Manhattan Makeovers Blog for Attorneys, Businesspeople, and Artists

Color analysis for professional people

Most people want a color analysis for the wrong reason. They mistakenly believe it will tell them what colors look good on them. This is not the case because unfortunately most image consultants use the now discredited Color Me Beautiful system, which categorizes people in one of four seasons, a system with no empirical basis.

president of argentina

Cristina Fernández de Kirchner

The truth of the matter is that the real purpose of a color analysis should not be to tell you what colors you’ll look good in, but rather what colors will make you more effective in your profession. If you’re a socialite, a color analysis should tell you what colors will make you more effective when meeting with people at cocktail parties and social functions. Along the way you’ll also look good, but not because of some illogical reason like a seasonal color analysis, but rather because you will be highly effective in the colors in question.

Manhattan Makeovers has access to an extensive database which reveals which colors have tested best for law, medicine, academia, sales, PhDs, and numerous other professions. With this knowledge, you can be sure to be wearing a color combination that will make you excel.

What do we mean by effective?

The answer is that we mean you will be more accepted by clients, more respected by colleagues, and less offensive to decision-makers, such as judges and supervisors. The only way to know this is to test the colors in various professional environments. For example, we know that salesmen wearing blue blazers and beige pants sell more than the same men wearing gray suits. This kind of knowledge is available for almost every profession, and it is this knowledge that we share with clients.

If you are a woman and you wish to look good, we can also help you with that, of course. But we can do much more. We can also help you be more effective. And few image consultants can boast that they can do that.

BLACK OUTFITS

Black outfits, such as the one worn by Cristina Kirchner, the president of Argentina, are ineffective on most professionals because they are too severe and funereal. However, when you are the president of a country you can often bend the rules and wear what you want. Black outfits are, however, effective for short men and women, and for people who otherwise need to boost their authority.

Kirchner actually looks good in black because she has dark hair and fair skin. As a high-contrast person, she will enhance her appearance in high-contrast outfits. While the black outfit is not high contrast in and of itself, when placed against her fair skin, which is visible in her forearms and neck, it is a high-contrast outfit, similar to John Singer Sargent’s Madame X.

It goes without saying that everyone wants to look good. But for a professional it is ultimately more important to be effective than to be fashionable. This is why the critical color data we share with clients can help them improve their relations with others by making them more effective.

When we meet clients we also tell them fun information, such as what colors test best for impressing the opposite sex. Usually these outfits are completely different from the ones that are most effective at work.

Male Makeover at the Met

We like to take our clients on a journey when they get a makeover, a journey through time and space, and a personal transformation. That’s why we begin at the Met. Here you can visit places like Egypt, Europe, and America in the world of art and architecture. What we focus on is European and American art. We share our research with our clients about color and contrast analysis while showing them representative works of art from Cézanne, van Gogh, and others.

at the Met for a makeover with client

At the Met. Michael Christian (left) with client. (photo Paulina Glozman)

One of the first things we discuss is the client’s contrast level, which I also discuss in a video on this site. You can find out a lot about how to enhance your image by doing a contrast level analysis of a person. Then we show some works of art to illustrate these principles.

When we walk through the museum, we pass through exhibits from the Middle Ages, and our frame of reference changes. We allow the client to tell us what they wish to accomplish, and in this creative environment we begin to share our ideas.

When we finish looking at the works of art, we sit down for a coffee in The American Wing Café. The last time I was there I had two double espressos and a cup of tea. Then my associate and I go over the basis of our research findings. We share three decades of research on how to be more effective at work by improving various aspects of your image. We cover hairstyles, wardrobe, footwear, and accessories.

This process gives our clients a good orientation. Then we shop with them. We take them to the hairstylist first, if they wish. Then we go to Madison Avenue and Fifth Avenue and shop with them to show them the styles we recommend. They are under no obligation to buy anything since we’re not affiliated with these stores we visit. But most clients find time to make up the deficits in their wardrobe.

The beauty of starting at the Met is that it gives the whole process a wonderful, timeless appeal. It lets our creative side thrive, and it allows a client to feel relaxed and at ease as we begin to open their eyes to new possibilities for their image.

By |February 11th, 2015|Makeover|0 Comments

Testosterone and an aromatase inhibitor for women

Dr. Rebecca Glaser, MD, recently reported a successful treatment for 1,000 women using testosterone plus an aromatase inhibitor (AI), which prevents conversion to estradiol. The AI is anastrozle. The patients have been followed up for 8 years and there has significantly been no recurrence of breast cancer, indicating that this approach works to stop breast cancer, as described by Ed Friedman in The New Testosterone Treatment.

The use of testosterone as part of hormone replacement therapy is highly advantageous to women on many levels. It boosts energy, fights breast cancer, and provides other health benefits.

An article summarizing Dr. Glaser’s remarkable results can be read here: “Testosterone / anastrozole implants relieve menopausal symptoms in breast cancer survivors.”

