Accessorize--With a New Man

Dear Dategirl, I'm a research scientist and have always been incredibly clueless about "girly" things. My husband has been going through a stressful time at work, and has started to pick on my appearance. I know I need to learn how to dress better, put on makeup, and figure out something to do with my hair, but where do I even start? Are there people you can hire to help you learn such things? —Nerd Girl You can bet your ass there are people you can pay to help foxify you. But I'll get to that in a minute. You mention that you've always been incredibly nerdy and unconcerned with hair, makeup, and the like. Which means when you met your husband you weren't exactly going to be mistaken for a Kardashian. (Not that they're necessarily prettier than you—I just looked in the dictionary under "high maintenance" and found them.) What bothers me is that you say your husband is going through a rough time, and so to deal with his difficulties he's decided to find fault with you. There is absolutely nothing wrong with wanting to stay attracted to and attractive for your spouse. If it's your appearance that's suddenly making him unhappy, then he needs to discuss it in a constructive, caring manner. Just as telling someone they're fat often backfires and makes them eat more, mocking and picking would have me busting out the sweatpants and Crocs. Unfortunately, couples often fall into this trap. After all, it's easier for him to focus on your mom jeans and overgrown eyebrows than to come to terms with the fact that the guy who used to be his assistant is now his boss. You need to sit his ass down and get to the bottom of what's really bugging him. If he's a more science-oriented type, he may not be that in touch with his feelings, and could be unaware of his general prickishness. I don't mean to make you paranoid here, but I also wonder if he's fighting off an attraction to someone else, and in his own ham-handed way trying to give you a leg up on the competition. Either way, you need to know and he needs to stop. However, you sound like you want to work on your game anyway, and as far as style goes, that's easy. First, look around at your friends. Is there anyone whose look you particularly admire? If you like their haircut, ask them where they have it done and make an appointment. If your friends are no help, check out salon reviews online. You can hire an actual makeup artist to help you navigate the world of cosmetics, but department stores have staff who are trained and free, as long as you buy some product. Make sure you tell them to go easy, because you're an amateur and the last thing you need is to be fucking around with things like mink lashes and rhinestone faux-moles. Department stores also have personal shoppers who'll pull clothes in your size and help you figure out a flattering style. I hope it goes without saying that your man should pay for at least part of this makeover. But mostly, you need to convince your husband to quit being such an asshole. Because otherwise, he'll end up with a well-coiffed wife dressed in cute outfits, wearing fab makeup, and accessorizing with a brand-new man.

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