Tag

Latest

Browsing

Hairstyles are a key part of self-expression, in the same way that makeup and clothing are. The way that we style our hair can be a manifestation of our personalities, even if this is done unconsciously. However, for those of us with curly and coily hair, it’s not as easy to express ourselves as it may seem.

The Burden of Societal Pressures

It should be no surprise that women with curls feel an external and societal pressure to straighten or relax their hair.  To some people, for whatever reason, curly hair automatically represents a lack of seriousness, with it often being classed as ‘messy’ and ‘unruly’. 

Dr. Marianne LaFrance, a professor of psychology, women’s and gender studies at Yale University has previously shared how:

From early on, women are given the message that appearance is massively important, and it can become a marker for their success in life.  

The desire to meet society’s Eurocentric beauty standards creates a barrier in many women’s self-expression, and this is evident across many different countries. In particular, many women in Egypt can be forced at a very early age to straighten their hair, all to align with European standards of beauty. Moreover, the beauty standards for Dominican women can be highly criticizing too. The term “pelo malo” (bad hair) is used towards women with curly and kinky hair.

Targeting Black Women

Black women in particular face a much larger stigma when wearing their hair naturally. More so for Black women, rocking natural curls seems to be a lot more political than it is aesthetic. Not only is natural hair a barrier in self-expression for Black women, but it can also be a barrier in scoring careers or even going to school. The UK school system specifically seems to have a problem with afro-textured hair, as Emma Dabiri (author of ‘Don’t Touch My Hair’) emphasises. Pupils have previously been excluded for fades, locks, braids, natural afros and more. 

Fashion is Psychology’s very own founder and editor-in-chief, Shakaila Forbes-Bell, also offers her own perspective. 

I avoided being natural due to an ingrained belief that my hair wasn’t beautiful and being teased for the tightness of my coils.

Underlying messages and racial stereotypes presented by society can have a deep impact on self-esteem. Black women are consistently told that they have “nappy” or “bad hair” and begin to internalise self-hatred. In order to reduce these social pressures of adopting a more Eurocentric look, we must target the beliefs adopted at an early age through socialisation. 

Forbes-Bell agrees, emphasising how

There is a lot of unlearning we have to do when it comes to how we maintain our curls and coils and how we feel about them. For decades Eurocentric beauty norms have been instilled in women worldwide so it’s understandable why straight or relaxed styles have their appeal.

The Curly Hair Movement

The curly hair movement has represented a crucial shift in attitudes towards embracing curly and natural hair. Although natural hair has been gaining momentum over the last couple of years, the curly hair movement has been supercharged by recent lockdown restrictions. Not only was most of our time spent inside, but professional treatments have not been possible for many months.

According to recent research from L’Oréal, Google searches for “how to make your hair curly” have increased by 50%. Not only are more people with naturally curly and coily hair embracing their style, but there seems to be an overall increased interest in having curly hairstyles. 

Editorial director of naturallycurly.com, Alexandra Wilson, states:

The natural hair movement really ignited in the 70s when black women were wearing their afros.  

The acceptance of natural seems to have been a long time in the making, with many factors playing a crucial in its rise.

The Social Media Boom

One of the most important factors to consider is social media. Social media has created an accessible community in which people can learn from each other in a way that wasn’t previously possible. A quick search into YouTube can tell you what products and techniques are best for your curl type and texture. Social media is especially impactful for those who are not used to seeing people with similar hair types and textures to them. Being able to witness other women embrace their curls has inspired others to follow suit.

According to one study, Instagram online communities have contributed to making hair types mainstream, and have educated people with a new perception that black women’s hair types are actually beautiful.

Positive Psychological Shifts

Importantly, this new acceptance and appreciation for curly hair has led to a psychological shift in those who are embracing their curls. The curly hair movement can perhaps go hand in hand with the culture of body positivity and acceptance we are experiencing as a society. 

For example, one woman has previously shared:

Discovering my curls and embracing exactly who I am has granted me many incredible opportunities to share my individuality and promote self-love.

