Social media, Instagram in particular, is changing the way many women consume clothing. This is the topic of discussion with Jill Chivers of Shop Your Wardrobe in our video.
The ubiquitous outfit photo that is posted daily on Instagram creates a pressure to turn over your wardrobe, or just acquire more and more new items to create new outfits for social media.
Fast Fashion vs Slow Style
Social media can drive feelings that make you think you’re being constantly assessed by those who follow you (particularly if you have a large social following). Social media can also make us feel like we’re failing in the style stakes. If “everyone else” is looking great and different every day, we can think that by purchasing those pieces, this will fix our own style issues, when in fact we haven’t figured out what it is we need in our wardrobes and how we want to really express our personal style.
Jill believes that in the fast fashion world there is no underlying foundation for style, no silhouette, colour scheme or basis for building a sustainable wardrobe over time. Instead, it’s basis constant consumption that in the long termis unsustainable, both for the environment and also financially (unless you are super rich).
When you are learning about your style there is an element of delayed gratification (rather than jumping on board of the buy the latest fashion for the sake of having it), as it takes time (and a little effort) to really nail down what is your style and therefore what you really need in your wardrobe. It takes time to find great pieces that will really make your wardrobe work well and that are truly representative of your style as what you’re after, what suits your body, colouring and personality will appear here and there, over time.
FOMO – the fear of missing out also pushes out ‘buying’ buttons as we worry that if we don’t get the newest, latest and ‘greatest’ fashion pieces right now, we will be missing out on something fabulous. Yet retailers are manufacturing this FOMO to keep us buying (and keep sales turning over), rather than helping us develop our personal style.
Both Jill and I believe you should shop your wardrobe first, and start thinking about curating your own style that makes you look and feel great, as well as help to ease your pathway through life. Clothing is one of the things most linked to self-worth and identity. It has enormous power to give us confidence (or take it away if we don’t feel good about what we’re wearing.
Studies on enclothed cognition have shown that what you wear does matter, so much so, just by wearing what you’d perceive to be an intelligent person’s garment, you can actually score higher on an intelligence test!
Next time you’re looking at an Instagram feed (or other social platforms, or mass media) that makes you feel like you “should” be owning something new, take a step back and pause a moment and reflect on whether this is true. Social media just like shopping environments are controlled and very contrived, and it’s easy to get caught up in the emotions that they produce and make poor decisions that are not reflective of your personal values or personal style.
Discover Your Style
The more you know about what suits you, your unique body, colouring, values, lifestyle and personality, the easier it is to resist FOMO and the lure of the social media led fashion fix. This is why my Steps to Style program is so powerful, as it empowers you to make choices that are in line with your values and helps you discover what really works.
Find out more about the program here.