Is Ingenue Essence about embracing your whimsical inner child’s innocence?
This article has all the answers!
Individuals with Ingenue essence are inherently cute “dolls” with bubbly personalities layered with innocence and childlike whimsy.
The words ‘pretty’ and ‘cute’ are the most heard compliments for their overall existence and aura.
Their eyes sparkle with childlike curiosity, their voice is a harmony of giggles and soft notes, and their stature is warm, friendly, and inviting.
Kitchener defines Ingenue style essence as the small-scale Yin essence that’s decorative and delicately youthful femininity.
Visually, these individuals may appear petite and soft, with compact roundness and youthfulness.
Their facial features remain agelessly young with baby-like physical features— small/round noses, big doe eyes, round/heart-shaped faces, rounded cheeks, and natural blush.
Ingenue style essence by John Kitchener is a big slap to everyone who continues to preach, “Dress your age!”
No, dress however the way you want; dress the way you feel within!
If your aura is gentle and innocent with an intense desire to embrace your inner child— Ingenue style essence will allow you to express yourself freely through fashion.
What Is Ingenue Essence In Style?
Harriet McJimsey was the first to articulate Ingenue essence on the Yin spectrum— it portrayed gentle femininity rather than the sensual embodiment of women.
However, David Kibbe found the idea of Ingenue style essence to be non-existent, for he believed no woman in her prime would ever have a childlike body and bone structure.
This is also due to the reason that Kibbe only focused on the physical attributes of an individual for his style archetypes as known as Kibbe Body Types.
The same was not the case with Kitchener’s archetypes, though.
He believed that a person’s vibe (essence) is equally important while determining their unique style identity.
So, he pursued Ingenue style essence with utmost value and significance.
Kitchener’s idea to allow Ingenue style essence in his system brought peace to many individuals who struggled to articulate their unique style without losing their essence or vibe, which is undeniably mellow, giddy, and sweet.
Ingenue style essence contradicts and yet completes the yin side of the spectrum.
- Angelic style essence (The most Yin) defines old-soul age.
- Romantic style essence (The Yin) defines the young adult era of an individual.
- Ingenue style essence (The small-scale Yin) defines bubbly youthfulness.
While the romantic style essence portrays a woman’s sensual femininity, the Ingenue style essence characterizes innocent and warm femininity.
Ethereal essence paints femininity with maturity, but Ingenue style essence sketches individuals with childlike girlishness.
So, they contradict yet complete each other on the spectrum. Kitchener’s choices do sound right with this philosophy.
Butterflies, bunnies, unicorns, rainbows, puppies, small delicate flowers like gypsophila (baby’s breath), fairy foxglove, scorpion grasses, and cherry blossoms best represent someone with Ingenue style essence.
Physical characteristics of the Ingenue archetype
It can be frustrating for people with Ingenue style essence and body lines to come across as someone intimidating, dangerous, or mysterious, especially when your personality contradicts your body type.
We say you be a daunting package packed in pink lace. It will take people by surprise!
“Strike them with your dazzling smile and kill them with your spicy personality.” haha, just kidding!
Ingenue essence face and body type very much resemble features of a baby.
That’s probably why you get to hear a lot of “Awws!” and compliments like “adorable,” “pretty,” “girly girl,” etc.
Let’s start with the Ingenue face type; it’s the most giving characteristic of the Ingenue style essence.
You wouldn’t find a trace of sharp features or edgy jawlines in Ingenue faces.
Their face is round, soft, or heart-shaped, with a small chin and a big forehead.
It’s usually small in size compared to other essence’s face types.
Another giveaway for Ingenue style essence is their full, round cheeks with a natural blush.
These cheeks enhance their “adorable” aura and make people want to squash them.
Those eyes are big and far apart, resembling a cute puppy!
They hold curiosity, cute mischief, and innocence in their big doe eyes. You’d automatically want to melt looking into them.
The eye color is generally light with a darker rim around the iris for individuals with Ingenue style essence.
This is another signifier for the baby-like resemblance in the Ingenue face type.
It’s not easily found in adults, so light and big eyes are a big giveaway for Ingenue-style essence.
Please note: The eye color lighter than an individual’s overall coloring better justifies individuals with Ingenue essence.
