How to Find Your Power Neutral

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In the endless world of personal style where the choices are immense, some things can feel hard to narrow down figure out for ourselves. Have you ever seen something that looks killer on someone else but wonder why it falls flat on you? How can she radiate in that white trench while on me it just looks blah? While fashion is meant to be fun and nonrestrictive, there are some tricks of the trade that can help make things a little less complicated. I wanted to share one of my favorite tips with you today in hopes of making your next investment purchase a little easier... finding your power neutral. 

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What's a power neutral? Whether you're a girl who loves to wear lots of color or not, there's always going to be a neutral tone that you need to have in your wardrobe. It's not the red dress you pull out for rare special occasions. It's that go-to tone when you buy your first expensive handbag, or the shade that takes up most of your leather shoe collection. This goes beyond favorite colors and personal preference. There's an actual color that's the strongest choice for you visually, and it's always going to help pull your look together. 

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So how do you determine your power neutral? It's so simple you're going to be like, "how did I not think of this?" It all comes down to one thing... YOUR HAIR. Yep, that's it. The bottom line is this: when your staple everyday wardrobe pieces like bags, shoes, leather jackets, and that one go-to special occasion dress match the tone of your hair, everything is in visual balance. So for me, my base hair color is dark brown which means that a neutral in that realm is my best bet - dark brown or black, as opposed to nude, blush, or white. I've always been a gal who loves black, so that takes up a lot of my wardrobe especially for the investment items. My first three nice bags were black and one dark brown. Until recently, ALL my leather shoes were black.

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If you think of your look from head to toe as a composition, it makes sense for there to be a balance between your head, your feet, and what you're carrying on your arm. Sprinkling that neutral throughout your outfit, counting your hair as a "matching accessory," gives it a sense of cohesiveness throughout. But don't worry about being TOO exact - black is good for dark hair, but so is navy for summer, and burgundy or deep brown in the fall. The highlights in my hair right now make the more saddle browns work a bit better than if I was all dark right now.

I'll never forget the time in my twenties when I was obsessed with the idea of buying a white leather bag. I had seen them on a few ladies around NYC and thought it looked so fresh. But whenever I looked at them in the store, it always looked so severe when I held one in the mirror. Don't get me wrong, it's not that it's a major snafu to wear the opposite neutral, but I eventually realized that the ladies who looked so effortless with the white bags were the ones with light blond hair. 

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Lately as I've softened up my style, I've been having fun bringing some blush and caramel tones into my shoe and bag collection. But I will say that sometimes putting outfits together with those pieces are a little trickier than my go-to black. Sometimes it feels like my feet get lost with my lighter blush clogs, and all this dark hair on the top making it look out of balance. My point is that you can always feel free to experiment in your wardrobe however you want, and there's a time and a place for every color you like. But I love knowing that when I really need to pull out the big guns, say for a photo shoot at those epic windmills in Palm Springs, I can go to a statement black dress and my staple black leather jacket, and know it's the right choice for me.

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So, to figure out where you stand with your neutrals, think of your hair on a scale of 1 to 10 in lightness to darkness, and match that to a realm of neutrals on the spectrum. If you have light brown or dark blond hair, try the camels, grays, olives, and medium browns. If you have super light blond hair, you'll kill it with the whites, creams, and soft grays and blushes. These are a great place to start with your investment staples, and once that part of your wardrobe is well stocked, you'll feel more ready to start adding in some of the other tones. I've got my eye on a light toned leather jacket next. I know I won't wear it AS much as my black one, but since I'm covered for black, I'd love to expand the options.

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So, I hope this was helpful for you in getting inspired for your everyday staples! My guess is you might already be unofficially incorporating this tip, but I find that having an explanation in our heads of why things work can help us in making decisions. 

As always, happy shopping! 

Photography by Ashley Burns

Spring Special + Gift Box

The Life Styled Catherine Sheppard Spring Styling Special

Ahhh! Over the past month, I have been working on putting something together that I am sooo excited about, and have been chomping at the bit to show you what it's all about for weeks! If you had a chance to watch my live spring styling session to the end (if not, you can still catch it here), then you saw me give a full rundown of this basket of spring dreaminess, but I am thrilled to present it to you today in all its glory: my SPRING GIFT BOX! Yesss! Every single one of my clients who books a styling package or follow-up session (if you've already done one of my two new packages) between now and April 15 is going to be getting a special delivery with all of these goodies, and it is SO. GOOD. Read on for all the details...

