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6 Grooming Mistakes To Avoid

Most good grooming is common sense. Careless mistakes can derail your appearance and impact your image in the blink of an eye. It’s easy to overlook these little details but they don’t go unnoticed and they’re speaking volumes about us so here are 6 grooming mistakes I try to avoid. I’m updating this post from a few years ago with a few new ideas.

Clean your eyeglasses every morning.

Clean your sunglasses as well. I use these generic prepackaged wipes from Target. I started with the name brand then switched to generic because they work just as well and why waste the money? My optometrist tells me a spray cleaner and a soft cloth just spreads the smudges around…which I found to be true. I also keep a few wipes in my car and handbag for that inevitable thumbprint that lands front and center in my field of vision.


Wipe the tops of your shoes.

Some people are so meticulous they wipe their shoes clean after each wearing. If you’re that person, skip this step and probably the rest of the list too. Gently clean suede shoes or boots with a suede brush. With leather, it can be as simple as using a paper towel. The point is to remove dust. Polishing shoes is more time intensive so a weekly, monthly or seasonal thing. I like to take my boots and leather shoes to a shoe repairman at the end of each season. He checks the soles for needed repairs and gives them a professional polishing. They come back looking like new.


Lint roll yourself.


Look for errant dog hair, dryer fuzz, shmutz (technical term) and general crud (ditto). Sometimes you can even remove fuzz pills from your sweaters…if you’re lucky. I roll across my shoulders, down my arms and legs, then get the backside. If wearing a coat, hat, and scarf, I give them the same treatment. In a pinch, a piece of tape will work.


Check for chipped nail polish.

This counts for toenails too, if they’re going to be seen. If the polish can be touched up to blend, fine. If not, remove what’s there. Bare nails make a better statement than chipped polish. Even the most beautiful hands look tacky with chipped nail polish. Especially if it’s colored.


Be sure your perfume is not overpowering.

A signature fragrance is wonderful, even preferable, but make sure it’s not too strong. After we wear a fragrance for weeks, months or years,  we can become desensitized to it. A light application is safest so we’re not suffocating people in elevators, restaurants, airplanes etc.


Buy and use a sweater shaver.


This simple little tool takes seconds to buzz off sweater pills which inevitably happen under arms, on the inside of your sleeves…anywhere a sweater is rubbed. Even the finest wool can pill, but a quick, careful shave makes your sweater look almost new. I got mine at Target.


What can you add to the list?

You may also enjoy 10 Things That Are Making You Look Older

Thanks for reading and remember to wear what makes you feel confident.



  1. The lint roller is my go to because I wear black and have a dog.

  2. I hate to admit this, but every few days, I must tweeze just a few errant hairs from my chin. Humbled to admit that truth, but better that than the humiliation of having strangers stare at my chin.

  3. True all of these! I keep a microfiber cloth for glass in my car and clean my glasses every time I drive…. Which is back and forth to work, at least. I don’t need any liquid, so it’s easy. I can’t stand dirty glasses on me or others. It’s amazing how quickly they get dirty!

  4. Constance Ruggieri says:

    I think you should try contacts instead of glasses. None of them looked that good. You are so beautiful without them. I’m 83 and 5′ 5″ tall weigh 120 and wear 4/6 clothes. I love wearing snug jeans but always with a slightly loose shirt that goes just below my waist. I always wear long sleeves as I am a little vain and my arms don’t look that great. you are right about the riding boots. Bought a pair in Italy 11 years ago that fit my somewhat skinny leg. They are great with skinny jeans. You have an awesome column. Love your advice. I have very thin hair because of a thyroid problem (take meds for it) Any advice for a cute hair style?

    1. Southside Girl says:

      I agree that Jennifer looks beautiful without her glasses, but I do like her in them as well! Love the light blue frame on you, Jennifer! 🙂

  5. Beth Leggett says:

    Great helpful hints.

  6. Lipstick on your teeth 🤦‍♀️

  7. lisa mickey says:

    I believe in the rule of Three. I always wear a cardi or a long vest with a shirt & then a scarf or a long necklace.. I’m not big into bracelets, but they can be the Three 🙂

  8. I think too much makeup makes us look older. I have never been much for makeup but I have friends that you could just scrape it off, I believe and have been told that they look much older than I. So I think that is a good lesson.
    I love your site and read it every day without fail. Thank you for all the wonderful tips.

    1. You’re right. Very heavy makeup can be aging. I love and wear lots of makeup but try to use a light have with it.

    2. Carol Milnar says:

      I just joined your site this morning & read all your tips on petite fashion. Boy….what an education. I love that you post pics of “to do & not to do”.