The same cannot be said for individuals who are overly lighter in appearance.
Nose and mouth:
A small and perky nose with a round or peach center is very common in Ingenue face type archetypes.
Besides big eyes and forehead, Ingenue face types mostly have small features.
Another small feature for Ingenue individuals is their mouth and lips.
You will find the upper lip to be subtle but bowed. The lower lip is compact instead of round or full.
The body curve
Ingenue body type isn’t voluptuous or curvy, and doesn’t have many sensual attributes to flaunt.
It’s rather petite and short with gentle roundness/softness and a wave-like curving line— not too full (S) nor too edgy (Z).
This doesn’t mean that individuals with Ingenue essence aren’t sexual or sensual; it’s just the visuals.
Ingenue style refocuses more on the youthful innocence of a woman rather than her sensuality.
The height is not very tall; their compact size makes their unique style shine without appearing weird or ridiculous.
Curly hair brings out the youthfulness in their appearance; they bounce and add childlike character to your personality.
Of course, there will be Ingenue individuals with straight hair, but they will look extraordinary with a curly perm. It’s definitely something you should try!
Ingenue style essence VS Gamine style essence
Differentiating Ingenue and gamine styles can become very difficult if we don’t take “their essence” into consideration.
It’s their essence (along with a few physical attributes) that separates both essences.
Both are short and petite with compact bodies, but Gamine body type gravitates closer to sharp edges, and Ingenue gets pulled toward soft roundness.
- Unlike the round cheeks in Ingenue, the Gamine face type might still highlight edgy cheekbones and a little sharpness in their face shape. Gamine might have edgy eyebrows and sharp/straight lips.
- Forget doe eyes in Ingenue style essence; Gamine slays and carries cat-eyes like a pro.
- Even when they have doe eyes, there’s hidden mischief in those eyes instead of innocence.
- Gamine style is petite with a Z curving line; their body type is edgy with defined shoulders and lined symmetry.
- I like how Flamboyant Gamine and Soft Gamine unite in Ingenue innocence. While Kibbe typing is rather structural and based on specific measurements, the Ingenue is rather the vibe and this why it is called an essence.
Here’s a better illustration: You visualize soft pastel colors when thinking about Ingenue style essence.
However, dark colors come to mind when you think about the Gamine style essence.
Because of the difference in their vibe and aura, Gamine and Ingenue can have strikingly contrasting fashion styles.
For Ingenue, the preferred style would be the retro, vintage, chic, bohemian, preppy, girly, ethnic, or soft-girl look.
For Gamine, it would be the popular emo, street style, punk, goth, rocker, or tomboy look.
Styling Ingenue Essence
This prediction doesn’t mean you wouldn’t look good in other styles.
You can pull off any clothing that you like; I’m sure of that. However, you would literally slay the world with an Ingenue wardrobe if that’s your essence.
People often ask me, “would I look bad if I tried another essence’s wardrobe?”
I always say: “you should continue trying as many styles and blends as possible until you are truly satisfied with your choices.
It’s not a crime to experiment with your wardrobe; Kibbe or Kitchener essence isn’t a law.”
Plus, everyone’s a blend of different style essences, so you can try all your essences whether they are present primarily, secondarily, or tertiarily.
For instance, Taylor Swift is a verified Ingenue, yet she absolutely looked stunning in her crystal naked dress at the MTV VMAs.
That dress was purely dramatic style essence plus romantic in nature!
However, Ingenue’s wardrobe brings out her true essence to life despite her tall height.
It fits her like a second skin and makes her look peaceful. I admire and adorn her in Ingenue wardrobe; she looks like a young girl experiencing life as she travels the world.
Her aura through her fashion is warm, kind, brightening, breezy, soft, and soothing.
You would rarely find dark colors in an Ingenue’s closet— it’s mostly filled with pastel colors, hues with light value, a wide variety of white, and vibrant floral colors.
The popular pastel choices for Ingenue are blue, light pink, green, and lavender, without a doubt.
However, any pastel color would compliment individuals with Ingenue style essence.
My personal favorite light-value colors are
- Sunset colors such as magenta, burnt orange, and vibrant yellow.
- Floral colors such as maroon, cherry red, dark pink, etc.
