Coffee Break – Commando Tights

We are firmly into fall right now, and that means I am thinking tights. I had heard about Commando for years as being the best “opaque” tights, but it wasn’t until last year (when I got a pair for free at a Bare Necessities event, to be honest) that I tried them out — and they really are everything I’ve read. They’re opaque, matte, soft, silky, and (so far, fingers crossed) durable. One more thing to add to your Black Friday and Cyber Monday shopping lists… At the moment they’re $34 at a number of places, including Bare Necessities, ShopBop, Revolve, Piperlime, Freshpair, Nordstrom, and Amazon, and available in black, brown, purple, red, gray, and olive. Commando 70 Denier Matte Tights Panty Hose



  1. finally – a place to ask all my burning questions about tights. :) namely:

    – can you wear dark tights w/ light shoes? yes/no/depends? depends on what?
    – how do you wear dark tights with light colored dresses/skirts?
    – can you wear tights with summery fabrics, or does this look weird? (or only if they’re the wrong color?)
    – patterned/textured tights. i like these, but find them tricky to pull off. suggestions welcome … like with solid colored skirts only?
    – finally – colored tights remind me of my niece, who is 10. i’m sure there is a more sophisticated way to wear these. love to hear ideas.

    thanks, all!

    • can you wear dark tights w/ light shoes? yes/no/depends? depends on what?

      I’ve seen this pulled off well, but I think it’s difficult. I would say that it’s more of an “edgy” look – probably not for a conservative workplace, more of a fun look.

      That’s about all I have. My responses for the rest of them would be “it looks weird sometimes, and it depends on whether or not it looks weird.” I very often find that my idea of what certain tights will look like with a certain outfit is completely wrong, and I really just have to try and see.

    • MissJackson :

      re: colored and/or textured tights: I think that moderation is the key here. If it looks odd, try pairing with a knee length skirt and tall boots so that only a little pop of color/texture shows. The bolder the color/texture, the less of it that needs to “show”.

      • Maddie Ross :

        I’ve been trying to work more colored tights in to my wardrobe this winter. Up until discovery The Skirt, most of my winter skirt wardrobe was black, navy or some type of gray / black / tweed-y pattern. With the colors of The Skirt, I think black tights can be really dark, unless you’re wearing the right shirt. So far, the colors that have worked best for me are other “neutrals” — burgundy, gray, camel and olive. I did purchase a muted purple, teal and mustard that I am looking forward to trying. I think I will take Miss Jackson’s advice and wear knee high boots though with those.

        • just clarifying – with the colors of The Skirt, black tights *can* or *can’t* be really dark? it sounds like too-dark doesn’t work …

          • Maddie Ross :

            I meant that unless you’re wearing the right shirt or ensemble, in my opinion, black tights can look too dark with some of The Skirt colors. For instance, one of my favorite looks earlier in the fall was my mustard Skirt and white blouse with a navy and gold chunky necklace. Putting aside the black / navy issue, I don’t think I could wear black tights with that look. But, I have worn my mustard skirt with black tights and a black and gray patterned blouse. Again, just my opinion.

    • I wear dark tights with my nude for me shoes, and never have given it a second thought… maybe I need to buy a full length mirror. :)

      I wear dark tights with all sorts of colors – light gray, bright green… Again, maybe I need to get a full length mirror to examine this more carefully.

      I don’t wear tights with pieces that look “summery” but the fabric content would have to be something like seersucker or eyelet cotton for me to categorically rule out wearing tights with a “summery fabric”.

      I wear textured or patterned tights frequently and tend to make sure that the rest of my outfit is pretty conservative.

      Colored tights are too strange for me. Saw a girl wearing some mustardy yellow tights last weekend and had to do a double take because I thought she was jaundiced. I bought a dark teal pair one time and cannot figure out how to wear them besides with a gray sweater dress + tall riding boots. And even then… not so sure.

      • I do not mean to be snarky here at all but really? Maybe I’m imagining the colors wrong, but are you saying you would wear black opaque tights with light beige shoes?

        • I did see a young woman wearing that combination the other day (OK, last year), and I thought that it looked really good on her. Fresh, modern, eye catching without being too much so. That said, she was wearing them to a political gathering, not work, and she had a pretty “young and trendy” vibe going on, so that’s why I’m sticking with not really for a conservative workplace, and probably only in moderation in a casual one.

        • I would, if for example the rest of my outfit was made up of those colours too – it is just about balance. So you would need something beige-y on top as well.

        • I would, and do, wear black opaque tights with my sage green pumps, and I love black tights with lighter coloured ankle boots.

        • I would and have. That doesn’t mean everyone can pull off the look. I hate it when people get all snarky with clothing rules. But generally assume that’s a sign of someone with a lack of fashion imagination.

