Friday, October 28, 2011

Illuminated makeup

Congresswoman Kathy Hochul spoke about the jobs bill at a press conference this week. She wore a tan jacket, and blue eyeshadow: (

There's nothing wrong with blue eyeshadow per se, despite what some magazines may tell you. If you have hazel or light brown eyes, it can be a great choice.

But be careful, especially using the colors marked "highlight" in your little eyeshadow palette. They go on lightly and they're supposed to. If you don't have enough light while applying your makeup, you can inadvertently pile too much on your brow bone - it appears that may have happened to Rep. Hochul here. The best way to avoid this is to use a makeup mirror with lights on it.

They're not too forgiving to the little lines and blemishes on your face, but you can see exactly what you're doing.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Too much white around the face

Hillary Clinton gave an interview to Voice of America this week. She wore a white blouse:

We often turn to white tops because they "go with everything" but in this case, it doesn't go very well. As we have seen before, bright white reflects too much light on Secretary Clinton's face, making her skin and hair look washed out. Cream would have served similarly as a neutral color without being so harsh, although with a black jacket she could have paired almost any color.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

What you look like on a jumbotron

I'm always telling you to consider the context and the background of the setting you'll be speaking in (all black on Charlie Rose, bright sunlight at a state fair, etc) but sometimes it can be hard to picture what that will really be like.

Here's some video of Rep. Tammy Baldwin speaking at a black-tie dinner for the Human Rights Campaign. Or rather, video of video of her on large screens above the crowd. She wore purple:

You can barely see her standing on the stage, but you can certainly see her on the screens. Not only is the image large, it's repeated right next to itself. As much as I'm an advocate for prints, this would not be the right time! I think she chose well with a satin wrap around blouse with a subtle sheen.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

When candid is better, it's time to change the portrait

Until recently, I was most familiar with Rep. Shelley Berkley's image from her official portrait, which appears on her website and her social media profiles:

I can't be the only one who's noticed: her hair in this photo is BIG, completely overwhelming the rest of her. And that's really saying something for a woman who has strong features otherwise.

Rep. Berkley is now running for Senate, and her campaign machine is ramping up accordingly. And you know what I found out? She doesn't have that hair in real life. Here she is on the House floor recently, speaking about the Palestinian bid for statehood at the UN:

Her hair is longer and somewhat straighter and decidedly less poofy.

Her current look is so much more up to date. I hope a new portrait for her new campaign will catch up to that. While hair stylists and makeup artists are helpful for portraits (or weddings, or trials...) it's important that you continue to look like you. What good is looking good if no one can recognize you?

Monday, October 3, 2011

John Boehner breaks the rules

If there's one thing the conventional wisdom seems to know about how politicians should dress, it's that men have a uniform, and that uniform includes a bright red tie. "Red is a power color," they say. "Red is patriotic," they insist.

And then you notice something like this: John Boehner is Speaker, and his ties are pastels.  Look:

He wears pink:

And green:

And yellow:

Not much red this year!

Now, you might remember my discussion in Politico this time last year about Boehner's sharp, authoritative style of dress. But that was election season - expect those red ties and cuff links to make a comeback as election time draws near again.