      My two cents about grooming. I know many ladies that think in order to make their eyes look bigger & more wide open, they feel the need to cake on the eyeliner around the entire eye.
      Dead give away! Less is more!

  9. New on this site and loving it. All your posts are very helpful and the comments from followers so positive. Very enjoyable and refreshing. You look great !

  10. I’m in agreement with all the above! Such a good list. I would add good posture. Make a point to pull your shoulders back so you don’t appear stoop shouldered. Good posture makes you look about 5 years younger!

  11. patricia a gale says:

    Clean and WHITE teeth are so necessary. Amazed how older people let their teeth get so yellow.
    Whitening your teeth takes 10 years off your looks.
    And for those that still smoke?? cigarette smoke/smell is so offensive.

    1. Yellowing teeth is very aging. You’re right. Sadly if a dentist has made you a crown to match your yellowed teeth you’re stuck never being able to lighten the rest. Crowns won’t bleach.

      1. Southside Girl says:

        THIS! I am going to have to invest thousands of dollars if I want to brighten my smile. It’s the curse of the crowns, as well as enamel loss.

    2. FYI Sometimes loss of enamel is the cause of yellowing of your teeth. In that case whitening strips, mouthwash, etc. will make no difference. I know this because my husband’s have become yellow and he consulted his dentist. It is what it is.

      1. That’s my case as well. Losing enamel and not happy with yellow teeth but dental insurance doesn’t cover veneers & veneers don’t last forever- just like crowns they have to be replaced is what my dentist told me. So no veneers for me.

  12. It is always such a pleasure to read your posts that are filled with good tips and clothes that are age appropriate and current. This post and comments was great. One product that was recommended to me, prior to our 50th wedding anniversary trip to Niagara Falls, was Urban Decay All Nighter makeup setting spray. Not a product that I thought I’d continue to use but like it so much and use it daily over my makeup. Way better then powder and gives a nice finish.

    1. I will try that! I really like a lot of Urban Decay products.

  13. The eyeglasses… Great tip! Dirty glasses make me think the person is unaware or doesn’t care. Lint roller…. FYI, when I die, the autopsy will say she died of dog hair. I do my best! xoxo, Brenda

  14. …just saw this post. I’m late, but thought I’d drop my two cents in. I’m in total agreement with the magnifying mirror and using it to find those little stray hairs popping up in hitherto hairless places or escaping from one’s nose. It’s not just the gents who have problems with overly exuberant nose hairs.

    1. Oh yes! The nose hairs! Next its hair on our ears and I will not look like a gnome. They will be groomed off too!

  15. You do look fab Jennifer! I always opt for neutrals but if I wear colour around my face I look so much better.

  16. Karen on Bainbridge Island says:

    Many, many years ago I read something that I’ve never forgotten about how we should present ourselves to the world as we age. The key was not to try and look younger but to look contemporary. Wear clothing that is in style, but still age appropriate. Style your hair in a look that is current, and update your eyeglass frames as styles change.

    I appreciate your comments as well regarding clean glasses, clean shoes, fuzz-less sweaters, etc.

    1. Those are all great tips. I never want to try to look younger, ever! I’m proud of my age and just want to look the best I can. The eyeglass cleaning is usually overlooked but makes a huge difference. We’ve all seen the little old lady with eyeglasses so smeared, we wonder how she can see out of them!

  17. I love your lists to keep us ‘pulled together’ Jen! I completely agree. I’ve never tried the lens wipes and you know that’s on my list now. I work in a professional environment 4 days a week and I must admit the nails are my biggest..struggle. I tend to wear more natural shades because they chip so easily. I agree, 60 seconds to take it off and go natural is better than going out with chips. A magnification mirror is essential and I’m upgrading to one with lights…there is just so much going on that I need to keep an eye on. LOL!
    TGIF-looking fab girl!
    xx, Heather
    PS-I’ve noticed a little more attention to detail when shaving underarms is good at this stage. The shape of that area seems to have changed-maybe that’s just me…;)

    1. No, it’s not just you about the underarm area. Mine has gotten “longer” shall we say? Sagging? Horrors!!.. but probably yes.
      Just this weekend I discovered my 7X isn’t strong enough anymore! There is way too much going on I need to see and “get a grip on” (tweeze).

  18. Barb Fullerton says:

    Great tips! I feel better already!

