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Nurturing Beauty Style Secrets Blog

Diane’s Makeover: Going Gray Changed Her Wardrobe

When I first met Diane, she had warm dark hair and wore deep, rich colors that looked amazing on her. Then she let all her beautiful curls go to their natural light, shimmery gray and everything changed.

While Diane embraced a new cooler color palette and loved knowing what colors looked amazing on her, other style questions came up as she looked at her wardrobe. Questions like, ‘How do I put together an outfit,’ and ‘Why don’t these two things look good together?’ Equipped with her new color palette she was excited to move forward with her personal style journey. Let’s take a look at what we did together.

When creating an outfit, the first 3 steps are most important, so we started there!

1. Wearing Colors That Make Her Sparkle

As I mentioned, when Diane’s hair was dark, her color palette was also on the deeper side. Those colors harmonized with her natural coloring and she felt at home in them.

With her beautiful gray curls, the darker colors felt off and harsh to her and she was right. Not only did she need more lightness and brightness in her palette, but now her colors were also cooler than before – a big adjustment for her. Here are her two palettes so you can see how different they are and why it took a while to wrap her mind around the differences.

While she used to wear some black, she finds that black now feels overpowering (even if she intensifies her makeup). Instead, she rocks a range of grays that make her glow and compliment her softer look (as you can see below).

Now that we have her colors all set, what’s next?

2.  Finding Her Perfect Fit

Is it possible to be wearing colors that look amazing on you and still not feel good in an outfit? Absolutely! That’s why fit is the second wardrobe aspect we want to address.

For Diane, a super relaxed, slouchy look just wasn’t cutting it. The sleeves are too long, the v-neck is too wide and the style felt too boxy and droopy on her. She wanted to feel chic and current but ultimately didn’t feel either and nowhere near as pulled together as she wanted to.

Also, in the before outfit above notice how that shade of gray, while not terrible, looks a bit drab and flat on her. A more vibrant gray works better, as you can see below.

In general, whether dressing up or down, Diane realized she feels better when she wears a slightly more tailored look that skims (rather than fights) her curves. Her smile below says it all!

It was now time to move on to crucial Step #3.

3.  Reflecting Her Inner Beauty

While color and fit are certainly essential elements of a great outfit, there is one factor that must be considered above all else! That’s your inner beauty – who you are in your heart and soul. This is not about what styles you like to wear or what you do in your life, although both of these need to be taken into consideration. It’s about expressing your essence no matter what you’re wearing or where you are going.

Each of my clients has 4 Inner Beauty Words that are specific to them and reflect who they are. At least one or two of these inner beauty words must be expressed in every outfit for them to feel at home in what they are wearing. (In fact, for many women the lack of self-expression through their inner beauty can often explain why they might look good in an outfit, and even receive compliments, but still feel out of sorts or not like themselves when they are wearing it.) If your outfit does not make you happy, check to see if it’s expressing YOU!

Diane’s inner beauty words are:

  • Sparklingly passionate
  • Softly feminine
  • Curiously candid
  • Intuitively grounded

If you consider this ‘before’ photo again, I suspect you can see immediately that it doesn’t reflect any of those words. There’s nothing sparkling or feminine or grounded about it and Diane could feel that. But until we identified her inner beauty words, she didn’t know how to change it.

For Diane, ‘softly feminine’ must be in all of her outfits before anything else. This doesn’t mean she has to be fancy or feel overdressed. It means there has to be a softness to the style, color, print or fabric.

In this dress, for instance, the drape, fit and fabric are softly feminine. Even her shoes with the bow feel that way. Her jewelry and the shine of her shoes (not to mention the shimmer of her gray curls) bring in the sparkling quality, and the slightly deeper navy blue and the flat shoes feel grounded. This all contributes to her feeling beautiful when she wears this outfit.

Surely Diane says it best, “Ginger’s skills and knowledge of fashion, fit, color and individual style helped me to transform the clothes I wear into outfits that reflect the best of who I am now at this age and stage of my life. I walk out into the world confident that my outfits reflect my authentic inner beauty.”

The next time you get dressed, if something feels off in what you are wearing, take a look at the color, fit and your personal inner beauty and see how (or if) those are reflected in your outfit. That will help you make adjustments.

You deserve to (and can!) feel confident and authentic in everything you wear even if all you’re doing is wearing something casual to run to the post office. Start with these 3 elements of an outfit and see what changes you can make that make your heart sing!

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Need help making this happen for you when you feel stuck? Get your own personalized color palette done either virtually (with very specific guidelines) or in-person if you are in the Boston area. Get more information here: Color Analysis

OR join the next ‘Create Your Personal Style in 6 Weeks’ class where you learn all the tools you need to create a fabulous wardrobe AND you can get my personalized support along the way. Learn more here: Create Your Personal Style.

Here’s what Donna from Massachusetts says about her experience with the class: “Having amassed a closet of black clothes, I found little joy in getting dressed. The ‘Create Your Personal Style in 6 Weeks’ class offered a novel approach for curating a wardrobe that reflects the real me. Now, I’m more selective about what I add to my closet and I feel great every time I get dressed.”

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Many thanks to my amazing ‘before and after’ team:
Nicole Wenstrom ( — Hair
Theresa Johnson ( — Photographer
David Nicholas ( — Makeup
*Inner Beauty Words: Each of my clients gets 4 personal inner beauty words. These are words or phrases that describe who she is at her core and essence. I have worked with hundreds and hundreds of women and no two have ever had the same 4 words. This is not surprising since each woman is unique and it’s exciting to help her find the wardrobe that makes her feel like she’s fully expressing who she is. There are many ways in which I help you uncover your inner beauty words. Find out more HERE.

All of Diane’s after outfits are vegan-friendly.


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Ginger Burr is a fashion stylist and personal shopper serving clients worldwide from metro Boston.