The Life Styled Catherine Sheppard Spring Styling Special
The Life Styled Catherine Sheppard Spring Styling Special

I really wanted to do something fun for my clients who are in spring wardrobe refresh mode, and I love a good gift box, so this felt like the perfect way to kick off the season. The basket includes all of my favorite items for every OTHER aspect of your life, from food and wine, to health and wellness, interiors, and skincare! These are things I use and love on a daily basis from all my favorite brands and local shops, and I really wanted to introduce you guys to each of these products. Each one is very carefully chosen and purchased directly by me, so this is no hokey sponsorship deal. It's my ACTUAL favorites for the season, all for the purpose of setting my clients up for the most luxurious, self-cared for spring ever! Because what's a perfect spring wardrobe refresh without a life refresh to match? Contents of the basket detailed below.

The Life Styled Catherine Sheppard Spring Styling Special
The Life Styled Catherine Sheppard Spring Styling Special
The Life Styled Catherine Sheppard Spring Styling Special
The Life Styled Catherine Sheppard Spring Styling Special

So here's what's inside...

Space rosé from Helen's Wines - It's not really called space rosé (J. Mourat O.V.N.I Rosé) but that's what Helen calls it, because of the cute label. I tried this wine for the first time at my birthday wine class, and it is seriously spring in a glass!

Ila olive oil from Midland - This is the ultimate luxury in olive oil. You'll want to eat it with a spoon... or with an entire loaf of bread. I love to drizzle it on avo toast with an egg.

Overose candle - Gah! These candles. Not only do they look stunning on a table top or counter, but each of their scents is equally amazing. Not perfumey or too floral... so warm, complex and perfect.

Canyon Coffee - My favorite locally made coffee, by a gf/bf team who are both way too attractive for their own good. 

Hasami Porcelain mug - This line of Japanese porcelain is my new fave. They just opened a new store for just the ceramics in Mar Vista. I'm dying to get a whole tea set!

OPI polish - Gotta have those spring nail colors. I'm curating my favorite shades for spring, and you'll get one of them in your basket! I always love to bring my own to the salon for my toes, so I know I'm getting exactly what I want.

Saje Transitions Essential Oil Blend - I love this hormone balancing essential oil blend made especially for women. 

The Five Minute Journal + gold pen - My favorite morning/evening ritual for getting in the right mindset of gratitude and focus. 

Goop supplements in High School Genes and Why Am I So Effing Tired? (a week's worth of each)- These are all the rage in the wellness world, and you can feel the effects immediately! If you've been wanting to give them a try, here's a week's worth to get you started!

Goop "The Martini" Emotional Detox Bath Soak - The PERFECT treat for a spring evening. You know you need a long bath to detox from these winter months and start fresh.

Goop glow - A sample of this skin glowing antioxidant powder. Give me all the skin glow!

Caravan linen tea towel - There's nothing like a luscious linen towel for your kitchen, bar cart, picnic basket, or bathroom tray!

True Botanicals Nutrient Mist - My favorite clean skin mist for prepping skin for serums, oils, and moisturizers. It smells divine and it's also great for setting makeup and a mid-day pick-me-up.

Los Poblanos Lavender Lip Salve from Midland - I have 4 of these all throughout my house, car, and various purses. It's so good.

Sage or palo santo bundle (your choice) - We all need to clear the energy in our space for spring! Take your pick of either of these bundles. I love the smell of both and how they look displayed on a shelf!

Straw market tote - The best tote for storing things at home (hand towels, toilet paper, rolled up blankets, toys) or for taking to the farmers market!


The Life Styled Catherine Sheppard Spring Styling Special
The Life Styled Catherine Sheppard Spring Styling Special
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Pour yourself a glass of rosé because here is where it gets extra good. As if this basket of $400 worth of spring must-haves isn't enough, I wanted to take it all a step further. Sooo, if you purchase a package by April 20th, you're guaranteed to get this gift AND 20% OFF a package or service. Yes!

521A1720 copy 2.jpgThe Life Styled Catherine Sheppard Spring Styling Special
The Life Styled Catherine Sheppard Spring Styling Special
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The Life Styled Catherine Sheppard Spring Styling Special

ONE THING TO NOTE: If you're thinking about booking a styling package at all, keep in mind that I don't pile all my clients on top of each other. I book them into slots, so I only start a new package up to twice a week. That way, I can ensure that I can devote ample amounts of time to each client. So the sooner you book, the sooner you can get on the spring calendar!

521A1456 copy 2.jpgThe Life Styled Catherine Sheppard Spring Styling Special
The Life Styled Catherine Sheppard Spring Styling Special

I am SO excited for spring, and looking forward to sharing in the energy of the season with some of you! Happy spring!

My dress / Sailor's top + pants

Photography by Ashley Burns