Belle’s Weekly Reading: May 16, 2014

May 16, 2014



1) During our discussion on hair length, a reader left a comment referencing this article from FiveThirtyEight, “Are Businesswomen with Short Hair a Cut Above the Rest?”.

I hope we can grow beyond the notion that successful women need short, straight hair to be taken seriously.  It’s like we’re telling women, “Society says long, wavy hair is the coif of sex symbols, so do the opposite if you want to be respected and appreciated in the work place.”  Stupid.

2) A B.P. Moveover flat in snakeskin print?  It’s like Nordstrom read my mind.

3) As social media expands and companies pay billions for “the next big thing,” is the future of social media secret networks that allow you to share anonymously?  Could this be the death of the selfie (oh please, oh please)?

4) Searching for home decor led me to JCPenney.  Yes, that JCPenney.  They carry Jonathan Adler’s Happy Chic line and most pieces are discounted drastically.

My favorites?  This modern four-poster bed is a steal for under-$1000.  This standing tray would look great as a side table.  Want a cheap thrill?  This faux-agate storage box is under-$20.

5) Does what women wear to work matter? I hope so. Or else this blog has been a waste of my time.  And to think, I could have been knitting.

6) I love leering at gorgeous gowns.  This week’s favorites come from Stella McCartney black dress with sculptural mesh details and this Adam Lippes dress that is retro in the best way possible.

7) Here’s a fun one from The Washington Post: What your Internet use says about your politics.

8) While I was a big fan of Rainbow Brite, is this ROYGBIV striped scarf from Rose & Rose too much?

9) A decorated Bureau of Prisons employee who attained the highest security clearances while serving the government and voted in every election since 1976 went to apply for a passport and discovered that he wasn’t a citizen.  Now, an embarrassed government is trying to deport punish him.  Complicated.

10) Love red wine but not the stains it leaves on your teeth?  These wipes promise to help keep your smile from turning Burgundy.

11) If you’re trying to break a bad habit, the best way may be to reshape how you think about yourself.

12) Use code BRSUMMER to save 40-percent-off full-priced items at Banana Republic thru 5/18.  Ann Taylor has 40-percent-off with code LOOK40.  And The Limited is taking 40-percent-off dresses and skirts.

Workday Reading

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  1. Joules says:

    Those gowns you picked are gorgeous, particularly the black one. I love how flowy it is!

    Style by Joules

  2. I can’t imagine basing such a drastic hairstyle decision on my career. That ugly bob will never, ever be on my head. But that’s easy for me to say, because my long hair does not affect my career, and I don’t care about going high into politics or what have you.

    • Love my bob says:

      Wow that’s kinda a catty way to put it. How about “I personally prefer long hair on my own head.”

      • LIndsey T says:

        I did not read anything catty about it at all.

        I do find it interesting that you took something directed at no-one as an insult.

  3. I absolutely need the teeth wipe after red wine! hate how they become..and i wish they would bring out for the lips as well.hhaha.. I have had short hair for the longest time now, and I dont think it has affected my career prospects one way or another.. what does affect is how I dress, and boy do people notice!

  4. sorry for being nitpicky says:

    RE #9, interesting article, but the government is NOT trying to deport him. The article states “Deportation is not something he would face as a Cuban refugee and military veteran”

    • Belle says:

      The article states that, but the friend who shared this on Facebook is an immigration lawyer, and she says neither of those things are guarantees, which is why the reporter, not a government official, says them in the article. He wouldn’t need a lawyer if he wasn’t at risk of legal ramifications.

      • It’s a really sad story. I’m not clear on what the law is in this area, but he might just have the lawyer to advocate for him in the citizenship application process and not because the gov’t is actually threatening deportation or any other ramifications. No?

      • Anna says:

        We do not deport people to Cuba. He could end up at an immigration detention center, such as Krome in Miami, indefinitely. Even if we did, the Cuban government would have to provide travel documents and accept him, not something they do for U.S. deportees, unless they are people they want back.

      • TT says:

        He’s not at risk for deportation (immigration lawyers who do not specialize in Cuban immigration and asylum may not know that). He is losing other citizenship benefits – the right to vote for example, and if he were to travel outside the US he would not be granted re-entry. There are legal ramifications to being in immigration limbo, but deportation to Cuba is not one of those things. It sounds like he has a good lawyer, and I hope his immigration status gets sorted out so he can adjust to be eligible for citizenship.

        Regarding Cubans, if the coast guard catches them attempting to immigrate via boat, they can return them to Cuba as long as they have not set foot on American soil. All Cubans are automatically given a “credible fear” interview even I’d intercepted by the coast guard.

