For as long as I can remember I’ve associated that proclamation with the color, pink. Attribute it to the pink-themed baby showers, the nurseries adorned with pink, and the predominantly pink wardrobes of little girls. The fact is, pink has forever been stereotypically feminine regardless of blurring the line between feminine and masculine with statements such as “real men wear pink.” While pink is not exclusively a girl’s only affair, it has long been associated with sugar, spice, and all things nice (heck, I even bought my female dog an electric pink bed and collar) and girls develop a fondness of it from an early age. But in most girl’s subconscious mind as she matures is the belief that pink is the color of Barbie, (and can she be blamed for that? I had the pink house, the pink convertible, the pink camper van, the pink yacht, the horse with the pink mane) and Barbie is reminiscent of childhood, therefore one’s fondness for wearing pink is something to be overcome with age. And many of us, do. I don’t view the color pink through the eyes which I did as a young girl, and it certainly doesn’t dominate my wardrobe. Up until recently, I’d see a pink dress and cringe, I was convinced women wore frosted pink lipstick in hell, and a hot pink car made me say “Who does think she is? Barbie?” There’s a all pink house (minus the white front door) up the street that looks like fairy floss, and it’s owner is an elderly woman. Not all women fall out of love with pink.
While there is such a thing as pink overload, it took me a while to realize wearing pink doesn’t mean limiting yourself to the nauseatingly girlish shades. Carnation, coral, or hot, there’s no reason why pink cannot be incorporated into any woman’s wardrobe at any age – provided she doesn’t harbor irrational hatred for the hue.
Pink is undoubtedly a powerful color that has the ability to attract and flatter, or make the wearer look like the packaging of confectionery. Head to toe pink is overwhelming on even the most girly of girls and gives the dreaded bubblegum girl illusion. Not that I have any idea what that means, but I am familiar with the visual. Excluding fancy dress, and “pink parties” (where women have the permission to wear all the pink their heart desires to raise funds for the National Breast Cancer Foundation) excessive pink should be avoided at all costs. Just the term “all pink ensemble” is terrifying. You can wear a shocking pink dress, as long as you keep every other aspect of the look very simple. Pairing a hot pink dress with lipstick, nail polish, and shoes of the same hue is a bad idea. Bright pink hands, feet, and lips have the potential to be a good look when matched with neutral clothing and accessories, and vice versa. Duller, more subtle shades of pink such as salmon and rose are gorgeous when paired with black, brown, gray, burgundy and navy, which all add sophistication to any shade of pink, and prevent it from looking too girly. Soft pinks are additionally complemented by white, denim and khaki. Though light harmonizes with light, avoid the cutesy pairing of pastel pinks with pastel blues and yellows. And if the latter three colors don’t remind you of babies nurseries and onesies, I’m not sure what else would. Hence, cutesy. Avoid.
Pink and black is a popular, commonly seen combination, but the outcome depends on the shade of pink. Though no shade of pink can ever really clash with a color as bold and basic as black, steer clear of combining black with hot pink. It is dated, reminiscent of a licorice all-sort, and lives on the edge of tacky. Black and blush pinks are a stunning combination however. It mixes the fun, flirtatious femininity of pink with the professional and understated appearance of black. Another perfect substitute for black, that looks flawless against pink, is gray. But you don’t have to opt for the pink dress, skirt, or blouse. Pink is one of best accent colors, and a little bit of pink goes a long way. A pink scarf or handbag can be just the thing to make a simple black dress pop. I’m very fond of classic blacks and grays, and my wardrobe mainly consists of these two neutral colors, but a shocking pink handbag or a rose pink pump is a way of expressing that I never completely abandoned color. For the risk taker, pink can still live in harmony with other bright tones for a striking combination. Pair dark green & pink for a sharp look, and emerald green (or turquoise) and pink for a fresh look. Either are capable of looking spectacular. My personal favorite is soft pink with turquoise. Deep purple and grape are rich tones that sets off most shades of pink, with stunning results. The brightest shades of either purple or pink can co exist if you’re feeling bold, though I’m not its strongest advocate since it will forever remind me of the outfits my mother used to sew together for my dolls, cementing my belief that bright purple, bright pink, and bright orange together should stay in the fictional world of Barbie.
On that note, there are as many ways not to wear pink as there are to wear it. Combined with the following colors, pink is evidently an eyesore, with few exceptions:
Leave this combination to Valentines Day cards.
Leave it to beach towels! Bright yellow and pink are an abomination.
Unless you’re vying to be a cast extra on “Saved by the Bell”, stay away from this tacky duo.
I figure this is the reason the sky has to be gray for the pink in a rainbow to look good. The opposite to “It’s a girl!” is of course “It’s a boy!” and now the baby showers, the nurseries, and the wardrobe is bright blue. The two opposite colors that are considered predominantly masculine and feminine do not harmonize. However, slate blues, dark blues and pink are a rich combination.
What about pink and the color of the hour, pink? In fact, it’s currently a trend to mix soft shades of pink with the bolder ones. The result can be spectacular or excessive, defeating the whole purpose of this article and be a prime example of how not to wear pink. The trick to looking simple and stunning is to avoid too much ruffle, ribbons and other embellishment when it comes to the many shades of pink. Experiment with caution. Don’t get carried away and don’t confuse pink with princess.
Blair Adele - sometimes better known as Vanity Blair has had a love affair with the art of writing since she knew how to hold a pen properly. While girls studied Seventeen magazine, she studied the dictionary, infatuated with expanding her vocabulary. Since the tumultuous teenage years, she has viewed trends with disdain, preferring to embrace individuality when it comes to style. “The Blair Necessities” is where she combines her objective: expressing femininity through fashion, and encouraging what sets a woman apart from the rest, with her passion for the written word. Let she who is without fear of fashion, cast the first stilletto.