However, it’s crucial that we keep this positive momentum going, as there is still a long way in how we approach and perceive natural hairstyles. 

Forbes-Bell offers an interesting insight regarding the perception of Black women in particular: 

Instead of being seen as the gold standard, straight hair needs to be viewed as one of many styles that Black women can rock with confidence. There needs to be increased texture representation in all forms of media and there also needs to be more education on the various ways that curls and natural hair can be taken care of – ones that don’t break the bank!

We must continue to embrace our curly and natural hair, while also reversing problematic Eurocentric beauty norms.

We often think of our clothes as things, as possessions separate from ourselves when in reality, they act as a second skin. Your personal style can help you befriend your body and manage your moods, meaning that your choice of outfit can have a profound effect on how you feel. So, to celebrate the power of clothing to help you lean into who you truly are the FiP team have started a new series called #mysecondskin where we’ll be speaking to people from all walks of life about the role that their wardrobe plays in their everyday life. For our eighth instalment, we’re speaking to Senior Creative at ASOS, Jess Cheng.

Jess Cheng

Jess is an incredibly talented creative and art director based in London. Originally from Toronto, she now works at ASOS as a Senior Creative. Just like Jess’s bio reads “based on a true story”, she loves to share aspects of her life over at @thejesscheng, capturing moments on film or creating reels with her pals in her spare time. Although the main focus of her gram lies in showcasing her latest fashion pieces, from elevated basics to hot pink satin skirts, she has her audience hooked.

Here’s what Jess had to say when we asked her about her relationship with her own clothing: 

1. How do your clothes make you feel?

When I’m out wearing a good outfit? Confident, in-control, and self-actualised – in the best case scenario. The clothes I wear are something I have total control of, and I always try to dress to make me feel my best.

2. What is your most treasured item, that brings you joy?

I don’t tie much sentimental value to my items, and my wardrobe is always evolving. I do own a gigantic fluffy pink hat that I don’t see myself getting rid of anytime soon.

3. Do you believe your clothes are political/ define you in any way?

One hundred percent. The way you visually present yourself is an instant signifier of your identity, without having to say anything. In the past there was a standard ‘uniform’ people were expected to wear to different occasions (e.g. a suit to work, a white dress on your wedding day), but society nowadays is a lot more accepting of self-expression.

Without getting too deep into the semiotics of fashion, I let certain influences and inspirations shape what I like to wear. My style is quite accessible and practical for use. I do enjoy tapping into trends and changing up my look, and I think that also reflects in my personality as well. I don’t like subtlety or elegance, I gravitate towards bright colours and interesting cuts. 

4. Has Covid-19 changed your relationship with your clothes?

I’ve always leaned into a comfortable and casual aesthetic, and Covid was just an excuse to add more interesting joggers and sweat sets to my wardrobe! Sneakers over heels, any day!

I want to diversify my wardrobe with some more standout pieces with texture or pattern. I want to get my hands on a vintage LV multicoloured bag or a Charlotte Knowles top.

The sensation of physical retail

Physical retail allows us to engage with a brand beyond just purchasing products, and the experience adds to our brand perception and loyalty. Yet different brands often go about creating such an experience in distinct ways. While some opt for a maximalist and immersive approach, others prioritise a more intimate and muted environment. 

Cast your mind back to the late 2000s when Abercrombie and Fitch had teenagers queueing around the block to experience its overly dark, intensely perfumed stores, and this feels like a world away from the minimalism opted for by millennial cult brands Ganni and Arket, both favourites of those same consumers more than a decade later. 

Granted, taste and trends evolve over time and change as we transition into adulthood. Yet we also know that teenagers possess different traits to young and older adults. For instance, sensation-seeking is heightened during adolescence, while risk-aversion tends to be low due to developing brain structures. 

So, could retailers potentially construct an optimum shopping experience that is catered to its core consumers’ personality traits?  

