A Better You
When that clock struck midnight it didn't magically change anything beyond the start of a new year. But it did give you an opportunity to start anew, with renewed goals, plans and expectations. Are you ready to be a better mom and woman?
2008 was a hard, hard year. With the economy hitting a major downturn and job loss, fear and worry rampant, it was difficult to stay upbeat. But 2009 is a new year and it's time to break out of the 2008 rut and make this year your best.
From your outer beauty to your inner beauty, here are seven great ways to reinvent yourself this year.
1. Change up the hairdo/makeup
Ready to reinvent your hair and makeup? It can be hard to keep up with the latest styles and trends, but some experts offers great advice on how to make your face luminous and your hair magical.
Shimmery jewel tones are in for eye shadows this season, but you have to know where to apply them, experts say.
"Since the placement of the shadow is as important in staying modern as the colors are, steer clear of adding the darkest shadows to the eye's crease which is dated and not appropriate for most eye shapes. Punching up your look with a darker shadow should be kept on the outer corner of your lid, blending well so you get a watercolor effect," says Carissa Passerella of HookedOnBeauty.com.
Passerella also advises to choose a jewel-tone shadow in emerald or amethyst but to go green if you have dark circles -- a common trait for overworked moms.
Eyes should also get a boost with bold eyelashes, says Bryce Gruber of TheLuxurySpot.com. And don't forget those lips! "Enhance pouty lips with plum and wine shades with a slight gloss. Most makeup artists are using lipstains with sheer glosses (or even lipbalm) over, complimented by lightly lined eyes with again, very full lashes," Gruber said.
For cheeks go with a natural look. "Soft pink blushers will also look the most natural, and they will not leave a line of demarcation, as peach and brown-toned tawny blushers do. Place blusher on the high cheekbones area (near the temples), because this will give your face a life - not on the lower cheeks which give a full-cheeked "farmer's daughter" effect," says image consultant Sandy Dumont.
Looking for a new 'do? Master stylist Marc Harris, who has worked his magic on MTV, in Vogue and more, says the bob is still fierce, but with a shorter, layered twist. But that's not all. "Cropped pixie looks are hot, as they become the most logical direction for women who prefer to be ahead of the fashion curve. After establishing the bob for the past few seasons, the quickest way to get out in front of everyone else is by cutting it shorter as the bob continues to hold the masses attention," says Harris. He also expects to see long hair this year, by any means necessary.
As for color, the buzz is that red hair is hot, hot, hot this season. Federico Calce of Federico Salon in New York says that many of his clients - which include models and actresses - are going red and looking for styles that they can maintain themselves.
2. Develop a personal style
Personal style is one of those buzz phrases. You know you should have it, you know you need it, but you cannot be quite sure how to get it, right?
Well, aside from the lucky folks selected for What Not to Wear, most of us aren't about to get Stacy and Clinton knocking down our doors to help us find the right one. However, that doesn't mean you can't develop your own style.
"When I work with my clients, one of the first things I ask them to do is to cut out pictures of fashion, buildings and environments that they are attracted to. No analyzing, just clip. It's amazing once you lay them all in front of you how they work together and tell a story about your personal tastes and style. Those pictures then provide cues for what designs and details to look for when putting together your own unique look," says Teresa Morisco, president and chief stylist of Wardrobe911.com.
Once you have your look clips together, start shopping for items that fit the themes. Generally speaking, fitted clothes will look best. Go for classic, and supplement with trendy pieces.
"Create a different look every day with different jackets and accessories. The majority of people have cool skin, so look for jackets in primary colors, including black, navy, red, cherry red, royal blue, royal purple, fuchsia. This is the year to go for bold jewel tones, because First Lady Michelle Obama has already started this trend," says personal stylist Dumont.
3. Do what you love
Whether it's creating beautiful artwork, leading community organizations or something different entirely, 2009 is the year to stand out for doing what you love. Women everywhere have taken personal interests and transformed them into fulfilling hobbies and rewarding careers.
"I started my stationery business after a lifetime of loving to illustrate. Now I've started my licensing division, licensing my designs to other manufacturers," says Karen Bullard of KarenColePaper.com.
Bullard isn't alone, other women have used their passions to create at-home jobs that let them mesh work and family for a better work-life balance. "I am able to be the room mom in both of my boys elementary schools. I can attend school concerts and functions during school hours. I can even take a long lunch with my husband and not have to worry about being late getting back to work. My schedule can be totally flexible because I am my own boss!! I can always be available for my children and my husband," says Lisa Jo Greenfield.
Working at home isn't the only way to incorporate your interests into your life. Carve out time just for you to engage in an activity that is a personal interest. Classes, community groups and day trips are all possible ways to do so.
Read More: Work-from-home ideas for stay-at-home moms
Next: Get organized and improve your relationship with your man