The golden rule for hot and humid weather is simplicity. Your grooming begins with personal hygiene. It is best to wear cotton underwear during summer. Loose, light clothing is also comfortable. Changing of clothes daily is a must.
Go for serene colours
For your clothes, simple lines and pastel, serene colours would be suitable. Go for clean cuts, with a minimum of detail. Avoid frills and flounces. Blue jeans never go out of fashion, but try jeans, in other colours too. Another cool trick is to use two shades of the same colour, like two shades of silver blue or powder pink. During the day, subtle colours actually make you look cool, so go for gray, beige, ivory, lemon, leaf green or pista green and white of course.
Know about fabrics
Materials like cotton, organza, chiffon, crepes, georgettes or lace look summery and feel comfortable. Try a flowing chiffon or georgette top for evening wear. Avoid synthetic fabrics. Flowing styles look and feel cool. Avoid tight figure hugging dresses. Skirts can be most comfortable during summer. Large prints or bold abstract prints should be avoided. Candy stripes and small baby checks in soft pastel shades, trimmed with lace, look attractive. Try a top with a denim skirt or jeans, or kurta in small checks in light blue, light pink or light green. Trim the sleeves or at button-closing with white cotton lace and see how appealing it can look. Geometric patterns look cooler. Flowery prints, with small flowers on a white, cream or pale background can look good for hot weather too.
Make your own fashion statement
You can follow traditional, Western or fusion. You need some basic clothes, like a few pairs of pants, jeans or skirts worn with various kinds of tops, T-shirts or blouses. Accessories can also make the outfit look special. You can either match colours, use contrasting colours, or use a theme, like traditional handlooms or prints. Ethnic fabrics can be translated into modern styles.
Where trimmings go, avoid bright gold or garish silver, even for a gala summer night. Avoid heavy work during summer. Trimmings with lace may be more appropriate. Churidar ensembles for the evening can look cooler when they are in one colour. With it wear a chiffon dupatta with light trimmings, or tiny sequins. Long cloth sling bags in bright shades can look good and brighten up your outfit. Try sling bags with mirror or bead work for the evenings. Big bags are in.
Cut down on jewellery
Choose one striking accessory. Silver has a cooler look than gold. Light stone studded jewellery is very much in fashion. Avoid tight chokers around the neck. Long, loose dangling chains or beads are great for summer. Large hoop (ring) earrings are suitable accessories for young girls. Keep your hair simply styled and away from the face. Try to keep the nape of the neck free of hair. If you have long hair, put it up with the help of a large hair clip, ribbon, co-ordinating them with your clothes.
Pay attention to your feet
After washing your feet dry thoroughly and apply talcum powder. If you wear closed shoes, sprinkle some in the shoes too. In summer slippers and open sandals are best, as they allow the perspiration to evaporate. However, open footwear attracts dirt. After a hot day, soak your feet in cold water with some salt in it.
Keep to light fragrances
During summer avoid concentrated ones. A light cologne may be enough. Floral or lemony fragrances are just right in summer.
Could you tell me the correct method of application of mascara. What kind of mascara would be suitable for a long time wear?
— Anuradha Sundararaman, Bangalore
Roll-on mascara is easy to apply. You should also have a small brush, to brush out the lashes, after applying mascara. Remember to change your roll-on mascara after 3 to 4 months. Too much of it will make the lashes stick together. Use a hand mirror. Apply it in two or three light coats, using upward strokes for the upper lashes and downward strokes for the lower ones. Wait for the first coat to dry and then apply the second one. After applying the final coat, brush out the lashes to separate them. To make the eyelashes appear thicker, you can dust a little loose powder between the coats.