When I'm home for the holidays, I dread going just about anywhere in my New Jersey town. See, my town is small. It's so tiny that it isn't even big enough to be called a town. (It's technically a borough.)
Having grown up in such a small place, I basically can't do anything when I'm home without running into someone I know. As a result, I'm always convinced I'm going to see my high school nemesis or that boy who made fun of me in middle school.
Even so, I know I have it easy. Unlike many of my friends, I don't have to worry about seeing any former hometown SOs. So, yes, I may have to produce a readily impressive explanation of what I'm doing and where I'm living these days, but at least I don't have to worry too much about looking hot. That's a phenomenon saved especially for your ex.
But let it be an issue no more! Here are 10 tricks to look hot, fast when you know you'll see your ex while you're home for the holidays.
1. Make sure you have oil-absorbing sheets on you.
The last thing you want your ex to take away from your run-in is that you've devolved into a greasy, shiny mess. But let's be honest, after you've been holiday shopping, it's hard to keep that shine away.
Lucky for you, oil-absorbing sheets exist. Have them handy so you can blot the grease away from your face quickly and effectively. In the tragic event that you run out of cloths — gasp! — a napkin (NOT a moisturized tissue) will also do the trick.
2. Pack dry shampoo in your purse.
We're all guilty of getting complacent with our hair when we're home for the holidays and our parents are dutifully taking care of us.
But that doesn't mean we have to play victim to this complacency. All we have to do is pack the ultimate miracle product in our purse: dry shampoo. As long as we're carrying Batiste Dry Shampoo, our hair can be spontaneously refreshed whenever we need an extra dose of glam.
3. And use hand cream to tame any flyaway hairs.
When you're driving with the windows down, or walking in and out of stores with fluctuating humidity levels, flyaway hairs are inevitable. Your hair just isn't meant to stay in place.
Instead of opting for a hairspray that will make your hair immovable, just use a dab of hand cream to tame those pesky flyaway hairs for good.
4. Always wear shoes with heels.
Nothing will give you more satisfaction than looking down on your ex — literally. While you're walking around, wear shoes with a little heel to give you an extra boost.
5. Try to consume less salt while you're home to avoid bloating.
Realistically, you aren't going to embark on a full-fledged diet in September just to look good while you're home for the holidays. That would be crazy.
What is NOT crazy, however, is watching your salt intake while you're home. Substituting certain salty foods for more lightly seasoned fare can help you avoid the bloating and puffiness we've all experienced.
I do want to stress one important caveat: Don't worry about salt during Thanksgiving or any other big holiday meal. No ONE is important enough to warrant your skipping the stuffing.
6. Carry a subtle lipstick so you always look fresh-faced.
When you're hitting up your local haunts, always carry a lipstick that is subtle and pairs well with your skin tone. This means no dark purples and neutrals, and let me tell you why.
If you carry a lipstick in a pink or bronze color, you can use it to both color your lips AND blush your cheeks. When your ex is rounding the corner, just blot a cream lipstick on your lips and rub some along the line of your cheekbones.
You'll be good to go in an instant.
7. Wear flattering clothes that are also comfortable — not sweatpants and chunky sweaters.
I know. I know. It's soooooo tempting when you're home to simply wear sweatpants and chunky sweaters at all times. But when you have an ex lurking nearby, you just can't afford to risk it.
Yet you can still be comfortable, I promise! Just throw on a pair of flattering leggings (read: no sagging behind) with a long flannel shirt. You will look fall/winter fab, and you'll make your ex RUE the day your relationship ended.
8. Do abs exercises every night before bed to help your posture.
Abs exercises like scissor kicks and planks don't work overnight when it comes to giving you a six-pack. But you don't need a six-pack. You just need to be comfortable holding in your stomach for a few minutes while your ex asks you about your life.
Consistently working out your abs will improve your posture and help you look long and lean when you're reminding your ex of how amazing you are.
9. Stay hydrated with lemon water.
In conjunction with cutting your salt intake, drinking a constant flow of water will help you stay hydrated and avoid bloating, benefiting both your figure and your complexion.
As an added bonus, water infused with orange and lemon will give you a dose of vitamin C, which will bolster your immune system so you can avoid catching that cold that's going around (though it would be fun to sneeze on your former flame).
10. When all else fails, top knot.
The problem with running into your ex is that you just know it will happen when you least expect it. You can follow the rest of these steps, but you'll run into each other the ONE time you're feeling lazy.
With that in mind, you can always resort to the excuse that you just left the gym. Simply tie your hair up in a perfectly messy top knot and breathe a little more heavily. After all, who can resist the girl who just worked up a healthy sweat?