Updated: Mar 13, 2018
All too often, I see people dressed inappropriately for an event. A work related function requires a completely different outfit than friend's party. We tend to dress, in the moment, without thinking about the event we were invited to. We get inspired by social media posts or friend's comments, which most of the time lean towards extremes. The excuse is - you will stand out or you want people to notice you. These are valid points, but the way to achieve that does not require a barely-there outfit that exposes too much and leaves little to imagination.
Let's talk about the social media. We love to "like" and "hate" outfits that ignite controversy. Most of the time, these outfits are revealing and attention seeking. For many celebrities, any publicity and traction on social media sites translate into views and followers. As a result, fashion brands offer them merchandise to promote. The more followers celebrities have, the bigger are the possibilities for brands and advertisers to reach potential buyers. Your comments, likes, and dislikes translate into lots of money for celebrities and brands they advertise. So, they continue to push boundaries and try to outperform each other by wearing, most of the time, inappropriate attention grabbing outfits.
In addition, we live in the real world - not the reality-TV-making-money world. We need to think critically about what we wear. I believe younger generation needs to be educated about what is real and what is not. The reality TV is not real. The crazy outfits are not real. The barely-there dresses are not real. What they say, do, and wear is scripted to attract more attention and chatter on social media. This attention lasts only for a few seconds and carries no weight. Our outfits, on the other hand, directly affect our everyday lives. People make inferences about who we are and what we stand for by looking at what we wear. First impressions are critical whether at school, work, business, or life. So, do not pick outrages inappropriate outfit just to stand out for a second. Pick timeless looks and pieces to stand out for life.
“What you wear is how you present yourself to the world, especially today, when human contacts are so quick. Fashion is instant language.” Miuccia Prada.
Formal events like clients' dinners, firm outings, and any business related event implies a more formal attire. An event may specify what one must wear whether a black tie or business casual. It is somewhat straight forward for men. You wear a suit or some variation of it. For women, it proves to be a little bit trickier. Every time, a few people seem to miss the nature of the event. Dresses are too revealing, shear, and inappropriate for the event.
When you dress, keep in mind where you are going, what kind of public is gathering, what will the conversations be, and will your reputation be affected by your dress choice. Even if you are comfortable with a little bit too short of the dress, think about the rest of the people. Will they be comfortable talking to you? Will they want to engage in a conversation with you? When people are uncomfortable, they remember. They will associate discomfort with you next time they see you. If this is a business or work event, you don't want your outfit affect business relations or possible promotion in the future.
Think back to the times of Linsey Lohan and Paris Hilton. They dominated the spot light with their crazy outfits and inappropriate dresses. They faded into the history as fast as they have risen to fame. Now, imaging Angelina Jolie or Jeniffer Gardner. Their styles are timeless, classic, and yet, sexy. Their looks also turn heads and get picked up by the social media. However, they do not fade into the background. They always get noticed and praised for their styles.
So do yourself a favor. Think every single time before you dress. Think not only about yourself but also others. Style is a personal choice, but we need to remember that we live in the society. People tend to judge the extreme poor choices others make. These judgments then affect promotions, raises, project possibilities, and other life events.