In order to enter, we asked you to submit the style advice you'd give your middle-school self. And, lo and behold, each and every response made our hearts swell — so many references to Dr. Martens, heavy eyeliner, and frizzy tresses! But the most touching comments were the ones about ignoring trends and dressing for you, not the popular kids or what PacSun pushed. (Even Kristen Lee of TenOverSix weighed in saying, "I'd definitely have to tell my younger self, stop fighting your curls! Just go with it ;)"
It was tough to choose a winner (BTW, congrats to Ingrid Kong!), so we're sharing our runner-up picks below:
Winner: Ingrid Kong
"Tween me: Please do not over tweeze your eyebrows and shave your natural sideburns, the first doesn't grow back and the latter grows back with a vengeance. Those American Eagle, Doc Marten 'uniforms' with matching hair ribbons will only disguise the unique person you really are."
Runner-Up: Abigail Barba
"Put down the red-brown lipstick and throw it away immediately. You can toss the mohair sweaters and satin button-down shirts as well."
"You're 13 and really in love with the Ashlee Simpson show, but you've made a HUGE MISTAKE taking those scissors to your hair. Right now you kind of resemble George Washington, but it's ok."
"Stop dressing like a 60-year-old grandma because you're not confident enough to wear anything else. Light-wash mom jeans, turtle necks, zip-up fleece vests, and sweatshirts with puppies while wearing hiking boots are not exactly good looks. You can wear everything all the other girls are wearing, even if you don't think you can. Don't use bad fashion as a way of hiding yourself."
"Quit using that brown eyeliner as lip liner, mousse to make your curly hair extra crunchy, and why did you think that over sized frog backpack was so cool? Keep on going with all the rainbow accessories because it sure did help you look extra awesome in 2012."
"You are such a babe, but elephant pants, an extra-large plaid flannel, and that extra-large Felix the Cat t-shirt do not mix."
Photo: Courtesy of Wren