Style is one of those words that confuses almost everyone. What does it actually mean when we say “finding your style”? The most simple and pure way to think about is to see style as a true representation of your authentic self. Style is how you represent your personality through clothing.
Why style matters
First of all let’s start with why style matters. People often view fashion as something that is unnecessary and others avoid fashion and shopping because it can bring much anxiety. This anxiety that many of us experience is often related to our self-image and the expectations that we feel from society. Yet, there are so many positives we can all gain from playing around with style.
Clothes have the ability to uplift our mood, change our perspective and often even enhance our performance ability. There is actually some science behind it all. Cognitive psychologists Hajo Adam and Adam Galinsky have the theory named “enclothed cognition” it talks of the effect that clothing has on our cognitive processes (Adam, 2012). The basic theory is that we often form symbolic meanings about clothing that are created through our experiences. An example of this could be a nurse wearing scrubs, when they wear this uniform they feel confident and comfortable in their abilities to carry out tasks and care for people. As said by Karen J. Pine in her book "Mind What You Wear: The Psychology of Fashion" “we cannot help but adopt some of the characteristics associated with clothing, even if we are unaware of it.”
Clothes can brighten and boost our moods either through these associations or through the colours of the clothing. As talked about in our previous article “Boost Your Mood With Colour”, colour can have a hugely positive effect on our mood. The most important part is that you can use clothing to create a desired mood or feeling. Turn your morning mantra into “how do I want to feel today?”, this simple question is the key to choosing an outfit that will make you feel good. Your choice of clothes could completely change your perspective on the day.
Being your authentic self
Many of us run scared from fashion because we associate it with trends or a particular look that we feel we’ll never be able to create. Yet this is not the point of style and fashion. Your style should always be something that is uniquely yours, a representation of the many different parts of yourself. These parts might include our background and the way we grew up as well as our political or environmental views. Style can be used as a way to reaffirm our likes and dislikes.
Finding your style can be difficult, it is a crucial part of the process to simply try different things. Don’t be afraid to give different styles, colours and fits a go. Experimentation with different shapes, colours and styles can help you discover what you love to wear. We all cringe a little when looking back at old photos of ourselves. Although, it is important to embrace these stages of style because they are essential in our development and growth.
So, the message to home from all of this is that everyone is more connected to their clothes than they might originally realise, and the secret to finding your confidence and style is often embedded in this connection. We hope this encourages everyone to take more risks and truly get to know yourselves and your style.
Adam, Hajo; D.Galinsky, Adam. 2012. “Enclothed Cognition”. Journal of Experimental Social Psychology. Issue 4, Volume 48. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0022103112000200