Traditionally, to be a classy woman means to be stylish, superior, admirably smart, elegant and respectable.
However, I find the traditional definition and ideas on what it means to be classy can cause us to focus a little too much on the external and superficial ways to be classy.
I believe that a truly classy woman isn’t just a woman who is a part of elite society or who is rich. In other words, it’s not your actual social standing or economic situation that determines how classy you are, although that can be a part of it.
7 Steps to Becoming A Classy Woman
What determines how classy you are is who you are.
You see, money, status and having rich friends can always be taken from you.
But who you become can never be taken away from you. Any rich woman or man can have their riches wiped out from underneath them, and they could find themselves swimming in the deep end like some poorer people.
Would they suddenly not be classy if this happened to them?
The answer to that question depends on who they are. Not so much the circumstance they may find themselves in.
So I am here to re-define classy in a better way. Here’s how I define it: classy means to be a genuine woman who is high value. She holds herself well and respects herself regardless of life circumstances, and despite what other people may think of her.
I would also say that a classy woman does not judge herself regardless of what mistakes she might make.
It’s a slippery slope – once you start making mistakes, you might judge yourself, and if you’re unlucky, others might judge you, and your confidence starts to diminish – sending you into deeper low self esteem or bad self image.
So it’s kind of like, once you start off being a mistake maker, or once you start off being (or feeling) low status, you feel worse and worse, and because you feel worse and worse, and you show up less classy.
So the truth is – there are two aspects of being classy – there is the internal aspect and the external aspect.
Strictly speaking, the external aspect has everything to do with how you show up, how you hold yourself and your habitual facial expressions, the way you walk, your posture and it’s also about how you dress.
The internal aspect is the harder one to master because it takes bravery and it requires you to trust in the process. However, it’s the internal aspect that truly translates to the external aspect as well.
Regarding the internal aspect of being classy – it’s all mental and emotional.
So, to be classy from the inside-out is about your freedom to not judge yourself; it is about you opening in love and loving where you are at – and loving where others are at, regardless of how judge-worthy they might be (or you might be).
You can’t dress high status and ignore the internal aspect – you will ‘look’ classy and high status, but as soon as people speak to you, all hope is on the way out.
A classy woman also knows that aiming for perfection is pointless because there is so much perfection in imperfection.
Also, because of these attributes, a classy woman can handle all social situations and conversation with confidence.
That being said, here is how you become a classy lady in 7 steps.
STEP 1: Hold yourself as a classy, high value woman.
To market yourself as a classy lady, there are two aspects to this.
Part A: The internal: what you believe and feel about who you are; and
Part B: Posture: holding your physical body as a classy woman would.
# Part 1 A: The internal.
The internal is what you believe and feel about who you are.
Look, it doesn’t matter what happens…face the world with eyes wide open and shoulders pulled back. Hold yourself like you matter; because you do.
You matter, because you have something to give to the right person, or people.
To be classy from the inside out, you need to know and believe with your soul that you are already enough.
You were born for a reason.
Even if you don’t feel very confident inside, even if you feel shaky inside, just keep on breathing! Breathe and breathe some more; and know that nothing is bigger than you; even if it feels bigger than you.
You cannot be high class if you don’t THINK you are high class.
You have to start by believing you are worthy of love.
It’s your job to market what you have, and to market yourself, you have to believe you are ‘It’.
Who you show up to be speaks louder than what you SAY about who you are.
Classy women show that they are classy through who they are and what they do, not what they say about who they are and what they do.
So, add value to yourself and your life so that you don’t feel a lack. Appreciate who you are as a woman – all of you.
Don’t hide away in fear that you might be somehow unworthy of being acknowledged as high value or classy.
# Part 1 B: Posture.
Posture is very important for being classy.
If you have poor posture, that will make you go unnoticed to the right people and slip under the radar of other classy, high value people, because it will say a lot about your physical and mental health without you even realising it.
It will scream the message: I am depressed and low energy.
It may also send the message that you don’t think very highly of yourself or that you are too overworked to function in a healthy way.