- Low-chroma colors such as mute pink, blue, and mute green look flawless on someone with ingenue style essence.
If you follow Taylor Swift’s everyday style, you will find that she looks gorgeous and naturally soft in pastel colors, especially when she wears pastel blue.
The size of your outfit matters when deciding your very own unique style.
Many individuals with Ingenue style essence would either try to wear something more natural or classic style such as baggy clothes or plain fits.
Somewhere, trying clothes that don’t suit your body type makes you lose your unique essence.
“Boo” to anyone who demeans you with the insult ‘girly!’
How can someone use that as an insult? Of course, you are a beautiful girl, so you’d naturally be girly.
If this statement has stopped you from dressing up however you feel.
They fear your natural femininity, but you shouldn’t!
If that’s your case, you should start trying compact shapes for your outfits— the outcome will take you by surprise!
Compact shapes compliment Ingenue style essence and enhance their overall dressing sense.
- Mini skirts and short pants that reach your thighs would look absolutely gorgeous on you!
- You can also try long but compact skirts; they should flow with air, so choose skirts with ruffles or frills.
- Try to avoid pencil skirts because they are more formal than girlish.
- Other patterns that you can try are A-line, gypsy, accordion, circle, knife pleated, and mermaid skirts.
- Balloon tops with frills, ties, lace work, and bows are darling choices for individuals with Ingenue style essence.
- Mini sundresses are the hallmark of Ingenue style essence. Add a balloon, puffed, ruffled, kimono, or butterfly sleeves, and you’d be the cutest talk in the town.
Everything that’s short is beautifully appropriate for someone with Ingenue style essence!
Decorative trimming and elements
Although compact, the Ingenue style is anything but simple. There’s a reason why they are called the ‘decorative small-scale yin.”
Every element of their attire is adorned with delicate but decorative details. Expect a lot of variety in their sleeves and the overall pattern of their dresses.
Big and small bows throughout their attire are very common and pretty!
You will also find many ruffled and frilled details in their dresses, skirts, and tops.
The more ruffle layers, the prettier you get! With Ingenue essence, there’s never such a thing as “too much ruffle.”
Compact, delicate, and beautiful patterns
This is what makes someone with Ingenue essence look extremely beautiful and girlish— the floral details in their fabric!
If you wear something that has small delicate floral prints throughout the length, it’s definitely going to look flawlessly gorgeous.
Besides floral prints, the Ingenue style slays vintage check patterns; it’s their second hallmark.
Vintage and Ingenue go hand-in-hand; take any 1960’s outfit, and your body type would love it!
Other patterns for the Ingenue style also include polka dots and lace work!
Your choice of fabric should be soft, flowy, and ruffled.
So, georgette, chiffon, tulle, lace, satin, and viscose – all natural materials would be a great selection for your outfits.
Other than that, any material that adds a natural flow to your outfit is welcome!
Dainty and pretty accessories
Just like your compact and pretty shape, your accessory choices should also be delicate, detailed, and pretty girly.
You’d look absolutely stunning in scarf ties/bands, floral tiaras, small diamond pendant/necklaces /bracelets/anklets/earrings, etc.
Jewelry with hearts, stars, moon, leaves, and flowers is a better choice for Ingenue style essence than heavy or full coverage jewelry sets.
Vintage and mini handbags would be a sweetheart addition to your overall look. Other than that, vintage hats also complement Ingenues, especially a beret!
Whenever in doubt, style yourself in vintage patterns, colors, dresses, or accessories. You will ace the look without even trying!
The vintage era was THE ERA for Ingenue style. So, everything would suit you if you have an Ingenue style essence.
It would also help you add history and timelessness to your outfits without even trying! So, go for it!
Are you someone with an Ingenue style essence?
Overly sensual outfits such as low-cut necklines, maxi dresses, asymmetrical outfits, or maxi bodycon might not compliment your overall Ingenue body type.
Wearing such clothes may make you come across as someone “who’s trying way too hard.”
If you have had a similar instinct that these sexy clothes don’t flatter your body, you might be an Ingenue.
Everything becomes more difficult with the back-to-back fashion trends; it confuses us and makes us wear something that’s not the right choice for our bodies.
Lucky for you, Y2K is all about bringing the barbie style back to life, and I absolutely love it!
