A proper ‘pinch me’ moment. This one has been on my bucket list for quite some time! I couldn’t be happier to share that I’ve been profiled for Forbes Women! When I started my journey with Fashion is Psychology I had one main goal: to spread awareness about a little known discipline that fascinated me. I’m not a stylist, I’m not a label whore or a fashion curator. I’m someone that has a deep, psychological understanding of how clothing impacts the way we navigate through this world; how it makes us feel, act, connect and engage with ourselves and those around us. Never could I have imagined that I would be able to work with so many amazing brands, speak to first class publications and have a global readership. I’m excited to see so many people come to understand that Fashion Psychology is the key to a more ethical, sustainable and mindful relationship with our wardrobe.

A huge thanks to Cheryl Robinson for the write up and pr extraordinaire Antonia Fagbohun.

“When you start adding meaning to certain clothing, you embody that. People do that when they wear certain clothes in a lot of different situations, specifically in the working environment. … Subconsciously, they wear clothes to help them navigate different situations, help them embody specific trades, help them feel more confident, happier, or even more comfortable. A lot of times, that kind of decision and that motivation is operating below levels of consciousness.” 

“It’s very interesting that there are associations that you have, especially like across racial lines as well. For a lot of ethnic minorities, you grow up to think, ‘Look your absolute best. You have to dress as an authority.’ You have to overcompensate by making yourself look extremely presentable. But then you look at all of these white Silicon Valley kinds of guys, and they’re seen as almost the pinnacle of success and their wardrobe is hoodies and t-shirts. That’s a status symbol in itself. But then maybe someone who was a minority wearing that would be looked down on.”

“We all operate on this thing called heuristics, which is like a mental roadmap of things that you associate with. People will operate based on those heuristics. So if we have experience of someone who’s dressed down, we associate that with maybe something really cool or edgy, or something that’s like streetwear and very authentic. We have that association already in our head based on our previous experiences based on culture, society, etc. Then if we encounter somebody who’s dressed like that, we’re going to ascribe those traits to that person…”

Please read the full article here.

Author

Shakaila Forbes-Bell is a Fashion Psychologist and writer who has been featured in Marie Claire UK, i-D, Who What Wear, All Walks Beyond the Catwalk, Fashion Bomb Daily, The Voice Newspaper, Gal-Dem, Black Matters US and more.

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