Shopping

Rear view of woman in swimsuit holding shopping bags.

Resveralife Look Well: Summer Swimsuit Shopping Made Easy

One time of year strikes fear in the hearts of even the bravest of women:  swimsuit shopping time. There are so many strikes against you before you even begin searching for the perfect suit. Dressing rooms are cramped with horrendous lighting and your body is probably pasty white from being covered up all winter. Swimsuit shopping is definitely one of the most dreaded tasks faced when the weather gets warmer. Fear not! These five tips from Resveralife will help you get into the right mindset, and the right suit, without the stress.

Before You Go
A little preparation can go a long way when it comes to swimsuit shopping. One of the best ways to reduce stress and self-consciousness before you even hit the store is to invest some time in a bit of grooming and pampering. Shaving your legs gives you one less cause for concern in the dressing room. You can even take the pampering a bit further by applying self-tanner prior to going out. These two simple acts can be a huge ego boost when it comes to stripping down in the dressing room.

Beautiful woman in a swimsuit.

Know Your Body
Just like there is not one pair of jeans that magically fits every body type, there is no swimsuit that fits every single body and looks magnificent. Spend some time looking at your body and determining what your general shape is. Also, if you have any areas that you want to hide, look for specific cuts that aim at achieving a bit of camouflage. Alternately, there are specific suits that highlight body parts or areas that you want to flaunt. Here’s a super brief guide to suits that fit a few of the most common concerns when swimsuit shopping:

  • Stomach – If you want to hide your stomach a bit, look for swimsuits that have ruching or shirring. These details are forgiving. Additionally, one of the trendiest ways to hit the beach right now is the retro fit suit. Retro suits are especially helpful with concealing weight carried in the lower part of the stomach.
  • Large Bust – Even if you don’t necessarily want to conceal your cleavage, there are certain difficulties that arise with an ample bosom. Look for bra-styled tops, particularly if they are molded cups, and always go for adjustable straps. Some swimsuits are sold by bra size; these can be a great place to start looking for a suit that will be stylish and supportive.
  • Small Bust – Those with less chest are some of the only people for whom bandeau tops work perfectly. If you aren’t into that style, tops with details or texture like ruffles or fringe can give the illusion of curves. Suits that have bra-style padding or push-up tops help create cleavage if you don’t have much naturally.
  • Curvy Body – Curvy bodies are beautiful, but they can be problematic to fit as they are fuller in the breasts, hips and butt. It can seem difficult to find a suit that highlights and fits your shape without looking matronly. Suits that have color blocking enhance and embrace a curvy shape as do retro cut swimsuits.

Young caucasian female shopping for bikini with friend.

Grab a Friend
While the idea of displaying your body to another person during a swimsuit try-on session may make you cringe, it’s actually a great idea. A friend is there to give you an honest, and hopefully tactful, appraisal of how a suit looks on your body. Additionally, if things don’t turn out as you had hoped or you get frustrated and feel defeated, a friend is right there to pick you back up and make you feel awesome about yourself again.

Get Moving
When trying on a bathing suit, the mindset is generally to get in and out as quickly as possible so the experience is as painless as can be. However, your body standing still is much different than your body in motion, and you probably aren’t going to be merely striking a pose in your suit. To get a true idea of whether or not a suit is right for you, it’s important to move around a bit to see how the suit moves with you.

See a Specialist
While large retailers offer a wide variety of swimsuits, if you are having trouble finding one that fits well, head to a swimwear boutique. Sales staff at a specialized boutique will be able to assess your body and address your concerns. A swimsuit may cost a bit more at a boutique, but if the result is the perfect swimsuit that enhances your beauty, the extra cost is well worth it.

Swimsuit shopping may not be the most fun task for warm weather, but it doesn’t have to be completely overwhelming. Follow these tips for easy, stress-free swimsuit shopping.

Woman with credit card in front of laptop

Resveralife Reports: Consumer Research a Threat to Retailers?

We live in an age of instantaneous information, connection and satisfaction. We get what we want, when we want it. As consumers, it has always been important to be informed when it comes to our purchases. We want to know what we are buying, what benefits the item or service might have, any disadvantages that the item may have and what performance we can expect from the thing we are spending our hard earned money on. Whether it is a silk camisole or a washing machine, we like to be savvy shoppers. But does our increased availability of information and our knowledge of products threaten retailers?

