Ask Belle Roundup, Vol. 12
Jul 11, 2011
I am e-mailing you because I have no idea what to do with my hair when at work that is both professional and slightly young. I have straight, medium length blonde hair and my fall-back options that seem serious enough are always a slick ponytail or a neat bun, both of which probably make me look ten years older and are quite boring. Is wearing your hair down unprofessional?
I don’t know where women get these ideas sometimes. No, wearing your hair down is not unprofessional. And buns and ponytails can be cute options for work.
If you’re looking for some hairstyles that are more fun, but still work appropriate, Joanna Goddard from Cup of Jo and her friend Caroline have some wonderful tutorials. I’m a big fan of the Gibson Roll, the Three Twisted Buns and the Messy French Bun. If you don’t have long enough hair for these options, YouTube is here to help.
I have recently doubled down on my fitness goals and joined a gym. I work out or take a spin class before work and need to shower and get ready for the day while still at the gym. I need an affordable bag that will hold a towel, a hair dryer, brush, all of my shower necessities etc – I don’t want to be traipsing in with a Vera Bradley but at the same time, I don’t want something that is SO nice it might invite sticky fingers. Any recommendations?
I appreciate your attempt to stay away from Vera Bradley.
In this situation, most women would suggest a Longchamp nylon tote bag. But while I agree they are functional, and they’re not ugly, I find them to be SOOO incredibly boring. Like wearing nothing but black ballet flats, every day, for the rest of your life. Snore!
For something just a little different, but well within the bounds of classic tastes, I would suggest a weekender duffel. This canvas and leather one for Cutter & Buck is perfect for the gym, and quite a bit more stylish than a simple nylon bag or a quilted monstrosity. If you want something a bit nicer, you can also try a vintage leather bag from your local thrift store. I no longer gym, but when I did, I carried my essentials in a cognac leather duffel similar to this one on eBay.
I am a recent college grad who is moving down to Washington, D.C. in August. As of right now, I am looking for work in the non-profit sector or on the Hill, and have a few leads for job opportunities that may just come through in time for my end-of-summer move. I just stumbled across your blog online, and love your DC fashionista manifesto! I was wondering if you could give me a list of a few “staple” items that I need to survive in the working world in D.C… clothing, accessories, shoes, the works! I am on a budget, but am totally willing to shell out for a few items that I know I will wear over and over, and can use for many different looks.
Keep doing what you’re doing!
It never ceases to amaze me how many topics I’ve covered on CHS in the past (almost) three years. But since a lot of you are new here, and I know the search capacity on the site isn’t the best (working on that), I thought I’d post a little guide to some of my better posts on beginning a wardrobe and Intern Style.
Welcome Interns! 15 Easy Pieces should give you a good idea of how to build a basic work wardrobe. The individual pulls are from several years ago, but the general premise remains the same. The same rule applies to the Five Shoes Even an Intern Can Afford post. Use these posts as a guide as you try to build a closet of professional attire for an internship or a first job.