When you’re thinking about ‘who to dress as’ it’s normally so you can make a splash at a fancy dress party, but it’s actually very helpful to stop and think about whether, day to day, you are really dressing as yourself.
Most jobs have a dress code, written or unwritten: the expectation of a sober suit in a respectable finance job, for example, might be an ‘expectation’ rather than a uniform as you’d be expected to wear if you’re a nurse, or work in food preparation, but it still carries force, and not complying will have consequences.
Outside of work, fashion and leisure make more demands on your time: hitting the latest trends is an aim that might or might not coincide with feeling the most comfortable in your skin. It certainly doesn’t mean the same thing as being comfortable in your clothes! And exercise comes with a uniform all of it’s own.
Rediscovering the art of dressing as yourself is surprisingly liberating! Let’s take a look at how.
Know What You Love
Look at what you love doing – whether it’s socialising, working out, exploring your city or cosy domesticity. This will inform what makes you feel most comfortable. Try to disregard activities where you feel like you have to put on a mask, or if your clothes are uncomfortably like a costume.
Finding out where you’re truly yourself is tricky – keeping a diary can helpful, as it means you have to reflect, think about what you’ve been doing every day. It also requires honesty: you might want to be the sort of person who’s happiest jogging to the gym for a spinning class, but you may have to admit that privately, in your heart of hearts, you feel truly at home cooking for friends or sitting in a nook, reading.
Putting that Knowledge into Action
Once you’ve decided where your heart really lies you need to put that into action – reserve a couple of hangers or a draws worth of space for the clothes you wear when you have time to really be you. Whether it’s a comfortably fashionable Blood Brother hoodie and skinny jeans, your gym clothes, or even a shirt and a choice of silk ties, having clothes reserved for when you don’t have to meet anyone’s demand but your own help to build your confidence and sense of self. Knowing who you are – and dressing the part, means you can feel really comfortable in your skin.