Shopping for pleasure

Research defines two distinct shopping types: utilitarian – the purchasing of necessities, and hedonic, or leisure, shopping. The latter relates to the social and immersive aspects of shopping for pleasure, and can be defined by dimensions including enjoyment and escapism. 

Research finds that our enjoyment of a store is impacted by a range of environmental cues, and this ultimately defines our overall experience. For example, how we perceive a shop can be influenced by its sensual, interpersonal, and physical elements, which researchers call ambient, social, and design cues. 

One study identified that positive evaluations of a store’s ambient music and scent resulted in a more pleasurable and engaging shopping experience, while a wide range of well-priced clothing also increases hedonism. Store layout is important for improving flow, which is the idea that the customer is completely absorbed in their experience, to the extent that they lose track of time. 

So, it is clear that the more positive our reactions to key in-store features, the more enjoyable our experience will be. And with increased hedonism possibly promoting purchasing or impulse buying, retailers may be interested to understand how they can maximise store performance by inciting hedonic shopping. 

The personal shopper

However, it is likely that we all evaluate store characteristics differently, and have varying preferences that contribute to a positive shopping experience. This means the perfect in-store environment may not be as simple as one size fits all. For instance, while one shopper might enjoy and purchase more from a store that is highly stimulating and busy, another may prefer order and organisation. 

One study demonstrates that those high in sensation-seeking gain a pleasurable and engaging experience in stores with complex layouts and multiple design features, compared to those who are more risk-averse. Sensation-seekers are those who enjoy novel and varied experiences, it is linked to aspects of extraversion.  Conversely, introverted shoppers may find more enjoyment in a well organised, minimal store environment, and feel more compelled to make a purchase when colours and stimuli are limited. 

We can suggest that conscientious people, who favour order, would prefer boutique-style shopping over dynamic high-street stores. Or perhaps that those high in openness might enjoy sensory stimulation while shopping due to their need for varied experiences. 

Personality’s future in fashion?

Retailers should try to understand the traits of their core consumer and shape their store environment to appeal to their preferences, in order to increase enjoyment and promote purchasing. 

We as shoppers can also consider how our personality traits might impact the kind of shopping environments we enjoy. Particularly as we try to limit first-hand shopping to strive for more sustainable habits, selecting stores that appeal to our individual differences may be a novel way of ensuring maximum pleasure and satisfaction from the few purchases we do make. 

So, next time you venture down Regent Street and find yourself happily browsing Cos but with a headache in Zara, remember your Big-Five scores might have a lot to answer for!

We often think of our clothes as things, as possessions separate from ourselves when in reality, they act as a second skin. Your personal style can help you befriend your body and manage your moods, meaning that your choice of outfit can have a profound effect on how you feel. So, to celebrate the power of clothing to help you lean into who you truly are the FiP team have started a new series called #mysecondskin where we’ll be speaking to people from all walks of life about the role that their wardrobe plays in their everyday life. For our seventh instalment, we’re speaking to product Designer and podcaster Stephanie Irwin.

Stephanie Irwin

Stephie (@Stephieirwin) is the host of the Fashion Originators Podcast (@fashionoriginatorspodcast) where she interviews game-changing fashion entrepreneurs.  She distil’s fashion content down to what’s important, creating solutions that are fun, inclusive and data-driven. Alongside podcasting, she is a product designer and associate lecturer at London College of Fashion.

Here’s what Stephie had to say when we asked her about her relationship with her own clothing:

1. How do your clothes make you feel?

My clothes make me feel whatever I want to channel in that given moment – whether its a luxurious black roll neck for coziness,  or a loose fit blazer over jeans so I feel casual yet put together. With time, I’ve learned that great fabric is the most important thing in a piece helping you feel a certain way. 

2. What is your most treasured item, that brings you joy? 

100% my Acne Studios camel coat. Not only is it a classic that elevates even the most lazy outfits, but it was the first purchase I ever made with my staff discount when I worked at Yoox net a porter! 

3. Do you believe your clothes are political/ define you in any way?

I think the most political thing one can do with shopping is to avoid fast fashion, take good care of your clothes, and REALLY think before making a purchase. Resell or rent out pieces you don’t wear much.