So ideally, you should study how to have great posture.
You’ll never see any high class female celebrity with poor posture. Especially the likes of Kate Middleton or Meghan Markle.
Or if you’re a more traditional girl, think of ladies like Audrey Hepburn or Princess Diana. Did they ever present with poor posture?
Perhaps in moments, but usually, never.
I talk a lot more about having great posture in my program ‘Triple Your Radiance’.
For now, what you can do is check out an article (along with some older videos) where myself and my husband D.Shen (who is a qualified physiotherapist) walk you through 3 exercises to instant good posture.
These two aspects – the internal and the external – are the basis of how you ‘market’ yourself as a classy lady.
Marketing yourself doesn’t mean to try hard to prove yourself by telling everyone about your virtues.
It also doesn’t mean to yell and shout about yourself (far from it).
Who you are and how you hold yourself speaks far more about your class than who you SAY you are.
Remember that saying “the empty vessel makes the loudest sound”.
Marketing yourself – is all about holding yourself highly, and acting as such. (read my article about the contrast of light and dark feminine)
That’s why posture is so important. Walk like you are a part of this world; and walk like you belong here.
You are grounded in the earth…imagine yourself standing in the grass, and imagine your legs are the heavy roots of a big, beautiful tree… you are rooted to this earth, you belong, and you matter.
To increase how classy you show up, I also recommend you read the article: “How To Be More Feminine: 18 Ways of A Soft Feminine Woman.”
Once you believe you matter, you start to walk like you matter, like you have value to offer, and you start to believe that you have value.
When you have value, you start to be willing to take the risk of giving out value to others (to those who deserve it, of course).
This is (going back to the internal aspect briefly) very much about the internal aspect of being a classy woman.
Yet it’s the harder aspect to master, which is why we want to learn about it.
STEP 2: Develop rituals that support a high self-worth.
A classy woman is a woman with a high sense of self-worth and who also projects herself that way. And high self-worth only comes from knowing you are worthy.
However – you can only truly know, and feel, with certainty that you are worthy when you face enough and give enough (to yourself and others) that you have little choice but to give yourself utmost respect. (read my article about do beautiful women intimidate men)
I’m talking about emotional resources here. Some people like to call it emotional fitness: a woman who can hold her own yet give her heart in the face of grave fears.
Emotional resourcefulness is your ability (or your desire) to breathe through, and handle anything that faces you with love and vulnerability.
With love and vulnerability will come strength.
So – develop rituals: whether that be a daily practice of gratitude, A daily resolve to push a little further on your spiritual path with your spouse or your children, a daily practice of viewing life as a playground rather than a battleground and looking for the evidence to support that belief or even a daily ritual of giving understanding and love rather than judgments.
It’s up to you. I mean after all, perhaps there are some people in your life whom you feel are not worthy of your understanding or love. That’s fine.
Expecting things from the world is not classy
You always want to try to lead with understanding and love first. Don’t just expect it from the world.
Expecting it from the world is not classy – that’s value extraction.
When you feel entitled, you don’t attract high caliber people in return. In fact, you attract your reciprocal. In other words, you attract the same kind of people as you – because they are willing to tolerate and resonate with your own sense of entitlement.
Your daily rituals become your standards for yourself.
Rituals are a way to make you actually earn confidence and self esteem and in turn, feel great about yourself. It’s not just empty self-talk.
You can use this as a measure of your sense of self-worth and confidence…(example)
If you were dropped in the middle of a daunting social situation, say, the red carpet tomorrow in among the most respected, poised and famous leaders, philanthropists, business men and women – would you be comfortable, and looking forward to the event?
Would you believe that you too, have something of value to bring to the occasion?
When you develop daily rituals that support a high sense of self worth, you start to appreciate how you can actually be of value to others. You start to give value.
A classy woman is a woman who has value to give
A high quality, highly esteemed classy woman is a woman of value and a woman of value is one who values the happiness of others, and who is considerate.
People will rarely perceive you as high class unless you have real value to offer and add to their lives.
