Why you should always keep bleach pens in your suitcase

I love wearing white. White shirts, white pants, white coats. White is my favorite neutral—it looks great with a variety of colors and looks nice9-22-14-1 against my skin tone. However, it has one big drawback: if it gets one speck of dirt on it you will see it. For this reason I typically avoid wearing white for travel. Most of the pieces I take on trips must be worn multiple times, and that’s not always possible with white. A few weeks ago I was only traveling for a two days and didn’t need to rewear anything thing, so decided to ignore my rule and wore a white shirt on a travel day. Everything was going pretty well until I had sushi for lunch. My very last bite slipped out of my chopsticks into the bowl of soy sauce, which in turn splashed all over my white shirt. I had a cardigan to pull on when I headed back to the office, but if you looked closely you could definitely see little brown spots all over my white shirt. Sigh.

Another recommendation: don’t wear white pants when you have an important speaking event.  Here’s why.  The day before giving a speech in front of two hundred people I got my car fully cleaned inside and out, which was desperately needed.  The morning of my talk I put on my favorite pants, a pair of flattering and comfortable white slacks.  I was running a little behind so the Home Warrior drove me so I could do my makeup in the car. As part of the car cleaning I had my seats shampooed, and they were still a little damp from the day before.  When we arrived I was a little concerned I would have a damp spot on my rear so I got out and asked the Home Warrior take a look at my pants before heading into the conference.  He was silent. When I turned around to look at him he had the most terrified expression on his face I had ever seen.  All he said was, “Get in the car”.  I said “What??” He proceeded to inform me that I had a huge brown spot on the seat of my pants which made it look like I’d had a very unfortunate accident.   Apparently some coffee I spilled in my car years ago hadn’t been cleaned properly, and only resurfaced upon shampooing of my seat.  My talk started in fifteen minutes.  Luckily we lived five minutes away so the Home Warrior frantically drove me back home where I changed into black and made it back with seconds to spare.  Crisis adverted, barely.

So while I love white and think it looks great with a variety of colors, I would exercise caution when traveling in it or depending on it looking impeccable for important days. If I’m ever tempted to wear white on a trip I will make sure to keep a Tide pen in my suitcase in the event of more sushi-mishaps.

Readers, have you ever had a wardrobe malfunction while wearing white?

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  1. Horrifying post! But seriously, I would never wear white slacks in a professional situation. That may just be me, but besides the dirt/accident factor, I just don’t see it as being professional enough in my environment. I do think a crisp white shirt can look great when styled well.

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