Talk To Me: Do You Adjust Your Makeup and Dress According To The People You Meet?

Gossip Girl Blair Waldorf and Serena Van der Woodsen

© The IT Girl

Oooh did you catch the finale of Gossip Girl? Don’t worry, no spoilers here (that includes the comments, so no spoilers from you too, yes?), but I’ll say this. It’s a good one. :)

Anyway, in honour of the season finale of Gossip Girl (and because I couldn’t find a more appropriate image for the topic), I thought we could chat about a topic that’s been playing about in my mind recently. No, it’s not about Gossip Girl (although daaaammn, the clothes, the bags … sigh).

I wonder, do you adjust your makeup and dress up according to the people you meet?

Example 1

You see, I have this friend who’s always immaculately dressed. I’ve known her for over 4 years now and I have never, EVER, seen her without full makeup on. I’ve been to her house many times for dinners and even in her own home where she’s cooking up a storm, she always had full makeup on and was beautifully dressed.

She’s a gorgeous lady and a lovely friend but I’ll tell you this. I can’t help feeling a tad inadequate every time I’m in her presence. A couple of years ago, we met up for tea. I remembered it was an exceedingly hot day, a day for shorts, tank tops and sandals with minimal makeup on. The kind of day when it’s so hot, foundation would melt off your face. She came with expertly-applied makeup, in a gorgeous silk frock and 4-inch heels. As much as I enjoyed her company that day, I felt like the most underdressed person in the whole room (even though pretty much everyone dressed like me that day).

So whenever we meet, oh I make an effort all right. I carefully put my makeup on. I accessorise. Even if I’m in jeans, I put the heels on. She’s a beautiful friend who has never intentionally made me feel small or inadequate in any way. It’s just my silly insecurity, I know, but I can’t help it.

Example 2

On the other hand, I have also, er, “dressed down” for another friend. A dear friend whom I have minimal makeup on and smart casual attire whenever I meet up with her for a meal. She doesn’t wear makeup at all and dresses very casually each time we meet. It’s like the other end of the spectrum. Even wearing blush and lipstick would be overdressed on my part. So whenever I catch up with her, I keep my makeup to a minimum. I still make an effort but it’s not full-on.

Example 3

Beauty bloggers. Enough said. :P

It’s funny how we (okay, maybe just me) adjust what we wear for the people in our lives, isn’t it?

What about you? Is there anybody in your life you would go out of your way to make yourself look real good for? Do you also tone down what you wear for certain people?

PS: No List of Lusts today because Christmas is coming and there are just waaaaay too many things to lust over. :P



37 comments… add one

  1. Yishan

    I dress for myself, but it’s the makeup that I dial up or down depending on who I meet!
    Yishan recently posted..BODY SHOP Colourglide Shine – Ruby Sparkle #12My Profile

    1. Tine

      Me too! I remembered wearing bright red lipstick to a meal with that friend I blogged about, the one who dresses very casually? I had to run to the restroom and rub it all off. I don’t know who felt more awkward that day, her or me.

  2. Lily (@ChloeAsh)

    It’s an interesting topic Tine! Every time I go out, I try to make an effort to look presentable. However, I also make sure I look like I fit into the occasion. I would feel awkward to stick out like a sore eye, be it over or under dressed, so I guess you know my answer. That said, I still dress for myself, in something I’m comfortable with. I just play around with accessories and makeup :-)
    Lily (@ChloeAsh) recently posted..My First Inglot Freedom Palette ExperienceMy Profile

    1. Tine

      Me too. Although I do admit in terms of clothes, I do sway towards the casual side more often than not. Which is why accessories and a bright lippie come real handy to dress up manky ol’ jeans! :P

  3. xin

    well…thank goodness most of the people i hang out with are all on the similar taste of ‘fashion’ LOL
    i am thankful of that because can dress comfortably whenever i hang out with them. but i do ‘dress’ accordingly for family gatherings though

    1. Tine

      That’s really good. A lot of my friends can be pretty dressed up, which is actually a good thing for me because it forces me to get out of my comfort zone and not just turn up in jeans and t-shirt :P

  4. Norlin

    Nah…I dress for myself mostly or the occasion not the person I’m going to meet. I put in effort or no effort depending on where I go and what my mood is really.
    Norlin recently posted..It’s All About Colours This ChristmasMy Profile

    1. Tine

      That’s good. You always look good whenever we meet. So not fair :P

  5. Miss Kitty

    I strive to be that eternally flawless friend aha! unless I’m only going out for 10 minutes or so to the deli I will get myself dolled up. you never know who you’re going to meet!

