Carson Kressley, the Emmy-winning TV star and New York Times bestselling author of Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, has spent the last decade transforming thousands of women and connecting with millions more on Oprah Winfrey, Good Morning America, and countless other national broadcasts. He knows what makes women tick. Whether we live in Tacoma or Tallahassee, there is a common thread among all of us: we want to feel beautiful but don’t always know where to start. We’re frequently frustrated by fashion and can’t figure out which trends to follow and which to flee.
Does This Book Make My Butt Look Big? is a roadmap for all of us to build unshakable body and fashion confidence. Nowhere else is there a fun and accessible book created for the underserved masses like us, who just want to get out the door looking and feeling fabulous. Who don’t have gobs of money to drop on our wardrobe and feel left out of the game. And when it comes to how we feel about our bodies, all we see are roadblocks...and signs for Burger King!
We need to be reminded that fashion is FUN. We need to know that with the right tools, we have the power to transform our self-perception by shifting our mindset from woe-is-me to wow-is-me. We need the secrets of playing to our strengths and minimizing our flaws. We need to take more chances, and leave what doesn’t work in the dust. Most of all, we need Carson, our peppy, blond fairy godstylist, to show us the way!
|Publisher:||St. Martin's Press|
|Product dimensions:||8.30(w) x 10.20(h) x 0.70(d)|
About the Author
CARSON KRESSLEY is the Emmy-winning TV star and New York Times bestselling author of Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. Regarded as one of the fashion industry’s most sought-after makeover experts, Carson has touched the lives and wardrobes of millions of viewers around the world for more than a decade.
Read an Excerpt
Does This Book Make My Butt Look Big?
A Cheeky Guide to feeling Sexier in Your Own skin and Unleashing your Personal Style
By Carson Kressley, Riann Smith
St. Martin's PressCopyright © 2016 Carson Kressley
All rights reserved.
makeovers, MAKEUNDERS & TAKING CARE of MOI
MY SERENITY PRAYER
Beauty gods, grant me the serenity to accept the features I cannot change, the courage to self-tan the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference ... between Botox and filler.
AS FAR BACK AS I CAN REMEMBER, I've been making myself over. (What, did you think I was born with this Don Johnson mane and pillowy lips? Oh, wait, I was ... sort of!) But my metamorphosis from country bumpkin to haute couture wasn't all roses and rosé. In fact, it bordered on IKEA-furniture-assembly-instructions confusing. Brace yourself, dear reader, because my style journey began with none other than life's most marketable phallic symbol: lipstick. Freud would've had a field day with me ... on his Barcalounger!
It all started when I was a young Tater Tot living in Claussville, a small town in Pennsylvania Dutch country. It was the 1970s, the Watergate scandal was in full swing, and hot pants were all the rage. But not in my sheltered neighborhood, silly; people were too busy churning butter! Still, Mom would get Avon deliveries (Ding-dong! Avon calling!), which at the time was the closest I could get to the glamour of the beauty-and-fashion industry. Most boys my age cared about Battlestar Galactica and baseball cards, but for me, seeing that new Avon delivery at the door was like Christmas in July! I'll never forget the shiny turquoise plastic box that housed forty mini-lipsticks with yummy, exotic names like Crystal Red, Caramel Candy, and Coral Kiss. After I'd arrive home from elementary school, while Mom was still working, I'd go through her lipsticks, trying out each one in the mirror, practicing my pucker and pout. Afterward, I'd carefully resculpt each angled lipstick edge with a butter knife to hide any signs of use (like I still do when I raid medicine cabinets at housewarming parties).
Since my mother had won the title of Miss Pennsylvania Milkmaid — Mom sure was a fox — she had a crown in her closet and a fabulous chiffon dress and dyed-to-match sparkly shoes. With my lips glossed in Rum Raisin, I couldn't resist trying on her clothes and jewels. It was like my own secret fashion show; all I needed was a hit song from the Carpenters in the background and a slow dance with David Cassidy. No one in my family ever said anything, but I think they knew what was up. I felt ashamed. It wasn't until I fell in love with seventies television drama queens that I realized how empowering fashion could be. Rhoda rocked a Boho headscarf before any of us knew what Boho was; Jennifer Hart sizzled in her glam St. John pantsuits; Carol Brady's mullet was pure trendsetting magic; and Endora and Mrs. Roper swung their colorful caftans around in Pucci perfection. "More," I said, "more!"