          • I dont think she was being snarky. It is a very fashion forward look so it is not for everyone. There is certainly nothing inappropriate about it but it is not for every conservative offices. plenty of people call it a fashion don’t but many are now reversing it and calling it fashion forward


          • No, I wasn’t being snarky. I have seen the look in Vogue or Bazaar layouts, which I interpreted as intentionally jarring, Cindy-Sherman-esque anti-fashion fashion,

            but I haven’t yet seen it in real life, in a corporate office.

            I’ve seen lighter boots and booties with dark tights, but not yet pumps.

            I think it would be hard to pull off, because you’d have to have enough flair that it looked intentional, not like you just didn’t know how to dress yourself.

        • I do that all the time – personally love the look

      • Ditto, eaopm3, I love wearing black tights with nude/beige patent flats, especially with dresses in more subdued colors like black, gray, and dark purple (the flats give a nice pop of brightness in an otherwise borderline funeral-esque outfit). It never even ocurred to me that this would be weird but now based on some of these comments I’m wondering if people are secretly laughing at my fashion sense.

    • found a peanut :

      Re: colored tights, you have to stick to “adult” colors and make sure it’s the only color in an otherwise sedate outfit. “Adult” colors are navy, dark gray, dark burgundy, dark olive and maybe forest green. Pair with a dark gray or black dress and black non-patent shoes. Voila, sophisticated colored tights.

      • “Adult” colors? Am I the only one who hasn’t heard this term before? Granted I am in Florida, so it’s just possible that we have no adults down here since we all like bright colors. I don’t even put navy and gray tights into the colored category at all. I consider them to be neutrals along with black and brown.

        • found a peanut :

          You’re probably not the only person – I just made that term up. Maybe I should have been clearer, I mean “adult” tights colors. I too wear pink, yellow, etc., but to me pink tights would be a little girl color and I wouldn’t wear them to work, while I would wear burgundy tights to work.

      • I’m in Florida too and have been trying to figure out what to wear on an upcoming trip to NYC. I have a great black dress I want to wear with black boots and tights. Black tights just sounds like a funeral to me, but I think that’s the New York way of doing it Or could I wear some kind of purple/raspberry or something? I own a pair of textured red tights, but wonder if that would be too much color.

        • spacegeek :

          You could do a ribbed or textured black tight, or a grey tight if you want to break up the black a little without going out on too much of a limb. LOL Purple/rasp would of course work too, if you think you can pull it off!

    • I don’t like dark tights with lighter shoes because I think it breaks up the line of the leg unless they’re worn with boots. With colored tights, I try to either match the shoes or the skirt to keep from looking stumpy. I love patterned tights in theory but find that the shapes get distorted on my muscular legs. I have to say though that I saw a collegue in ivory cable knit tights the other day and she looked like a preschooler.

    • Granted, these are my own rules, based on my judgy preferences, so feel free to take ’em or leave ’em. I don’t even wear tights.

      – can you wear dark tights w/ light shoes? yes/no/depends? depends on what? YES – do this on purpose. The shoes should be statement shoes, not a different neutral colored shoe. So don’t do black tights with maroon/brown/navy shoes, it’ll look odd and sap the color out of the shoes. Choose red/blue/metallics.
      – how do you wear dark tights with light colored dresses/skirts? STICK with the same color family. Light blue skirt – navy tights. Tan skirt – brown tights, Etc.
      – can you wear tights with summery fabrics, or does this look weird? (or only if they’re the wrong color?) DEPENDS on the weight of the fabric and the chemistry between the skirt and tights (static electricity, bunching, drape, etc). Try it out at home and use undergarments as necessary (slips, shorts, etc).
      – patterned/textured tights. i like these, but find them tricky to pull off. suggestions welcome … like with solid colored skirts only? PERSONALLY, I find smaller patterns more professional than larger patterns, but of course, ymmv. The suggestion to wear boots is a nice way to ease into patterned tights.
      – finally – colored tights remind me of my niece, who is 10. i’m sure there is a more sophisticated way to wear these. love to hear ideas. CAN’T help you with this one, some people like color, others don’t. Try colored tights out on the weekend. Or even muted colors.

      • I agree… I love pairing dark tights with metallic shoes – bronze, pewter, even silver – they add a pop but don’t feel disjointed.

        Regd colored tights, I never considered them until I saw someone wearing a cobalt blue dress with burgundy tights and cognac boots… it looked awesome and perfectly polished so I may take a few risks in this area now

        • I love this. I’m wearing a black and white dress (mostly black) with burgundy tights today and it is my favorite. Makes an otherwise pretty boring outfit interesting.

    • thank you so much, everyone!

      for kicks, i went to pinterest and entered in “colored tights”.
      now *there* is some food for thought. the bridesmaids are not my style, but there are some cute looks in there.

    • I saw a great catalog pic recently that had a winter white shift dress with black tights/black shoes, and it was gorgeous.

  2. Not a fan of Commando tights. Just saying. They roll down or fall down.

    • SF Bay Associate :

      Oh dear. I hate that. Would you mind sharing your general body shape?

