Jan 262017

I have had some weird dental adventures. My most recent: at a routine cleaning a couple weeks ago, I was told I have a cavity which would have to be filled. Having read most of Cure Tooth Decay: Remineralize Cavities and Repair Your Teeth Naturally with Good Food, I decided not to schedule the filling, and to give myself a little bit of time to see what I could do.

One of the recommended strategies is to combine cod liver oil with pasture butter. Since I drink bulletproof coffee in the morning, I already get plenty of butter; yesterday my order of Nordic Naturals – Arctic-D CLO, Heart and Brain Health, and Optimal Wellness, Lemon 8 Ounces arrived. I took a teaspoon. This morning, my active cavity is significantly improved. By that I mean brown and sticky to tiny hard black spot. Overnight.

I don’t want to be annoying with all my crazy lifestyle stuff, but I thought you might want to know.

Mar 102015

Over the weekend, I stumbled onto the Style Identity series being presented on the blog Truth is Beauty. I recommend it to you. The quote I wish to illustrate here is:

The effect of clothing context on our apparent masculinity or femininity is analogous to the effect of color on our skin.

The apparent color of your skin changes, for better or worse, depending on what color is next to it. That’s because of simultaneous contrast.

And the apparent qualities of your face and figure, including the apparent masculinity or femininity, change depending on the context that surrounds it.

If almost everything in the frame reads as boyish, then the viewer mainly notices what’s not boyish – and so the Gamine’s feminine qualities actually stand out more.

The more boyish the context, the more beautiful Gamines look.

From Style Identities: The Gamine

Do you see the brilliance in that? How beautiful it would be if mothers of tomboys could get comfortable with that and quit trying to force the pretty little dresses and such!

In my own life, it made me think of these two pictures I took the day I got my hair cut.

Since learning I don’t technically need my glasses all the time, I have gradually decreased wearing them. They are mostly reading glasses now. In the same time period, I have also changed how I wear my hair, and I’ve been getting alot of compliments.

I do like my hair. But I’m also wondering, could people be responding to seeing me without glasses? When I got these glasses, I really liked them. Now that I know how glasses are supposed to fit, I know they are a little bit wide for me. Two problems with that extra width:

  1. It makes my eyes look very closely spaced. Not quite cross -eyed, but you know what I mean.
  2. My eyes also look smaller; therefore, I appear more … shall we be PC and say yang rather than masculine?

Alot more could be said. Allow me to just close with this important point about fitting glasses:
glasses should line up with the sides of the face.


Btw, I am affiliated with Warby Parker now. If you use my link ( they will pay me a little fee. Thank you!

Mar 052015


Yesterday I got my hair cut. After studying a multitude of factors impacting hairstyle, doing some hairstyle design consultations for clients, and getting the expert input from My Virtual Makeover (for which my hair is not yet long enough), I finally stopped long enough to crank through the considerations myself. It took the better part of two days.

ALOT goes into hairstyle design. It is informed by each of my Essential Series of services.

Although it is only my second day with the haircut, I believe it is both more complicated and more flattering than what I would have come up with using the standard methods: asking a hairstylist or looking on Pinterest. Which, btw, I am finally on Pinterest (@rebeccamielke). 🙂

Dec 162014

(Clearly I have fallen off my blogging routine! Sensing some changes coming, I will try to be more predictable in the new year; in the meantime, you can subscribe by email. If you still use email 😉 )


The first step on my official Color Training, although I have been successfully doing color analyses for awhile, is somewhat of a personal visual identity and attitude assessment. One of the early steps in that journey was collecting a pictorial history. Looking at pictures of myself from various stages and times of life and identifying how I feel about how I looked at the time has been a very productive process; if you struggle with self-acceptance on any level – and who doesn’t? – I thoroughly recommend it.

The Christmas season is a great time to get together with loved ones and look at pictures. Consider, after all the gifts are opened and before the post-frenzy letdown sets in, looking at pictures together – maybe even doing some scrapping.

Oct 212014

This tip brought to you from the locker room – as in, I am literally walking around talking into my phone in the otherwise empty locker room, where I first heard this tip:

if you want your self – manicure to last, use two coats of OPI topcoat

Since the key to the effectiveness of the above tip is letting it dry, I use the following closely-related system:

The next day:

  • I add a coat of quick-dry clear polish
  • followed by another coat of Seche Vite

If I successfully get this second coat on, the manicure will last me a week. And it is incredibly cheap! When it does go, it typically comes off in big chunks – like a whole nail at a time – which can be unsettling when you find it laying around 😉

Oct 162014

purple-velvet-jacket.jpgWe talked about this haircut back in 2008 and it actually looks alot like what the front of my hair looks like now, although my bangs haven’t grown all the way out yet. And my glasses and my hair seem to be getting along okay 😉

If only I still had the velvet paisley blazer!

Lots of good scarf comments on this post, too. It is interesting that, after all these years, I still like this look and feel the same about it – except that now I am willing to try the sideswept bangs (with Carla’s encouragement.