Add that to my growing experience competing on the equestrian circuit, where I saw the international set donning ultrachic ensembles, from horsey Hermès scarves and bangles to Bianca Jagger hats and Jackie O sunglasses. I started to realize that, wow, there's a big, exciting world of style out there, and one day I'm going to not just live in that world, but help women around the world get the keys to the fashion kingdom! In case you're wondering, I pictured that kingdom looking like a cross between Churchill Downs and Studio 54.
But my dreams of disco balls and world fashion domination would have to wait. Meanwhile, I had to worry about getting hung on lockers at school and beaten up at the mall, when all I wanted to do was wear my Coca-Cola rugby shirt and Swatch watch and window-shop for Mackenzie Phillips, my dream makeover client, in peace. Cue the violin music and pass me an orange Fanta! I was an after-school special in the making.
And since it's just us girlfriends, I'm going to tell you another deep, dark secret. I've had a nose job. A schnoz shave. A beak tweak. There, I said it. It was many seasons into Queer Eye, and it was a splurge on myself that I could finally afford. I had always been self-conscious about the way my nose hooked down. So I went to a plastic surgeon to the stars in New York City and said I needed a little nip-tuck, nothing drastic. As they were putting me under anesthesia, I freaked out, wondering, Can I really go through with this?
When I woke up after surgery, I kid you not, the first thing I saw on television was myself in an NBC made-for-TV version of the classic movie, The Year Without a Santa Claus. John Goodman was Santa, and I played, of course, an elf. My first thought was, Is this a dream? and my second was, Wait, do I still have my old nose? Once the bandages came off, I did an unveiling of my newly tapered naso to my friends at my apartment a week later, after I had properly liquored them up. Most of them didn't care or really didn't notice the difference. But I did, and I carried myself differently because of it. New nostrils, new attitude!
We've all had our moments of reshaping and reinventing ourselves in hopes that somehow it will all click into place and we will finally look in the mirror and say, "Hello, gorgeous." I don't know what your own hotbutton issues are, but I know what it feels like to not feel comfortable in my own skin and to have the motivation and itch to want to change it. My feeling is you can sit around and complain about something; learn to accept it (like I accept my freakishly skinny arms — in the gay world, being buff is a big deal) or decide to take action like you're Shailene Woodley confronting your inner demons.
It may not amount to a drastic move like plastic surgery (which by the way, I don't casually advocate), but a li'l refining can go a long way.
Tszuj Do it ... Book yourself an impromptu pampering appointment, like a deluxe paraffin mani-pedi or a blowout ... but it's an exploding offer that ends today! (I used my Crazy Eddie voice for this one. Sorry, you have to buy the audiobook to hear how awesome it sounds, or be a child of the seventies with access to N.Y.C. cable stations.)
QUIZ: ARE YOU READY TO UPGRADE YOUR LOOK?
1. Congratulations, you just won a free hair makeover from the best salon in town. You:
a. Are gung-ho to change your color, cut, or style. Snip it, whip it, flip it!
b. Defer to their suggestions but tell them you don't want to do anything too trendy.
c. Get a consult first, but wind up with something similar to your usual trim.
2. You have a $100 gift certificate to Sephora. You: a. Get a full-face makeover plus lashes for an upcoming party.
b. Buy a trio of lipsticks: two tried and true and one wild card.
c. Forget it's in your wallet or use it on your niece for Christmas.
3. In the waiting room of your dermatologist's office, you see before and after pics of a certain nonsurgical product/procedure you haven't tried but are intrigued by. You think: a.Wow. I'll ask my doc about it today. Maybe I'll give myself an early birthday gift.
b.I'll take some brochures home and mull it over before my next appointment.
c.Too risky, too pricey. What if it backfires and I wind up on Botched?
4. Have you whitened your teeth, gotten a spray tan, a blowout, facial, or tried shellac or gel nails recently?
a. You do all of the above regularly, plus lasers, plumpers, highlights, and more.
b. You've done many of these things but never as often as you would like.
c. You get your nails and hair done before a trip or a holiday event, and that's it.
