When you start thinking about beauty and talking about it with others, you are almost instantly surrounded by advice. Friends, experts and websites are happy to give you suggestions to improve the way you look and feel. And your own friends are likely to ask for your opinions when they want to change their look or buy a new product.
What kinds of advice should you give?
There are two kinds of advice you typically give to others.
First, there are evaluations. It is hard to have a clear sense of how you look. On the one hand, when you look in the mirror, you tend to see everything that looks wrong or out of place. On the other hand, it is hard to see yourself from a distance and to know the impression you make on others.
When you are helping a friend to evaluate how she looks, it is most helpful to tell her all the things that she can’t see for herself. The most important thing you can do is to provide a sense of how she looks overall rather than just how the specific parts (earrings, makeup or clothing) are working.
The second type of advice we often give is recommendations. There are lots of products and styles out there, and it is hard to know about all of them. One of the best ways to find out about new products is get a recommendation from a friend.
Recommendations are nice, but they are often less helpful than you might think. The problem with recommendations is that your needs are different from your friends’ needs. Your hair, skin and body shape just aren’t the same. So, a product that has worked perfectly for you may not be so helpful for someone else.
Rather than just making a recommendation, it is particularly useful to give information. That is, the advice people often find most helpful involves things that they would not have though of for themselves. If you know about a store that has just opened, a great new website (like YouBeauty), or a fascinating product (like one you read about on BeautySage), letting people know about them is great advice.
The reason that information is so helpful is that it gives your friends a new way of thinking about some problem they are trying to solve rather than just recommending a solution. They can combine this information with all of the other things they know about themselves.
And finally, remember that when you are giving advice to your friends, your primary job is really to be their friend. Most advice we give is to help people change something about themselves. Change requires admitting that there is something wrong about yourself (even if it is just that you’re using the wrong conditioner). So, make sure that when you’re giving advice, you are being supportive and not just showing to your friends that you know more about something than they do.
At least, that is my advice.
Get some inspiration from these ladies and learn to appreciate your behind.
Say "goodbye" to winter dryness and get your skin ready for the sunny days ahead!
From cave paintings to Kim Kardashian, a review of the bright side and the dark side of the backside.
Could you boycott beauty for a year? This author did.
Return to the Mobile Site