“The plan was to just pass through Medellin…but that was four months ago.” The story is all too common here in Medellin. Travelers are either making their way through Southern and Latin America, or come to Medellin for a quick getaway, and suddenly they are hooked. Falling in love with this city is all too common…for guys anyway.
I’ve met at least a dozen guys that have decided to stay in Medellin long term, but I have yet to meet, in person, a single girl that has come to appreciate this city the way the guys do.
The standards for women here are quite different from the standards in the countries that most travelers come from. The problem is, they are very fashion oriented and not very obvious. There is a lot to fashion that I am completely oblivious to, but here are a few tips to make fitting into Medellin just a little bit easier. Looks are key here in Medellin. Sure, other girls care a lot more about it than the guys, but women are the larger part of the population here.
Don’t look like a backpacker. Guys can get away with it, but a T-shirt and shorts will not cut it for women.
Make-up is not optional. It doesn’t have to be super heavy, but unless your skin is naturally flawless, throw on some type foundation and at least some eyeliner EVERY TIME you go out.
Leave the heels at home. Unless they are extremely professional looking, heels are considered tacky, especially at discos. A pair of really nice flats or wedges will go a long way.
Keep accessories simple. Wearing a lot of jewelry will only get you attention from robbers. Keep accessories small, shiny, and cheap looking. Sequence jewelry is the most popular style I see here, and earrings are the most common accessory in Medellin.
Nice jeans are a staple. A simple skinny jean is popular right now, as is a boot cut that has many elegant embellishments. Make sure they are dark wash or white. Shorts are much more rare, and should be as formal as possible.
Tops must shine. They don’t have to be metallic, but they should be at least slightly attention getting. Something that has much attention to detail, a great pattern, and/or flashy colors is what you’re going for. T-shirts must be extremely fitted if worn at all. Tank tops and spaghetti straps are great, but make sure you keep your stomach covered. A small gap above your pants is ok.
Skirts are great but be careful with dresses. Skirts are not as common as jeans, but they are pretty much a free ticket. Keep them a few inches above the knee or longer, unless you have a tiny frame, and any style, color, or material is acceptable. Dresses are just less common. A simple sundress can be worn pretty much anywhere that is casual. Keep them simple for during the day. Dresses are not always common at a disco or club. I would stay away from them unless you know for sure.