Style Diary | The Look of Love

I’ve somehow gone from not owning anything pink to living in various shades of it. You never know, I might branch out for my next Style Diary before I truly become a millennial cliché but if you can’t wear pink on Valentine’s Day then when can you?

Like I said in my last post, I might be single but, minus the over-commercialisation, I love everything about Valentine’s Day. Red roses, sweet-treats, lacy lingerie, heart-shaped everything – what’s not to love?

To celebrate all things Valentine’s I thought I’d put an outfit together that encompasses the sentiment of the holiday a.k.a a pink cosy jumper that makes me look like a giant marshmallow and tights dotted with cute little hearts. It’s not necessarily how you’d typically envisage Valentine’s in outfit form (think: a glamorous, tight red dress and high heels) but 1. that’s not exactly my style and 2. it should be about dressing for yourself rather than anyone else and wearing what you feel most comfortable in, which for me changes depending on my mood. This time warmth and comfort took priority, which is just as well as it was freezing when I took these photos at the weekend!

Valentine’s doesn’t need to be all about romantic love, there’s no reason why it can’t be a day to celebrate self-love, which is what I’m going to (try and) do this year. When we’re in a relationship, Valentine’s Day prompts us to think of the little things that would make our partner feel loved and appreciated so why shouldn’t we do that for ourselves if there isn’t anyone to do it for us?

In the last four years I’ve spent Valentine’s Days alternating between being single and in relationships and I’ve enjoyed both equally. There’s a lot of pressure from all the commercial hype surrounding one day, to either do the most romantic thing if you’re with someone or be the most OK with being on your own if you’re single.

Sometimes it is a bit lonely being single and it’s alright to admit that, but a lot of people feel the need to show that they’re better off being single, which usually is the case but sometimes it isn’t – just as relationships come with bumps in the road, so does single life.

I know I’m not the only one that feels like their confidence has been knocked after coming out of a relationship. In my last one I went from feeling like I meant the world to someone to feeling unwanted and it’s very hard not to see yourself through their eyes and start to question why someone might not want to be with you.

That said, it’s also easy to blame someone else for not feeling confident in yourself but ultimately, you’re the only one in control of your confidence and that’s how it should always be, whether you’re with someone or not. It’s easier said than done though and, as well as allowing others to impact my confidence, I’m my own worst critic, which isn’t a great combination!

However, for the first time since being single again, I’m much happier in my own skin. Towards the end of last year I was feeling a bit rubbish and like I hadn’t accomplished anything but writing this post here and pinpointing the things that I’d achieved that year made me realise why I should feel happier in myself. I really recommend writing down a list of the things you’ve accomplished if you’re ever struggling to feel positive about yourself.

I’m enjoying being on my own and the liberating feeling of being in control of my own happiness (which involves staying away from guys who play games, do they not realise how off-putting it is?…we’ll save that for another day!) but that doesn’t mean to say I’m not open to meeting new people and getting to know someone if the right person comes along. For the meantime I’m focusing on what I want and figuring out how to love myself (hence this post), which I think is vital before entering into a relationship. There’s a reason why people say you can’t love someone else until you love yourself.

It’s a very British mentality to be self-deprecating but it’s worth remembering that it’s OK to value yourself and realise your own worth, which in turn makes it easier for everyone else to see. There’s a fine line between self-assurance and arrogance but there’s nothing wrong with loving yourself.

And on that note, Happy Valentine’s Day! However you’re spreading the love this Valentine’s, make sure you spare a little for yourself, you deserve it.