When you read the term ‘feminine dressing’, what kind of images do you conjure up?

Floaty, floral dresses?

Lots of pink?

Lace trims?

Bows and frills?

Kitten heels?

All of these features of an outfit are what I class as ‘girly’ elements.

Now, some women can pull these pretty things off beautifully. But if you don’t feel that you can, please don’t worry. There are plenty of other ways to look and feel feminine without using any of the above.

What many women don’t know (and I certainly didn’t until I trained in image consultancy 10 years ago), is that we all suit different styles. When you know which styles work best for you and in what proportion, its easier to create great outfits that still make you look and feel like you.

If your look is strong and statement or understated and classic, or relaxed and casual, you might struggle to wear these girly pieces. Some women find they feel good when they add one girly piece into an otherwise non-girly outfit, but for many others of us, even the teeniest, tiniest hint of girliness can be a disaster.


Newsflash: This doesn’t mean that you can’t be feminine. There are other ways!


I know from my own style journey, that every time I tried to wear something ‘pretty’, I’d look at myself in the mirror and think I looked dreadful. What I didn’t know back then was that we all suit different styles and that the overtly ‘pretty’ style that I call ‘girly’ doesn’t work for everybody.

Far from making me feel feminine, I’d look in the mirror and feel ugly. I’d think you had to be classically pretty to pull off a pretty dress.

It was only when I had my own style analysed as part of my image consultancy training that I saw the light. From that moment onwards, I ditched the girly, stopped trying to make it work and embraced my own true style. Let me tell you, it was such a relief!

I know that I’m not alone in having felt like this. I’m forever giving women ‘permission’ to ditch the girly and embrace new ways of feeling feminine.

And here are 5 of them for you to try today!


5 ways to feel feminine without wearing florals and frills

1. When you wear a dress, add in some ‘tougher’ elements. These could be statement boots, a leather jacket or even a jumper layered over the top. Wear a block or wedge heel rather than a kitten heel.

2. Try mixing up your fabrics. Try a silk or satin shirt to create a softer look.

3. Wear prints but skip the floral ones. A quirky print, something geometric, paisley or swirls will add interest in a non-girly way.

4. Don’t be afraid to accessorise. Leave the heart and floral pendants behind and try simple classic pieces or bold statement jewellery. Just adding some earrings, a necklace or a bracelet to your outfit will add a feminine touch.

5. You don’t have to avoid pink! If you like pink but don’t want to feel girly, try going bold. Shocking pink, fuschia and plum give a stronger look than baby pink. Or, if you really love (and suit) pastels, choose clothes in a strong, structured silhouette to avoid a flouncy vibe. Create a lovely tonal look by wearing pink with reds, browns and burgundy.


There are of course many more ways to inject feminine vibes into your outfits and when you’ve got to grips with your own true style, you’ll understand the ways that work best for you.

The way I enjoy ‘girly’ style nowadays is to admire it on other people.

This is one of the many benefits of being style confident. You can enjoy all styles but stop buying and trying to wear them all!

I’d love to know what you think. Is it a relief to know you can give up on the frills?

Do leave me a comment below.

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