by Jules Standish (2011)

This is the first self help book for women of its kind, a book that looks at the psychology behind why women wear black. In certain cultures it is expected that women hide themselves behind black. However, women worldwide choose to wear it for different reasons: they believe it to be slimming, smart, chic and easy to co-ordinate.  HOW NOT TO WEAR BLACK  is a guide for women to find out whether black suits their temperament and their genetic colouring!


The BBC Radio 2 presenter, broadcaster and author, Janey Lee Grace, has written the foreword and additionally says, “Oh lucky you! The inspirational colour analyst and personal stylist Jules Standish has revealed ALL in this great new book. She knows her stuff this girl and trust me, this is your in-road to personal styling and colour analysis.”


Contributors to the book include legendary fitness guru from ITV, Diana Moran, aka The Green Goddess, and “Dream Whisperer” and author and national press columnist, Davina Mackail.


Published by O-Books, HOW NOT TO WEAR BLACK  is available to purchase through Amazon online and leading High Street bookstores..

  •    Where does the concept come from?...

    As a colour consultant and stylist I believe that putting one’s personality on display and turning faults into assets is the only truly exciting way to dress.


    Having given advice for many years on how it is possible to look younger, healthier, happier and more attractive through the use of the rights colours, it became more and more obvious that women in particular, have no idea how damaging black is to their looks. Once I showed them how much it aged their faces, they were shocked! Some swore never to wear black again and others wanted to be shown how to continue to wear it, but without highlighting all the negatives as they aged.


    The colour black has become such a big part of our fashion culture, and designers and high street stores brain wash everyone into believing that black is THE colour to be seen in from autumn through to spring, I thought it was time to help educate women (and men) on whether it actually suited them and if not, how to wear it well.

  •    What are the main things the readers wil learn?...

    How to give yourself a transformational colour analysis. This is a once in a lifetime experience and one of the best investments you can ever make. My book gives the opportunity to find out what colours will make you look fabulous and healthy, and also whether black can be worn as you age without you looking and feeling older than your clothes!


    Discover what your true colours are. You were born with an inherited, genetic blue print of personality traits and colouring. However, through personal circumstances, challenging situations and emotional difficulties, you may find that you have changed along with way. You will gain a fascinating insight into the whole field of colour as it relates to YOU.  Find out which colour fan harmonises to your own individual colouring and personality in areas of fashion, cosmetics, hair, accessories, and even interior designing.


    How to find out whether you have the skin tone and the personality to wear black without ageing your face or draining your energy fields.Most people assume that black is slimming, flattering, chic, elegant, etc without realising its damaging effects on the face and well being to many skin tones.

  •    How do you use the book?...

    The book is meant as an easy to use Self Help Guide, so that women, and men, can find out for themselves if they should be wearing black. This is done by looking at the pattern and colour of the eyes, by draping black and other colours up against the face, and filling out a personality questionnaire.


    Once the self testing has been done, the reader should know whether black is indeed a colour that they can wear well, without highlighting the signs of ageing on the face and whether they have the introverted personality that suits black.


    Then there are chapters that give the reader invaluable information on how to continue wearing black if it is NOT in their colour range. This is the key to understanding how to make subtle changes in the wardrobe without spending a fortune, but ensuring the face is being made to look its best. If black CAN be worn, then there is a chapter to show what the harmonising colours are and how to wear black to its best effect on cool skins.

  •    What about the diagnostics and methodology?...

    The colour analysis system I use, and describe in the book, was devised over 30 years ago and is based on the methods of American Bernice Kentner.


    This system is different to others on the market, because it is holistic and based on a series of tests to determine accurate results. These include looking inside the eyes with a mirror and light, as the pattern and colour tell me which skin tone and often personality traits the individual has. The personality questionnaire gives me and the client an insight into how they feel about colours psychologically and finally draping different shades against the face, show which ones are the most flattering.


    Understanding skin tone and colour is down to ones inherited genetics. Therefore it is important to be able to diagnose exactly what the correct colours are and then put harmonising colours against the face to make the skin tone look more even, healthier and younger.


    I look at the skin the way a plastic surgeon might when deciding how to improve a client’s appearance. I choose correct colours that minimise lines, wrinkles, blemishes, dark shadows and other problems with dramatic results. Sometimes this can be as transformational as a surgical face lift! My aim is to concentrate on ensuring that the skin looks as attractive as possible. Black often simply has the reverse effect and highlights all these negatives on the face, making people look years older!

  •    Will it change how people wear black in the future?...

    I hope it might make people think about how they wear black to make the best of themselves. Everyone wants to look as attractive as they can. As a colour, black has so many psychological issues surrounding it particularly for women, who often lack confidence and self-esteem and like to hide behind black, feeling that it makes them invisible – particularly overweight women. When going through emotional trauma, illness, divorce and death people often revert to black and dark colours to grieve in, and whist this obviously has its place it’s also important to come out of wearing lots of black to help the healing process.


    Black will always be a fashion staple in wardrobes – my aim is to help ensure that women in particular know how to wear it so that they can look slim, chic, elegant and stylish – while keeping their faces looking young and healthy.

  •   Who is wearing black right, and who wrong?...

    Nigella Lawson has the cool skin tone and dramatic dark features to wear black and its related colours to maximum effect – and she does! Joan Collins is another cool lady with a very classic style who looks fabulous in black and white. Ditta Von Teese wows everyone when she appears in print looking sultry and dramatic in black too.


    An example of a celebrity who shouldn’t wear black is Victoria Beckham. She has changed her image over the past few years in order to be taken seriously as a business woman and as a result now wears a lot of black and dark colours. Sadly, these do not suit her colouring. We saw this recently when she was photographed leaving a restaurant with dark shadows under her eyes, highlighted by her high neck black dress. Victoria has a warm skin tone, which looks smooth and healthy in oranges and reds, and the neutral tones of camel and cream.


    Pixie Lott is another example of someone who looks tired and drained when she wears black, which just goes to show that even young skins can be damaged by it.