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Accessory Essentials


Our secret: shop in the men's department. A classic men's belt adds flair to even the most casual pair of jeans and works beautifully with a more tailored pant. (Take the pants with you when you shop to make sure the belt fits through the loops.) Choose a plain leather band in black or chocolate with a midsize buckle. A large buckle only works if you're petite; a smaller buckle is better if you're fuller on top.

When belting dresses and long sweaters, choose a belt that's wide enough to accentuate the narrowing of your waist, but not so thick that it shortens your torso  and makes you look heavier. If you're large-busted, opt for a slightly slimmer belt—no more than 3 inches wide—worn just below the natural waistline.  Whatever your body type, avoid wearing a wide belt over a thick, bulky sweater; instead pair it with sheerer, lightweight fabrics.

Bras (Strapless)
Finding that perfect, pinch-free strapless doesn't have to push you over the edge. Most women think they need a tighter band to keep a strapless bra in place, but the band should be the same size as your regular bra. Straps simply anchor the bra; breast support comes from the underwire or under-cup support panels. To be sure you're wearing the right size, ask a fit specialist in the lingerie department to measure you. (Seven out of 10 women wear the wrong size bra!) Then turn the bra inside out and look for a stay-there power band that hugs the body. Another common strapless problem: color. If your top is black, pick a black bra; otherwise, the rule of thumb is to match the bra to your skin tone.

Accessorize your evening wardrobe with a sleek, compact bag that's just big enough to hold your keys, cash and cell phone.

Not just for reading anymore, eyeglasses have become a true style statement, instantly transforming your features, your outfit, and your image. Find your perfect frames.

Shades like chocolate or nude are fresher and more modern-looking than traditional black. Wear them with a fuller skirt for added shape and texture. Or try wearing an eggplant or chocolate hue with knee-high boots—nothing's sexier than a hint of hose above the knee. Pair a slim pencil skirt and a simple black shirt with bright opaque tights in any color; overlay with large-diamond fishnets in black for a playful twist.


A chic sun hat will not only keep aging ultraviolet rays from your face and hair—but with many more designs to choose from these days, it's an easy way to show off your personal style, too. Among the looks to consider: newsboy for golf pro chic; retro for mod moments; bucket for rainy days; wide-brimmed for ultimate sun protection.

Cold weather options: capeline to make a trench even chicer; beret for French flavor; trapper for those anorak days; cloche with a straight coat.

Simple but striking, jewelry can give everyday basics a new life. Finish off any look with a pair of simple gold hoops—save sparkling earrings for night—or opt for a large, chunky necklace for instant glamour. But avoid accessory overload by leaving chunky necklaces at home when you wear eye-catching designs on your ears.

From instantly glamming up a T-shirt and jeans combo to hiding those telltale dark circles, sunglasses are definitely an accessory with purpose—to shield your eyes from the harmful effects of the sun, most importantly. But that doesn't mean every pair is suited to every person. Look for frames that accentuate your face shape, skin tone, and lifestyle.

Sometimes tights can make legs appear heavier than they really are. The trick is to choose finely knit fabrics and leg-lengthening patterns (like vertical stripes) and to coordinate the shade of the tights with the color of your shoes or boots. Or opt for hosiery with delicate, feminine, romantic details. Especially slimming shades: black, gray, navy, and chocolate.

A clunky bag does nothing for a suite or dress. Instead pick a roomy, sleek, well-structured leather tote. You'll look put together, and it will keep your papers, cell phone, makeup and more in place.

Wearing a timepiece is no longer just about helping you stick to a schedule. With the advancement of technology, today's tech-savvy designs tell you the outdoor temperature, the date, the direction you're heading in and so much more.