is one of those tools you can use to absolutely transform your mood.
Now I instinctively know exactly what pieces to go for in my wardrobe when I’m after a bit of a mood lifter, but this question made me really sit back and think about how I could simplify it for those who need a bit of guidance. So, I went through my clothes, had a think, and came up with a list. Here you have it – 5 simple ways to beat the blues.
1. First and foremost, the easiest and most dramatic way to boost your mood is with COLOUR!
One of my favourite wardrobe pieces to throw on when I’m feeling a bit bleh is my big, warm, bright yellow oversized jumper – it’s a warm cosy hug and a bright splash of sunshine all in one.
Yellow is a fantastic colour, it really just screams bright, happy, sunny and fun, and the great news is that there is a yellow for everyone! Depending on your personal colour palette, you might go for a warm soft golden yellow, or maybe a lemony pastel shade.
What I really love about throwing on something bright and colourful is that is tends to spark a cycle of positivity – you feel an instant lift when you pop it on in front of the mirror, and more often than not you’ll find that others will also notice and compliment you on your clothes, which will then boost your mood even more!
I said that my yellow jumper feels like a big yellow hug every time I slip it on, and as women (and human beings), when you’re feeling low or wobbly you can’t underestimate the healing power of touch and comfort. Young children instinctively clutch a soft toy or favourite “raggy” when they want to comfort themselves. Softness and touch is a proven and practical way of resourcing & grounding yourself when you need it emotionally. You might not want to carry a teddy bear to work, but you can easily cocoon yourself in soft tactile fabrics that feel as good as they look.
This winter I treated myself to a pair of fleece-lined jogging bottoms in a slim tailored cut, smart enough for the school run and a pair of cosy sheepskin pixie boots which I use as slippers, but again, smart enough to wear when friends visit and practical enough to nip outside for firewood or to collect the kids. These pieces have given me joy all winter, like a warm hug – the ultimate feeling of comfort! Having something to wear that makes you feel warm and cosy, that is soft and pleasurable to feel against your skin is guaranteed to make you feel better on down days.
Pure quality clothing makes you feel good in so many ways. Like giving yourself positive affirmations, telling yourself “you are valuable”, “you are worthy of good things” and that you’re deserving of good quality pieces of clothing is an easy way to boost your mood and make you feel great!
I have a beautiful sweater from Mallorca-based Irish designer Zoe Jordan that was a splurge item, but without fail, every single time I put it on it makes me feel re-inspired. It’s a happiness anchor for me that reminds me of the positive power of beautiful design on my mood and sense of self and it reconnects me to my own creativity when I am feeling anything but. Buying luxury pieces is not self indulgent, its self love. You deserve good things in your wardrobe and in your life.
4. FLATTERING “OLD FAITHFULS”
One of my favourite pieces of advice because it’s so easy! Everyone has at least one item that’s your never-fail, go-to piece of clothing that fits & flatters you perfectly that you can rely on to feel good in every time you wear it. Maybe you’ve had it for years, maybe it’s not high quality, but it doesn’t matter – you know the piece I mean! One of mine is a cheap and cheerful H&M black and white cotton embroidered top that I’ve had for almost 9 years. It started out as a breezy summer shirt dress that I wore on repeat when we lived in Bali. When we moved back to Brighton it was rarely hot enough to wear as a dress and languished at the back of my wardrobe for 3 years. When we moved to Mallorca I pulled it back on, but was no longer comfortable wearing a dress so short, so I chopped off the hem and started wearing it as a blouse. It’s simple, neutral, but with enough embroidered detailing around the neckline to feel interesting and artisan. Flattering AND sustainable!
5. Last but not least, HAIR and MAKEUP
I’m definitely not talking about spending hours in front of the mirror. Like all of the other tips, this is meant to be a quick, simple, instant pick-me-up that anyone can use. My hair is reminiscent of Kylie Minogue and her 80s rock glam, but even bigger and frizzier! Much as I love Kylie, this isn’t my style, and it’s something that I’m self-conscious about. After years of practice, I’ve got the job of straightening my hair down to a fine (and fast!) art, and these days it’s a matter of minutes to make it look straight and sleek and I instantly feel so much better. Even if you just focus on the front! What matters is what YOU can see. If you have a fringe, tie the rest back and just give yourself a fringe wash/style to freshen up the frame of your face. As well as the hair, just by taking two seconds to swipe on a pop of coloured lipstick you’ll effortlessly feel brighter and more glamorous, even if it’s just to do the school run. Of course, if you’re up to it feel free to add mascara and whatever else you feel, but at the very least, bright lippy for the win.
So those are my 5 style suggestions to instantly boost your mood and make you feel good. I love that I can help other women use their style in a mindful way to feel happy and confident every day, not just on good days. Tell me, what go-to tip do YOU have as a style pick-me-up?