4. Has Covid-19 changed your relationship with your clothes?

100% – I’m far less judgmental of sweatpants!

5. What are you planning on buying next?

I’m in a phase of life where I’m trying to be super sensible with my cash, and only buy things that I could either sell later or keep  forever. I’m eyeing up some Mejuri diamond hoops, but think it will take a few more months of saving before those can happen! 

Fashion may be said to be inherently genderless. But for centuries, traditional conventions for men have barred them from many aspects of fashion. 

Even today, men’s sections in clothing stores often pale in comparison to their female-targeted counterparts. However, there has been a growing market for men in one of the tiniest accessories anyone can wear: earrings. 

From Underdog to Mainstream

In the past, earrings on men were associated with effeminacy under traditional gender norms. More recently, however, this perception has begun to change across the globe.

Earrings for men have become a key symbol of the hip-hop subculture. While the hip-hop movement originated in the US, its influence has since spread beyond its borders. Cultural variations of hip-hop from Nigeria to Korea have inspired local men to adopt earrings too. As hip-hop culture is strongly associated with ideas of masculinity, earrings on men too gained masculine connotations in this context.

In contrast, earrings on men are associated with the archetype of  “herbivore men” in Japan – a term which, while not necessarily derogative, describes men who engage in traditionally feminine practices.

Regardless of the reasons for wearing them, one thing’s for sure – earrings for men have become a mainstream trend. Today, international superstars like David Beckham, Johnny Depp and Morgan Freeman proudly adorn their ears with shining studs.  

Backlash

As with most forms of change, there is pushback against the growing trend of normalising male ear accessorising. Recently, iQiyi – a popular streaming platform in China – censored the earlobes of male artists who appeared on their shows while wearing earrings. 

Similarly, in other parts of the world, those who stand by traditional norms of dressing according to gender continue to protest the wearing of earrings and other jewellery by men, citing reasons which range from religion to conservatism. 

Historical Origins

But the origins of earrings for men may date back far longer than popular consciousness remembers.

Archaeological evidence suggests that men from the Achaemenid Empire (550-330 BC) and England during the Renaissance period (1500s-1600s AD) accessorised with earrings. Up to the late 19th century, the Ainu men of Japan wore earrings too.  

The gender-bound conventions of accessorising which we call traditional today were therefore not always the norm in the distant past.

Indeed, history tells us that men may have adorned their lobes with earrings for as long as women have.

Here to Stay?

Earrings remain an increasingly popular accessory for men internationally. Established brands such as Asos and Farfetch have listings for male earrings on their website catalogues. Multiple fashion magazines, ranging from The Trend Spotter to Esquire, have also published articles on earring recommendations for men in the past year alone.

Even with continuing backlash against this form of accessorising, it appears that earrings for men will not be disappearing anytime soon in the foreseeable future.

Which will ultimately win in the debate for and against earrings for men: trends or tradition? Only time will tell.

What is it like to be a model? Do you get free stuff? Have you met anyone famous? Are you allowed to eat that

Numerous questions about what it is like to be a model and what the lifestyle entails, have been thrown my way over the last seven years. Honestly, I never really know what to say or at least I struggle to articulate it in a way that does the job – and your efforts made within the job – justice. No matter how many times I feel like I finally understand what to expect and how to explain modelling, life always seems to send me back a note saying, ‘try again’. Try again to define the life of a model. 

Nevertheless, I am going to try. The best way for me to explain my life as a model is by comparing it to playing a game; a game where the odds are your level of success. Modelling should not be seen as a deceitful game or in that case a fun game, but it is a game where you win or lose over and over again, based on luck and how well you play your cards. This is the hand I like to play: 

A game of strategy and persistence

As with any other creative job, you need to be able to work hard and believe that at some point, someone is going to see that what you do is special and worth investing in. You need a style, an image and confidence, all something your agent should be able to help you with. I don’t know if I should consider myself lucky to have had great agents, because it should be something everyone has, but I know for a fact that I wouldn’t have been as successful as I’ve been, without them. If your agent does not support you or you don’t get along, I suggest you change – it is a crucial relationship to keep healthy, both for your career but also for your own mental health. 

