Every woman has an off day, where her choice of eyeliner clashed with the shadow, or the heels she couldn't wait to break out were just slightly too tall for those particular pants. Even the most stylish women you know have had missteps along the way, either because they had a lazy/bloated/overslept/between-laundry-cycles day, or decided to take a risk and just took it too far. These minor sins are forgivable because no one is perfect, and making an effort to look stylish every day is taxing, and sometimes falls by the wayside when compounded with a rough week at work, a personal problem or the rare but dreaded morning that one oversleeps.
However, at least when applied to appearance-conscious women, these mistakes are just that - mistakes. It is rare that any of my friends or my female relatives will purposefully step out of the house in whiskered jeans, Uggs, or with unwashed hair in a ponytail, but when it happens, it's either an accident or a case in which 30 extra seconds would have been too long.
Sometimes, when cruising celebrity rags online (guilty pleasure, hello), I come across pictures of figures of song and stage looking as if they are trying to be unattractive. And not unattractive in the get-attention-on-Oscars-night way. I'm talking about looks that I can't come up with a metaphor, simile, antonym, alliteration or onomatopoeia for, even though heavens knows I tried. It's because the outfits and/or hair and makeup are just that heinous - they defy explanation. Maybe this will clear the idea up...
Avril Lavigne. One of my favorite cases of "Pretty Girl, Terrible Taste." I'm sure she lashes out in these hideous outfits to reinforce her badass-punk persona (eye roll). But Gwen Stefani circa 1996 looked more badass, and way more sexy, in a tank top, plaid cargos and Vans. But between this dress, the shoe choice, the preposterous highlights, and RuPaul-esque makeup, I realize she's not worthy nor capable of being saved. What a waste of a tiny figure. OK, if I look at this picture anymore I might tear my hair out.
Poor Lily Allen. This girl cannot catch a break. I realize it must be unfortunate to live in the shadow of another bluesy songstress from England, especially one more memorable and talented, if more than a recreational drug user. But the difference between Miz Winehouse and Miss Allen - I get the impression Lily tries a lot harder. Here she is trying to look glamorous on the red carpet, and something about it (probably the hair) just isn't striking the right chord. I see this on her a lot. Like my Calculus teacher used to say: "You're on the right track." Which for me, and Lily, translated into: "Just forget it and try something else."
I don't think Brittany Murphy is the next Meryl Streep, although her performances in "Clueless" and "Uptown Girls" are sweet and light enough to substitute for Frosted Flakes on a Saturday morning. I do, however, think she was beautiful once she left her Tai phase. Unfortunately, she took one step too many in the generic-Hollywood-blond direction, and got Restylane in a really obvious way. Could just be a bad picture, but Brittany, honey, please - you were great the way you were. Don't do this again.
And now this. Apparently, Beth Ditto is the singer of a punk band in England, and according to certain sites, totally comfortable with her body. This is to be commended, but let's face it ladies, no one, no matter what size, looks good in skin-tight pink lame. If you're a size 0, you get the "You could do better" reaction, and if you're not a size zero... well, let's just say it's only a degree of awful, and the right side of the bell curve is exhibited here. As someone who was undeniably chubby in high school, I can relate this girl and applaud her confidence. But I wish she would try to not only be big, but big and beautiful. Try to look good, whether you're big or small. Everyone can do better than pink lame.