Oh, and, btw, I have completed a first draft of a style essence calculator based on existing personality profilers! 🙂

From the top.  Hair:

  • Presently, I’m okay with my hair.
  • This haircut – without the turned under, uniform smoothness of the other – suits me better, both style idiom and hair texture.
  • Here’s the problem:  hanging across my face, hair would goo up my glasses.  Yet Christopher Hopkins would say that asking for this haircut but with bangs is like asking for chocolate chip cookies but without chocolate chips.   (I don’t think my stylist would mind doing it.)
  • Comments on how this haircut would suit me?

Next:  If I were to wear a scarf, unlikely as that is, this application is one I would consider. Thoughts from you accessory people?

Finally, twenty years ago, when I had a fashion retail career, I considered myself a “pink suit”. Daily I wore suits. But they were feminine and colorful, not mannish. Now I am finding myself with a strong preference for velvet blazers. Currently in rotation: blush pink, brown paisley, and grape.  My favorite way to wear them is with white oxford button-front shirt, collar flying.

So, all in all, this post was just an excuse for running the photo, which captures the stylistic essence of my personal idiom (me on the inside), everyday-wear.  Now, I’m off to the studio.  In a little over a week, I have the final for my beginning watercolor class.  I need all the practice I can get.

Oct 142014

Still thinking about my hair. I think it looks good, but I am still conflicted. Lol. At least I don’t have hair that I know looks bad! image

A number of people have commented that the stacked bob is modern and very popular among the chic, younger (20s and 30s) crowd. That may be. But, aside from the fact that it has topped the haircut charts since 2006 (thank you, Mrs. Beckham), it is also a great haircut for with-it retirees and has numerous technical and practical advantages (which is why I requested it). But I don’t see it on any of the many amazingly beautiful “stars” in the 50 and nearly demographic.


IMG_2993.PNGI don’t actually see it, but I get told alot that I look like Meg Ryan. Guessing from this picture, she has a version of stacked bob. Hmmm. I wonder if I could do this with a flat iron …

Back to the question at hand: what message do you think the stacked bob communicates? I am honing in on my authentic personal idiom; more on that in the near future. 🙂

Oct 102014

Lately I have been playing around with my (stylist’s) stylus, modifying hair in pictures. This is where I think I am going with the length.

Sometimes it is easier to see proportional relationships is a small picture (like on your phone, rather than on the computer). I always feel like I want my hair a little more full, but in the little pictures the flat might be better.



Oct 092014

I got a haircut today (October 8, 2014). It is exactly what I asked for and a fabulous cut. My stylist really wanted to do stacked in the back, and I agreed; in fact, if I had sketched my own haircut design this would have been it. So why, when I looked at the back, did I think it was old (albeit stylish) lady hair?

Rerun, from September 11, 2008:
In Staging Your Comeback, Christopher Hopkins hints humorously at how he interprets what clients say.  For example, if you say, “I don’t want it too neat”; he thinks, “she doesn’t want to feel old”.  (And isn’t that the truth?  And more than that, I don’t want to look like an old man.)  If you say, “I don’t want to look frumpy”; he thinks, “she needs more makeup”.  If you haven’t already, buy the book and read the rest of the list yourself.

In answer to the question “What is the most effective way of communicating what you want to your hair-stylist?”, Imogen’s comment is representative of the most commonly recommended way of handling it:

If you have a picture bring it – but look for a picture of someone with the haircut you want who appears to have a similar texture of hair – because what you want may not be possible if your hair won’t do the cut you want.

Interestingly enough, I think the second most popular advice was just to let the stylist decide.  Lots of other good advice in the comments back there.  Describing what you want seems to be the universally ineffective way of doing it.

Anyway, once upon a time, eons ago, I picked up this book – and I mean, picked it up in the bookstore and stood there and read it – which defines and explains the different kinds of hair textures and what kinds of styles work with them.  There’s no substitute for understanding your own hair texture.

The most common communication frustration for my hairdresser, and probably yours too, is people coming in with a picture of a hair style that simply won’t work with their hair.  Which is probably the reason some hairdressers prefer you bring a picture of yourself when you liked your hair.  Which makes no sense to me.  How could I then get something new every fall?

New for Fall 2014. Old lady or trendy?

Sep 182014

Spending money on their hair is a challenge for alot of women. Just this evening, I was having that conversation with a client. Some styles can go longer between cuts; for the past few years I have been going for a cut every 5 or 6 weeks. (If I were trying to keep my gray covered, I have no doubt I would need the roots touched up more than monthly!)

In discussing and contemplating my hair in two recent posts (from summer 2007), I came to a conclusion:

I have been going too long between haircuts

Because my hairstylist is extremely skillful and my hairstyle imprecise, I can go longer. I often receive compliments on my haircut LONG after my last visit to the salon. Thus it always seems premature to schedule the next appointment before I leave.

The typical scenario: after about 10 weeks, I have a week when my hair looks so-so. Followed by a week when it looks fabulous. Followed by a week when there is no longer any doubt it is overgrown. Toward the end of that week, I make the call.

While I can usually get in fairly quickly, the problem is compounded by the fact that my hair has lost its shape enough that it now takes me another week of styling to get it retrained. Count them: that’s a minimum of 3 weeks of bad hair out of every 13 weeks! About one quarter of my life.

The simple remedy for this problem? Note to self, in the 9th week: make appointment for haircut. The cost? One haircut per year. Less than $25 $50.

I’m putting a sticky note on my calendar right now. There’s really no excuse not to, is there?

And now it is even easier. I love online booking!