    1. Tine

      Hahahahaha you always look flawless!

  6. plue

    i dress accordingly based on the people I am meeting or the event/ gathering I am attending. and this applies to work too! i put minimal makeup on if i am meeting important clients, and bareface if i am not seeing anybody and just stay in office. don’t want to stick out like a sore thumb, ya know ;)
    plue recently posted..NOTW: China Glaze Deviantly DaringMy Profile

    1. Tine

      Hee hee, yeah I know what you mean. Don’t want to stick out like a sore thumb by being too casual or overdressed! :P

  7. redambition

    What a great topic, Tine!

    While I tend to dress for myself, I do absolutely tailor my look to the people I’m going to see and the place I’m going. I too have some friends who are more dressy, and others who are more casual. I try to always stay true to my own style, but I definitely adjust.

    1. Tine

      Thanks for your comment, and I definitely agree with you on staying true to your own style but still adjusting if needed. That’s what I do too. Well, I try :P

  8. Zoe

    I loved reading this post, it was as if it was about my own life! I constantly find myself thinking about where I’m going and what attire/make up is appropriate. I am a school teacher and there is such a range of what people think is workplace appropriate, the sport teachers dress differently to the English teachers who dress differently to the Art teachers, so many variations!

    Someone once said to me “Dress for the job you want, not the job you have” I think this saying has been around for a while and I think it’s true. I try to just look professional and in terms of make up I wear things that will enhance my features as opposed to looking “made up”, that being said, I just can’t leave the house without blush…


    1. Tine

      Aww thanks Zoe. Years ago I used to wear a very ugly uniform to work (think awful purple skirt and an unflattering striped top) and it was really, REALLY difficult to look good because the uniform was just so darn ugly. When the company finally implemented Casual Fridays, it was such an amazing transformation. Not for me, but for a lot of people whom I thought didn’t have it in them to be fashionable. Jeans were absolutely fine for Casual Fridays, but this engineer I knew wore gorgeous dresses, accessories, etc, and I highly looked forward to what she wore every Friday. :)

  9. Sue

    For me, it’s mainly on the occasion. If there’s an event, then all the make up will be on. However, if it’s a casual occasion, I do go easy on the make up cause I find it more comfortable. Not so much of whom I am chilling with …

    1. Tine

      Good one Sue. I’m mostly like that too. Okay, maybe not with the people I mentioned in the blog post :P

  10. Swati

    hehe Tine…count me in!!! sometimes, I do as well feel as if I am underdressed or just came out of the bed!! I don’t apply makeup but sometimes I don’t really bother to dress up well either!! generally, the only days you will find me well turned out is if its some special occasion i have been excited for or my mood and day has started on a good note :)
    Swati recently posted..Aloe Veda Giveaway [OPEN]My Profile

    1. Tine

      Good point Swati, on the part where your day starting on a good note. I find that I tend to pay more attention to what I’m wearing on me and my face when I start the day well. Maybe it was a good dream I had or a particularly good start to the morning. Either way, I leave the house looking and feeling good with a bounce in my step :)

  11. Kimberley

    I definitely agree with you! I find myself dressing up and down for certain friends, it’s so funny and sometimes I don’t even realise I’m doing it!
    Kimberley recently posted..Lush Christmas Bath Products Pt 2My Profile

    1. Tine

      Hahaha funny the things we don’t realise eh? I didn’t think much of it too until my husband started to comment “ahh meeting with the girls today eh?” (beauty bloggers). I was like, yeeeaaaahhh how did you know? “You always have full makeup on when you do, and barely anything when WE go out”.