Think of how women show up low value – if you or I were to show up low class or low value, we’d almost always act in a particularly recognisable way.
Usually, this kind of woman is lacking self esteem and feels so insignificant in this world, that she becomes obsessively significance-driven and she is habitually unable to listen, to care for or to help others.
This kind of person may be socially uncalibrated and completely unaware of others and how they’re making others feel, because their need for sucking value from the world is too great.
A woman showing up like this may even frustrate you with anger because you simply can’t get a word in and let’s face it, it’s HARD being around someone who isn’t present or who doesn’t care about you at all.
Here is what a high quality woman is NOT: She is not someone who is constantly sucking value from others.
STEP 3: Focus on taking responsibility, over blaming.
Blaming others comes from our resistance to painful emotion that wells up inside of us.
We want to avoid pain, or we are scared of taking responsibility.
So our instinct is to blame….because retaliation feels better than crying in a moment where we feel like we failed…or like we weren’t enough.
It is much better for you to admit that you feel like you failed, than it is to blame others…why?
Because admitting that you have the feeling of failure is vulnerability – it is you reducing the resistance you have to life and to emotions altogether.
It is soft and it is real. Blaming others (or even yourself), is a lazy and fearful way to face life – it is never high value, and it’s never classy.
For more on how to be High Value, see my video on 3 Undercover Ways to be More High Value Over Other Women & Get Him to Choose YOU.
Of course, sometimes we all slip up. Sometimes we are exhausted and hangry. Sometimes we are overwhelmed and trying to process trauma.
It is in these moments that our classiness is really tested.
(Don’t worry, I’ve failed these tests plenty in my day-to-day life).
But I use the guilt after such incidents as a guide: the guilt, rather than letting it cripple me, I let it be a reminder to do better next time.
Now, there is a difference between telling the truth about someone’s character and blaming someone.
What is the difference? The difference is that when we blame someone, we are acting out of fear and our intention is to retaliate.
This is all fear.
Telling the truth about someone’s character can be done with love or even with objectivity, and once it is done it is done.
Blaming and criticising is sometimes done to avoid revealing our own selves…to push someone away, or to ‘cope’ with pain and uncertainty.
I am not saying that we should all be perfect and never find a reason to blame someone; because we all have moments where we just have to criticise, and we all have moments where we have stooped low.
But this is where having rituals that support a high self esteem will help: when you have real esteem for yourself; when you consistently make yourself do difficult things, when you consistently make time to appreciate and be grateful and when you make time to truly connect with yourself and others, you start to get closer to the truth of humanity: that we are all one.
We are all different, yet we are also all one. No amount of blaming will change that.
And there’s really no better test than when you’re under stress. It’s when you’re under stress that it really shows how much you truly want to be a classy woman, full of love and high value.
FEEL instead of blaming
If you notice yourself wanting to blame, criticise or be hateful…that’s a good reminder to feel.
Your feelings may not even be related to the other person!
Sit down, speak out loud about what hurts you, what is making you sad, and what is making you angry.
Go deep – say to yourself or to someone that you trust how you really feel. Don’t pretend.
If you are scared that you’re not enough – that’s okay – just say it – admit it to yourself.
The least classy ladies in the world are often the ones who are most fearful of admitting that they feel like they are not enough.
This is because they will do almost anything to push everyone away due to their fears of not being enough coming to surface.
So, if deep down you have painful emotions that are too difficult to handle, allow yourself to feel like you are not enough right now, or that you feel uncared for and unloved.
It’s not the feeling – it is our resistance to the feeling that is inevitably damaging.
STEP 4: Let Love flow through you.
Let love flow through you. Let love flow through your hands, your words, your body, and your actions.
Love softens you and makes your every movement, every word, classy.
It makes your energy neither too arrogant nor too humble.
Love permeates your actions as intangible value within every important relationship you have.
The way we hold ourselves can encourage stress, fear or relaxation and love in others.