Recently, Google partnered with Ipsos MediaCT and Sterling Brands to see what impact technology has on consumption and shopping habits. Included in this study was the question of whether or not consumer research is damaging to retailers. The common belief among brick and mortar retailers is that the primary reason we go into stores is simply to conduct a transaction. Retailers assume that we have already completed our research and as such, that we are fully informed about their product. They assume we are there only to pay for our items. However, the research suggests that the retailers who believe all we want is a sales transaction are doing damage to themselves.

The data gathered by Google, Ipsos MediaCT and Sterling Brands, suggests that as consumers, we expect more than ever from our retailers. We still visit stores, and online shops, to compare and to stimulate interest in items. The research suggests that while we are more informed than ever, we still look to retailers to be an authority on their products and to provide use with a shopping experience. Google, Ipsos MediaCT and Sterling Brands found that just because we perform searches and gather information does not mean that we are turning our backs on retailers. We simply want more out of them. We visit our favorite stores not only because we like the merchandise that is sold there, but also because we enjoy and savor the shopping experience in these stores.

Retailers would do well to take heed of this information. The majority of us visit stores to get an idea of what we want to buy prior to conducting research. Once we have seen the item, then we go into detective mode and try to learn as much as possible about what we intend to buy. Our research doesn’t necessarily hurt retailers, though it does affect what we want from them. Because we can pull together so much information on a product, we expect our retailers to be able to still tell us more. Why buy something when the retailer seems less knowledgeable about the product than we are? We expect retailers to be experts in their products and services. We also anticipate that retailers will provide us with a personalized shopping experience.

Being an informed consumer is important, and some of the burden certainly does rest on us. However, retailers also need to remember that customers want more than just information and details on products. We want to feel valued and important. When it comes to shopping we want more than product specifications, we want to have an enitre experience when it comes to shopping.

Shopping and looking at herself in the mirror

Resveralife Live Well: Shopping and Self-Esteem

We have all heard of people indulging in a little “retail therapy.” This common maxim is used to describe shopping as a means of increasing our current moods or ridding ourselves of some stress. As it turns out, the idea of shopping being related to our psychology and self-esteem is not quite as far-fetched as we may have originally thought. As a culture we practice what is known sociologically as conspicuous consumption. Essentially, conspicuous consumption is spending money on goods that are intended to demonstrate our social status. Often, conspicuous consumption refers to the purchase of expensive or luxury items, which are recognized as prestigious status symbols. Studies conducted recently indicate that “retail therapy” is not just a term thrown around when we want to feel better about ourselves by buying. In fact, it seems that our spending habits, particularly of luxury items, are directly related to our self-esteem.

Researchers Niro Sivanathan, assistant professor at the London Business School, and Nathan Pettit, of Cornell University, conducted clinical studies in a lab that were intended to delve into the psyche of what our spending really says about our self-esteem. The results of these studies confirm that we are far more inclined to spend, especially on higher priced items, when we are experiencing periods of low-self-esteem. Why are we buying particularly when we are feeling down? One of the reasons indicated by the studies suggests that we buy in order to create an impressive exterior sense that we are well off. The second reason truly is retail therapy: we shop when we want to soothe internal pain regarding how we perceive ourselves.

Quite simply, psychological forces impact our decision to shop. We all face a great number of challenges daily, and the blows to our egos can be tough to take. It is in these moments that, according to researchers Sivanathan and Pettit, we desire to increase our conspicuous consumption. Additionally, it is interesting to note that the research conducted also indicated that not only do we spend more, but we do so paying mostly with credit cards when our self-esteem is low. The general hypothesis is that using credit cards as a means to purchase high-end goods helps us decrease any guilt we associate with spending large amounts of money.

When we say we are indulging in retail therapy, it really is a truth. Our self-esteem and attitudes towards ourselves influence our shopping habits. We turn to shopping as a means to alleviate stress and as an attempt to improve our perceptions of who we are. Self-esteem can of course be improved by means other than shopping, and it is advisable to learn other habits of coping with stress and low self-esteem. While shopping definitely does bolster our self-esteem, in the long-run it is not a permanent fix. Grabbing some friends and heading to the mall for a day of retail therapy is totally fine. However, it is important to remember that material possessions do not define who we are as people.