It is important to point out that testosterone is indicated for women even if they have not had breast cancer. As Ed Friedman explains, it is likely to protect against the occurrence of breast cancer.

By |November 11th, 2014|Health|0 Comments

Sitting is bad for your health

The video that follows features James A, Levine, M.D., professor of medicine at the Mayo Clinic and a world-renowned leader in obesity research. He is co-director of the Mayo Clinic/Arizona State University Obesity Solutions Initiative.

He is also the author of a new book about the dangers of sitting. That book is filled with research that should scare everyone about sitting too much.

book by James A. Levine, GET UP!

In the following video he talks about the value of moving rather than sitting, and he explains that a sedentary lifestyle can contribute significantly to obesity.

As an image consultant, I recommend Dr. Levine’s book to everyone. It can help improve the way you look and feel, and it can do wonders for your health.

This is the video:

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dr. Joseph Mercola has also written a good article on this subject: “Walking more may be key for a longer, healthier life.”

By |October 17th, 2014|Image|0 Comments

The subliminal impact of men’s neckties

All you have to do is ask yourself whether you are affected by a man’s tie to realize that very few people have ever thought about this question. In fact, most men choose ties based on whim or guesswork. But the truth is that the tie contains a large association of subliminal messages which are being broadcast to other people. These subliminal messages are saying things about your competence, integrity, and intelligence. More importantly, your tie is a status symbol, and the most effective ties include 100 percent silk ties in certain specific designs and patterns, which I will discuss here.

By wearing the correct color and style of tie, a man can increase rapport and communication with other people. If you wear the wrong style tie, if you’re a salesman, for example, you are likely to alienate potential customers and sales will decrease. If you’re an accountant and have a high net worth client, wearing the wrong style of tie can cause him to trust you less, whereas wearing the appropriate tie for the wealthy and upper-class individual will tend to make him think you are on the same playing field, increasing trust and communication between you.

There are only six types of tie styles: rep, solid, paisley, polka dot, Ivy League, and knit. The rep is a striped tie and it works best with working-class and middle-class people, and is somewhat less effective with upper-class, aristocratic, and rich people.

Solid ties are relatively neglected by many men, who mistakenly feel that these plain ties are not sophisticated. In fact, the solid is a very sophisticated look and works with all types of people. It is also easy to match with any suit.

Paisley ties have big amoeba-like designs and are less formal and best used on days when you don’t have to make an important presentation or meet a new client. They are also good for the weekend and will work with all types of people.

Polka dot ties are effective with working-class, middle-class, and upper-class individuals, especially if you match the dot color to your shirt color. Smaller dots are more formal and effective than bigger ones, and huge dots should be avoided since they can make you look clownish.

Ivy League ties are like polka dot ties, except that instead of dots they have a repeating pattern in the form of the symbol of an Ivy League school. Other examples include a small figure inside another small figure, such as a square inside a small circle. These neckties work best when your client has graduated from an Ivy League school or if your client is ultra rich.

We will discuss silk knit ties in a future blog post.

Posture as a Class Marker

bad posture of Lou Costello in Nuck Privates

Lou Costello in Buck Privates had bad posture

Hut – hut – hut – hut! Hut – hut – hut – hut! Hut – hut – hut – hut!

The sound of Marines marching echoes in your ears if you listen for it. Marines, soldiers, sailors — even Abbott and Costello had to march when they were in the army. But you could always tell the real soldiers from the comedians because Costello’s posture was laughably poor.

In fact, posture is such an obvious marker of social class that Abbott and Costello were able to take advantage of that to get laughs in movies like Buck Privates. Unfortunately, if your posture is poor you won’t be getting laughs if you’re an attorney or any other professional; instead, you’re apt to be passed over in favor of an expert who has better posture, specifically, an upper-class stance.

Our research — conducted in law offices, college classrooms, airports, and urban neighborhoods over the past three decades — discovered trends that are significant with respect to posture and social class: it turns out that members of the upper class stand, walk, and sit tall, while working class individuals slouch, bend, and have a more curved posture in comparison.

We conclude one thing from this research, namely that posture is a clear marker of social class and that the way you stand, sit, and walk is a dead giveaway to new clients, judges, and colleagues about where you fall in the social hierarchy.

When we do image consultations, we offer optional help on posture for clients. Not everyone is interested in this aspect of their image; but they should be. If you have middle-class or working-class posture, you are a walking, talking advertisement for failure rather than success, especially when dealing with people from the upper class.

For this reason, we offer clients the option of improving their posture through various tested methods, including horseback riding lessons. There is no question that these lessons, which you can see in the accompanying video, can result in better overall posture because the proper posture for riding a horse will carry over into your professional life.

“I’ve seen it many times,” says a New York riding instructor. “People with poor posture take riding lessons and they walk out that same day with better posture.”

The best way to avoid being a walking advertisement for failure is to mimic an upper-class posture. Horseback riding and other simple exercises can improve your posture and elevate you in the minds of others, ultimately leading to smoother interactions both on and off the job.