      • I’m somewhat curvy, but have pretty thin legs. I carry my weight in my butt and stomach, but am not overweight at all.

        • Bursting out :

          BUT they are great for pregnancy b/c of the lack of elastic/ control top.

  3. Little Lurker :

    A) Kat, could you please split the Holiday Weekend Thread into two parts? If it starts tomorrow, it’s going to get unwieldy.

    B) Seriously, who sends an email on Tuesday afternoon before Thanksgiving to say “Sorry, I forgot I can’t do my work because I’m out of town — you do it”???

    (Don’t worry; Boss is having none of it either.)

    • I am continuously surprised by coworkers and subordinates that will email at the last second and say “Sorry I never got around to it. Tootles!!” It just wouldn’t occur to me to *not* do something. Maybe I shouldn’t be surprised by this, but I am.

      • Or even worse, people who just leave without even telling you. How can you tell I’ve been on the wrong side of this before? Grrrr.

  4. I’m in love with Wolford’s velvet de luxe. Has anyone tried both Wolford and Commando and preferred Commando? Wondering if it’s time to branch out.

    • found a peanut :

      I too love Wolford’s velvet de luxe. Have never tried Commando. I also like Falke, which has merino tights in different colors, if you are looking to branch out.

      • I’m the anon from above who doesn’t like commandos. I love Wolford. Like Falke. If I need the control top, spanx are the best.

    • Thanks!

  5. Anonymous :

    [Note: I am not trying to start a flame war here. Please just skip this if it is not of interest to you. For people like me who support LGBTQ rights, read on:]

    I just discovered this and had to share it: the Salvation Army discriminates against the LGBTQ community.

    There are plenty of charities (Goodwill; Red Cross; Doctors without Borders; etc.) that do not discriminate. I usually toss some donations in the bucket but will be redirecting my contributions starting this year. I thought I should post this in case there are LGBTQ-rights supporters, like me, who did not know.

    • SF Bay Associate :

      Yep. At least around here, this is well known. I didn’t realize that other parts of the country weren’t aware of their practices. Thanks for pointing it out.

      • Mary Ann Singleton :

        I actually wasn’t aware of this, but it’s timely that I found out – I have a big bag of clothes in my hall that I was going to drop off at the Salvation Army.

        For those of you in San Francisco (SF Bay Associate?) – can anyone recommend a good charity that takes used clothing (and accepts drop-offs on the weekend)?


        • Out of the Closet — there’s one on Polk St. at California (and other locations in the city).

        • I think there’s a Goodwill dropoff box and sometimes a truck at the Presidio – the big parking lot down by the water.

          • SV in House :

            If you are thinking of the one in the Sports Basement parking lot, it is no longer there.

            There is also a Goodwill drop off on Bay, near Marina Middle School.

          • Oh really? Bummer. I just took some coats to them recently (last 6 months or so?) and have another bag in my car right now. I liked that location because I didn’t have to think about parking.

    • Wow. Awkward. My company does the Salvation Army Angels every year. It is not an option to participate (I mean, it is, but it isn’t, you know?). In light of this, I would choose not to participate. Dang.

      • I used to be in that situation. I wanted to start a drive to contribute to a local charity as a way to sidestep the Salvation Army problems (yes plural) but the person who headed the team in our dept was just too powerful to piss off. In retrospect I wish I would have chosen something entirely unsimilar, perhaps a relief fund for a disaster that just happened or idk, education for girls in Afghanistan or anything that would look like a real calling, not just competition (although it would have been totally with the intent to avoid donating to his “team” and to suck away donations).

  6. Evidently I’m in thanksgiving mode early, because I cannot get interested in working today.

    What’s every one wearing? I’m wearing dark charcoal pinstripe wool Martin fit trousers from BR (several years old — 3 at least since I got them before i had my kid, but they still look great), a white button down shirt that has turquoise stitching on the placket, and a turquoise cashmere cardigan that is also five years old, or maybe 6. I’m also wearing my new gorgeous fresh water pearl necklace from Kanye’s shop. LOVE IT. Whole outfit built around it.

    • Always a NYer :

      I’m wearing dark wash jeans with black knee boots (under the jeans, not the jeans tucked in), grey v-neck tee, black wrap cardi. I dressed it up with huge black pearl studs and have on my usual jewelry of my watch, gold rope bracelet, and rings.

      Because of the holiday, we can dress casually today and tomorrow, yay!!!

      • It’s nightime here so I am wearing jammies. Casual day of study group and a field trip to the natural foods store so I was wearing a Boden purple and white print dress, thick brown belt, grey tights, and dark purple ballet flats. The dress requires a thick belt but I wasn’t loving the grey tights + brown belt- venturing out this weekend to find a replacement.

