As women, many of us have believed for years that we choose our outfits based on our mood, and now there’s data to back it up. A study by Karen Pine, professor of psychology and co-author of “Flex: Do Something Different,” found that women choose their clothing based on their emotional state. Among those she surveyed, 57 percent said they wear baggy tops when depressed, and 62 percent said they put on a favorite dress when happy.
Her findings also suggest women should dress to achieve the mood they want as opposed to the mood they are already in. So if you want to feel powerful and sexy, dress the part instead of waiting to feel like it first. Not sure where to start? Here are some ways to dress confidently and with purpose to maximize your best assets.
Dress for Your Body Type
If you ignore your body type when selecting your clothes, it can lead to ill-fitting outfits and plummeting confidence. Start your confident style journey by making sure your clothes fit and flatter your best assets. Skip the cap sleeves if your arms are on the flabby side. That stubborn stomach can be hid with an elegant empire dress to draw attention to your face instead of your midsection.
Pick up a pair of dark jeans with a boot-cut style instead of hip-hugging jeans if you have a curvy figure. A woman with long, lean legs but an unflattering midsection could choose crisp skinny jeans matched with an A-line shirt to hide her stomach and problem curves.
Pick Quality Pieces
You may already have a signature style, but it doesn’t necessarily make you feel confident. Women should dress not only for their own pleasure, but to feel confident in meetings and social outings. If you feel like your most important clients don’t take you seriously, choose some classic, quality pieces for important business occasions.
A tailored suit, an elegant black dress, expensive heels or a beautiful leather tote can help make you feel the part. Sprinkle in some fun jewelry that speaks to your signature style, so you don’t lose that personal touch. You will discover that classic and quality pieces will far outlast your trendy shirts and dresses that never make it past the next season.
Discover Fashion Psychology
Believe it or not, being wealthy or having a positive mental outlook doesn’t necessarily bring confidence. Pine discovered that what we wear can dramatically impact how we feel. This is all the more reason for a person struggling with confidence to carefully choose the right wardrobe. In one study, she found subjects who wore superhero shirts and related clothing felt more confident and physically stronger. She’s also noted that depressed people tend to put on jeans, but if they put on a fantastic dress, however, it could actually change their mindset and improve their mood and confidence.
Wear What Makes You Feel Good
While it’s important to pick flattering pieces that make you feel the part for your social situation, it’s not the only thing to consider in your fashion journey. Wear what makes you feel good. You may feel absolutely fantastic in a certain dress that might not have the most flattering pattern or cut. But if it makes you feel amazing, then incorporate it into your wardrobe appropriately. Save it for a day when you want to do some errands, meet friends for lunch, or just spend time unwinding after a long week of fashion overload.