There’s a saying by David Deida that is very much relevant to becoming more classy:
“Everything you do right now ripples outward and affects everyone. Your posture can shine your heart or transmit anxiety. Your breath can radiate love or muddy the room in depression. Your glance can awaken joy. Your words can inspire freedom.”
Of course, you cannot help being stressed out at times. But to be classy, it also helps to remember that our energy is felt by others, and it affects others.
So, it’s nice to take responsibility for the energy that we put out into the world.
When we put out love, we tend to get love back. When we put out stress or hate, we get much worse back.
I understand that sometimes, we get angry.
Sometimes, we get very stressed.
But the practice of being classy is really the practice of accepting each moment, rather than always fighting hard against what is.
We can learn to love where we are at – even if we hate feeling right now.
Feeling is hard, but the more we feel, the more we become ‘love’. And the more we become love, the more classy we feel like to everyone around us.
STEP 5: Cultivate authenticity.
Contrary to popular belief, being classy and elegant isn’t about “self-control” or holding things in.
It’s not about being a stoic.
Try to be authentic. You could have just lost a dear family member, your dog could have gotten run over, you could have had a big issue with your best friend, you could be down about losing your job, or just life’s problems, and that is all fine – as long as you are authentic.
You can be grieving, or experiencing emotional suffering, and still be classy. All you have to do is acknowledge the pain, perhaps share your feelings with friends, family and your lover, but still hold yourself with grace and poise.
To actually be authentic, you must value being authentic more than you value having a nice ‘image’ or another kind of ‘identity’.
Wouldn’t you agree that it’s the people who try really hard to project an image of classiness that usually show up the least classy?
This is due to the fact that the energy of ‘trying too hard’ makes them feel less authentic to you. Something is just not quite ‘real’ about them.
This identity problem consumes a lot of people. For example, a lot of women are actually feeling hurt at a given time but pretend to be the happy mother, friend or wife, because they don’t want to have the identity of being silly or overly sensitive (in this masculine world, we tend to look down on a woman’s natural and biological gift of wide ranging emotions – and our ability to feel these emotions).
Drop the need for a nice image. I think it’s exhausting, don’t you?
More than ever now, people are starting to want what is real. Secretly, deep down (behind the masks that many of us put up) I think we all prefer to be around what is real.
In the old days, it was a lot about ‘show’ and keeping ‘face’. Now, I feel like things are becoming more transparent. We can hide less.
Also, many of us are sick of living in a fast-paced environment where people are always climbing the corporate ladder, valuing ‘things’ or money.
STEP 6: Care beyond what is comfortable.
Caring takes extra energy; people who care are generally very passionate people. Not impulsive, but passionate.
Sometimes people confuse impulse for passion – it is just impulsive, not passionate.
Care about life; about the way your words touch someone.
Care about the way you welcome people into your home – care about how warm and welcome they feel in your home.
Care about you hug your lover, your family.
Care about being better.
Care about engaging more with life.
Care about loving deeper.
Care about being kind (to the people who deserve your kindness).
There’s no other way to live.
This requires a kind of care for what you are doing, for who you are, and a general care for the world, and other people.
It’s rare. But I feel that you will live a more infinite life and be a richer woman for it.
Many people don’t care beyond what is comfortable.
But this is what makes caring worth something.
STEP 7: Act according to the context & dress modestly where it fits.
I can remember a young woman who once began showing up to a sporting club where I frequented.
This sporting club had roughly 85-90% men.
That’s right, only 10 – 15% of the attendees were women (one of whom was myself).
The first day she showed up, I thought she was so sweet. I was so happy to have another woman at the club.
She came across as a friendly woman with a cheerful demeanor. And she still had that demeanor to this day.
However, it quickly became apparent that it wasn’t that she was always sweet as such, but that in many ways, she had developed this persona as a way to manipulate people and to take value from every person she possibly could, everywhere she went.
(There’s nothing wrong with developing a sweet persona, but obviously not everyone acts from the same place inside of themselves).
A Classy, Traditional Environment Calls for You to Act According to Unspoken Etiquette
The sport we were participating in was a very traditional sport where we were physically close to the men, and so certain boundaries should very obviously be adhered to.