  12. BebeTaian

    There are friends I dress up for- and I, too, have the Immaculate Friend. It just seems that the times I see that Immaculate Friend are in the middle or after solving crises, so I always look terrible! >D Case in point: very, very sick cat. Wake up, get dressed in jeans and a thin tank, grab cat and bag (currently a military surplus ammo bag; they’re indestructible!), race across town to vet… one block from IF. I’m not what you’d call ‘attractive’, and clothes like that do me no favours. And yet, where do I end up post-vet? Hanging out on her back porch with her while kitty gets some down-time. She’s doing nothing but cleaning all day, and is still dressed nicely. Naturally!
    BebeTaian recently posted..Lotions: the Good, the Bad, the Meh.My Profile

    1. Bun Bun Makeup Tips

      Somehow, Immaculate Friend reminds me of one of the Stepford Wives coz they’re always so prim and pretty despite doing all the housework. =)
      Bun Bun Makeup Tips recently posted..Doll To Doll’s First Month Anniversary GiveawayMy Profile

    2. Tine

      Yikes that’s an Immaculate Friend all right. Looking good and still very composed in a time of crisis. I’ll be looking like something that poor cat dragged in! >.<

  13. Beauty Box

    Love this topic! I dress according to the occasion and also who I’m meeting, especially ever since I moved to Tokyo. I tend to be a bit casual when I meet my gaijin friends because they are pretty laidback, but my Japanese gfs…man, do I fret when my nails are not done, and I always put on a super nice outfit because they always look so immaculate!

    1. Tine

      Aww thanks Yuming. OMG I so know what you mean! I never used to care what makeup I use or what I wear until I worked in Japan. The girls I used to hang out with aren’t office ladies; they were engineers who wore jeans to work every day. But STILL. Immaculate makeup nevertheless, and I looked like I just stepped out of bed at work without a lick of makeup on. Even taking the bus to town, the students looked heaps better than me. It was in Japan that I started to wear makeup, dress better, carry prettier bags (I used to only carry one red messenger bag to work for years!), etc.

      Even when I was back there for holiday in November, I felt like I needed to make an effort. Usually when I’m on holiday, I can’t be arsed but not when in Japan. As if the early mornings to get all the sights in weren’t enough; I had to wake up even earlier to do my eye makeup and all that. Husband had WTF stamped on his forehead all week :P

      1. Beauty Box

        My husband said I “changed” when I started to fuss over my appearance in Japan, but it’s only when you are in the thick of this “lipstick jungle” in Tokyo that you would understand the pressure. The husband has no competition…most salarymen can’t be arsed hahahaaha!
        Beauty Box recently posted..Top 12 Most Popular Posts In 2012My Profile

        1. Tine

          Hahahaha I know! Tim said all Japanese men look the same in their suits :P

  14. MC

    I think I dress up according to the place (and especially) the occasion rather than for the people I meet.

    1. Tine

      That’s a good idea. I do that too. That is, unless I’m meeting up with the people I mentioned in the blog post. Then all bets are off :P

  15. Bun Bun Makeup Tips

    I think I dress UP for the occasion more than for the people specifically. Like I’ll dress up for a wedding because it’s a wedding, and not for the people at the table. This is such a fun topic!
    Bun Bun Makeup Tips recently posted..Doll To Doll’s First Month Anniversary GiveawayMy Profile

    1. Tine

      Love your comment! Dress for the wedding because it’s a wedding, not for the people at the table. LIKE! :D

  16. Sarah

    This is such an interesting topic! I always dress in my own style, but tailor it to the setting eg. I have to wear business wear that’s fairly tame to look “appropriate” at work. If around the house it’s very casual. I almost always wear makeup when with friends, but tone that up or down depending on the setting. No matter what I do I like to look tidy if that makes sense haha! So I’m very uncomfortable if my nail polish chips when I am out
    Sarah recently posted..Pretty in Pink: An easy Christmas maniMy Profile

    1. Tine

      That makes perfect sense, Sarah. We should take pride in ourselves and looking tidy is part of it. I can’t deal with nail polish chips either. It doesn’t matter if I painted my nails the day before, if it chips, it’s gotta go :)

  17. Michelle Beh

    For me, I did it as well. It all depends on the person I met, the location I go. Lol!! But mostly I ll choose those outfit that I find more comfortable to wear even though the factors above.

    1. Tine

      Haha I agree Michelle. I definitely need to be comfortable in what I’m wearing most of all. Even if the dress is very pretty but it’s very short or tight till my brains are about to pop out, what’s the point? I look even worse trying to adjust the length or trying to breathe! :P

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