Reader Question / The Big 3-0

Q. Hi Jordan!

The big 3-0 is creeping up on me (next week), and I ended up just going with getting some people together for dinner at an Italian restaurant…I would love to get my hair and makeup done since I am not so great at doing either of those things, but I don’t want to pay a lot of money. Do you know anything about going to a makeup counter (ex. MAC) in a mall and having makeup done? If I have to buy some products, that’s fine. I just don’t know how it works. And I don’t know what to wear! I want to look like me but better and still be comfortable…Any suggestions greatly appreciated!

Thank you!

– A

A. Happy happy birthday!! First, makeup: I’d suggest going to Bobbi Brown, Giorgio Armani, or Laura Mercier;  they all have tons of gorgeous, subtle colors and emphasize a natural, sophisticated look. Call ahead to make an appointment (you don’t want to arrive on the day-of, discover a crowd, and get all stressed out), and feel free to tell whoever you speak to that it’s your 30th birthday and you’d like to look extra-special.

When the appointment rolls around, don’t be scared to tell your artist exactly what you want; they want to make you happy, so it’s in your best interests to speak up. You should definitely plan to buy at least a couple of the products that the artist uses on you (I’d estimate that a couple of products from any of these lines would run around $40-$50).

For your hair, see if a local salon will use you as a model; you can get very inexpensive hairdos that way…but you might not be able to dictate the style, and that’s kind of scary. So I’d suggest asking a talented friend with similar style to do your hair – it’s your birthday! I’m sure she’d be happy to oblige. Otherwise, check back in a few days – I’ll be posting a tutorial for loose, natural waves that you can leave down or pin up.

Now…what to wear?! I’d go in one of two directions: for a more comfortable, casual look try slim pants (everyone seems to love the GAP Really Skinny black pants) and a sexy top with an asymmetric neckline, a little sparkle, or unusual details. Add some statement jewelry and amazing shoes (the accessories are what will dress you up if you’re going more casual), and wear your hair up.

If you want to wear a dress, I’d say pour on a bit of drama: like I said, it’s your birthday! I love this BCBG look (and might actually have to buy it for my own upcoming Big Birthday):

If you just don’t feel comfortable in anything but an LBD, try a slightly offbeat version like this Rachel Roy. If you want, you can always add sweater tights so you stay cozy; just go for a slightly chunkier heel if your tights are on the thicker side, so there’s balance. Some more ideas in always-classic red, white, and navy:

TopShop Red Strappy Cape Dress ($95); Free People Goddess Dress ($128); French Connection “Zero Dotty” One-Shoulder Dress in Dark Blue ($117.60; or try this one if that’s a bit short).

Have so much fun!



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