      • SoGal Gator :

        Black White House Black Market sweater dress with black tights, long silver necklace and knee high black Munro boots with 2 inch heel, silver tear drop Ralph Lauren earrings. I am feeling warm and toasty — it’s cold today by SoCal standards — must be in the low 60’s. I LOVE wearing tights! These are DKNY Super Opaque.

    • Dark wash jeans, light gray sweater with shawl coller, arm warmers and down vest – with the space heater blasting because the office heater is broken and it would otherwise be 55 degrees inside.

    • That necklace sounds great. Could you or Kanye link to it or to something similar? (I’m not quite experienced enough to really know whether each peice is one of a kind or not.) I’d love to see it.

      Oh, and light gray slacks from BR that I’ve had for about 2 years, a dark purple tee shirt from the Limited, and red peep toe heels, and a purple/black/gray argyle (argile? argyl?) cardigan, a necklace with dark gray pearl-like things (I’m not actually sure), and silver stud earrings.

    • I’m wearing a cobalt blue and black checked jacket, dark blue cowl neck tie waist tunic, and black ribbed leggings tucked into mid calf black suede boots. Accessorized with gold bow earrings with an aquamarine pendent and a gold, light blue, purple and white enamel bracelet. Working from home this week.

    • Pretty boring today.

      Black suit slacks from Ann Taylor, white button down with light purple vertical stripes from brooks brothers, and I just threw on the suit jacket (also black) because its freezing in my office today.

    • Black, 40’s-inspired dress from Trashy Diva; black tights; red Campbell heels; dark green, jade necklace.

    • LinLondon :

      Just wore the bog standard BR black wool skirt suit, plus wine-colored ruffly blouse and tights, which was a bit matchy-matchy, but oh well. Black patent flats, because I decided wasn’t in an intimidating mood. I’m 5’11” and sometimes I pull out my 4-inch heels when I feel like making more of an impression :)

    • EC MD — you and I are wearing the same pants. Lets not stand too close to each other on the internet so no one else notices!!

      I’m wearing mine with a purple sweater, black onyx necklace, black suade boots. I’m boring :)

    • gray j.crew super 120s dress, black polka dot pantyhose, pewter round toe ferragamo heels, opera length freshwater pearls and my usual watch and wedding rings.

    • Man, I am seriously feeling the need to give myself a Christmas present from Kanye’s shop :-)

      Today I’m wearing a slim grey turtleneck sweater under a maroon merino cardigan, a black knee-length skirt with a pleated hem, black tights, and the most gorgeous deep-black suede wedges. Oval onyx-and-silver drop earrings; no other jewelry save the usual. It’s so cold and grey and gloomy here; I guess I’m kind of dressed like the weather.

    • I just had an idea. These threads are so much fun, and a lot of us have The Skirt. We should have a Skirt day and then see what each of us wears with it. It would be really fun to see everyone’s different approaches to the same item of clothing.

      • That sounds fun!

        I just ordered my first Skirt, and I think I’ll get it tomorrow. So excited! :)

    • EC MD, that outfit sounds awesome!

      Grass green long-sleeve boatneck tee with black cardigan; jeans; gold Toms. No jewelry today because I was too lazy to go digging through the piles of clothes on my dresser to find it.

  7. New Zara Black & white polka dot top (so cute, buy it now!), black pants (Ann Taylor?), white cami, Black Kamis, and vintage earrings. Hair in a Gibson roll-awesome, easy, no fuss, no muss. I must be only 1 of 3 attorneys left int he office. Wah wah wah.

  8. I have been reasonably happy with the black opaque Assets Terrific Tights, but they do show some thinning when I’m sitting (i.e., they become paler grey over the knees). Can anyone compare those (or Spanx) with the Commando opaque tights, and/or the DNKY “Super Opaque” tights?

  9. MeliaraofTlanth :

    The most truly opaque tights I’ve ever bought were a grey pair from Old Navy. And they’re super comfortable and have held up quite well. Plus, I imagine they were only $5 or something. ON tends to change up their basics frequently, though, so I don’t know if their tights are still awesome.

    I’m also extremely fond of the Duane Reade brand nude tights as the only pair that actually matches my skin tone.

    • MeliaraofTlanth :

      Oh, and for truly opaque black tights: fleece-lined tights. Seriously amazing. I picked some up at marshall’s last year; no idea what brand they are, but I want like 7 pairs for the winter.

  10. Scarves for hotties :

    I’m looking for suggestions for scarves for people who are generally warm (can’t wear silk or thick wool) but like the look – this would really just be an accent piece.

    • What about silk chiffon? Check out your local thrift/second-hand stores – you can often find really nice ones there for very little money.

  11. Divaliscious11 :

    Everything except long enough!!! My experience is with tights, if it says 6′, then you’ll be tugging at 5’10″……. Any other tall girls have a different experience Witt this brand, please let me know…..