This young lady was one to deliberately draw attention to her fake breasts using verbal and physical cues, right in front of the ladies and the men at the club.
She would wear very low-cut bras at this (traditional and respectful) sporting club and when men came near her, she would deliberately draw attention to them.
Just as an example: an attractive older man was talking to us about everyday things, and midway through the conversation, she proceeded to grab her low cut bra-top, saying “oh, sorry!” and pull it up as far as a very low cut bra could be pulled up.
In other words, whilst no one was even on the topic of her breasts (and neither would it be appropriate to talk about them), she drew attention to them.
She would talk about her breasts around the wrong people at the wrong time, openly, when people were having normal conversations about the mutually practised sport or about how work was that day.
She would do this with the purpose of drawing attention to her breasts.
To Be Classy, You Should Act According to the Customary Code
Now, just to put this into context a bit more for you…
There were other women at the club (perhaps with even larger breasts than her), however, since we were practicing a very respectful and traditional sport, the majority of the women made a point of covering up – I would guess out of understanding and respect for the environment they were in.
This young lady didn’t.
Despite the fact that the sport required men and women to be physically close.
And she didn’t quite pick up on people’s subtle feedback about her approach either.
This is a perfect example of someone not being sensitive to, and aware of the context and the environment she was in.
Also, this was not the only issue.
She had an interesting approach to almost everyone in the club, whereby she would ask anyone she possibly could for favours repeatedly, that were very obviously out of their way.
A lot of people would agree to these favours, sometimes to their own detriment.
We’re talking about favours involving the use of people’s time, effort and energy. Favours that I believe most decent people would have the sense not to repeatedly ask for, and give nothing in return.
Then very quickly there also came an incident with a married man at the club. I won’t go into that.
I just hope everything turned out ok there with this man’s marriage and of course, his wife.
Do you know the dark art of “High Value Banter” that helps you quickly weed out the wrong types of men and create emotional attraction with the “BEST of MEN”? CLICK HERE to learn how in this free class.
There’s nothing wrong with wanting attention (in the right context)
Now, is there anything wrong with drawing attention to oneself? Not in the right context, not at all!
If she were at a nightclub, a casual house party, or an all women’s dancing class, perhaps the unspoken rules of that particular environment would be different, true?
However, she wasn’t in this kind of environment. She was at a club full of men, and the biggest issue wasn’t so much with revealing her breasts.
The issue was the disregard for the unspoken etiquette at the sporting club, as well as her insensitivity to the subtle feedback of others.
Very quickly, I began to notice that she was angering a select few people at the sporting club.
To be Classy, Be Sensitive to Social Feedback!
People began to talk amongst each other about her ways and it became clear that she was offending people, partly because of the lack of respect and gratitude she was showing to people in return for the exorbitant favours she was asking.
So, what is the overall point of this story?
The point is that if your goal is to be classy, then it’s a good idea to consider where you are and whom you are with, and what the moment calls for.
It helps to act appropriately.
Classy People Respond to the Environment They’re in
There’s an old saying that illustrates my point perfectly:
“When in Rome, do as Romans do.”
Context is everything.
This is kind of like your own needs and wants versus the needs and wants of the majority – in any given context or situation.
There’s nothing wrong with wanting attention – as long as your way of going about it is appropriate to the context and not painfully annoying people and making them lose respect and trust for you.
Here’s what I believe: I believe that classy women care about context!
Classy in its traditional definition essentially means to be smart, elegant and sophisticated.
To ooze these kinds of vibes requires one to be very attuned to the context.
We don’t want to ignore subtle feedback in social environments. That would turn out disastrous.
To be classy, you need to feel for the situation at hand. Know what environment you are entering.
Don’t turn up to a classy function with too many body parts popping out of your clothes.
Sure, I understand that you may not have dressed specifically for attention – sometimes as women, we just dress in the clothes we dress in because they were the most convenient items of clothing at the time.
