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Friday, June 12, 2009

how to look preppy

How to Look Preppy
Prep is someone who cares about their appearance enough to look good -- but not so much that they are superficial. They are conservative, clean cut, classy and classical.

Get the attitude. An important quality of a prep is their ability to be happy, bubbly, and very social. Look on the bright side all the time and be happy with who you are, and encourage people to do the same. Act friendly and outgoing... a little shy is OK, but be nice. Smile. Stand up straight. Avoid getting people angry. Forget talking about money or politics-it can put people off. Being snobby shows poor breeding. Preps have a friendly attitude and good manners. Read Etiquette books or take etiquette classes. Good manners are very important to preps. It shows people you have had a good upbringing. Use basic politeness such as please, thank you and excuse me. Be considerate and hold doors for people. Guys, don't wear a hat indoors. Keep your cell phone in check and put it on vibrate when you go to a public place.
Be social; make new friends and practice being more outgoing. Throw a party for no reason every so often. Try to keep the party drug- and sex-free. You can be the life of the party but still be classy at the same time. For example, if you are at a party you won't be anti-social or drinking like a drunk and slobbering all over the place. Rather, you will have nursed one drink all night, socialized, and will not act like an idiot.
Get your clothes from a traditional, upper class store. Get timeless, classic clothes that will always look stylish. DO get brands such as Ralph Lauren, Brooks Brothers, Vineyard Vines, Lacoste, J. Crew, Martha LeWren, Nantucket Brand, Ann Taylor, Vicomte Arthur, Lilly Pullitzer and Tedi Tavaré.
Buy the preppy style clothes. Just because you got some clothes from an upper class store doesn't mean they are preppy. Buy clothes that are classic, and clean-cut. Don't be afraid to splurge on these a little, as preps tend to hold onto clothes for a long time. Remember to make sure your clothes are always clean, and always match. Good fabrics are very important. Get rid of any polyester. Buy mostly 100%cotton, wool and cashmere. Wear preppy colors. Bright and happy, like green, pink, light blue, nautical red, white and navy blue and preppy patterns such as plaid, stripes, gingham, polka dots, argyle, floral, paisley, nova checks, and tartan.
Here are some suggestions for that type of clothing:
Polo shirts
Oxford shirts (unlike polos, oxford shirts should always be long-sleeved ***if it is warm outside simply roll up the sleeves)
Rugby shirt
Cable-knit vests and sweaters (traditional cricket sweaters)
Cardigan sweaters in preppy colors and patterns
A jacket or blazer (navy blue is a staple; try seersucker or madras plaid in summer, tweed in winter)
Chino pants-could have cuffs
Khaki pants. The prep equivalent to jeans
Bermuda shorts (khaki, madras plaid, seersucker, linen or preppy prints and patterns)
Skirts (khaki, madras plaid, seersucker, linen, preppy prints and patterns)
Tea dresses and summer dresses (in madras plaid, preppy colors, seersucker, or linen). A-line dresses, halters, and flowy dresses are acceptable.
Tennis- and golf-inspired shirts, skirts, and dresses
Color coordination is key!
Wear preppy shoes and acessories like these:
Pearl necklaces and earrings as well as diamond jewelery (make sure it's small, not fake-looking, and doesn't look too trashy or tacky)
Most preps wear their mother's, grandmother's, or aunt's old diamond and pearl jewelry, as an "old money" thing.
Small handbags in simple colors and patterns or large, monogrammed tote bags (Vineyard Vines, L.L. Bean, and Lands' End have good choices). Vera Bradley handbags and wallets are also very preppy but make sure to get the right pattern (in preppy colors)
Hair accessories such as headbands (silk/satin scarf headbands or hard headbands with ribbon bows) and grosgrain ribbons in preppy colors, prints, and patterns.
Ribbon belts in a variety of preppy prints, patterns, and colors or, especially for guys, black or brown leather belts.
Preppy girls wear ballet flats, top-siders (boat shoes), ribbon/canvas flip-flops, Rainbow sandals, and simple leather high heels and wedges in shoes.
Preppy guys wear classical loafers, leather moccasins, suede loafers, boat shoes (top-siders) or leather flip-flops. For formalwear, they wear leather dress shoes in black or brown.
Wearing a pair of top-siders without socks is classic preppy.
Stay fresh and clean. Take a shower at least once a day. Brush you teeth and wash your face twice a day. Shave as often as you need to for smooth skin. Preps always take care of themseves. If you have bad skin, see a dermatologist.
Keep makeup light. Don't wear a lot of eyeliner, or wear none at all. Go very easy on the foundation, and wear a little lip gloss. Remember, less is more! If you can get away with no make up, you can still look like a preppy girl if you're well-dressed and hygienic. Many preppy girls are clean-faced.
Maintain your nails. Clearcoat on your fingernails; color or french pedicure on your toes. Don't let the skin around them get dry to the point that they crack, and stop biting your nails. If you polish them, go for a natural French manicure, clear polish, or even neutral, solid-colored polish (not bold, like red or blue or black). Don't let the polish chip off, and don't let your nails get too long. Nails should be in neutral colors and medium short in length on girls and trimmed short on boys.
Smell nice. Wear a light perfume or cologne that's not too overpowering. Make sure to only dab it on lightly. Also, a few drops of your favorite essential oil and water in a small spray bottle is perfect. Being hygienic and applying deodorant will also ensure that you smell good even when the perfume/cologne wears off.
For men, a clean shave is a must. No facial hair, whatsoever. Clean-cut and all-American. Keep simple hair. A common preppy hairstyle is the shaggy look or the fluffy look, or hair just parted on the side and short. Keep your lips moisturized. Chapped, cracked lips are unsightly. No unnatural hair color or shaved hair. Keep your hair looking natural! Always smell fresh. Pick one 'clean' scent to stick with. Make sure it is not overpowering.
Keep your hair clean and well-trimmed. Shampoo and condition your hair every day or every other day, depending on your hair type. Get your hair cut at least two times a year, or how many times needed to maintain your style. Get your hair done at a quality salon, they really take good care of your hair.
For preppy girls, there are many traditional hair styles such as the bob, shoulder-length hair, and long hair. No bangs. When styling your hair, follow the tips in the Style Preppy Hair article.
Enroll in a prep school if it's possible. However, that might not be practical for everyone, so at least aim like you're at one. Get good grades, enroll in AP classes, and aspire to get into an Ivy League school. That's a major part of being preppy.