Here’s how wearing the wrong or the right style accentuates your body type.
As someone with Ingenue style essence, wearing compact dresses wouldn’t make you appear like someone trying way too hard to fit into a girl’s closet or as a woman jailed in a kid’s outfit.
They will suit you and enhance your overall appearance naturally. Your style wouldn’t appear forced, that’s for sure!
However, someone who clearly doesn’t have Ingenue style essence will look out of place and restrained, silly, or even ridiculous.
Take Elle Fanning (Ethereal Ingenue); she is a combination of Ethereal and Ingenue essences.
You will always find her in pastel colors, whether in movies or real life.
They perfectly compliment her overall bubbly smile and her girly resemblance.
Secondly, her outfits are always adorned with flowers, laces, or bows.
Her dresser (Whoever that might be) does a great job bringing her essence to life.
Look at the first picture; she looks youthful, girlish, and simply pretty.
In the second photo, you will notice that the natural style doesn’t compliment her or her body at all!
On the other hand, we have Jennifer Lawrence; she is a combination of romantic and natural essence.
She slays deep necklines, flowy dresses, street style, and other laid-back getups.
However, girlish outfits aren’t her scene. She looks uncomfortable and out of place in the pictures presented below.
Now, look at Jennifer Lawrence in her essence; Romantic & Soft Natural.
She looks absolutely stunning in the maroon gown and completely relaxed and friendly in her street style.
That’s how styling your essence impacts your vibe and overall appearance.
Here’s who you can follow to style your wardrobe.
These celebrity examples have Ingenue as their primary essence, so you will find great ideas to organize your wardrobe as an Ingenue.
I especially love being inspired by Alicia Silverstone in the movie “Clueless” while styling the Ingenue essence. She slays the Ingenue essence in that movie!
Aja Naomi is the first one that comes to mind when we think about Ingenue style essence.
To this day and age, she still looks absolutely stunning in compact shapes, floral prints, and vintage patterns.
While McJimsey suggested that “every Ingenue essence does transform into romantic or Ethereal essence after reaching a certain age,” it’s not entirely true for everyone out there.
We have too many 35+ aged individuals who slay Ingenue style essence for that statement to be true.
Age is not the predictor for Ingenue essence and Aja Naomi is a breathing example of that!
Her petite body type, sweet smile, and big eyes make her the perfect candidate for the Ingenue essence.
Her wardrobe includes pastel colors, compact A-line dresses, and lacework pieces.
Young Audrey was a prodigy; her hair, makeup, ageless beauty, everything was delicately woven with passion and details.
Without a doubt, she had an Ingenue essence about her.
She is the woman who can pull a ‘pixie cut’ without casting emo or boyish vibes, talk about that!
For all we know, she made pixie cuts look pretty, girlish, and simply stupefying.
Her fashion was unmatched throughout the vintage era; she was definitely a vintage queen of her time and even beyond her time.
Audrey beautified every outfit she wore, but she absolutely stunned the audience with her pastel pink colors, big bow necklines, diamond tiaras, opera gloves, and vintage hats.
Audrey’s designers did a great job designing her essence; every compact outfit of her’s complimented her body, face, and coloring perfectly.
Have you seen Alicia Silverstone in the movie “clueless?”
The character’s style in the movie perfectly displayed and embodied an Ingenue, a pretty high-school girlish girl!
All her outfits were a beautiful combination of short skirts (pleated/A-line), crop vests with vintage checks, crop sweaters, shirts, and jackets, all in a variety of pretty pastel colors!
Her character was further outlined with subtle yet elegant jewelry (diamond pendants/bracelets and earrings) and her famous beret hat.
Marilyn Monroe— Romantic Ingenue style
Marilyn Monroe perfectly shows the difference between Kibbe’s and Kitchener’s essence styles.
According to Kibbe system, Marilyn Monroe is a romantic because her body is curvaceous.
However, Kitchener puts Marilyn in Ingenue style essence because her personality and essence is that of an innocent girl.
Emma Watson— Gamine Classic Ingenue style
John Kitchener allows us to have a composite of different essences.
If you think you are a Classic Ingenue, following Emma Watson’s style will help you greatly while organizing your own wardrobe.