That’s ok – again, we are not all perfect.
However, leaving some bum cheeks for all to see or leaving some nipple for all to see is something only for the bedroom.
Classy women Calibrate to the situation at hand
I know that all women’s bodies are different, and so we will all present differently – yet regardless of bum size, breast size, breast size, toe size (just kidding) – small or large – a woman can choose how, and whether to put them on show or not. (read my article about dressing feminine in the workplace)
At certain events, or on certain occasions (social or private), it’s fine to show leg or cleavage.
However, you must take a few breaths and allow yourself to be calibrated to the situation at hand.
You might feel like wearing something very sexy – but as well as considering what you feel like wearing – you have a responsibility to feel for what is appropriate for the event you are attending.
Even if you feel like dressing revealingly, consider how that might come across to other people – and consider if you might be doing it to take value from the situation.
Sometimes, when we feel deeply insecure or we desperately want attention (which is normal at some stage in life), we can begin to take a lot of value from people and social situations – all the while convincing ourselves that ‘this is just who I am’.
And yet – remember from our point above that who you are ripples out to others.
Who you are adds value or takes value
Who you are adds value or it takes value.
Another example from my own life: my oldest son recently made a change in BJJ clubs.
A whole new club in a whole new part of my home town, a whole 1 hour and 15 minutes away.
Now, being an Aussie girl, I had no qualms about wearing my denim shorts with sandals and a t-shirt or singlet on a very hot summer’s day, while taking my son to training.
However, there was one problem: this new club had a majority of muslim families.
This means that the women there – young and old – were all in their traditional garb. Almost all (bar myself and at the most about three other moms) had on a headscarf and were covered right down to their knees.
The second time I drove my son to training, I really began to feel uncomfortable in the clothing I was wearing.
It was fine for a lot of the places I’d normally no.
However, I noticed that by dressing the way I did, I felt inappropriate, and I realised I was creating separation between myself and those women.
Should I, could I, keep dressing the way I did? Technically, yes!
I’m not muslim, after all.
But very quickly I realised the environment I was in, and knew it was time to at least make an effort to try to cover myself with long skirts and pants and perhaps long sleeve tops.
At the very least, I felt a responsibility to dress appropriately for the culture of this particular club.
So what I try to remember is that being calibrated is more important than taking what you want from a situation, or perpetuating disconnects in social situations.
Being out-of-whack brings with it consequences that you might not want to experience.
And if you’re ok with the consequences, that’s ok, it’s all up to you.
Still, the truth is that we all have to pay the price for our own actions at some point.
Why cause yourself more stress if you don’t need to?
If a Woman has a Nice Figure, People can Tell Regardless of what You Wear…
It is also important to know…If a woman has a nice figure – people can actually tell, even if you’re wearing a turtleneck and tracksuit pants!
Even if you’re wearing a paper bag! It’s just that it may not be as “eye-catching” because the vie for attention isn’t obvious.
Make sure there are some nicely tailored dresses and pants in your wardrobe that are form-fitting, well-made and good quality. Even if you can only afford one or two pieces. It’s worth it.
Below is a list of women whose style and mannerisms you could choose to model.
I have no idea about who it is you admire as classy. I’ve just given some examples I know of.
The best way to start dressing classy is to choose someone you identify with and see what she does and how she holds herself.
Carefully observe the posture on these women!
Do you admire anyone in particular for her class?
Is there a particularly classy person you would like to mention? tell us about her in the comments! We’d love to know, and we’d love to learn more from you!
Here are some examples of women with class:
What do you think makes a woman classy?
Please add your thoughts and advice in the comments section for what makes a classy woman so that we can learn from you.
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Renee is the founder of The Feminine Woman & co-founder of Shen Wade Media where we teach women how to show up as a high value high status woman whom easily inspires a deep sense of emotional commitment from her chosen man. Together with her husband D. Shen at Commitment Triggers blog, they have positively influenced the lives of over 15 million women through their free articles and videos as well as 10’s of thousands through paid programs through the Shen Wade Media platform.
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