9 articles Tag women

Dressing for Success: What Are 5 Essential Components of a Women’s Business Outfit?

I know; morphing from a beauty diva whose closet has dozens and dozens of casual attire to a smart and decent business lady isn’t easy. You possibly can’t even fathom the prospect of looking stylish on an official outfit, different from your usual casual, attire!

Looking chic on a business outfit

You only have to discern which clothes match with which other one and the mojo to navigate vaguer social rules and dress to kill. And you don’t even have to do a complete overhaul of your current collection or even spend a fortune, shopping for an entirely new set.

Just a little new set of selected types of official women’s attire and you are fully ready to start “slaying” again on your new outfit. There are over five main components that make up an ideal women’s business attire.

1. Start with a well-knitted blazer

Out of all women’s official wear, you will need, a blazer shouldn’t miss. And whether you are new to the world of office wear or not, spotting a nice, cute and quality blazer isn’t hard. Go for something that’s nicely cut and knitted to perfection, slim and fitting, especially on your arms.
The good thing with a blazer – bold colours are cool, is that it goes with pretty much any other attire. It goes well with your dress, that skirt or even that only black pant you love wearing to official gatherings.

2. Accessorize well

Nothing completes a killer look of a smart, focused professional businesswoman more than a nice watch, a beautiful necklace, and a matching earring. Coordinating jewelry with your office attire isn’t hard, provided you learn more about which fashionable brands are good for you. The same is true for a watch.

But for someone who probably has never shopped for a timepiece before, I’d suggest that you don’t splurge on one of those super-expensive brands. Just go for something that will look nice on your wrist and still match with a majority of what’s in your wardrobe.

3. A Beautiful To-The-Knee Dress

Once in a while, you will need to remind everyone that the chic, fashionista in you isn’t dead yet. While doing this, however, choose a well-cut dress that’s thick and flattering, but comfortable when put on.

Naturally, dresses are fantastic for business meetings for they ooze elegance and sheer sophistication. But it’s also an instant choice that doesn’t disappoint during one of those days when you can’t decide what to wear. Just make sure you go for solid coloured dresses – sleeveless or not.

4. IMPORTANT: roomy, high-quality handbag

Don’t forget to tag along with a cute handbag. Work bags that are a little bit of everything; professional, but not too roomy, and not too bulky, will accentuate the calm and organized business woman in you. Ideally, your handbag should be able to comfortably carry all your essentials and still feel comfortable to walk with.

5. Cute, comfortable heels

I’ll not talk about flats and ankle strap (or sneakers) official shoes for women because they are part of everyone’s staples. When it comes to heels, however, it’s okay to have at least a pair – just in case. Pointy or not; super-high or not, your choice should, however, feel comfortable to put on and trendy with your overall office wear.

Going through this list, you should feel confident investing in them, especially if you are considering buying a couple for a start. Other outfits to consider are a beautiful, bold-coloured blouse and a beautiful pencil skirt. The best thing is to have a perfect blend of them so that, choosing what to pair with which another one becomes a breeze!

Work Rights All Women Need to Know

Protecting yourself at work is something that everyone needs to do. However, it can be even more important for parents because you have a family to support. You need to be aware of your legal rights at any time, but when you’re a parent, you often need to take certain factors into consideration. Parenting can require you to leave work suddenly or need to take time off, among other things. All mums and mums-to-be should be aware of their rights at work, and so should dads. Here are some of the rights you have that you should be familiar with.

Office Business Woman Entrepreneur Notepad Notes

Photo link

General Working Rights

There are plenty of working rights that apply to everyone, but that are especially relevant to women. Women are more likely to work on a “zero-hours contract” – 52% of people on zero-hours contracts are women. Women are also much more likely than men to work part-time – nearly three-quarters of part-time workers are women. Because some working rights are affected by the hours you work, such as statutory holiday time, it’s important to be aware of which rights you have. For example, for each day you work in a week, you are entitled to 5.6 days of paid holiday if you’re a permanent employee.