    • No experience with Commando, but I swear by Spanx Tight-End Tights. I get the reversible color ones (black/grey and black/brown) and I’ve had them for at least three years. I’m 6′ tall and have never had any problem tugging or these not being long enough. The control top is there, but it’s not nearly as strong as a typical “Spanx” product, so I don’t feel like an over stuffed sausage by the end of the day.

      • Divaliscious11 :

        Yes. I love mynSpanx tights, just wanted some heavier weight/fleece lined.
        I bought one pair of these and they were too short, I think they went in the donation bag because I can not return tights- sleeves me out, even if the were $35 bucks….
        Maybe I’ll send an email to Spanx…..

  12. SAlit-a-gator :

    I buy my opaque tights from Target for $4.99 – they come in a variety of sedate and not-so-sedate colors and they do the job well. I think of tights as an accessory, so $34 for me is a bit much for tights. I’ve worn my Target ones several times now with no problems.

  13. ladies – can we get a link or actual brand for “The Skirt”? I’ve tried looking through the archives, but can’t find anything??

    • SAlit-a-gator :

      It’s the Halogen seamed skirt – you can find it at Nordstorm.

    • i *think* it’s this one – brand is halogen.

      if it’s not this one, it’s something similar.

      • incidentally, that skirt has 182 online reviews (4.5 stars) and 3 discussions devoted to it on the Nordstrom site.

        an impressive bunch of consumers, we corporettes.

      • MeliaraofTlanth :

        Do you think Halogen’s been like, “I wonder why this skirt is selling so well? Oh well, let’s not question and make it in every color imaginable!”

        • if they’re smart, they’re following corporette religiously :)

          and if you’re listening, halogen research team – WTF is up with your sizing??

        • I think this is exactly it. And for any Nordstrom buyers reading Corporette — please, please, please bring back a mustard and a teal color before spring 2012! Thank you . . . .

      • Nothing has ever made me feel so out of place on this site as this skirt. I honestly don’t understand pencil skirts. Who are they flattering too? I am slightly knock-kneed; mid-calf or at least past the knee works well for me, and hems a little higher on the thigh are good too. But it’s not just my body type; if you’re bow-legged, that would stand out in a pencil skirt too, as would a pot belly. I suppose hips could get away in one, but why not something that emphasizes the curves and makes them look wonderful instead of smusching them in?

        I want to like pencil skirts, but seriously must be missing something

        • Have you tried pencil skirts with heels? They make an extraordinary difference for me — pencil skirts look terrible on my body in flats, but heels seem to utterly transform the look.

          • I think it depends, I have some extra pudge (hips, little tummy, thick thighs) and seriously look 15 pounds thinner in a high waist pencil skirt than I do in anything else I own. I seriously want to invest in 10 pencil skirts and wear nothing put!

        • I may be too late, but just wanted to reassure you that you aren’t the only one. I want to like the pencil, too, but it just doesn’t work great on me. I’m fairly slim, but have thicker/rounder/more muscular thighs, so it’s hard to find a pencil that fits in the waist and isn’t obscenely tight below the waist. Plus I think because I am small-framed, especially through the shoulders, the pencil skirt just creates an unflattering bottom-heavy shape. On the other hand, some sheath dresses actually look pretty good on me.

          So, I look for A-lines that aren’t too triangular. It’s not Nordstrom quality, but I found a gray plaid (windowpane?) skirt at H&M that fits me well and has a slight a-line to it. Will probably return the BR pencil skirt I ordered, it’s not hugely unflattering but does hug my bottom in a way I’m not comfortable with. That’s another thing – I’m a little sway-backed, maybe that’s another reason pencil skirts don’t look great on me.

      • this is the right skirt, but definitely search for the name on Nordstrom, they often have different colors under different listings on the website, and sometimes even different prices. And check Nordstrom Rack, too, periodically for discounts on some colors.

    • It is the Halogen Seamed Pencil Skirt at Nordstrom

    • Was in Nordstrom’s this weekend and The Skirt now comes in a gorgous dusty mauve color. Online I think it’s the one called plum nectar but the skirt that I tried on in person is a lot lighter than that one looks on my computer screen.

      Halogen has cardigans that match but I liked it with gray. Just divine — I want it for Christmas! Not sure what color hose I would wear with it. I think probably nude. Even a sheer black or gray might be too dark (even though they show it with back hose online). What do you all think?

      • SAlit-a-gator :

        Can I just vent about how upset I am that the SKIRT does not come in fun colors like the plum mentioned above for petite sizes…FOEY (to quote Ellen).

        • agreed! hear us nordstrom? we vertically challenged corporettes want the SKIRT in pretty colors too!!!

  14. Any thoughts/experience w/ gel/shellac manicures? I’m thinking of getting one tomorrow so that I can cook w/out having to worry about chipping my polish. Is the removal process really damaging to the nail? I typically get manicures 3-4 times a month but really hate having to go to the salon so frequently so I thought this may be worth it.

