Fashion and Mental Wellbeing

Fashion is a nonverbal way of communicating with oneself and with others. According to, It may not be as obvious as the nonverbal gestures, but the choice of clothing is just as indicative and a more direct way of communicating nonverbally. Your choice of clothing can express who you are, who you want to be, who you perceive you are, and how you want to be perceived.

This kind of communication is not only outward, it can also be inward. Your choice of clothing can serve just as much as self-motivation and mindset conditioning as it is a message of representation of self to others. Clothing choice can be like a mantra for the day ahead.

Enclothed Cognition: Mind and Fashion

Enclothed Cognition is the influence of specific articles of clothing on human psychology. Research done in 2012 in the United States led to the discovery that clothes can affect the wearer’s psychological state and performance.

There is much association in the works in the concept of Enclothed Cognition. People can associate a double-breasted suit jacket to a person of the law, the blazer to the office worker, the laboratory coat to those in the fields of science and medicine, and the camouflage print to those in the military. On the other hand, someone may opt for laid back outfits like Custom T-Shirts & Hoodies.

Clothing choices and associations therefore can affect your psychology, and the consequences or effects thereof on work and other functions can be measured. Clothes can be convenient and comfortable or powerful and symbolic. Sometimes, clothes can be all of that at once.

Unknown to many people, you can use clothes to make a positive statement. The right clothes for you can serve as an encouragement for yourself, as well as your message of expressing who you are, what you are, how you want to come across, and what you want to become.

On the other hand, clothes can also affect you negatively in many ways, including a bad association or misinterpretation made on the articles of clothing you have on. Your clothing can also affect you negatively if it is unflattering and worn on a bad day or when you discover how unflattering your clothes look on you as opposed to someone else.

When actions and events don’t line up with our personal views and beliefs, they can lead to uncomfortable conflicts and internal unease. That’s cognitive dissonance. After that, you may find yourself choosing between changing actions to make them consistent with your frame of mind or do better in convincing yourself that you just got to keep on. Most people make changes.

How to Pick an Outfit

A common question is whether to pick an outfit because you like it or because you want to feel like it? When it comes to picking the outfit of the day, wear it because you want to feel like it. Take control. Set a goal, set your standards, and shape your frame of mind, because you’ll most likely shape it for the better.

Perceiving the Image You Put Out

Other people will respond to how you dress. They will treat you according to how they perceive your fashion-based self-expression, for better or for worse. Therefore, it is important to set your priorities and clarify which is more important to you. Is it your satisfaction or their perception? The bottom line is: people will respond in one way or another, but how you take their responses is up to you.


Fashion choice is yours to make, but the nonverbal communication you may consciously or subconsciously, even sometimes unwittingly, send across can mean differently for you compared to others. It can mean your self-encouragement or your discomfort. Ultimately fashion is a powerful communicator.

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