On being impressionable

"Her nails are unmanicured, which on her looks like the last word in efficient chic, and I suddenly find myself wondering why I bother with a weekly polish."

--from a recent New York Times Magazine article about Cate Blanchett written by Daphne Merkin

I'm certainly a fan of the weekly polish, but I can totally relate to Daphne Merkin on this: When I come into close contact with a smart, compelling, put-together woman, I'm liable to call every single one of my current sartorial choices into question.

If I'm wearing flats and I meet a cool woman in towering heels, I instantly wish I were literally in her shoes. Suddenly I want to swap my trendy pastel polish for her understated beige manicure, or vice versa. This happened most recently while covering the Women in Tech panel at Facebook, which featured some really brilliant (and amazingly dressed) women.

I recently read a memoir by Carole Radziwill that focuses in part on her friendship with the late Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy. I was too young to really appreciate CBK's style in the early 90s, but reading about her personality, and looking at her photos now, is enough to make a girl want to remove all her nail polish and toss out 90% of her wardrobe, jewelry, hair products, and makeup.
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