School is well underway, and we’re at the point in the year where you’ve started to slack a bit in your wardrobe choices simply because there isn’t anyone worth it in your classes. Come on, ladies – I know it’s not just me! But that ends now. I’m challenging all of you readers to be daring and try something new. If there isn’t anyone to impress, why not experiment and try something crazy? Okay, maybe not too crazy, but at least try something you wouldn’t do otherwise.

I’m going to start with something for your hair. You might have noticed this one on campus already, and I think it’s a fabulous trend that everyone should feel confident enough to try. I’ll call it the high ballet bun. Kim Kardashian is one of the ladies bringing the style to the mainstream, but it has already evolved further at this point. The great thing about this hairstyle is that it’s easy, and can effortlessly mask a bad hair day. Forget straightening, curling, or whatever else your normal hair routine requires. This is a classic feminine look that I hope is here to stay for a while. For a how-to on the bun, simply search it on Pinterest or a blog such as “The Beauty Department,” and they will break it down for you. Try it out; you’ll be glad you did.

Regardless of whether you have 20/20 vision, it’s fun to try putting on a pair of glasses. Vintage-looking pairs with darker rims are very popular right now, and they are a unique way to shake up your look and show off that bookworm persona that your professors love to see. In choosing a pair of glasses, it’s important to consider your face’s size and proportions. Contrast the shape of the frames with the shape of your face. For fuller, rounder faces, go with a pair that is more rectangular. For stronger jaw lines or more angular faces, find some that are rounded and soft. If you want to be really daring, try lighter frames, or even clear ones – they’ll brighten up your eyes like nothing else.

One of my new(er) favorite things to do is to rock red lipstick. Gwen Stefani has been doing it for years (and totally owning it), and I think the rest of the world should finally be brave enough to try it out. It may seem that a certain shade of red can go for anyone, this most certainly isn’t the case. Depending on your skin tone, a darker or lighter red will be more appropriate. I would suggest stopping at a makeup counter for some advice, whether or not you buy a tube; drugstore brands work just fine. 

Complementary lip liner is also essential with red lipstick. I didn’t think it would make much of a difference, but I have definitely noticed how it can improve the overall look. It helps it stay on much better and defines your lips, dictating exactly where the lipstick should go. I was nervous about trying this trend at first, since I’ve always been more of a gloss girl, but I am obsessed now and love my Gwen-inspired lips.

Now, I have a couple of suggestions to try for a night out. First, I recommend finding a top in that vivid, rich royal blue. You know which color I’m talking about. It’s looked great on every lady I’ve seen sporting it lately. Plus, it looks kick-ass in pictures that have been Instagrammed – if that’s any incentive. This gorgeous color can suit anyone, regardless of skin tone and hair color. Looser blouses and tunics in the color paired with a skinny pant is a great way to go. Pair the top with some killer red lips, and you will be a standout, guaranteed.

This has to be my favorite suggestion: leather leggings. Yes, you heard me right. Channel your inner badass and try a pair (they don’t necessarily have to be actual leather, but go for the look). Pair them with some ankle-high booties and a loose top for a foolproof outfit. If you are feeling really daring, wear it during the day, possibly with a neutral-colored sweater or a vintage rocker tee. If leggings aren’t your thing, try and incorporate leather into a skirt. A high-waisted A-line is ideal. This shape will offset the hardness of the leather and make you feel tough yet feminine at the same time. I love the embodiment of that fashion paradox – it’s something that will never go out of style. Go ahead and throw your hair up into a bun and slap on some red lipstick. I dare you.