Discrimination

Anyone can be discriminated against in the workplace due to their gender, age, race or ethnicity, disability, religion, or marital status. The 2010 Equality Act is an important piece of legislation to be aware of if you want to know how to spot and combat discrimination at work. The law bans discrimination based on a number of factors in the workplace and during the recruitment process. Women should also be aware that discrimination due to pregnancy is illegal, and that potential employers can’t ask about pregnancy during interviews. Discrimination can be direct or indirect, as well as including harassment and victimisation.

Photo link

Maternity and Parental Rights

It’s also important to know about the law surrounding maternity and parenting. Maternity leave and maternity pay are both required under the law for employees counted as workers. This doesn’t include agency workers, casual workers, or anyone on a zero-hours contract. Your statutory maternity leave rights include up to a year’s leave. You must take at least two weeks off, or four if you work in a factory. If your average pay before tax is more than £113 a week, your employee must pay you maternity pay. You might get contractual maternity pay instead, or possibly maternity allowance if you can’t get maternity pay.

Flexible Working Rights

Flexible working is also a common choice for parents. It includes any changes to your normal working hours, including flexitime, working from home, or job sharing. Many mums choose flexible working because it makes parenting and working more manageable. You might be entitled to make a statutory request for flexible working, which must be negotiated using a certain process under the law. You need to be an employee who has worked for your employer for at least 26 weeks.

You should always be knowledgeable about your rights at work. Keep up to date with any changes so that you know what challenges you might face.

Treating Myself with David Nieper

David NieperWhen it comes to buying clothes, Husband and I seem to be diametrically opposed in our attitudes. Whilst I tend to opt for cheap and cheerful, he tends to buy more expensive items and, in principle, it may seem like he spends more than me but his clothes are better quality and therefore last him a lot longer – he always jokes that he owns clothes which are actually older than me! He’s always encouraging me to buy myself nice, more expensive things but I can never seem to get my head around spending money on myself, however I recently discovered luxury womenswear from David Nieper and it’s making me change my mind!

David Nieper (who is actually a person, not just a faceless brand) has created a reputation for creating luxury womenswear which is all designed and made right here in England, so as well as getting homegrown talent in your wardrobe, you’re massively cutting the carbon footprint of your clothes by buying domestically because nothing needs to be flown halfway around the world.

One incredible detail, which I’ve never seen on clothes before, is that each garmet you buy is actually checked and signed by hand by the principle seamstress before it’s sent to you, giving you the ultimate personal touch.

David Nieper personal touch

Something which really caught my eye about David Nieper is the lingerie collection. Finding well made bras in large sizes can be a huge problem, but this store actually offers well-made bras which go up to an H-cup, giving women with a large bust a great option for buying their undies.

As if all of that wasn’t impressive enough, I also discovered that David Nieper offers an individual size service, where you provide your measurements (should they be different to ‘standard’ sizing) and they’ll provide you with garments which are made to your exact specifications. Not only this, but they also offer an alteration service for their clothes, so if you need something made shorter in the arm or leg, for instance, they’ll do this for you too!

If you have a woman in your life with discerning tastes, David Nieper also offer gift vouchers, starting at £25, which they will send to you with a luxury gift card (left blank for your message) and I think these would make brilliant presents for birthdays and Christmas – who doesn’t love being given the gift of being able to shop?!

David Nieper is different from pretty much any other shop I’ve ever encountered and it’s clear that the personal service they offer is why they’ve been in business for so long. Head over to the site to see their ranges and experience it all for yourself.

The morning after pill: know the facts

image

When it comes to emergency contraception, it pays to be in the know. Although you might think you’re clued up on the morning after pill, it could be that you’re confusing fact and fiction. So that you’re up to speed on this subject, keep reading.

It’s easily accessible

The morning after pill can be easily accessed from a variety of places, including your GP, your local chemist and sexual health clinics, and you can even purchase it from an online pharmacy such as Click Pharmacy. This is especially useful if you’re too embarrassed to approach your doctor or a pharmacist in-person. If you decide to use the morning after pill, you will be asked a few simple health-related questions to ensure it’s suitable for you.

