What does your clothes say about you?

Koryen Harper

Fashion is seen as the clothes you wear, but experts believe fashion says a lot about the person on the inside.

“When we are feeling depressed or unhappy, looking our best is not on our minds,” Shauna Mackenzie Heathman, owner of Best Kept Self in Charleston, South Carolina said in an interview with GoodTherapy.org. “Mental energy is focused inwards towards emotional thoughts than things requiring extra energy.”
According to an interview on Goodtherapy.org with feng shui expert and author Donna Stellhorn, in feng shui it is understood that how you dress is associated with the five elements. Each element – earth, wood, fire, water and metal – has energy, which people gravitate toward, in connection with how they feel at the moment.
“Feng shui is the study of how the energy of our environment affects us. Correctly analyzing and balancing allows us to keep the positive benefits and remove negative effects,” according to the Feng Shui Institute website.
According to Stellhorn, there is a specific energy and style for each of the five elements. The shape, color and material of the clothes indicate the elements. For instance, animal prints, are in sync with the fire element and indicate attention-seeking behavior.
“When we are down, we are more likely to reach for jeans and loose-fitting tops,” Stellhorn said. “These boxy shapes relate to the Earth element; a desire for stillness and stability.”
Compared to women, color is more of an indicator of emotional states for men.
“Men who usually wear a T-shirt and suddenly start wearing a button down shirts in green or brown have moved from the Earth element to the Wood element,” Stellhorn said. “This shows a desire to grow and add to their life financially and socially; they have become curious about the world around them.”
Judgments and assumptions based off appearance are naturally occurring thoughts even when we try to avoid them.
“Although I try not to judge others off how they dress, it’s a natural thought that crosses my mind,” said Rashida Sa’Mi Young, assistant stylist for IKON Magazine and fashionista. “When I see people who wear hooded or baggy clothes, I think they must not care about their appearance, or they are not having a good day.”
Making a good first impression with your outfit doesn’t have to be difficult.
“Putting an outfit together well is important because first impressions are important,” said Hadi Leila Labarang, founder of MyMuseBox.com and executive editor at Scarlett Magazine.
Everyone has days when they are not feeling their best. When Labarang is not feeling her best, she said she likes to wear fitted blue jeans, a white shirt, a blazer and heels.
Sa’Mi Young suggests when you are not feeling like putting much effort in your outfit, simplicity is key. She recommends wearing maxi dresses, body cons, flannels, skinny jeans, platforms or booties for a glam simple look.
Men’s fashion is straight forward with clothing options. You have shoes, pants, a shirt and possible accessories unlike women who have various layering options.
“For men jeans are essential to pulling your look together, your jeans can make or break your outfit,” men’s fashion expert and stylist Ryan Thurston said. “How your jeans meet your shoes is the most common trend that men don’t consider when buying pants or putting an outfit together.”
Even with financial limitations there are still ways of keeping up to date with fashion.
“Don’t neglect yourself if you can’t afford new clothes,” Sa’Mi Young said. “A cheap and rewarding way to go about shopping is thrifting. Thrifting is a cheaper way to buy some desired name brand clothes, vintage or clothes with personality.”
Thrifting is a popular means of staying trendy for college students living on a budget.
“I bought a Cavali shirt that would normally cost $700 in retailed stores, but at a thrift store I paid $50,” San Jose City College student Krystal Lewki said.
The most important thing in fashion to remember is there is no one way to dress or look.
“With fashion don’t be afraid to mix different type of ideas,” Thurston said. “When you wake up think who do I want to be today.”