  5. Addie says:

    Thanks so much for sharing the article on how to develop better habits! When I don’t exercise in the morning, eat approximately every 3 hours and make reasonably healthy choices most of those times, my appetite gets all out of whack and I feel like crap. I know this about myself and I do pretty well most of the time. But when I’m busy or stressed, it all goes out the window. I’m currently trying really hard to make this a stronger habit. This article helps!

    • Anna says:

      Agreed. I’ve been in a rut the last two weeks, and I just feel disgusting. I told my friend I couldn’t do happy hour today, because I have to work out and she just didn’t get it. I could have a few drinks tonight and keep feeling icky and grumpy, or I could spend an hour at the gym, release some endorphins, and feel better about myself both physically and mentally.

  6. Mo says:

    Agreed. I have been running every day for the past 540 days (at least one mile a day, even if I’m sore, hungover, sick, etc.) Nice to know that there may be a good reason behind my madness.

  7. Michelle says:

    Heads up, the link for those teeth wipes actually goes to a Nordstrom page for men’s pants.

  8. Phyllis says:

    When I clicked to find out about the tooth wipes, I was taken to a page of men’s trousers at Nordstrom. Could you tell us about it again some time?

  9. V says:

    Belle – Could you give us some ideas as to how to wear a shoe like those BP snakeskin flats? I got a similar pair from Ann Taylor (with a higher ration of white to gray), but I am stumped as to what to wear with them. Thanks!

  10. Emilee says:

    #5… ugh! Asking pre-law students not to dress skanky is not “sexist”. Why would you want to dress like that for work? Major cleavage and “F*** me shoes” are just NOT professional, and I hope there never comes a day when they are considered as such!!

    • Addie says:

      I thought the same thing when I started reading that article. I *think* what they were trying to say was that they should have addressed the issue directly with the few offenders rather than sending out a school wide memo which might make it sound like they think all women need to be told how to dress. Calling it sexist is still a stretch though.

      • Belle says:

        I agree with this, I also think they shouldn’t have directed it just toward women. I’ve seen plenty of male faux pas over the years, surely they could have come up with a few.

        • E says:

          Completely agree with you here. A & F had a collection of lewd graphic tees for men that were super popular for a while. I knew a lot of guys who wore them to class when I was in law school, casual work things, and to the gym, etc. Address this type of situation individually or make it broadly applicable to both sexes.

    • To be fair not all loubs or stilettos are such shoes. Not clear if the LMU advice called them out explicitly or if this article is taking some license. But, that as an example is hilarious to me since many women at the firm I worked at (including partners) wore them and other stiletto heels regularly. Both in the LA and DC office.

      • LaReesa says:

        I think there is a difference between plain stilettos with a 3-inch heel and a pair of 5-inch shoes with a platform under the toe. I figured that’s what she was referring to as off-limits?

        • Belle says:

          I think most young women gravitate to the 4+ inch heel with the platform. A) Because they’ve never had to walk around an office for 10 hours a day, and B) because that’s what most of the less expensive shoes are. I hope that’s what they were referring to.

  11. Anna says:

    I didn’t read the full memo, but I think it’s kind of leap to say that it implies that how someone dresses matters for women but not for men. The truth is, dressing for work is much simpler for men and appropriate attire is reinforced in the media. Suit, shirt, tie, dress shoes, done. There really isn’t a whole lot of variation, especially in a conservative environment. Women’s attire on the other hand has way more options, and if you copy what you see in the media, you’d think that it’s totally ok to come to work in a mini skirt, skin tight dress, six inch heels, and boobs practically falling out. If you haven’t worked in the field or been around other professionals, as many students haven’t, deciding what’s appropriate attire isn’t so cut and dry for women. Simply, the issue with inappropriate dress just doesn’t come up as often for men as it does for women.

    • LIndsey T says:

      Second this.

      Also look at the ads, including the last dress posted here. Note how short the hem line is?

      I see a lot of women wearing their dresses that short. I have to wonder if that is not because they see it on the model in the ad and assume that is way it is to be worn.

  12. Lady Macbeth says:

    The first article linked is drawing a very broad conclusion based on some very old articles and a narrow point of view.

    Most of the high-powered women who are pictured are older-well into their middle age. How many older women do you see with long hair? Many women find it easier to maintain short hair as they get older, and some find that their hair will simply not grow long or look healthy as they age and their hormones change. Second, I’d posit that straight and wavy hairstyles are simply more popular and more common within all women of that age/in the same ethnic mix as the women pictured.

    That’s not to say I’m discrediting the author’s point. But her own methodology is a pretty garbage basis for an article.

  13. Sarah says:

    I love knitting!!! Haha. True story.

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