Last year I shared a series of This or That polls on Instagram. I don't remember the exact topic or question I chose to include at the very end but, I do remember receiving a number of replies regarding hesitancy to wear certain outfits or trends and this got me thinking: why are we so afraid to wear what we want?
I've always been interested in fashion and not to toot my own horn or anything but I do think that I was known as being the more "daring" fashionista in my teeny tiny hometown back in the day (I'm talking elementary school - high school, nothing crazy). Fashion just always played such a huge role in my life and how I chose to express myself but even so, I still sometimes experience moments of fashion self doubt.
So where does this self doubt stem from exactly? I think if you ask anyone why they're scared to wear those super cool flared pants they love or loud printed dress they adore, they'll probably say: judgement. And, I get it. I was once called a "try hard" for the way I dressed in 8th grade and I was once asked "what the hell are you wearing?" in high school. Those comments suck and they do hurt.
Even though young Nini put up a front and continued to wear whatever she wanted, it doesn't mean that these words don't haunt her occasionally. I mean yeah, I still think of them and yeah, I sometimes change out of outfits 3 times before going out in fear of looking "too loud" or "attention seeking" but you know what? 9 out of 10 times I REGRET not wearing the outfit I originally wanted to wear! That's right yall, I experience FOMO: the Fear of Missing Out... on cute outfit opportunities.
For me, the feeling of FOMO (in this case) hurts more than what anyone has to say about my clothes or outfits because well, it's self inflicted. I chose not to wear that outfit because I chose to let the fear of someone maybe saying something bad about it impact my decision. Now that sucks. Self doubt should never have that power over you.
Look, I am not all about that new year's resolution life but I did promise myself that I'd work on finding my style again and when I do, I'm going to rock it unapologetically. Life is way too short to not wear that dope ass outfit you know you look hot as heck in. Here are some things that have helped me face those fashion fears and semi-combat moments of self doubt:
- style that bold piece you're scared to wear in a casual outfit, it'll make that bold piece feel a little more "normal"
- if there's a trend you like but aren't sure if you can rock it, buy secondhand
- if there's a piece in your wardrobe that you don't know how to style, go to Pinterest for some fashion inspo
- come to terms with your fashion style and embrace your interests
- if a clothing item or outfit makes you feel good-- don't question it, just wear it
- ask yourself what's the worst thing that could happen if you decide to fearlessly wear whatever the heck you want (spoiler alert: the worst case scenario is probably not that bad)
I know these things are the definition of "easier said than done" but they're surely not impossible. If you practice this mindset daily, you will be one step closer to feeling more comfortable in your skin and sense of style. It's totally normal to doubt yourself but if you're doubting yourself because of other people's opinions... that's not okay. Not to be cheesy but I wholeheartedly mean it when I say: BE YOU! Even if that "you" is a tutu-wearing-20-something-year-old (I may or may not be talking about myself).