Using fashion as a self-care tool is something that can help you feel confident in your own skin. Last week’s Body Love Routine is the perfect routine to do before doing this one. Care for your body- then dress it up!
Before I get angry comments, I’m not saying fashion is something you need to do to show the world you love yourself. I often wear yoga pants and baggy sweaters to classes because at 5am I’m not always motivated to put in an effort. This has nothing to do with dressing up for anyone else, it has everything to do with dressing to feel confident. I was going to call this “Dress to Impress” but that sends the wrong message. We aren’t obligated to impress anyone…instead I called it “Dress for Success” so you know that when you’re putting in effort into your look, you’re doing it for you, and only you.
What You Need:
- an outfit that makes you feel great about yourself
- makeup (optional)
- an unapologetic attitude
Step One: Why Are You Doing This?
Okay, so I’m aware that this might be a little confusing. When people think about self-care they think about facemasks, journaling, candles, and a whole bunch of other relaxing things. But self-care isn’t always about taking a break and spending time on yourself. It’s about feeling good and proving to yourself that you’re worth the effort; that you’re enough just by being you.
Fashion is one of the most obvious ways to express yourself. Your personal style says a lot about who you are. I don’t know about you but if I actually dress up and throw on a little makeup, it makes me feel pretty good about myself. It has nothing to do with what other people will think of me. It’s about knowing that I spent time on myself.
Chose an outfit that gives off the vibe you’re looking to express. If you feel like throwing on some converse and jeans (one of my favs) for a casual care-free outfit, then go for it! Maybe you’re looking to give off a boss-bitch vibe; why not pick out a classy jumpsuit and a pair of heels? What you want to be is up to you. Dressing the part is fun and you deserve a little fun.
Step Two: Your Outfit
Lay out your outfit the night before. When you wake up in the morning, don’t chicken out. Sometimes I put out a pair of jeans and tight top but if I wake up feeling a little bloated or just lazy I often throw the jeans to the side and grab a pair of leggings instead. When I do this, I cheat myself out of my confidence. Putting on the leggings feels like a defeat for me. As if my (sometimes imaginary) puffy-bloated tummy sticking out ever so slightly would be offending to everyone around me. Well, that’s just not true.
It’s a form of self-care to be unapologetic about who you are. Literally, everyone gets a little bloated sometimes so promise me: no matter what happens, you’ll wear what you put out the night before. This is something I’ve been working on for myself. And let me tell you, when I wear what I laid out, even if I have my doubts about it in the morning, I feel SO much better for having listened to myself.
Step Three: Makeup (optional)
I don’t wear makeup very often. The other day, I wrote about my skincare routine that changed my skin so much that I no longer wanted to wear makeup at all. I want to allow my skin to breathe and even if I have a zit, (which still happens from time to time), I don’t cover it up anymore.
Makeup is a choice. My choice to not wear makeup isn’t a political statement. Just like someone who chooses to wear makeup isn’t necessarily covering up flaws or their own insecurities. Every choice you make doesn’t need to mean something significant. For me, it’s mostly because I’m too damn busy to bother putting makeup on every day. My skin needs to breathe. When I do wear makeup, it’s because I want to express myself differently one day and makeup is a good way to change my look with a few easy steps.
When I have a day where I’ve laid out an outfit and am going for a certain vibe, I usually add a bit of makeup to complete the look. My go to is a copper and brown eyeshadow (I have blue eyes so this makes them pop), a swipe of mascara, and maybe a nude lip. This look tends to go with a lot of my day-to-day fashion choices, as I typically wear neutral colours, and I always feel a little boost of confidence for spending time on my makeup.
Step Four: Change Your Attitude
People notice when you put effort into yourself. You’re bound to get a compliment or two and when that happens, don’t shrug it off. Don’t say “oh, I just had extra time today,” or “I don’t look that good.” Say “thanks, I love this top, too…” (or whatever you happen to be complimented on).
Not accepting a compliment isn’t just hurting yourself. You’re actually taking away that person’s opinion. If you compliment someone and say how much you love their shoes and they just say they threw it on because they didn’t have time, or that they didn’ have a better choice, or even if they even just act surprised, it’s 1) completely transparent and 2) not validating your personal opinion. It feels awkward to have a compliment rejected. So don’t do it.
When you make a choice and someone compliments you on it, just say thank you.