5. Your friend looks so much better after doing a cosmetic procedure. You:
a. Ask for her doctor's name pronto — you're going to look just as fabulous!
b. Feel nudged to think about any improvements you've put on the back burner.
c. Are secretly a tad jealous that she splurged on herself, but you tell yourself she looks fake.
MOSTLY A'S: The Chameleon
You're always game for transformation. You take pride in updating your appearance and almost feel competitive about keeping up with the latest procedures and trends to stay young and fresh. Just don't get on the makeover roller coaster, because more isn't always more. See my Barbie story at the end of this chapter.
MOSTLY B'S: The Evolver
You know it's key to update numero uno, but sometimes you wind up on the fence. As long as the expert is well qualified and you've done all your homework on the pros and cons, carve out the time to do one nonsurgical improvement in the next month that you know will give you a little boost, like a facial peel or tooth whitening.
MOSTLY C'S: The Evergreen
You can't help seeing the downside to most upgrades, partly because you haven't done your research and partly because you're scared that change equals a frivolous mistake in the making. Next time someone asks you what you want for a gift, say you'd love a gift card to a medi-spa or salon. Use it as a chance to experiment on a small scale.
carson confession: My FIRST ENCOUNTER WITH BEAVER
I did a show for the Oprah Winfrey Network called Carson Nation, where we traveled around the United States in an Airstream trailer full of style. We specifically went to small towns where people traditionally didn't have access to the latest trends. Which brings me to my trip to Beaver, Utah. My subject was Jane, a tall, beautiful, fifty-five-year-old mother in a Mormon family who had lost an adult daughter to cancer. For the past year, Jane didn't bother getting her hair done or wearing makeup. The pain, anguish, and grief overwhelmed her, and she just stopped living. Going through something so traumatic made everything else, especially her looks, seem unimportant.
It was our mission to get Jane back in the groove. We launched a crash course in "me time." We went through her closet together and realized how many terrific pieces she already owned. A shopping trip got her into some new clothes and introduced more color into her wardrobe — which was key to lifting her spirits. Then we colored her hair an amazing auburn tone, which set off her bright blue eyes. Believe it or not, little things like getting her hair and nails done snapped her back into living in the most sensory kind of way. When we left the salon she ran her fingers through her hair and said, "This looks good, this feels good; I feel more alive."
Cut to a fantastic family reunion. Remember, she was Mormon, so we're talking a lot of relatives — truly a stadium of superfans. Jane was glowing, and it wasn't just her spray tan. Everyone was so proud of her and dazzled by her new look that it brought people to tears. It was clear that she was back in the fold and was ready to be a fully present wife, grandmother, and mother to her four children again. It was in that moment of realization that Jane acknowledged that her daughter wouldn't want her to be living like she had been, and the best way to honor her memory was to continue taking good care of herself.
THAT MAKE EVERYONE LOOK amazeballs
There are a few universal beauty boosters that tend to look good on anyone, anywhere, anytime. Try just one and you'll find it hard not to fawn over yourself.
1. A FAUX GLOW
I feel naked without a tan (and look best naked with one!). It's insurance that even if I've put on a few pounds or my skin looks like gray Play-Doh, I still have a sun-kissed aura.
Face Tanner: My fave drugstore product is Jergens Natural Glow FACE Daily Facial Moisturizer with Sunscreen in Fair to Medium (they also make Medium to Dark for deeper skin tones). It gradually builds, so you don't get an Oompa Loompa effect. Blend into your neck and hairline (ears too) for a seamless look, then apply your regular makeup. With your new base tan, you may only need concealer.
BUTT seriously ...
Soak a cotton ball with facial astringent and rub to remove stubborn self-tanner streaks. Still there? Try a dot of diluted nail polish remover.
Body Tanner: When I travel, I pack Tan Towels, which are so easy to rub anywhere for a pseudo–vitamin D boost (tantowel.com). Clarins makes a Self Tanning Instant Gel that dries superfast and doesn't have that icky smell (clarinsusa.com). If you have a brand that you already love, make your supply last longer and achieve a more natural look by swirling it with a dab of moisturizer. After washing hands, rub a dry washcloth over knuckles, knees, elbows, and ankles, where color can be a stage-five clinger.
