Dressing Room Crashers

Got a school dance coming up? Or do you just need to pad your holiday wardrobe? Ugh. Dressing room dread has set in. ...

Well, we did a little eavesdropping in the dressing room, and we didn’t love the body-bashing we heard! That’s why we’re here to give you a body image makeover.

Slam: “Ouch, this zipper is digging into my skin!”

Going Glam: Why, oh, why are you trying to squeeze into a piece of clothing that’s too small? Is it because of a number on a tag? The only person who’s going to see that tag with the size on it is you, so get over it. Cuts and styles are different from one brand to the next and from one piece of clothing to another, so if you’re usually a size 7 and have to go with a 9, who cares? It’s just a number! Besides, wearing clothes that are too tight is not flattering.

Try this on for size: Comfort trumps fashion every time! If it’s too tight, too short or too anything, then it’s not for you.

Slam: “I hate my [insert body part here]”

Going Glam: Why battle with your body type? Instead, work with what you’ve got. Girls come in all different shapes and sizes, and they’re all beautiful! So take care of yourself by being physically active (hey, walking around the mall is exercise!), and strut your stuff confidently. Nothing is more attractive than a girl who is comfortable in her own skin, no matter what.

Try this on for size: Focus on your strengths and play them up: “I love my smile. And, wow, I’m having a really good hair day.” Look in the mirror every day and compliment yourself on whatever you love!

Slam: “I look hideous in this outfit. Selena Gomez wears it so well!”

Going Glam: Girls are all built differently, remember? In fact, no two bodies are exactly alike. What fun would that be? Besides, Selena Gomez and other teen celebs have crews that work on their style, image and looks. So stop comparing yourself. Find the cuts and styles that work for you, and don’t take it so seriously. Fashion is supposed to be fun!

Try this on for size: Play around with accessories, such as belts and scarves, to give an outfit your own personal touch. When all else fails, go shoe shopping!

Get Ready for School in No Time Flat

You’ve pretty much got your school routine down pat by now -- so why are you still feeling so rushed in the a.m.? Even if you can brush your teeth and get dressed with your eyes closed, you can use these tips. Here’s our get-ready map to nix the last-minute scramble:

The Night Before

  • Breakfast, check!
    Figure out your morning meal ahead of time and have everything you’ll need to prepare it handy. If you’re thinking cereal or oatmeal, grab the box out of the cupboard and place it on the kitchen counter alongside a bowl and spoon.
  • Lunch, check!
    Packing? Make sammies, grab juices and portion out snacks in the evening. Stick them in your lunch bag and stow it in the fridge for a fast grab in the morning. Need lunch money? Ask your mom and dad for it beforehand and tuck it into your book bag.
  • Outfit, check!
    Pick out your next-day school clothes before you hit the hay. Don’t forget to include outerwear, accessories and shoes. Neatly set them out or hang them up together for easy access. Even if you wear a school uniform, be sure you have matching socks and clean underwear.
  • Book bag, check!
    Finished your homework? Grab all your books, papers, binders and pencils and zip ’em up in your backpack. Need any signatures from your parents? Get it done now! And if you play an after-school sport, pack all your equipment in your duffel.
  • Shower, check!
    Get an extra 10 to 15 minutes of sleep by taking your shower at night.

The Morning Of

  •   Wash up, check!
    Brush your teeth and wash your face, being sure to keep your beauty routine simple. A great product that offers light coverage and moisturizes in one fast go is tinted moisturizer. Another time-saving pick? Cream blush, which can be applied to both cheeks and lips to give your face just a hint of color. If you wear mascara, just go with one coat on your lashes. Finish it all off with a swipe of lip gloss to your pucker, and you’re all set!
  • Hair, check!
    Stocking up on hair accessories like headbands, hair clips and scarves is a simple, fast and fab way to tame your mane in the morning. For more tips on hair how-tos, check out our sidebar below.

All You Need to Know About ... Boobs!

When you got your awesome new MP3 player, it came with a user’s manual. When you decided you wanted to bake your BFF a cake for her birthday, you looked up a recipe. Even your shampoo comes with “Wash, rinse, repeat” printed on the bottle. But -- so frustrating! -- there aren’t any instructions for your boobs.