    • They do last. And last. And you have to get new polish b/c your new nail growth starts showing.

      The colors are more clear-ish than usual colors. Hence it works best for lighter colors than for darker.

      When you have it done, you set your nails and then they are dry. No waiting to dry.

      But removal is a PITA. Takes about 45 minutes it seems. And it damages your nail. I did about 3 of these manicures in a row and then let my nasty beat up nails (as a result of the manicure) grow out and won’t do them again.

      • Should add (I’m the anon from 6:28) I had the polish removed at the salon. I did not attempt it myself.

      • Did you have gels or shellacs? My experience with shellac removal is that it’s non-damaging (and fast – mine soak for maybe 10 min?), but gel removal tears them up.

        • Not sure…probably gel. That’s what OPIs are, isn’t it? I know that was one brand used.

          • Yup, the OPI ones are gels. Getting gels taking off *destroyed* my nails, so now I pay the extra $$$ for CND shellacs. Comes off like a charm.

      • I too loved it when it was on (did three rounds of Shellac this summer for wedding season). As it came off, my nails were brittle, cracking (vertically up the nail bed, which they never do) and very weak. I will NOT do it again, no matter how much it tempts me. It wrecked my nails (but looked great the whole time it was on). I too had mine carefully removed at the salon each time.

    • I’m on my second shellac and I did a ton of research online. Seems to me the are way fewer horror stories with Creative Nail Design shellac. You can find locations on their website. My nails are thin and normally break year-round but they were really healthy after getting the shellac removed (professionally, at the salon, I don’t trust myself). My girl says I should only do like 3 shellacs in a row and then give my nails a rest for a few weeks. Good luck!

      • Suited Up :

        I agree w/ the advice to only do 1-3 shellacs in a row before letting it grow out. It does damage your nail, because the manicurist “scuffs” you nail with a file before applying the polish.

        I disagree w/ the light color-looks-better-than dark above. My salon uses OPI, and I use shellac as a way to get the dark, perfectly applied polish look that I can’t do myself without making a huge mess (right now I’m wearing Russian Navy.)

        When it comes to removal, I can generally “peel” the polish off myself after about 2 weeks (when I notice it coming apart at the edges, I’ll soak my fingers in warm water for a couple of minutes and use my nails to “scrape” the polish off- it generally comes off in one go.)

        • I think dark looks neat, but the texture of the polish is different and you can’t get the super dark, totally opaque look you can with regular polish, in my experience. Its shinier — like its covered in a thick coating of clear polish. I don’t really love that look personally.

      • huh, never occurred to me to give it a rest. I’ve been doing the shellac nails (could be gels, though – haven’t paid close attention to the polish bottle) & haven’t had damaged nails/probs. I love it – last about 2.5 weeks & I can wear a color w/o chips.

    • I am on my third, and have noticed no damage to my nails. I was warned by the manicurist the first time that I shouldn’t peel it off or try to take it off myself, because that will damage my nails. So, after 3 weeks (yes, they lasted that long without chips!), when my nail growth starts to show, I go back in to have the polish removed and new polish applied. The removal process is a little intimidating, but it’s not so bad. Yes, it takes longer than a regular manicure, but if you think of all the time you are saving by not having to go in there once a week, I think it is well worth it!

      • Suited Up :

        Ha, now I now why my nail look crappy after I peel off the polish, lol! I’m sure my manicurist told me not to do it, but I can’t help myself! :)

    • I really like the convenience of shellac/gel manicures. One salon I went to removed the shellac/gel by soaking small bits of cotton in polish remover and then wrapping them onto the nails with small bits of foil. I tried it at home and it seemed to work better than soaking. The key is NOT to peel it off, no matter how tempting, because that stuff really bonds with your nails so you will be peeling off bits of the top layers of your nails, along with the polish.

      I mentioned in another thread that french manicures (if you like them) can be a good way to go with gel/shellac because the nail growth is less noticeable than if you have a more visible, solid color.

    • I had them, the OPI version. I did it twice. I am tough of my nails, can’t last 24 hours with a regular manicure. I really liked how it looked, it wore like iron, I didn’t chip them.

      But, like others, I will not do it again. The removal left my nails totally shredded; they are thin, splitting, tiny splinter hemorrhages under the nails, and tender. I didn’t love that part of it.

    • If you do the Gelish versions, you can remove them at home although it takes some effort to get it all off. I’m not sure if this works for any of the other brands (OPI etc) but if they specifically tell you to avoid acetone, it might.

      Soak small pieces of cotton in nail polish remover (not acetone-free), place on top of nail, wrap the tips of your fingers in foil for about 10-15 mins. Then peel / scrape / gently buff off. The salons do pretty much the same thing, except they buff the gel off. I find peeling/scraping less damaging than buffing.

      • Forgot to add that my nails seemed stronger rather than weaker afterwards.

