My mom is exactly the same way--always overly critical. When I told her I was getting a divorce, she told me she couldn't imagine me being anything better than my ex-husband's wife . When your mom says something about your appearance, just smile and nod and then procede to do EXACTLY what YOU like and what makes YOU feel good. If I listened to my mom, I'd be brushing my hair and going out looking like a giant q-tip.