Re-visiting De Wolf Opticiens

August 27, 2016 • Style

i’ve been wearing glasses on and off now for about four years, but really only needed them for driving in the dark or working behind the computer for long stretches of time. truth is i could have probably held off on wearing them for a little while longer, but i’ve always liked glasses as a fashion accessory, so i honestly didn’t mind. then came juliet, and gradually i noticed myself grabbing my glasses more and more often, and yet i still couldn’t read some traffic signs or i’d end up with a bursting head ache at the end of a long work day. after she turned one, i thought it was about time to go see an optician for a check-up.

after i’d discovered DE WOLF OPTICIENS last year when i looked for and found the PERFECT PAIR OF SUNGLASSES, there really was no doubt in my mind i’d return there. i love the brands they carry, but above all i had never felt so cared for in any shop before. so i made an appointment, but went to a different location this time – a bit closer to my home town antwerp – in puurs. last time i went to their leuven boutique, and they also have a shop in schilde. again i was welcomed with so much warmth and friendliness – i honestly felt like their most valued customer. and as i spent some time in the shop getting my eyes checked and sight measured, i listened in to some conversations and realised every. single. customer. is treated like this. the de wolf team really goes above and beyond to listen to every concern and find a solution to every challenge, with a nice cup of coffee on the side. i swear i haven’t had a more enjoyable shopping experience in my life.

but perhaps even more importantly, i’ve never experienced such an extensive measurement at an optician before. de wolf’s little backroom looks and feels like an astronaut’s cabin, with psychedelic-looking machines and monitors. not only did lovely stephanie (what’s in a name, right?) check my results against my old glasses to see how my eyes had evolved, she also checked entirely new things – like how my sight is influenced by darkness, for example. though the tests were relatively quick and straightforward, the results were certainly extensive, and a little bit surprising… there’s one more thing you can add to the list of stuff people don’t tell you before you have kids – the pregnancy and mama hormones can influence your sight. so if you thought your waistline was the only goner after giving birth, think again! luckily my sight didn’t deteriorate per sé, but because hormones influenced the incurvature of my cornea, it simply changed my astigmatism. my old glasses are pretty much worthless now, which explains the headaches and bad sight i’d been experiencing. though stephanie kindly remarked that it could also be that i’m just a lot more tired now than before having kids, and of course that has its influence on your sight, too. word, girl.

in any case, i was relieved to be reassured my eyes were pretty much still in the same condition, and i just needed new glasses. i decided that, having become a mom, this meant i should probably go for a new look, too, and then the fun really began… i was lucky to have both stephanie and astrid, owner of de wolf opticiens, help me with my search. i explained them i didn’t want a ‘mom look’, but i wasn’t into too extravagant colors or frames either. they had me try on dozens of frames, with astrid even running out to her car to find one more that she wanted me to try on. they were super good at letting me make up my own mind, but adding their honest suggestions, too. we agreed that i shouldn’t go for a frame that looked too secretary-like strict, like my old glasses, and that i needed a more feminine or flirty shape. to be completely honest – the dior frame was probably the third i tried on and i knew from the moment i looked in the mirror that it was the one. i really considered the heavier frame from oscar et valentine, simply because it was so cool, but we all agreed i looked more like myself with the dior frame.

this was all about a month ago, and i’ve probably worn my new glasses more in the past four weeks than i’ve worn my old ones in the time span of a year. i am so happy i went for the dark blue colour and very subtly ‘winged’ shape – it’s all very discreet, but still a little different than what you see most. but by all means, what do you guys think? did i do good, or should i have gone for the heavier frame? no matter how much i like the look on others, i feel like i end up favoring something more elegant time and time again…


About That Pregnancy Glow

December 9, 2014 • KidsStyleWellness

STYLE-Pregnancy-glow-a STYLE-Pregnancy-glow-b STYLE-Pregnancy-glow-c

so i’ve been having some thoughts about that infamous ‘pregnancy glow’ women around the world are promised to convince them that stretching their entire body to fit a tiny human being is actually a good idea. of course the little person i’m creating is all i really want out of this experience, but i have to say i’m a little disappointed with the rest. that glow? yeah, wasn’t happening over here. so i decided to take matters into my own hands and start a new ritual, try new products and take such good care of myself that everyone would be fooled by my newly achieved ‘glow.’

truth be told, i was slacking before. remember when PARFUMA helped me create the perfect skincare regimen leading up to my wedding? turns out my raging hormones changed EVERYTHING, and i knew i needed to hunt down different products, but i was too lazy. then i started using the LOTION PHYTO-PEELING by cinq mondes and things started looking up. i love the freshness of this tonic, which is just active enough to make a difference for my skin, but not so harsh that it would damage it. i’ve been following up with the NO REASON TO HIDE serum by philosophy and i’ve completely fallen in love with it. before, i looked to serums to hydrate, not to treat – because i could never decide on what to treat, exactly. enter this serum, which promises to just completely transform your skin. it has certainly evened out and brightened mine!

it’s hard to say which new product has had the most effect, especially since i’ve also started using the CLARISONIC MIA 2 cleaning brush. file that under ‘late to the party’, sure. i was finally curious enough to make time to include this extra ritual in my daily routine. it actually doesn’t take up as much time as i thought it would, and i find the feeling of the brush massaging my skin really relaxing. i started off brushing my face every night before applying my serum (thinking it would maybe have more effect after such a thorough cleansing), but i ended up making it more of a bi-weekly thing to avoid over-stimulating my skin. after about six weeks, my face definitely feels softer and i’ve since stopped noticing new blemishes (hurrah!) the only downside to the device might be the color (it was gifted to me, so of course i’m grateful – but if i had to choose one for myself i’d go for a sleek white one), but i’m definitely hooked to the concept now. i really want to try out clarisonic’s OTHER BRUSH HEADS for sensitive skin, which might allow me to use it more often.

still, i can’t avoid a bit of the I SO PALE phenomenon, so for days when i need to be a bit presentable, i trust my current favorites in my make-up bag // both the dior SKINFLASH and PORE MINIMIZER are essential in any of my make-up looks (who am i kidding, i only know how to do ‘natural’, but both are great for that). // jane iredale and i have been besties ever since my wedding and that’s not likely to change any time soon. i still love the light coverage of DREAM TINT and am still so impressed by the magical powers of the BLENDING BRUSH. for color, i depend on BOBBI BROWN, who is such a star at making women look like they woke up like that.

speaking of pregnancy, here are a couple of things i’ve learned so far during mine. // when you are pregnant, everyone you meet is a specialist. turns out they all secretly went to medical school and moonlight as obgyns – sneaky sneaky. seriously though, i completely understand that everyone has their story to tell, and the best possible audience is the one that is going through the exact same stuff. but that doesn’t mean they’re ready to hear it. please be careful with horror stories and unasked for good advice, which i’m sure is always delivered with the best of intentions, but can be very annoying to moms-to-be who think differently. // when you are pregnant, people experience an irresistable urge to stroke your baby bump. why anyone thinks this is a good idea, i’ll never get. this is a time in most pregnant women’s lives when they are most insecure and protective of their bodies – especially of that part – and there everyone goes, stroking and petting like there’s no tomorrow. life is not a zoo, people, and we are not your pets. if you stroke my baby bump, i’ll put a finger up your nose. you’ve been warned. // when you are pregnant, you shouldn’t have to ask for back rubs. they should just be mandatory for your spouse. // over and out.

photos by stephanie duval


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my name is stephanie duval, and i am a storyteller. this blog is where i share my favorite stories about design, travel, fashion and the nice things in life.


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