Would you employ an Image Consultant?

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This afternoon I had a call from an image consultant.

She offered me to make me a lot better of myself through suggesting the colour and type of clothes that would be most suited to my body type and my skin tone. Furthermore, she promised me I would have fewer clothes but the clothes I will have will cover all occasions.

At an additional fee I could also employ her as my personal shopper to buy clothes that she has recommend that would make me look good.

I must admit that I was tempted because shopping and I just do not go well together. Most of the time the clothes I buy are just not suited to me.

I explained to her I want to lose weight before I explore this avenue further. I asked her to call me again in December, I will think about it. Should I be saying this in public!

I looked at her website and the after photos looked very good. This may be because the before photos were made to look worse.

Is it just me who found the idea of an Image Consultant appealing? Would you employ one? Some politicians do. 

About FirstTab


Blogs about my week in a boutique practice. My independent channel: https://accountantblog.co.uk/


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By Old Greying Accountant
26th Feb 2013 22:26

No way ...

.... Jose.

My view is be yourself, not some one's real life Ken.

I think this is your main negative attribute, you worry too much about what people think rather than just getting on and showing what you can do.

If you are a good trusted advisor you will get far better referrals than from how you look.

So, taking my own advice, if you want to give it a go, do so, but my opinion is it is a waste of money, especially knowing your personality, you will not take on 100% of what you are told as you like to make your own decisions (which is your best positive attribute).


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By vicadm
26th Feb 2013 22:50

Can be worth it...
I had my colours 'done' by a consultant from House of Colour a few years ago and thoroughly recommend it. I was wearing cool, muted tones and should have been wearing warm, bright ones as they make me look much healthier, happier and energetic (none of which are bad from a professional presentation perspective, I think). I paid just under £100 for the session, I think, and definitely worth every penny. I didn't take up personal shopper or style consultancy services as I'm fairly happy with the style of clothes I pick for myself (which I agree with OGA is personality driven), but colour really makes a difference.
Agreed that presentation is not a replacement for being a good trusted advisor, but knowing that you look good (because people tell you that) does wonders for confidence.

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26th Feb 2013 22:59


I agree with OGA - I know my image would not match any known image consultant - unless provided by Oxfam rejects. My "new" image would not be who i am so I would not be comfortable.


By all means get a trusted friend to take you shopping and buy some new threads but be yourself. Is it here I confess that I dont own a suit?


Your first impression for clients has to be warm and welcoming and that you know your stuff and whilst I dont advocate pyjamas or a sex[***] pistols t shirt they should be focusing more on what you say within 5 mins.

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27th Feb 2013 06:31

First few seconds
I think the reality is we assess people we meet for the first time within the first few seconds.. Our assessment is mainly based on looks and body language.

This makes the way we dress important?

Then comes the trusted advisor bit?

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to Portia Nina Levin
27th Feb 2013 07:26

What place were you brainwashed at?

FirstTab wrote:
I think the reality is we assess people we meet for the first time within the first few seconds.. Our assessment is mainly based on looks and body language. This makes the way we dress important? Then comes the trusted advisor bit?

We all form opinions of people in the first second or two but the vast majority of us look for something more substantial before making a proper judgement.


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By Old Greying Accountant
to Portia Nina Levin
27th Feb 2013 09:21

That is the point ...

FirstTab wrote:
I think the reality is we assess people we meet for the first time within the first few seconds.. Our assessment is mainly based on looks and body language. This makes the way we dress important? Then comes the trusted advisor bit?

If you have the gear, but the the body language doesn't fit, it is worse than being casual but with confident body language because you are at ease with your appearance.

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27th Feb 2013 06:50

First few seconds...

And if in those first few seconds I portray an "image" rather than me then I've started off on the wrong foot with them.


There are plenty of be suited accountants and if that suits them fine I have no issue, as there are plenty of clients who want that


My clients seem happy with my style and approach. They recommend me to their friends and my sign up rate at a first meeting is over 98%, in fact in the last 12 months the only first meeting I had where the client didn't sign up was one where his existing accountant dropped his fee considerably on hearing he was thinking of moving.

They are happy for me to go into their offices, factories and homes as required as their first and subsequent impressions are consistent

Be comfortable in who you are as there will be clients for you (unless perhaps you sit in their home dressed in a mankini smoking a pipe and swearing like a trooper in front of their kids ).

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27th Feb 2013 08:07


In any case, they would either be in hysterics at the vision of me, or in tears at the enormity of the task. I choose comfort over style.

None of my clients have complained about my appearance, and nobody has run screaming from the office upon first sight of me :)

ps. I personally am put off by someone who looks too 'smooth', especially if they are continually 'preening' themselves. It may just be me, but I always wonder if they put more effort into their appearance than into the quality of their work.

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By Flash Gordon
27th Feb 2013 08:53

Image consultant or personal shopper?

Image consultant definitely not! My image (for what it is) you can take or leave, no pretences. I don't meet clients anyway so it's now irrelevant but I think you have to 'own' the image not be given it i.e. if you don't feel comfortable in it and its not you then... bad idea.