Moreover, you need to accept that everything is last minute, and that the right opportunity could present itself anytime, so you need to be willing to sacrifice holidays, social events and other normal things you may need to plan for. You need to be resistant and be able to use the large amount of rejection and criticism you will face, as a tool to build your strategy, rather than taking it personally. Trust me, this is easier said than done… The whole industry is unpredictable, but that is part of the world and part of the game. You need persistence, patience and continue to form your strategy until it bites. 

If your agent does not support you or you don’t get along, I suggest you change

A gambler’s game

Contrary to popular beliefs you don’t roll off the plane onto the catwalk and then jump on a motorbike off to the next job, without having put blood, sweat, time and money into it. As matter of fact, you may never experience anything like this, but that does not mean you won’t try to achieve it by investing non-stop. You need to pay constant expenses for travel, accommodation, clothes, you name it, to meet and establish relationships all over the world. This can be a really positive experience if you love to travel, but as you are investing time and energy trying to get jobs it can be hard and draining, especially as you most likely will be doing it on your own. More often than not you will be spending money and time that you don’t really have, giving up other things that also are important to you. 

The dangerous bit here is that you are in control of so little when it comes to modelling, that the few things you do control you can get obsessive over – such as the way you look and how you behave in front of others. I know that both myself and others have tried to change weight, look and attitude in order to fit into the industry, and trust me when I say that this is in no way necessary! As a model, you do need to look after yourself and stay fit, but there is a really fine line between an unhealthy and healthy attitude to your looks, which should not be crossed. Constantly being in limbo over whether you are pretty enough, cool enough or skinny enough is not going to land you many jobs; Confidence is in the end always the most attractive feature which clients look for. 

There is a really fine line between an unhealthy and healthy attitude to your looks, which should not be crossed. 

A waiting game

This part is by far the most prominent of them all… You spend hours on hours waiting, I think you probably spend 70% of your modelling career just waiting by yourself. Waiting at castings, waiting in airports, waiting in transport and waiting at home. If you do not wait you will lose out, so you wait no matter how long if you want the job. It is boring, but you deal with the wait and you learn how to fill the time – I managed to study a BSc in Psychology while waiting for planes and clients. Even when you don’t have any work scheduled, you never know if a job or casting may come up, so you are always waiting even if you are doing something else. Leaving it up to other people to manage your time is tough and I have personally found it extremely challenging. You are nearly always on your own, so being able to handle this can be easier said than done, as the loneliness can be really anxiety-provoking. I found that filling the time doing things that make you happy when you are on your own, like reading, studying, making phone calls or writing, makes it easier to manage. 

The feelings that all this provokes includes excitement, adrenaline rushes, joy, boredom, frustration and anxiety. It is such a spectrum of emotions, where a lot of the time you can be feeling perfectly content and happy and within an hour you are close to having a panic attack, because of the last-minute changes and your inability to predict and control anything. It is a beautiful job that may create many opportunities, adventure and money. But it may also leave you with a pocket full of bad experiences and loss of money. Often, It’s both. Long story short – whether you are in the modelling industry, looking to join or simply watching from the outside, you ought to level your judgement, attitude and expectations. 

There is no real definition of a model’s life, so just play your best hand and expect the unexpected!

We often think of our clothes as things, as possessions separate from ourselves when in reality, they act as a second skin. Your personal style can help you befriend your body and manage your moods, meaning that your choice of outfit can have a profound effect on how you feel. So, to celebrate the power of clothing to help you lean into who you truly are the FiP team have started a new series called #mysecondskin where we’ll be speaking to people from all walks of life about the role that their wardrobe plays in their everyday life. For our fourth instalment, we’ll be speaking to Fashion is Psychology’s very own Maisie Allum. 

