This is me at the beginning of my final year at school. We were allowed to wear our own clothes in the Sixth Form, which was a big mistake, because my dress sense was pretty close to disastrous.
I mean, in this snap I am wearing a baggy fair-isle tank top which belonged to My Dad!! Who thinks it is a good idea to borrow their Dad’s clothes?!! Borrowing your boyfriend’s baggy sweater is one thing, but taking your Dad’s M&S woolly out of the wardrobe is wrong. So wrong!
I am also decked in as much cheap and nasty jewellery as I could find - some yucky chains and triangular dangly horrors clipped to my ears.
The 80s were a cruel, cruel fashion decade. Everything was just so fussy. I think I was deeply traumatisied, because now my dressing style is all about very simple and (hopefully) elegant. In fact, I so rarely wear jewellery or ear-rings that sometimes the holes in my ears have just about closed up.
Turning back to the pic, we have the hair disaster. Once again, I am growing out my hair after another spiky, short, horrible haircut. I suspect I have a stubby little ponytail at the back. By the end of the Sixth Form, I had quite nice long, below the shoulder hair, so if you are growing out, just keep the faith, stay away from the hairdressers and it will grow, I promise.
I was always doing this with my hair. Growing and growing and growing then getting so bored of my mane that I have some drastic lopping off session at the hairdresser’s. I love my new look for about three days, then I’m weeping with regret and facing a whole year of growing out trauma.
I’ve finally had to make a rule with myself, shoulder length is as short as I go. And that is final!
I think it’s also quite important that I pass on words of advice which sustained me during my teenage years. My friend’s Mum told us that your teenage nose is much bigger than the one you will have when you are fully grown. Now I have no idea why this is the case, maybe hormones swell your nose or maybe your face grows to fit your nose – but whatever the reason, this is TRUE!
When I look at my teen pictures, all I see is this great big juicy nose, but as soon as I turned 20, my nose just sort of faded back into my face and I hardly ever think about it at all.
So, please remind yourself of this fact every time you look in the mirror – your adult nose will be much smaller than your teen nose. I really think they should pass this information out to everyone just as soon as they hit 13. It would bring comfort.
My advice when posing for a school photo during the challenging teen years is go classic. Wear school uniform if you can, keep your hair simple, your jewels and accessories to a minimum, your make up nice and understated, then at least your insides won’t squirm with embarrassment when you are looking back at that photo in a few years’ time.
And if your Mum suggests putting your school photo up on the mantelpiece in a nice frame, promise her you will never speak to her ever again. Give her strict instructions that she can keep it on her bedside table, if she has to, or ELSE!