  19. I’m in total agreement about the care our face deserves!! It does take dedication, but we deserve it. I’ve got 5X, 7X and 10X magnifying mirrors. All have their uses:) And always at my dressing table by the window!! xoxo

  20. You are so right on everything. I would absolutely never let my nails or toes go, this is top priority for me. Hair must be CLEAN! And now I pat moisturizer on top of my make-up, when I’m completely finished to give me the added moisture I need to keep my skin fresh. Yes, the under-the-eye area especially. But young skin is never completely matte so we should take a cue from that. Also, buy the best products possible for skincare and makeup.
    I would never dream of going to bed without cleaning my makeup off and toning & glopping my face & neck with the best night cream I can buy. I’ve always done this and years of dedication have paid off bigtime. I put my makeup on with a 10X mag mirror in front of a window so I know what I actually look like!! Good post, good advice. Love you…

  21. Deborah Montgomery says:

    With a cat, tape rolling is essential! I have one in the bath, the kitchen, and the car. I am guilty of going too long between cleaning my eyeglasses, though.
    In the winter, moisturize hands and cuticles often. Dry, scaly hands aren’t a good look.

    1. Yes! Hands and cuticles show so much about us too. Lizard hands are never a good look. Great tip!

    1. What’s powder:))?
      It’s an, “I’m an old woman” beacon!!

  22. You always look great. I’m well turned out except for the dog hair. Tan dog and I wear head to toe Black a lot. I’m always covered!

    1. The dog hair is a challenge. I also wear black most days, so I have a small roller in my car plus my dog is Black and Tan 🙂
      My daughter has a Pug who sheds like crazy…when I visit her…the battle is lost.

  23. A high magnification mirror is a must. Find the brightest spot in the brightest room and take a couple minutes to check for errant hairs on cheeks and neck. Oh my goodness it’s better to find it yourself than to have someone transfixed by it while you’re telling them about your tuna casserole recipe!

    1. You are singing my song Brenhna! Observe my battle tools HERE

      1. Jennifer, the link to your tools takes me to a “not found” page. I’d really like to see that page. Can you fix the link?

        Thanks in advance.

      2. What tool, Gayle?

  24. This is such a good post and so helpful, not to mention things we don’t all think about. I am so bad with my nails because I let them start chipping and wait a few days which does look really bad with a bold color. I also think having a quick hair style that works and looks polished when you’re in a rush. Scarves are great for dressing up a casual look too.


    1. Hair can totally make or break our look! Great point Dale. Scarves are a favorite…even covering my hair in a pinch.

  25. For those of us with short hair, don’t forget to run the razor over the back of your neck every week or so. Also as my eyes weaken, I actually bring the magnifying mirror over to a sunny window just to make sure I’m not stepping out with some smear of make-up or mascara.

    1. Very good point. I remember doing that when I wore my hair short. The sides of my neck too! Bright, natural light is a great one. My dressing table is in front of a window. I can never see well enough in a bathroom.

  26. I’ve found out that as I age I look so grubby without a shave and to wear reading glasses when I do shave. I’ve got to get one of those sweater trimmers.
    You’re looking FAB Jennifer!

    1. Dearest GSL,
      Thank you so much!! Funny you should mention glasses while shaving…
      It’s helpful when I’m doing my legs these day!!
      Great point.

  27. Great tips. I’ve found that an edgy haircut (cut regularly) and groomed eye brows eyebrows make such a difference in how I look. The eye brow thing I was persuaded into by the woman on our local Bobby Brown counter. I had never used an eyebrow product…I guess thinking I didn’t want to look like I had drawn-on eyebrows ala Carol Burnett as Nora Desmond. But darkening them a bit with an eye brow brush and brow definer from Laura Mercier works wonders.

    1. Eyebrows are SO crucial. They frame the face and give me definition. If I do minor makeup…it’s brows, mascara and lips!! I love the Laura Mercier…and as a bonus it’s cruelty free…important in my book.

  28. Great tips Jennifer and I would add less ,makeup overall and little or no powder.
    have a great day!

    The Arts by Karena

    1. Powder is the enemy in my book too:)

      1. I do powder but very lightly. I have to or I look like an oil slick landed on my face. lol

      2. If you’re lucky enough to have oily skin, you’ll fair well in the wrinkle department!! It’s a good thing.

  29. Some good advice. I aspire but don’t quite manage all of them. I have tried the sweater shaver but find that a small sweater comb works just as well and seem to be kinder to cashmere.

    1. I am extra careful with my cashmere too, but this shaver seems pretty gentle.

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