Here, we answer your most baffling breast questions to make living with “the twins” a little easier. Consider this your go-to guide for all things boob-related!

When will my boobs start growing?
Early bloomers might notice “budding” around age 8, but your set can start growing any time between then and age 13. It typically takes three to five years from when your pair starts coming in to when you reach your final size. Still, some girls might feel like they grow a pair overnight, while others develop more slowly -- your boobs could even keep growing into your 20s!

What color are my nipples supposed to be?
Whatever color they are is the color they’re supposed to be! Once your breasts start growing, your nipples and the skin around them usually get a little darker, and the end result is different for every girl. (You might also notice a few hairs growing in that area -- that’s totally normal.)

Should my boobs be this sore?
Some ladies notice their boobs are slightly tender during the early days of blossoming and in the days leading up to a period. Usually, giving ’em some TLC around that time of the month (be gentle and wear a sports bra) is enough to avoid any pain. If you’re still super-uncomfortable, ask your doc if it’s OK to take a pain killer for it.

My boobs are pointy (or lopsided). What’s wrong with me?!
Nothing is wrong with you! Boobs come in all different shapes and sizes, especially when they’re growing in. They might be pointy for a while -- or be two different sizes -- and then even out by the time you’re done developing.

Can I do anything to make my boobs bigger?
Sorry, babe, but your cup size is determined mostly by the genes you get from your ’rents. You can’t swallow a pill or rub on a special cream and expect it to work like Miracle-Gro. Although, you might notice that your boobs change size when you lose or gain weight.

A GirlÂ’s Guide to Summer Hygiene

You’re having massive breakouts? Embarrassing armpit stains? Not sure if the pool and your period are a good mix? Yeah, your feminine hygiene catches a whole new wave when summer rolls around. Here, we help you navigate those choppy waters.

Summer Hygiene Lesson No. 1: Bikini Line Dance
When it comes to that spot on your legs that peeks out from beneath your bathing suit, well...there’s often some hair there. And shaving that sensitive area can be tricky at first. Try these tips:

1. Get into a shallow bath or shower -- do not attempt to shave while dry!

2. Lather the area up with a good fragrance-free shaving gel.

3. Spread those legs, or prop one leg at a time up on a ledge, and gently shave along your bikini line with a new -- never dull! -- razor.

4. Rinse your body (and the razor) with water, and pat your parts dry with a clean towel.

Breaking out along the area where you shaved? Those are razor bumps, caused by shaven hairs curling back and growing into the skin. Stop shaving until they clear up. If they don’t go away within a week or so, talk to your doctor about treating the area with hydrocortisone cream.

Summer Hygiene Lesson No. 2: Sweaty Pit Stop
Naturally, there’s no part of us that’s sweatier in the summer than the armpits! Of course, be sure to wash yourself daily. To avoid those nasty T-shirt stains, use a good antiperspirant (not just a deodorant). Carry it with you in a backpack or purse so you can reapply often.

If excessive sweating continues to be a problem, try dusting a little cornstarch or baking soda under your arms in the morning after your antiperspirant has dried. (Tank tops are not recommended with this method.) If you’re not shaving yet, this might be a good time to ask your mom if you can start, since underarm hair can increase sweat and odor.

Summer Hygiene Lesson No. 3: Swimming ... Period
It’s the question that every girl asks at least once: “Can I swim when I’m on my period?” The answer is yes -- if you wear a tampon. You cannot get into the water with a pad or no protection, as you risk leaving a trail of blood in your wake. Ugh.

If you’ve never used tampons before, talk to your mom or other parental figure about it. If you decide tampons are right for you, lock yourself in the bathroom next time you’re having a period and follow the directions that come in the box until you’re comfortable with it. Then, grab your bathing suit, jump into the pool and make a splash!

Quiz: Are You a High-maintenance Gal?

Are you a vanity-mirror diva? Or are you more of a wash-and-go kinda gal ... or somewhere in between? Take our quiz to find out if you’re a beauty-routine queen.

Photo: @iStockphoto.com/Brainsil