  15. I hope its not too late to get some feedback on this–

    I’ve met twice with someone to talk about the application process for a very specific job. This person also offered his name as a reference. I had previously worked in an organization where he is in the top ranks (though not for him directly), and he previously was in the top ranks at the place where I’m applying.

    The application process is ongoing and probably won’t end for a couple of months. I sent an email thank you after the first meeting. Should I send another one now and follow with a handwritten note whenever the process ends – good or bad? Or should I send a handwritten note now, since his participation/help is done?


    • karenpadi :

      I wouldn’t. I’m on the other side, trying to recruit someone to my firm. Until she gets the job, I don’t expect a thank you.

      Right now, the best way to thank me is to formally submit her resume…

      • He’s not currently at the same place — I’m applying to A, where he used to work for many years, but he currently works at B. I know him from having worked at B.

  16. To whoever recommended Things 90s Kids Realize: You have now ruined my entire afternoon. How rude!

    • AnonInfinity :


      This is better than feminist Ryan Gossling (sorry girl.).

      Just literally laughed out loud in my office at Status Update #18, which involves Carmen Sandiego, Waldo, and the death of Bin Laden.

      • AnonInfinity :

        OMG POGS! My favorite was an Animaniacs one that I won from my middle-school best friend that said “Give Peas a Chance.” That’s right, Pogs and Animaniacs in the same little cardboard circle.

      • I sent that same one to my husband! I’m hoping it gets him in trouble when he’s checking his email surreptitiously. :)

    • Always a NYer :

      I’m sorry!!! But when I saw the reminiscing about the 80s I needed to represent for the 90s kids. One of my favorites is the facebook status updates with Urkel and Laura <3 I need to be careful not to read this at work because I always laugh out loud.

  17. Hope it’s not too late in the thread, but any thoughts on Talbots sizing? They have some really nice, basic dresses on good sale now. I’m just between a 4 and 6 at Banana and Ann Taylor, usually take a small in their dresses. 5″4. Thanks!

    • In my experience Talbots runs large. If you’re between sizes go down. The 4 may even be large. I’m usually a solid 4 in most brands and have some 2s and some 4s from Talbots.

    • I was just at Talbots about a week ago and the sizing has really gone down to match what you’d find at AT/BR. I think that AT/BR tends to be a little better for pear/hourglass-shaped women while Talbots seems better suited to apple/straight-shaped women.

      • That’s a great summary. The sizing is not that different but the cut is completely different – they target different figures.

    • MissJackson :

      Get the petite sizes, and size down. I’d go with a 4 petite. Talbots runs both long (especially skirts) and large.

      • I tried that – didn’t work. I really liked this one blouse – tried a 4 and a 2 – too large; tried a 2p – fit right through the waist, but way to short and too tight in the shoulders. I think the only way with Talbots is to get your usual size or one size down, and count on having to do alterations.

    • I wear a 4 AT (occasionally 2, but really most of the time i’s 4), and I haven’t found anything at Talbots that fits me (I tried pretty hard this summer – I like a lot of their styles).
      I think the closest match was a 2, but while it fits in the shoulders, it’s ridiculously huge in the waist. So, if you’re hourglass-shaped or generally have a smaller waist than hips, you may not have much luck.

    • I’m the same size as you in BR/AT (but 5’8″) and wear a 4 in Talbots. I really like their sizing and it usually fits me well off the rack — I have fairly broad shoulders and a longish torso, slim hips but heavier thighs. Their dresses have held up very well with heavy wear.

  18. Anyone have advice on a young adult with a drug problem who is actively screwing his life with drugs, but feels, inexplicably, like rehab is not “for him? ” These are close friends of my family, do not know what to tell them. I feel like they are leaning towards some sort of involuntary commitment, which is pretty difficult to achieve in my Midwestern state. I worry that this type of avenue would mess up a lot of avenues for him as well, in terms of child custody, military options, etc. (not like drugs would not have the same effect, but seems like the involuntary commitment has more of a stigma.

    They are not well off, so rehab would REALLY be a stretch for them
    financially…as would continual support of his forays into the criminal arena
    through attorneys, etc. Not sure if there is health insurance. I get nervous
    about suggesting a state hospital, because those can be scary.

    Joys of being an attorney….the world’s problems become yours. :/

    • He’s an adult and needs to make the decision to get treatment on his own. That said, he may think all rehab is like AA and that’s what’s turning him off. You may want to suggest looking into whether there are other types of treatment in his area that may be more appealing to him. Otherwise, all his parents can do is refuse to support him if he gets into trouble with the law. Honestly if he does get in trouble with the law, the court may mandate some sort of treatment as part of his release that could help him.

    • We’re going through something similar in my family, and the thing is…his family needs to not support his forays into the criminal arena. He needs to experience the consequences of his actions–not be protected from them. I’m the *ss on this in my family…continually reminding family members to stop making excuses for our addict relative’s behavior, etc.

