Brenda Kinsel’s Style Test Helps Express The True You

There’s something about being over 40 that makes us want to go deeper to discover who we are, and we how can express this to the world. Clothing is one way to get the message out. But with so many style choices available, how do you know whether your style choices are expressing the true you?dressing over 40

Brenda Kinsel is the author of 11 Style Books including Brenda Kinsel’s Fashion Makeover: 30 Days to Diva Style!, and her ever popular 40 Over 40: 40 Things Every Woman over 40 Needs to Know About Getting Dressed. She always has great advice.

In 40 over 40 Brenda reveals a great test you can take to help you with your fashion identity dilemma. Brenda says:

“Take this test every morning: Look in the mirror. If you are wearing the clothes that reflect you, your life and your personality, then your diaphragm will relax, you will sigh and take pleasure in what you see. If you are dressed in clothes (or a look ) that’s not right for you, you will look and feel like you are in someone else’s clothes, like you are wearing a costume.”

dressing over 40Doesn’t that ring true?  Sometimes you look in the mirror and start to squirm, you lift your shoulders, shift your weight, tilt your head to get a better look, but you still don’t feel right. What is it? Too sporty, too avant guard? Just not you?

I’ve found that the key to dressing fabulous after 40, or any age is to pay attention to these feelings. Tap into your intuition-even expressing how you feel when you wear certain clothes in a journal.

Once it’s on paper you will soon see a pattern to what feels natural and what feels phony. A good image consultant can also help you through this process.

What style you see when you look in the mirror these days?  Does it reflect who you truly are? Comment below and let me know.

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8 thoughts on “Brenda Kinsel’s Style Test Helps Express The True You

  1. I’m often told that I look young for my age, but I’m still concerned that I may dress in something that is too young for me. I totally agree that we need to pay close attention to the way we feel in a particular outfit. I have found that I tend to gravitate toward what I feel best in, what is classic, and ignore the rest of my closet content.

    I did have my colors done and agree that this is so important! I look best in cool colors such as fuchsia, deep blues and purples and white/cream. My daughter is getting married this October and I will be wearing a champagne color, but accessorizing with a vibrant colored shawl and orange rose corsage,etc. Also, my husband has an eye for which dresses look best on me, so I seek out his input!

  2. Regarding comment by “PS”; I hear ya’ sista! I feel EXACTLY the same way and was so glad to find someone else with the exact same dilemma.I’m 53 and I get tired of the staple of my wardrobe-classic tees=long and short sleeve- in every color from Victoria’s Secret-(only place with sizes that actually fit me)-paired with jeans and blazers. Tasteful, close fitting clothes for tall thin women,just can’t be found anymore.I left the mall in tears recently because every store had the same thing-silky,loose,lowcut,blouson type stuff. They hung on me and looked terrible. Saturday night I wore a pleated black knee length skirt,a black drees tee, burgundy shrug, rose peep toe pumps,and glitzy chunky necklace and bracelet, small diamond stud earrings to a party. The combo looked great, but everyone else had on the colorful printed,loose, flowy tops and dresses, that just do not work for me.Why the recent catering to only one body type? And why is everything so low cut?? My decollote’ isn’t what is was 15 years ago. I don’t want old lady turtle necks for god’s sake, just nice pretty options! I’ll check out Talbot’s as you mentioned.

  3. Very good tips. I know I need to feel good in the clothes I wear on a particular day, otherwise I will not wear it. Funny enough many times for me that is tennis clothes! I play tennis 3 times a week and always wear ‘fashionable’ tennis clothes. Always something different (i mix & match). People think I’m crazy but as tennis is sometimes the only activity I have on that day I need to feel good. I feel so much better when I look different and not wear the usual boring tennis gear that other girls do. It’s all about making ME feel good! (and perhaps give the other girls a bit of fashion inspiration too…)

  4. I really hate the clothes today. I like clasic style, taylored clothing & most of the clothing today is slopping & baggy which look like crap on me because I’m tall & thin. I hope someday the industry goes back to of a more clasic style. I’m finding that I’m having to wear a lot of dress jeans & dress t-shirts because that looks best on me at the moment. Although I have discovered Talbots & they seem to have some styles that I like & actually have some long & extra small sizes. Yay!

    It’s true you have to dress for your body type & what you feel comfortable in. If that means I’m currently not in style so be it. At least I know what I’m wearing is a good look for me as an indivdual!

  5. Hey Deb! Hello Brenda.
    Nice post. I couldn’t take my eyes off Brenda’s smile. I think when you find your style and love what you see, confidence soars and your smile says it all.
    Confidence underpins a sense of style. Sadly I find many of us lose our way at times and our confidence takes a tumble. Finding it again is so worthwhile…especially in summer when we are often out there on the beach, wearing the least!
    Keep up the great work. I love you gals!
    p.s. 2 words…statement accessories…a great way to express your personal style.

  6. Hi Brenda, Hi Deborah – how cool you featured Brenda. Yes her style philosophy is just great and I also loved that line in one of her books when Brenda said she no longer is into investment dressing – who wants to be the same in 20 years time. I find doing Brenda’s exercises to tune into who you are /how you are relating to the world at any point in time is more wholistic than just what to wear. But that is the fun part! Thank you for bringing this post everyone! Jen

    1. Hi Jen,
      That’s interesting about doing away with investment dressing. JoJami and I have been saying the same thing the last few years. We bought some high end designer investment pieces that cost us a lot, but found we still got sick of them a couple of years later. It broke our hearts to have paid so much money and then to want to give them away. There’s always that odd piece in your wardrobe you love for years, but in general it feels good to freshen up after a couple of seasons.

      It’s the same with the mix and match fashion philosophy out there. We don’t mind mixing and matching a few items, and it is a wise idea if you are on a tight budget, but it can get boring. These days we prefer buying stand alone outfits and rotating them like little lifestyle uniforms. Seems more fun to have things completely different from one another, instead of clothing that is all sort of similar in color or style.

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