Dress for Happiness!

 

Winter fashion is arriving soon to help cover up insecurities, but summer fashion always finds a way to come back around into our lives. Fashion has a huge influence on how we see ourselves, and in turn, our happiness with who we see staring back in the mirror.

 

I have always loved fashion, but fashion has not always loved me.

 

That is something that I have had to come to grips with and learn that most women struggle with the same thing. Fashion models and mannequins are not good examples for most women and they do not help women decide if something will actually fit them.  When it comes to shopping for clothes, the story changes drastically from person to person. Winter clothes help cover up unwanted areas and are baggier so it is easy for women and men to forget their summer body goals. I was 15 pounds heavier a few years ago and hated buying summer clothes because they showed off my trouble areas.

 

Winter clothes gave me the security that I needed to not feel so insecure. When I did lose the weight my self-confidence did get a little better, but there was still something missing.

 

Love your body, love your clothes!

 

Yes, I had to learn to love my body in all it’s shape-changing ways. Since I have been buying clothes based on my body type it has helped me in the more positive way I carry myself on a daily basis.  I decided to purge my closet and to start buying things that fit my body type and that could be worn for more than one fashion or meteorological season.

 

However, even if you learn to love your body, fashion shopping is not any easier! Many of us buy clothes now online. Looking at clothes online still poses problems because every store has different sizes and cuts.  If you haven’t yet shopped online for clothes, I’d suggest starting with something easier and shopping for shoes is one of the easiest things—especially if your shoe size does not fluctuate. Then work your wardrobe from the bottom up!

 

One way I have figured out to be happy and bring peace to my shopping experience is to take advantage of the disconnected market.

 

All this means is that you can use all the different ways to shop, through brick-and-mortar stores in your community even if you have to commute to a larger mall-like environment, or online!

 

No matter which venue you choose, use customer reviews, your previous knowledge of a stores clothing sizes, the stores sizing chart and the knowledge of how clothes fit to your  unique body shape.

 

The last part is very important especially when it comes to women who have “extra”. What I mean by extra is extra breasts, hips, thighs, stomach and every other body part. Most clothes are made for women who do not carry extra body weight in those areas. I am a size 4 if I listen to most stores measurements, but I know since I have larger breasts, hips and thighs I am actually a size 6.

So knowing your individual body and the way clothes fit to it really matter when it comes to being happy with what you wear.
Not only women, but everyone

 

Women and men who have insecurities with their bodies (especially when it comes to shopping) should try and go to as many stores as they can and do a “shopping trial” day. What I mean by that is to go to as many stores as you can and try on clothes you would never try on to break out of your comfort zone. That experience will help you learn your body better but it will also help broaden your horizons into what looks good with your body shape.

You know what they say…You never really know what looks good on you until you try it on.
A little addition

 

Trying new colors is also something that can help with fashion insecurity. I know that when a color looks good on me I am a hundred times more confident. Some people use jewelry and make-up to hide their fashion insecurities, but I think that is a mistake. You have to wear clothes for everything including the gym, beach and outside chores. Most people will not wear jewelry or make-up to those activities, but clothes are a necessity. If you have clothes that you feel comfortable in to do those activities then you do not need to use something else to have people look away from your body.

Clothes should be able to make a statement and make you feel confident no matter the situation. Finding a way to be happy with and to know your body is the first step to overcoming fashion insecurity.

 

What tips do you have, fashionistas? Let’s start a conversation about how clothing and fashion can have a positive effect on happiness and self-confidence!

 

Candacea

Candacea Bey is a Journalism Graduate student at Temple University and a newborn Photographer. She is a type 1 diabetic who tries to see the best in everything and strives everyday to be happy. She is interested in topics that include happiness, self-esteem, fashion and community involvement. She loves Soca music, the NY Giants, Man. City, fashion and anything that involves an adventure. Having women of all backgrounds and ages develop a personal and community sense of happiness is what she strives to bring about in her writing. You can reach her on her Instagram at candacea_almira.