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Dressing after Lockdown

Lots of woman have realised during lockdown that, despite not being an occasion to dress up for, they feel better in themselves if they do. Here’s some reasoning why, which also may give some comfort and morale on Dressing after Lockdown.

Amidst a pandemic, spending time and money on our appearance can feel selfish, pointless and superficial. Mascara, maxi-dresses and top dollar pumps don’t save lives, but if your love for clothes is an intrinsic part of your identity, then accepting that without self-judgment can positively impact your well-being. Finding joy in what you wear doesn’t make us any less compassionate or intelligent.

stylish outfit with matching face mask
Dressing after Lockdown

I made the decision to not promote my Wardrobe Editing/Sustainable Style business during lockdown, because I assumed appearance would be the last thing people would want to hear about. Whether I was wrong or right to hold back, the fact remains that when we like the way we look, our self-esteem skyrockets. This has a ripple effect on the rest of our life from work, relationships and WELL-BEING.

“When we like the way we look, our self-esteem skyrockets”

What we are wearing may not be the most important thing right now, but well-being is.

The relationship between what we wear and how we feel is well-trodden psychological ground. Lee Chambers, an environmental psychologist and wellbeing consultant, told Harpers Bazaar last month, “What we wear affects our behaviour, our attitude and our personality” It’s known as ‘enclothed cognition’ which is about the connection and value that we attach to what we’re wearing.

Did you know, dressing for your role helps the brain shift into the correct mode? If you normally wear lipstick to work, by putting your lipstick on when working from home, even if you’re not putting on a jacket and heels, will help you pay attention to your duties. Another example: staying in pyjamas all day can blur the boundary between day and night, which can make it harder to get to sleep at night-time. It has even been noted that after as little as two weeks of wearing ‘stay-at-home’ attire, catching a glimpse of yourself in the mirror shows you a reflection of when you were last house bound due to illness – needless to say this is not a positive experience when your new norm is the same look as your ill look.

Everyone is different – some of us are looking forward to getting back to our pre-covid appearance, some of us have been liberated and remain committed, confident members of the new bare-faced athleisure club, and some of us are waiting to see what everyone else does, and how we feel when we have our next exact date of change.

Lee Chambers goes on to says, “how we react to this social shift, depends on many factors.”

The one I want to share with you and ranks high on the list, is how much our attachment to our appearance is based on social judgement. The more your appearance is driven by a desire to appear a certain way to other people, the more relaxed you’ll feel in a place where you’re not being socially judged, i.e. at home during lockdown.

If dressing up and putting on make-up is something you enjoy and do chiefly for yourself, it makes sense that you’ll miss it, so you have probably continued, or at least already gone back, to daily putting on make-up and ditched the lounge wear.

Lots of woman have realised during lockdown that, despite there not being an occasion to dress up for, they feel better in themselves if they do.

Which means more people are now dressing for themselves! Which is the exact point that I wanted to get to. The pandemic has no doubt bought masses of heart-ache and uncertainty to the entire World but has also forced us to look harder at who we really are, and who we want to be.

I’m ready when you are to FaceTime or zoom you back into your true style, albeit to continue working from home, home schooling, making the best of furlough, preparing for a different life ahead or just stepping back out in the public arena. It is already in your Wardrobe and my fresh pair of eyes will help you rediscover it and give you the confidence and ‘feel good’ factor to wear it!

For me lockdown has confirmed that I am 100% the kind of woman who feels an instant boost at looking down at my painted nails and selecting the hair flower that compliments my outfit. I never stopped over lockdown, because I simply didn’t want to. Don’t get me wrong, I love comfy clothes – but then again, I find all my outfits comfy, and both suitable for house and out, even if to the outsider they look a little dressy - that’s my style! & I can’t wait to work with you on your style.

I’d love to hear your lockdown style successes and fashion faux-pas

Sarah x

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