It’s more effective the sooner it’s taken

While it’s name suggests differently, the morning after pill can be effective for a number of days after sex. There are two types of emergency contraception available – Levonelle and ellaOne. Levonelle can work for up to three days after sex, while ellaOne can be effective for up to five days. Despite this, it’s important to remember that the sooner the morning after pill is taken, the more effective it will be at preventing pregnancy.

Using it is not the same as having an abortion

It is a common misconception that using the morning after pill is the same as having an abortion. The truth is, these two things are completely different. While an abortion terminates a pregnancy that has already begun, emergency contraception works to prevent an egg from becoming fertilised or implanted in the first place.

It will not affect your long-term fertility

Although it may have a temporary effect on your ability to fall pregnant, there is no evidence to suggest that using the morning after pill can lead to long-term fertility problems. However, you should note that this type of emergency contraception is not intended for continuous use. It’s also important to recognise that it shouldn’t be used as a replacement for another method of contraception, such as the combined pill.

There are some potential side effects

Like most medicines, the morning after pill can cause some side effects. The most common ones include nausea, abdominal pain, headaches, tender breasts and feeling tired and dizzy. If you are sick after taking it, you should speak to your doctor or pharmacist immediately as you may need to take another dose.

Keeping this information in mind should give you the peace of mind that comes from knowing this treatment is available should you need to use it.

Are You In the 50%? #oooopsmoments

It’s fairly safe to say (especially if you’ve read THIS post) that my bladder is a bit useless. In fact, I’ve always had a weak bladder, even before having my girls, but after two c-sections it’s worse than ever. That’s why, when I read that 50% of all women suffer some form of bladder weakness, I felt sort of relieved – YAY, I’m not the only one, not even by a long shot! The guys at Tena, makers of lights by Tena (for those #oooopsmoments), have made this little video:

 

For me, the worst time is when I’m dealing with a cough. All that hacking has an unfortunate side effect for me, and having something like lights by Tena to rely on would really give me some peace of mind. I thought I’d ask some of my friends to share their “Oooops Moments” too, to show you just how common these incidents are!

I sneezed in the early stages of labour and starting celebrating my waters had gone, then they examined me and said no actually I’d just peed myself!”

“Sneezing….. coughing…. jumping.. lol I can never think about going on a trampoline ever!”

“My brother in law picked me up during a party with all his rugby mates and I had to *squeeze* like a beast! A friend of mine got drunk at a wedding and decided to have a go on the kids bouncy castle… she pissed all over it and had to go home in shame!!”

I also had a ‘moment’ on a bouncy castle!! Didn’t realise it was going to happen, that’s what having 2 kids does, especially the 9lb 1oz beast!!”

“Jumping on the trampoline!”

Trampolines seem to be a bit of a running theme with a lot of women…I’m thinking they should probably come with a whole set of health warnings for women of a certain age! The beauty of lights by Tena is that they aren’t a full size set of incontinence pads, just a discreet liner which can be worn without anyone knowing. They also contain Feelfresh technology which neutralises odours, so you don’t have to worry about any unpleasant smells, should you have a little accident.

I think, given the fact that almost half of us suffer (and, to be honest, I suspect the number is probably slightly higher as some women still don’t admit it), it’s really important to destigmatise bladder weakness and accept it as a normal thing which happens to a lot of women. The more we talk about it, the less ashamed we’ll feel.

If you’d like to try Lights by Tena, you can request a free sample from the site (details in the video) and I guarantee, once you’ve tried them you’ll wonder how you coped without. With cough and cold season coming up, I know I’ll be stocking up just so that I can cough and sneeze without worrying! Also, I’d love it if you’d leave me a comment, letting me know about your little #oooopsmoments!