Maisie Allum

Maisie is a passionate Psychology of Fashion undergraduate at London College of Fashion, she applies her analytical and inquisitive skills to fashion business with the aim to positively enhance wellbeing. She is also the Editorial and Social Media Assistant here at FiP! 

Here’s what Maisie had to say when we asked her about her relationship with clothing:

1. How do your clothes make you feel?

I suppose I aim for my clothes to make me feel good about myself! I want my outfits to enhance my body and to be empowering. Or if I’m feeling not so good they can act as a sense of comfort.

2. What is your most treasured item, that brings you joy? 

My most treasured item might actually be my latest buy! I think it’s because it’s the first time I’ve splashed out and brought from a small business, and I’m proud of myself for that! It’s this gorgeous Khaki velvet jumpsuit that I can dress up or down and I know I will have it for a very long time!

3. Do you believe your clothes are political/ define you in any way?

I think people would get a pretty good sense of who I am based on what I wear but I’m apprehensive to say it defines me. I probably dress more depending on my mood at the time so the clothes I choose can be varied. In some ways, they can be political because I try to avoid wearing brands that go against my morals.

4. Has Covid-19 changed your relationship with your clothes?

I’d say yes! Since Covid I’ve gone months without buying anything, it has definitely made me slow down in lots of different ways! Also, I appreciate getting dressed up more, I’m sure you can relate! Having a good outfit for the park has made me so happy!

5. What are you planning on buying next?

For a while now, I’ve had in the back of my mind that when everything opens up I’d really like to invest in some more statement pieces. I want to be feeling myself once we can finally enjoy the things we’ve been robbed of again. I’ve got my eye on bright summer knitwear at the moment!

Follow @fashionispsychology on Instagram and use the hashtag #mysecondskin for your chance to be featured. 

Commodity theory puts forward the notion: the scarcity of the product alters its perceived value. This perception of scarcity, exclusivity, and therefore reduced accessibility to all reinforces the principle of prestige that consumers expect from luxury fashion. Not to mention this ‘exclusiveness’ creates allure, consumer excitement builds which justifies higher price points. Finally, demand goes up for those who can afford the price tag – and where there is demand, there will be sales. But what happens when you can’t justify the high costs on the latest designer trends?

Fake it 'til you make it

It has been argued, the desire to own (or at least be seen to own) luxury goods, combined with influencer and social media-driven culture – reinforces the message that success is measured by ownership of material goods has resulted in a toxic formula.

Consumers of all ages, through platforms such as Instagram, are exposed to and engage in the artificial cultivation of sharing and crafting a fabricated ideal self – and one consequence of this movement is the surge in demand for counterfeit and fake designer goods – whatever the cost. 

Studies report this dysfunctionality stems from an unmatched pressure to dress in a manner which emulates the individual’s perceived image of ‘success’ through the owning of branded material goods. As a result, consumers gain the gratification of purchasing such goods, being seen to own the goods and show symptoms of exhibiting the somewhat warped traits of brand loyalty – whether the product is real or not seems of lesser importance.

So is the illusion that comes with consuming high end fashion (real or replicated)? Is the pressure own a designer item so intense that we’ll buy a fake just to belong? 

Consumer confusion

There is often confusion as to what is considered a knockoff or a counterfeit good – and where the line between what is legal and illegal is crossed.

A knockoff is a product that has copied the style of another product but not the exact design whereas, counterfeits are ‘[m]oney, goods, or documents not genuine, but have been made to look exactly like genuine ones in order to deceive people.’ Do you see how easy it is to blur the lines between legal and illegal trading and purchasing?

Even more, the fashion industry is in a constant state of rotation and adaptation. The high street takes inspiration from the runways, designers take inspiration from other designers, and fashion history is reworked and remodelled to produce future forecasted trends. Thus, the issue of copyright within the fashion industry is somewhat a catch 22 and an ever growing grey area.

The complicated relationship between consumers and counterfeits

So what is the allure to buying or sourcing counterfeit or fake fashion?