Spray Tan: When I arrived on the set of Dancing with the Stars, I noticed everyone walking around half naked in black towels. Had I joined a cult? Then I caught on: They had spray tans that were staining everything. Orange really is the new black! Follow suit and wear dark, breathable cotton to the salon. If you're a newbie, try the lightest mist first. You want to look sun-kissed, not like you were dipped in carrot ginger dressing. Is it gross that I'm getting hungry?
BUTT seriously ...
Try Quick Tan Instant Bronzing Spray by Body Drench (sallybeauty.com). Have a friend spray you head to toe, preferably outside or in the shower. Better yet, make it someone else's shower, because when you're done, the place will look like graffiti art gone wrong. But you'll look amazing.
Bronzer: If you tend to break out after applying self-tanners and spray tans to your face, bronzing powder is a fab alternative. There are so many brands out there, but my standouts are Guerlain Terracotta Bronzing Powder and, for oil-free fans, Tarte Amazonian Clay Waterproof Bronzer (both available atbeauty.com). Lightly swipe it across your nose, from cheek to cheek. This is where the sun actually hits your face, along with your forehead and chin. Be prepared for "So, how was Hawaii?"
Tszuj Do It ... As a young fashion stylist working on sets around the world, I would hear a legend that Kate Moss used vodka and lemon juice to keep her blond highlights looking fierce. Try it! You're golden ... and so is your hair! Now that's what I call a vodka tonic.
2. HOT DAMN! HAIR
Blowout: Who doesn't look more put together with a professional blow-dry? Now that there are so many blow-dry bars around, it's easy to book one right after work so you look great for an evening event. If you can't get there, I love the John Frieda Salon Shape 1.5-inch Hot Air Brush. It's under $30 and will give you bounce and smoothness at home (amazon.com).
Conditioning Treatment: If you can book a fast conditioning treatment before your blow-dry, even better, especially if you color your hair regularly and suffer from dry ends and dullness. Your hair feels cleaner, fuller, and shinier, especially for those with lifeless or frizzy manes. At home, I love a yummy coconut hair mask called Smooth Extender by Smooth Sexy Hair. It's reasonably priced and available at drugstores.
Highlights: No matter what shade you are, from deep brown to strawberry blond, just about everyone can benefit from a bit o' brightening around the face. Your goal is to recapture what your hair looked like as a child in summer. Mine was lemon chiffon. ... what was yours? Stay tuned for more highlighting secrets in chapter 7.
3. A MEGAWATT SMILE
Ecru and cream may be in for winter coats, but not teeth. Studies show that whiter teeth make us look healthier, wealthier, and will guarantee a lifetime of fame and fortune. Okay, maybe not, but it sure feels good to go from yellow to hello!
Porcelain Veneers: If you have crooked, chipped, or teeny chompers and are willing to drop the cash (from $800 per tooth), this can be a serious smile changer. We've all seen this go way wrong when people go too big and too white, so keep it pearly and tasteful.
Tip: Do your uppers and lowers. No one wants to see movie-star teeth on top and rat teeth on the bottom.
Professional Whitening: If your main problem is too many espressos and liters of Barolo, but your teeth are in otherwise good condition, all you need is a good brightening. Your dentist can do inhouse teeth whitening or create a mold that is used with a customized kit that works over a period of weeks. Just don't scare the pizza delivery guy when you answer the door looking like Rocky.
Excerpted from Does This Book Make My Butt Look Big? by Carson Kressley, Riann Smith. Copyright © 2016 Carson Kressley. Excerpted by permission of St. Martin's Press.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.
Table of Contents
Omigod! You Look Amazing!,
1. MAKEOVERS, MAKEUNDERS & TAKING CARE OF MOI,
2. OUT WITH THE OLD ... IN WITH THE OOH!,
3. I JUST LOVE A WOMAN IN UNIFORM,
4. BEING A BARGAINISTA,
5. WHO, WHAT, WEAR,
6. OH, MY BOD! ROCK THOSE CURVES,
7. REALLY, I WOKE UP LIKE THIS!,
8. JUST BETWEEN US GALS,
About the Authors,
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
Informative, charming, chatty and positive. Carson is adorable and he and his co-author do a great job making the book feel like a friendly chat with a girlfriend while getting man-of-war. I recommend this to anyone needing a style injection and a boost in confidence. LOVED IT!