As I sit here in my backyard on the old wooden bench that is a grayish color from too many sun drenched summers in California, I think about how much time I put into getting ready for the day (picking out my outfit, doing my makeup, etc.). Now, I know that I’m not the only woman in the world that spends a decent amount of time getting ready in the morning, I’m just taking a few extra minutes to really ponder WHY all of this preparation and fretting is so necessary? Here I shall insert a little disclaimer stating that this blog is not going to become some superbly deep psychoanalytical study as to why women care about the way they look. I will try and keep this as lighthearted and simple as I possibly can. Because the bottom line is: people care about the way they look and the way that other people perceive them. Shocker, right?
Caring about the way you look doesn’t have to be some narcissistic characteristic, instead it can be justified by wanting to be taken seriously. I take this idea from the classic show “What Not To Wear” on TLC starring Clinton Kelly and Stacey London. This fashionably comedic duo shows people how dressing well doesn’t have to be some narcissistic characteristic, but instead helps show personality and abilities through the way you look. If you wear grungy clothes, or put no effort in putting yourself together then people might perceive you as something you’re not.They might think you are lazy, even when you are highly proactive. They might mistake you for an amateur even though you are a highly trained professional. The bottom line is that people do indeed judge a book by the cover, and first impressions are hard to break.
Growing up I was always a tomboy. I wore soccer shorts and a ponytail to school everyday. I never wanted to be perceived as girly, because I thought that it meant being weak. Now, as an adult, I love wearing makeup, dresses, and getting ready in the morning. Looking back on my childhood days, I guess I didn’t really know where I belonged. I didn’t have a style, or a true inclination where I wanted to go with my life. Now that I have established my own personal style I find that more doors are opened to me because I am put together. I present myself in a stylish and pulled-together way so that if a person has a first impression of me, hopefully it will be a positive one.
Now, I know that nowadays men and women are subjected to a certain bodily standard that they must achieve. For the purpose of this fashion blog I will concentrate on what women are subjected to (sorry fellas!). Ever heard of the recent fad the “thigh gap”? According to the most recent trends having a nice gap in between your thighs signifies a sense of beauty. What…? This fascination with being thin, or striving to have the perfectly toned tummy, or having a thigh gap looms on the point of ridiculousness. Now,I will admit to wanting to be thinner or more toned, but i am lucky enough to naturally be at a perfectly reasonable height and weight. As I’m maturing I find myself becoming more and more accepting of my body the way it is, and ignoring these perfect celebrity images that I am confronted with.
It’s strange to think that our ideal images of what we should look like come from strangers that we see on the internet, or in movies, or in magazines. Imagine taking a picture of the next person you sit next to and idealizing their body. ‘Gosh, if only I could have your perfectly formed upper lip and cheek bones.’ how ridiculous does that seem? Nowadays, I find that my body and all it’s quirks is completely unique to me, and me alone. No one in the world will have the same shape that I do, and that’s awesome. How I dress and present myself is also completely unique, and I should learn to appreciate that if I see someone wearing an awesome outfit, but I think that it wont look as good on me, I can always replicate it in my own way. Personal style is a way of expressing yourself, and you shouldn’t be afraid to take risks or step out of the box. Who knows, your daring look might even inspire someone else to step out their comfort zone.
Written by: Kailyn Wolf