A personal shopper for clothes might be interesting just because I never seem to be able to find a pair of trousers that really fit properly. And I have to be really in the mood for clothes shopping or it has no chance of working. Bearing in mind it's a real struggle a lot of the time to get out the front door if the dog isn't by my side, the thought of wandering round trying to find clothes, then try them on...... yeah well not that appealing. I do have various mental images of how I want to look now I've lost weight (though I think my mental images have added a couple of inches to my height and maybe given me a body that's considerably more toned than reality might suggest!) but I don't think I'm particularly conventional in the way I dress so not quite sure what a personal shopper would say. Much the same as Shirley's I guess!!

You need to decide what you want to look like FT. By all means get someone to say 'that doesn't work how about...' or 'have you considered...' but the end decision has to be yours...

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By Flash Gordon
27th Feb 2013 09:29


I always feel better when I've had a haircut. My head feels lighter (seriously) and I feel like I must look better. Clothes don't seem to have the same instant effect.

(Okay so sometimes taking the clippers to my own hair is a mistake but I'm getting better at not taking too much off the front)

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to lionofludesch
27th Feb 2013 10:58

wrong tangent

I think most of you are seeing the word "image" and interpreting it as far more sinister than what is being offered to FT. As VICADM commented, it's mainly a matter of choosing the right colours. FT is still going to look like an accountant, it's just that the visual impression will be more harmonious.

It's not really a big deal either way, to be honest. I don't think it will make a difference to FT's business.

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27th Feb 2013 15:20

The question is ....

.... would YOU employ an image consultant ?

You don't mention costs, but if we are talking about £100 as in an earlier reply, then I would say it was worth looking at.

Whether we like it or not, everybody (in both our personal and professional lives) makes an instant value judgement and as this is made in the first few seconds of meeting, a significant percentage must be influenced by what we wear etc.

We are all different, but many people do say how they feel more confident etc. when wearing different clothes.

Why not give it a go ?

As somebody said earlier, I don't think that it is anything sinister - if anything it may help us men who don't have a clue about fashion / style / colours etc. (although I accept that to some people these things are not important - but to others they are).

From how you describe yourself (i.e. not too tall, and looking to lose some weight) it may give you pointers on what to wear that would suit your body shape :

eg. do not buy trousers with turn ups as these can make you appear to be shorter.

Do not buy trousers that have a pleat on the front as they can make you appear wider( same with jackets - stick with single breasted jackets rather than double breasted, go for a slimmer lapel rather than a wide lapel - same with ties).

It is just really an extension of : wearing black clothes make you look slimmer, or horizontal stripes make you look bigger and vertical stripes lengthen your body shape.

I would vote for .............................. go for it (and let us know how you get on).




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By Old Greying Accountant
27th Feb 2013 20:13

As Granny Weatherwax would say ...

... it is all headology.

We are all susceptible to it but in varying degrees.

Some are very susceptible and an image consultant will help them.

Some are not very susceptible to it and and image consultant would be as much use to them as a priest would be to an athiest.

Some are not very susceptible to it, but understand its power and are happy to use it to manipulate people - this can be for good or for evil intent.

To put it another way, life is like a goldfish bowl, some are in the bowl looking out, some are outside the bowl looking in and others are outside the bowl but wiggling their finger around inside making ripples and waves.

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27th Feb 2013 20:58

Well put

Really well put OGA 

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By Old Greying Accountant
27th Feb 2013 23:49

Thank you my friend
I could expand more - some on the inside don't look out as they don't care what goes on there, and some don't even realise there is an outside.
Some on the outside don't look in as they don't really care what goes on inside (which probably describes me) and a few don't even know there's a bowl - they are the ones with serious problems!

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28th Feb 2013 08:55


You've forgotten the ones who see a bowl ... and smash it!

EDIT: ... or steal it.

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By Old Greying Accountant
28th Feb 2013 09:25

Ah ...

... you must mean Gordon Brown and Tony Blair respectively :o)

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28th Feb 2013 09:49


I was thinking of David Cameron & George ;)

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By Old Greying Accountant
28th Feb 2013 09:54

I think you'll find ...

... they are trying to find the bowl to glue it back together :oP

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28th Feb 2013 10:05

In that case

It will have a U-turn built in :)

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By Old Greying Accountant
28th Feb 2013 10:23

I would rather have ...

... a government that acknowledges it got things wrong and takes the necessary corrective action than one that ploughs on regardless, but ...

... we are drifting away a bit far from the OP


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28th Feb 2013 10:31

I disagree with some of your comments

But I agree that this thread has nothing to do with politics ;)


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28th Feb 2013 14:45

What's the cost of having your colours done?

I wore clothes that didn't do anything for me but was determined not to 'waste' money on clothes until I'd lost weight.

I spent a modest amount on clothes that I looked better in and this gave me confidence. It made me feel better about myself to work a bit harder at losing the weight rather than look in the mirror and deciding I looked rubbish anyway before hitting the cheese and crisps.

Look better for yourself not for others - I think most people would decide you were a decent human being by the honesty of your posts but it's how you feel about yourself.


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