Hotter Shoes – Review and Giveaway

Hi. My name is Jayne. I’m a woman and I like shoes. I’m sorry if that statement upsets you or if this admission takes the sheen off of my feminist-lefty-pro choice exterior, but I can’t help that. I do have a few disclaimers to add though:

1. I like my shoes to look nice

2. Above all, they MUST be comfortable

Gone are the days that I teeter around all day long in 5-inch heels, my ankles just cannot take the pressure anymore and I’m not as…lithe as I was in my early 20’s. The problem I have it that most of the shoes that I find aesthetically pleasing are actually ankle-murdering, toe-binding, blister-forming nightmares and I have an awful habit of buying shoes (hello, 4-inch leopard print pumps bought for 25th birthday evening…) and wearing them only once or twice before vowing to never torture my feet in them ever again.

So, when I was offered a pair of Hotter shoes to try, having heard their reputation of style and comfort, I tried to remain open minded. These are the ones I chose:

The heel on the shoes is enough to elongate the leg and make me feel taller without being a such an oblique angle that all of the pressure is on the balls of my feet, which is a real bonus. I’m a big fan of wearing slightly muted clothes with a statement shoe and these really fit the bill and I have several outfits that I could wear them with too, so they get another 10 points for versatility. The shoes are of a really good quality too, which makes me sound a bit like my Nan, but the older I get the more stock I place on quality rather than ‘BUY ALL THE THINGS’ and have them fall apart in minutes.

The wedges have a cushioned sole, which added to the comfort factor and they’re slightly wider than your average fashion heel too, so there’s room for ALL of your toes, not just 60% of them whilst the others are squished to oblivion. All in all, these shoes are EPIC.

Now, here’s the fun part – You can win your very own pair of Hotter shoes too! Hotter have given Mum’s the Word readers a chance to win any pair of shoes from their current collection. Just fill in the Rafflecopter form below to be in with a chance of winning:

a Rafflecopter giveaway

ANNNND, as if that wasn’t good enough, Hotter have been kind enough to give Mum’s the Word readers their own discount code, giving new customers 10% off of any full priced pair of shoes from the current range and free P&P on your order!

Just use the code PHAMTW at the checkout.

Good luck!

International Women’s Day – A Letter to My Daughter

To My Darling Daughter,

It seems only fitting to me that on International Women’s Day I should write to you, the single most important female in my life. You will, one day, be a woman and I hope that you have daughters too, for having a daughter has been the single most rewarding experience of my life.

You are my world.

I cannot express my gratitude at being blessed with a daughter who has the kindest heart of anyone I have ever met, a daughter who carries the weight of the world with her and wants to make it all better. Seeing the sadness in your eyes when you think of those less fortunate than yourself breaks my heart and mends it all at once when I see your determination to make a difference to the world. Quite remarkable for someone of less than five years old.

You have filled my world with laughter, happiness, dancing, art, singing, stubbornness, worry, frustration, wonder, joy, sadness. You make me feel in a world that is so often numbed by external forcesand for that I cannot thank you enough.

It’s my job, as a mother and a woman to make sure that you know certain things and while I may not know everything just yet, my 28 years of life have taught me the following:

Never allow yourself to feel owned by anyone or anything. You belong to you and you alone. Always take the time to find joy in the smallest things. The light of the moon, the miracles of nature, a smutty joke. It’s all good. You can be anything you want to be. Your Dad and I will always be here for you. We’re your biggest fans and you are our single greatest love. Beauty is whatever you want it to be and you can see it everywhere if you only look hard enough. Friends are important. Never take anything for granted. Be happy. 

As a woman, you may find that you’re underestimated of overlooked. Being underestimated is just fine. Enjoy the look on people’s faces when it dawns on them that you are SO much more than they expected you to be. Being overlooked is not good. Kick and scream until you get the recognition you deserve.

Forget the labels. Be it the ones in your dress or the ones people put on you. They don’t matter. All that matters is that you have total agency over yourself and your body. Keep it that way.