By |June 10th, 2014|Image|1 Comment

Age and Image

Bobby Fischer

Bobby Fischer

Bobby Fischer was a teenager when he became the U.S. Chess Champion. Almost all the international grandmasters were in their twenties and thirties when they reached the apex of their careers. What does this mean for YOU and your image?

A study of “The Age Factor in Master Chess” by Ernest Rubin, published in The American Statistician (1960) found an “extremely significant” difference between young and older players in terms of skill and chess mastery.

There is a similar correlation between success in sports and age. The author of the above-mentioned study found that “few athletes in baseball, basketball, football, soccer, boxing or track, to mention a few sports, reach their fortieth birthday on the active list.”

Having co-written a recent book on hormones — The New Testosterone Treatment (2013) — it is obvious to me that the reason for the diminution in sports and chess skill with age is due to the well-known decline in hormones that occurs with increasing age.

What does this have to do with your image? Well, really everything! As you age into your late thirties and forties and beyond, your hormone levels typically decline. Testosterone, estrogen, DHEA, pregnenolone and other hormone levels decline in almost all people, with increasing diminution in cognitive, mental, and physical strength. There is only so much that can be accomplished by cosmetic enhancements, such as changing wardrobe, footwear, and hairstyles. In many cases supplementing with hormones can increase mental and physical strength and bring a client new youthfulness.

For this reason we are able to refer interested clients to anti-aging doctors who can help them safely achieve teenage hormones levels. Such clients can expect to see dramatic improvements in their mood, endurance, and consequently in their image. Others will perceive them as being more alert and youthful.

The fear that hormone replacement is harmful or carcinogenic is unfounded when one uses natural bioidentical hormone replacement therapy.

While not all clients wish to pursue this option, those in the know will at least consider the suggestion and will investigate our advice to consider this as one of many methods to improve their image after the age of forty.

References
Friedman, Edward, with William Cane (2013). The New Testosterone Treatment: How You and Your Doctor Can Fight Breast Cancer, Prostate Cancer and Alzheimers. (Prometheus Books).

Rubin, E. (1960). The Age Factor in Master Chess. The American Statistician, 14, 19-21.

By |April 5th, 2014|Image|0 Comments

Accountant Wardrobe Advice

skirt suit

Skirt suit

The majority of female accountants realize that they must dress conservatively in order to be successful, but very few of them are aware that there is research about what is successful in their profession. The fact is that this information is not available in glamour and fashion magazines or on television shows, all of which cater to the popular taste and never present information about the actual effectiveness of garments, footwear, and hairstyles.

Manhattan Makeovers was established to provide the answer to questions by female accountants (and other professionals, both male and female) about what items of wardrobe are actually effective. In order to gather this research we have conducted surveys and done real world tests on various items of clothing for men and women. We have also tested footwear and hairstyles for effectiveness in various professions, including accounting, banking, medicine, teaching, and science. Because of this database of information, we can tell you exactly what will work for you if you are an accountant and what will be ineffective.

There are certain colors, first of all, that must be worn if you are to be effective. These colors do not depend on your hair or skin color. The discredited Color Me Beautiful book and technique will not tell you which colors are most effective. We provide our clients with this key information within twenty minutes of meeting them. They then know which color jackets, suits, and skirts are most effective. They also know which color dresses and skirts to avoid.

Certain colors, we have discovered, are more effective for women who work in the financial industry. This includes accountants, bankers, and women in other financial services. Wearing the right colors conveys to clients, colleagues, and supervisors that you are intelligent, trustworthy, and competent. Yes, your wardrobe communicates much more than a sense of style. It unconsciously speaks to issues of trustworthiness and integrity. Anyone in the banking or accounting industry must convey this kind of message.

ACCOUNTANT STYLE

The best style for an accountant is conservative. But exactly what does this mean? Does it mean skirts or pants? Does it mean a gray suit or a black suit? Does it mean a white blouse or a pale blue blouse with polka dots? Does it mean wearing flats, pumps, or heels? Does it mean a hairstyle that is long or short or somewhere in between? And should an accountant wear makeup to work?

All these questions have been answered quite definitively by Manhattan Makeovers and its fieldwork research team. When we provide a makeover for an accountant we present her with all the results of this research so that she can instantly make the right selection from her existing wardrobe, and so that she can acquire any new items she needs to make up any wardrobe deficits that might exist.

The hairstyle of an accountant is also important, which is why we take our clients to a professional hair salon where they can get the proper cut, color, and styling for their profession. We always advise clients what has tested well for accountants, and they can then decide which hairstyle they would like to have based upon this research and their existing hair. Our colorists and stylists are the most trusted names in New York hairstyling.

The bottom line is that in order to be effective an accountant must look the part. Only research can tell you what will be effective, and only Manhattan Makeovers has that research today for the New York accountant. Our clients also travel to us from around the world and usually stay in New York for three days for their complete makeover.