Even Gucci, in their Menswear Fall/Winter 2020 runway collection exploit the concept of embossing the wording ‘FAKE’ across the collection with the justification, “A playful commentary on the idea of imitation.”  Therefore re-igniting the conversation of how we feel about designer brands in 2021.

One explanation for our ability to justify buying knock-offs is Cognitive Dissonance Theory. For example, while millennials are more likely to buy counterfeit products due to factors such as affordability and social media pressures,  articles also suggest this generational group is in fact moving away from fast fashion due to the rising awareness of sustainability to prevent environmental harms.

Even with this being so, there is no doubt the consumption of counterfeit fashion is cause for concern. Why is the allure of owning fake designer fashion so rampant when there is so much readily available and accessible information surrounding both economic and humanitarian effects of producing and trading these goods? And as already mentioned, studies such as those by Psychologists Ha & Lennon (2006), Chaudhry & Stumpf (2011) and Maldonado & Hume (2005) have shown where there is a market and a demand, trading will continue to be widespread.

So what is the answer?

Owning a counterfeit version of a designer product not only impacts the consumer’s sense of identity – increasing feelings of achievement and instant gratification, but possession of fake luxury fashion also raises positive associations of belonging and acceptance from a desired social group.

However, the psychological impact of owning these goods, despite ethical concerns which are known and widely broadcast – even if quietly, are of lesser importance.

The exhibition of presenting the illusion of a luxury lifestyle via platforms, such as Instagram in exchange for societal approval trumps the ethical concerns. That being said, one thing is clear, there are strong grounds to suggest counterfeit fashion is not going away any time soon. 

We often think of our clothes as things, as possessions separate from ourselves when in reality, they act as a second skin. Your personal style can help you befriend your body and manage your moods, meaning that your choice of outfit can have a profound effect on how you feel. So, to celebrate the power of clothing to help you lean into who you truly are the FiP team have started a new series called #mysecondskin where we’ll be speaking to people from all walks of life about the role that their wardrobe plays in their everyday life. For our fifth instalment, we’re speaking to sustainable style blogger and stylist Rosette Ale.

Rosette Ale

Rosette (@thriftqueenlola) is a sustainable style blogger and stylist who loves sharing thrifty style inspiration and tips as a secondhand clothing enthusiast. Her love for fashion and environmental interest lead to the birth of @revivalldn, a slow fashion reconstruction brand specialising in the repurposing of textile waste. Revival aims to propose a new way of thinking about clothes, opening the consumer’s eyes to the potential of their unworn and (about to be) discarded garments.

Here’s what Rosette had to say when we asked her about her relationship with her own clothing: 

1. How do your clothes make you feel?

My clothes make me feel eccentric, bold and confident; I’m a lover of bright colours and bold prints as I love to stand out! Also, I buy a lot of secondhand/vintage so these make me feel unique abs special as (usually) no one has the same item.

2. What is your most treasured item, that brings you joy? 

A vintage jacket I bought about 10 years ago! I think it’s the oldest time I own and it any favourite thing ever. The print is so 90s and unique and it feels like it’s made from duvet type of material which is kinda strange but I love it!

3. Do you believe your clothes are political/ define you in any way?

In some ways yes I do. I use clothes as a form of self expression so they reflect who I am (the different layers of my personality) and also what I want the world to see/know about me. But also I am not my clothes, I am so much more than that; my clothes just give you a sneak peak!

4. Has Covid-19 changed your relationship with your clothes?

Slightly but not massively. I had a wardrobe clear out in the first lockdown and it felt so refreshing but instead of giving them to charity like I usually would, I actually took some time out to revamp and rework some items. Also, the pandemic really showed me how much I love charity shops and I’ve missed them so much!

5. What are you planning on buying next?

I don’t have plans to buy anything at the moment but as soon as the charity shops open, I’m going to have a good browse. Spring/Summer is my fave season so hopefully I can find some nice bright pieces!

Follow @fashionispsychology on Instagram and use the hashtag #mysecondskin for your chance to be featured.