wikiHow to Be Elegant

Three Parts:Looking ElegantDressing ElegantlyActing Elegant

How to impress people? Being elegant is the answer; it makes you look feminine, attractive, and mature! This article will show you how to be just that.

Part 1
Looking Elegant

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    Be clean. Practice good hygiene. Take a shower when you need to and keep your hair clean. Brush your teeth and use deodorant, to keep yourself smelling fresh.
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    Be tidy. Keep your hair brushed, your nails reasonably trimmed, and any excess body hair should also be carefully maintained to reasonable lengths.
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    Use subtle makeup. Use only enough concealer, foundation and powder to even your skin tone and cut down on shine. Eye shadow and lip colors should be subtle and use neutral tones line browns and grays. Eyeliner and mascara should be minimal.
    • There are occasions, however, where bolder lip colors may be appropriate. If you are going out for a formal evening, for example, bright red lips may be warranted.
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    Choose sleek hairstyles. When you think elegant women you usually think Audrey Hepburn, Veronica Lake, or Nicole Kidman. And what do they have in common? That sleek, beautiful hair, of course. Choose hairstyles which show off the satin quality of your hair and compliment your features and dress style. This will give you a more elegant look.
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    Get your nails done. Good choices for nail polish are pale pink, clear, or a french manicure. But remember that any colour can look elegant, it all depends on how you carry it off. Don't rule out any colour - including black - unless you don't like it. Look at some photos of celebrities' nails at events. They wear all colours, including black, green, and orange, and many of them still look elegant.
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    Use good perfume. You may not see when someone smells nice but it will form a certain picture in your mind. Leave a lasting impression by using a subtle perfume, applied correctly. Elegant top notes include scents like:
    • Jasmine
    • Rose
    • Amber
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    Stand tall. Having good posture will go a long way towards being perceived as elegant. Work on your posture and make sure that you are standing nice and tall. This will also make you look thinner and curvier.

Part 2
Dressing Elegantly

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    Wear nice clothes. Avoid clothes which look overly casual, dirty, stained, or ruined. Don't wear clothes that have holes or otherwise look distressed. Try to go out in nice - smart but simple- clothes when you run errands.
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    Wear classic cuts. Avoid trendy clothes like bell-bottom jeans or over-sized shoulder pads. Instead, opt for classic cuts on most items of clothing. This will keep you looking timelessly elegant. Knee length skirts with even hem lines, tailored button-down shirts in men's style, and knee-length trench coats are among a large number of classic cut items.
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    Wear clothes that fit. Make sure that the clothes you do have fit. They should not be too small (showing or creating bulges) or too large (hanging from your frame). Don't get married to a size, every time you try on new clothes, also try on a size up and a size down. Get items tailored, if you can, to ensure an even better fit.
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    Choose quality fabrics. Lean away from cheap acrylic material or cheap cotton and opt for clothing made from more luxurious materials. This will show and make your clothing look more expensive, even if it isn't. Silk, satin, modal, cashmere, Chantilly or other quality lace, many sheer fabrics, and limited velvet are all acceptable options. Thick materials that add bulk should usually be avoided, as these will detract from your smooth lines.
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    Choose high contrast or classic colors. When choosing colors, go for high contrast colors that are very light and dark compared to each other (red, white and black, for example). Classic neutral colors also work well (grey, beige, navy, plum, emerald green, champagne pink, etc.).
    • Other elegant color combinations include blue and gold, pink and white, and white and teal/seafoam.
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    Keep it simple. Keep your outfits simple: not too many accessories, not too many layers. Avoid patterns and pattern mixing. Don't get overly showy, either. Jewelry should be simple and should go with what you are wearing and doing. Don't wear anything that is too dressy for what you're doing: go for nice, but not unreasonable.
    • For example, a cocktail dress is a bit much for going grocery shopping but a black or navy pencil skirt, a cream-colored sweater and brown jacket and boots are about right. Sweats would be the bad choice; too casual.
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    Accessorize strategically. Choose accessories which compliment your outfit without going over the top. Accessories should also compliment your features and physique. For example, avoid wide or large earrings if you have a big face, or wear vertically striped stockings to make your legs look longer and thinner.
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    Keep it classy. Don't wear clothes that reveal too much skin, are too tight, or use materials which look low-class (leopard print, fuzzy materials, lamé, etc). Dressing this way can make you look cheap or like an escort. It will also make you look like you're trying too hard. Dress classy by following the advice above and avoiding these pitfalls, and you'll look elegant all the time.

Part 3
Acting Elegant

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    Speak exceptionally well. Use proper grammar, a broad vocabulary, avoid contractions and colloquialisms, and enunciate when you speak. This will make you come across as classy and elegant, a real lady. If you aren't in the habit of speak well like this, practice while you are alone, possibly in front of a mirror.
    • Do not feel like you have to take on a different accent in order to sound more elegant. The accent is rarely as much of a problem as vocabulary and grammar.
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    Stay calm at all times. Do not get overly emotional, either very sad (dramatic crying) or angry (yelling at people and making a scene). This will undo every bit of elegance in an instant. Instead, be calm and relaxed.
    • Remember: if you're not going to die (and neither is anyone else) it's probably not that big a deal. Breathe and take things one step at a time.
    • If you find yourself unable to stay calm, excuse yourself and go somewhere private until you calm down.
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    Act like you don't care. Like not getting too emotional, you should also give off an air of not caring. This will make you seem more classy and elegant. Getting overly excited or enthusiastic can easily make you seem child-like and immature.
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    Be polite to everyone you meet, whether you think they deserve it or not. Don't be passive-aggressive or sarcastic when things go wrong. Just get through all situations with perfect politeness. Treat everyone as if your grandmother were watching you and there was a nice piece of candy in it for you.
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    Be as graceful as you can be. Walk like a supermodel no matter where you are or how you're dressed. Take care not to fall or trip when walking in high heels Don't try to dance above your skill level. If you want to improve your grace, then practice walking, in heels, up and down stairs, etc. You can also practice your hand and leg movements in a full length mirror.
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    Be confident and act confident. Of course you don't have to actually be confident (for a lot of people, it's mostly an act) but act as confident as you can. Tell yourself you're beautiful, intelligent, and that you know what you're doing...because you are and you do! Project confidence out to others by not constantly apologizing, for pursuing the things that you want, even if they aren't popular,
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    Have excellent manners. Real ladies have perfect manners. Practice good manners as you go about your day and especially when you eat. Don't ever burp or fart in public. Hold doors open for others and wait your turn for services. Drive courteously. And of course, eat without making a mess or being gross.
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    Be intelligent. Don't act dumb just for the sake of it. Sometimes people act dumb to stand out. While you may stand out that way, it won't be in a way you want! Be careful also not to act like you know everything about every subject. Talk about subjects you truly know about or say you don't know much about the topic. Your honesty will be appreciated.


  • Read books and the broadsheet newspapers to improve on language, grammar and vocabulary.
  • Learn about different cultures.
  • Travel extensively, if you can afford it.
  • Exercise regularly and appreciate your unique shape.
  • Think and speak well of others.

Article Info

Categories: Building and Maintaining Self Confidence