      S/he isn’t going to be ready to go to rehab/AA/AA alternative until s/he hits bottom, as they say. My relative, after approaching me while drunk and telling me in no uncertain terms s/he needs to go to inpatient rehab, has since (at the moment s/he said this, sober) realized that s/he can do this on an outpatient basis.

      YMMV, I’m not a mental health or medical professional, my $.02

      • That should be “realized” that s/he can get sober on an outpatient basis (as in, I don’t buy it, and I don’t think the relative truly buys it, either, in their heart of hearts).

        The outpatient view quickly morphed into being able to handle drinking “just a couple of drinks, socially,” and maybe seeing a therapist, as well…

        It can be a long road. As one who has dated a drunk, and dated an alcoholic (the saying is that alcoholics have more meetings, HA), I recommend Al-Anon as a helpful resource. Again, YMMV, etc.

    • I’ve never been an addict, but I struggled for a long, long time with a problem with addiction-like characteristics: anorexia. When it comes to problems like these, my personal opinion and experience (in my own life and in the lives of others) is that forcing someone into treatment rarely works. Quite simply, the period of forcible commitment/treatment might be long enough to break the physical addiction or get you through detox (or in the case of an anorexic, thought the gut-wrenching period known as “refeeding”), but it’s not long enough to change the mental processes caused the problem in the first place.

      There is a line from Alice Sebold’s memoir about her sexual assault, “Lucky”, that rings true for me with regard to problems like this: “You save yourself or you remain unsaved.”

      • I agree. Unfortunately, you can’t force someone to beat an addiction. They have to want to do it themselves. The best you can do is protect loved ones (esp. children) from further harm, and try to convince the addict that they can and must get clean. Until they are convinced of this, you are just pouring time and money down the drain .

    • anon for this :

      My family went through the same thing with my brother. Unfortunately our attempts to make him go to rehab didn’t work and it wasn’t until the very end of his life that he actually wanted to go. We couldn’t get him there in time, because addiction is powerful enough that even when they are trying to get better they can’t help but use, and he overdosed.

      The most important thing to know is that an addict has to want to change for it to actually happen. You can’t want it for them. If they are truly an addict then an intervention might make them want to change. I suggest laying out the realities of what sort of help is out there and then laying out the truth. Whether they believe it or not, drug addiction will ultimately lead to their death. Whether that be a death in jail where they are serving time for a drug related offense, from an overdose, during a deal gone bad, or simply from medical problems that drugs lead to.

      I wish you the best of luck. Be there for your friends because this is harder for them than you could ever realize and unfortunately may only get worse. They need strong people to help them and support them because drugs really do destroy entire families.

    • lawpryncess :

      I’m a prosecutor in one of our country’s meth capitals and I see the devastation caused to families when they’re spending all of their resources trying to support an addict. I’m not just talking about financial resources, but emotional resources as well. My advice is that the family needs to get to AlAnon ASAP! In the criminal justice system here the addicts who seem to be in the worst shape (meaning they are frequent fliers who we can see becoming increasingly violent/more haggard/seemingly unable to even seriously consider getting clean) are the ones who have a family that is always ready to make excuses for their behavior, bond them out of jail, and spend all of their money on so-called “big dog” lawyers. AlAnon will help them through the process of realizing that no matter how much they love this person, they are really doing them harm by continuing to take responsibility for his/her actions.

      I can honestly say that the families we have been able to get to the program have eventually managed to step back from their addict and in return the addict then gets to a point where they at least begin to consider getting clean. Please get your friends involved in the program.

    • As others said, if he won’t go into rehab, he won’t go. They should stop trying to force him.

      If this ‘young adult’ lives at home, the parents should throw him out of the house. Change the locks if necessary. Tough love. As you know, counselor, if he is an adult, the parents have no legal duty to support him. He is not their problem. His life is his own. Alternately, they could find him an apartment and pay the rent for three months…while still kicking him out. Basically, if he’s at home, they are enabling him.

  19. Hi ladies, love this forum and would like some help. Where would you buy Coach bags online? I am in Australia btw. Thanks for your help!

  20. Anongirlie :

    What brands of tights do you all recommend?? Mine always rip/get runs within one day of wear!! I’m desperate!!

    • I really like the HUE sueded tights. I get them at Nordstrom Rack. They often come in 2-packs! None of mine have ripped yet, and I’ve worn them 5 or 6 times. They are very opaque. I have brown, navy and black and all are very nice!

      • I would concur. I was wondering why nobody mentioned HUE! They’re super durable, opaque, and comfy. My boyfriend does the laundry before I wake up on Sundays and he inadvertently dried 2 pairs and they’re still fine!

        I love the price ($10 for 2) or $5.99 for 1 (I think) at Century 21 (if you’re in NYC), 3 different “sizes” and if you end up snagging it because you sat on your velcro strapped shoes, it’s not $34 down the drain.

        But you can also get HUE pretty much anywhere.

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