I'll come clean: I've never really gotten into St. Patty's Day. In college, I was always working or in the studio while the better part of the student body was standing in line for wristbands and day-drinking on the strip. I grew a real hatred for that pinching thing, on one hand because I think pinching is tacky and annoying (you don't touch someone uninvited), but also because I often forgot to wear green on the 17th. Needless to say, I haven't grown into an adult who really gets down with old Saint Pat, but I do believe in avoiding pinching at all costs. So here are some ways to celebrate and rock your green without a nasty, nasty hangover the next day. 

Limes are green. So is mint. And by that I mean, why not have a cocktail party at home with your friends instead of tossing back warm green-beer all day and then trying to find a ride home? My cocktail choices would be anything that puts some (natural) green front and center, and has some warm-weather appeal. Think: Mojitos, Moscow Mules, and mint juleps. And if you are obligated to be on the bar scene with your pals that day, reach for Perrier. Served in green bottles, a little bit of refreshing carbonation — you'll feel like you're keeping up, but you'll be able to drive legally at the end of the night.

Traditional Moscow Mule:

1 half lime
2 ounces vodka
4 to 6 ounces ginger beer

Squeeze lime into Collins glass (or copper mug) and drop in half lime. Add 2 or 3 large ice cubes, then pour in the vodka and fill with cold ginger beer. Serve with a stirring rod [more recipes at Epicurious].

Green can be fabulous
. Some folks just can't resist — they have to wear the St. Patrick's Day themed apparel head-to-toe or else they feel like they missed an opportunity. But I've always liked wearing green anyway, and I'd much rather hang with friends feeling like myself and let someone else be the ambassador of shamrocks or whatever. And that doesn't mean you shouldn't have fun with it! Take this opportunity to wear bright shoes or loud accessories. But try to keep the holiday spirit out of your makeup palette. Green eyeshadow is a cute idea in concept, but practically speaking, it's not a good look. Girls with darker skin tones, celebrate: Greens are so gorgeous on you. I'll probably stick to the mint varieties.

Let your nails do the talking. The easiest and prettiest way to rock some green is to give yourself a sweet St. Patty's Day manicure. Pinterest is full of ideas, from polite to outrageous, and you can do green on your terms. If you're not handy, speckles and more random designs might be more up your alley. If you're feeling ambitious, water marbling and colorblocking designs can look fantastic in shades of green. I love mixing mint green with white and a hunter green, staying away from that stock shade of Kelly, for something a little bit unexpected.

St. Patrick's Day doesn't have to be a day to abandon style for glittery top hats and smartly-quipped one-off tee shirts. It just means wear green to prevent the dreaded pinch, and the rest is up to you. Take a look at the gallery for some more greenspiration. I might've just made up that word.

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