There are no ifs and buts when it comes to love. Your Dad and and I met and married within 6 months, despite everyone’s objections. Our mantra is “when you know, you just know”. It’s a good thing to remember.

I can only hope, as a woman speaking to someone who will one day be one, that I’ve done a good job, raised you with confidence, intelligence, empathy and grace.

Trust me kid, you’re going to need those things to make it in this world.

Love, Ma xxxx

 

International Women’s Day – Sightsavers

Because today is International Women’s Day I have a guest post from the charity Sightsavers for you all to read. 

Today is International Women’s Day. We’d like to celebrate a very special group of women, lady health workers, who, in developing countries, go door-to-door to provide access to free eye care services made available by us and our partners. These women work tirelessly to help prevent avoidable blindness, travelling to some of the poorest, hardest-to-reach neighborhoods, striving to improve the health of their community.

Case study – Jeba Ansari, Mumbai, India

Jeba a Young Muslim health worker shows the right way of wearing specs to one of the resident in Dharavi slums in Mumbai to find who has eye problem.

Hirabai Bayle, living in the Dharavi slum in Mumbai, India, shares a tiny home with her mother, teenage son and four sisters. Her husband left her and her son and now Hirabai earns £13 a month to support herself and her son, selling bananas and stitching gloves in a workshop. 20-year-old lady health worker, Jeba Ansari, visited Hirabai and diagnosed her as long sighted. By providing her with glasses, Jeba ensured that Hirabai could continue to work and remain financially independent.

Case study – Sarwar Kausar, Pakistan

Inspired by a need to support her community, Sarwar Kausar became a health worker after finishing school. In countries like Pakistan, many women must be chaperoned to appointments with male health workers, which can be hard to arrange. Thousands of women go without examinations, suffering from eye health problems like cataract and trachoma. Lady health workers can visit women at home when male family members are away, passing on key medical advice to prevent eye diseases and infections.

Case study – Samina, Karachi, Pakistan

Having trained as a doctor, 33-year-old, married Samina decided to become a lady health worker, and eventually trained to become a Lady Health Supervisor (LHS) in the Karachi district of Pakistan. One of around 100,000 lady health workers in Pakistan, Samina overcame prejudice from within her own village, as a women receiving professional training, and now continues to work hard to free her community of eye health problems.

Please visit the Sightsavers website to find out more about their work and to donate to the cause. 

Is This Really What Passes for Humour in 2013?

Sometimes, it’s really difficult to maintain a sense of humour at the same time as upholding certain standards. I consider myself to be a person with a good sense of humour but I do also feel like I spend a disproportionate amount of time in a state of moral outrage. I’ve been told by family members, in the past, that I take things too seriously, which may well be true but I prefer to think that I don’t settle for the bordeline-offensive tripe that some people find amusing.

Sometimes, I see or hear things and I think “Does anyone find that amusing?”. Yesterday was one of those days. I was in the Post Office waiting to pay in a cheque for work and I glanced at the greetings cards. This was one of them:

At best it’s a clumsy, outdated attempt at irony which misses the mark by a mile. At worst it’s a massively misogynistic, insult of a card that I’d shove where the sun doesn’t shine if someone bought it for me. Either way, it’s just not funny and I’m so fed up with this kind of thinly-veiled woman-hatred plied by a MAJOR card company as humour.

On a completely base level, I know I don’t have a single female friend or relative who chose their spouse based on the size of his packet, be it his pay or the one in his pants. I’m sure there are women out there who are ruthless enough to factor these things into their choice of partner, but this card flippantly portrays ALL women like this and I resent the implication.

Maybe this is one of those occasions where I’m taking things too seriously, but my gender has dealt with enough shit over the years and things like this card being blindly swallowed up by the masses are exactly the reason that a glass ceiling still exists and women are overlooked in many fields. As a mother to a daughter, I don’t want her growing up thinking that this is okay, or worse, falling into a stereotype because of what’s expected of her as a female.

It’s about time women were afforded more respect and dignity, which is a shocking statement to have to make in 2013.