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Ask Michael Cohen: How to Be Inexpensive Yet Chic

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I am a recent divorcee and to say the least, I have been left with not much. I came home one day and found myself the victim of a cliché. My husband was leaving me for a younger girl and leaving me with nothing but my personal accessories and a love it or leave it plan to put towards my living. This doesn't allow much room for some stylish spring clothes. Do you have any ideas on how to feel human without spending a ton on clothes? Cheryl S, Long Island, NY

I certainly do. Nail polish. I don't wear it myself and wish there were as quick a fix for men that was so inexpensive, yet could make you feel so of the moment. The best part of nail lacquers is that in total they are less than the tax on a pair of YSL tribute pumps.

For Spring 2011 sleek colors that work 9-5 are the pinks and neutrals. For something playful that seems most appropriate for the weekends, turn to the blues, and for a sophisticated yet hip look, paint on the metallics.

As for your husband leaving you with little more than the clothes on your back, I'd do a massive consignment shop deal. Start over with a new wardrobe of tans and blacks (nothing is chicer), a pair of jeans or two and find some steals on new shoes from Gilt.com.

Plus, I'd like you to become a victim of another cliché: Save money for a rainy day.

I'm on a total savings spree. This year I swear I am going to put a down payment on a condo. But, I have a horrible shoe addiction and I'm curious what's your take if I could purchase only one shoe for this Spring, what would it be and why? Loris S, Atlanta GA

Well, I imagine that you are having a hard time right now because there are so many fabulous shoes across the board this season. Between the colors, heels, and details every shoe from every designer seems to be a must have. I am obsessed with Charlotte Olympia color block satin pumps and Sergio Rossi patent leather peep toe pumps. But let me not make this more of a personal hell for you.

If I had to pick one shoe (ouch this even hurts me) it would be the Lady Daf Platform Mary Jane Pumps from Christian Louboutin. Not so much because of its red sole, but because every girl, every season needs an of-the-moment pump, and this season it's a nude. I love this shoe's hidden platform, which makes it ultra stylish and it goes perfectly with a work suit or skinny jeans and slouchy tank for a weekend look.

I recently started dating again and I am on three different sites (J.Date, eharmony.com and Match.Com). I have been lucky that I have all these girls after me. Problem is, it's expensive. What are some cheap ways to go on dates? Should I try to skip the "meal" part? Cook at home? Groupon? Thanks, Rob K, New Jersey,

I already dislike you immensely. You are the reason girls dislike dating, and this is not a compliment. However, because I know a lot of readers have similar situations I'm going to ignore the premise of who you are and dish out advice on how to have a fabulous, yet inexpensive first date.

As a general rule, I don't agree with long, drawn-out first dates, unless it happens organically. The best first date is getting together with someone over a cocktail and an appetizer. The reason I encourage some liquor is well, hello, everyone is nervous and a glass of wine or a martini can do wonders.

Make it somewhere hip and interesting, for two reasons. First, energy feeds off of energy. Second, if you are really bored and disappointed at least there are other things to keep you engaged, such as people watching or silly comments about how cool the place is. Hoping for the first scenario, a drink/snack date can take its course and evolve into a dessert/digestive scenario and there is nothing better than one of those surprising, exciting first dates.

As for cooking at home on a first date, that's grossly inappropriate. Inclusion into one's private space is not an option until, well, after the third date. As for busting out a Groupon? It's a nice way to save money, but also not appropriate for a first date. And, Rob, if you're still reading this, remember my advice as you tell your friends about all the girls falling in love with you -- online -- which will be a long conversation so long as you don't have any real first dates.

Feel free to ask me advice here in the comments section or on my Facebook page.