Dopamine Dressing: You Can Dress Happier

When the pandemic hit nearly a year ago, we saw a sudden shift in the way we dressed. Our ankle boots were exchanged for slippers, jeans gave way to sweatpants and our blazers became hoodies. Now your comfortable dressing is making way for a new trend: Dopamine Dressing.

How Dopamine Dressing works is that we actively choose to wear clothes that make us happy and bring us joy – it’s part fashion, part mindfulness.

Dopamine Dressing is nothing new. In fact, a study released nearly a decade ago, in 2012, found that when participants were asked to wear clothes with symbolic meaning, their perceived self-confidence increased. The study, published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology, found that clothing can have a direct impact on their psychological process.

“When we feel good in what we wear, we tend to feel more confident,” behavioral psychologist and author of The Psychology of Fashion, Carolyn Mair, told Stylist.

“If we are confident, we can only influence through our confidence. If we feel good, we probably look good too, because our attitude, voice and other non-verbal aspects will be more positive.’

Another 2015 study from California State University, Northridge and Columbia University found that the outfits we wear can have a direct influence on how we think. The study of five different experiments found that dressing a certain way can affect the way we make decisions.

So What Exactly Is Dopamine Dressing? That’s different for everyone. It is wearing clothes that make you feel good. It could be sweatpants and a sweater, it could be your favorite pair of jeans or that dress you were saving for a special occasion. As long as you feel good about it.

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