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Style SOS

The new power dressing

6 March 2018


In celebration of International Women's Day, we asked fashion psychologist Shakaila Forbes-Bell to share her expertise on the fascinating psychology behind the clothes we wear everyday. Evidence suggests that our outfit choices can have a huge affect on inner confidence levels and also the way others perceive you. So whether you’re gearing up for a job interview or working the room at a social event, read on to discover Shakaila’s expert tips on picking the right pieces to ensure you look and feel your best, whatever the occasion.

Dress like a boss, think like a boss

It’s proven that formal clothes make you think differently. People's ideas tend to be more broad and holistic when they're smartly dressed so wearing a suit, for example, can literally prevent you from narrow-minded thinking. Studies also show that tailored attire allows you take up more room in a work environment, which means that people are less inclined to invade your personal space.


Strong shoulders also come into play here. Eighties-style power blazers come and go on the fashion circuit, but research suggests that they should be a mainstay in your on-duty wardrobe, particularly if you want to succeed in a male-dominated environment. In other words, if you want to score a new job or promotion – mimicking a more masculine silhouette through your outfit will give you a better chance. Choose black as your colour palette, especially if you’re at management level as this gives the impression of greater integrity and influence on a group. 


BOOST YOUR OFFICE LOOK


Making friends wherever you go

If you’re in a situation where you need to appear relatable, make denim your best friend. For example, research shows that teachers who wear jeans are deemed to be more interesting and sociable. Darker washes are often associated with being more expensive and give the impression that the wearer has greater access to resources, so stick to black and indigo styles when you really want to make an impact. Trend awareness is also a hot tip for scoring points in the friend zone as it makes you appear more sociable to those around you.


Warm colours like yellow and orange are also a great way to draw attention – and also help you focus. So if you struggle to concentrate in new surroundings and larger groups, opt for a sunnier colour palette to help you stay alert.


IT'S IN YOUR JEANS


GO FOR BOLD

The (stylish) rules of attraction

Decades of research into sexual attraction prove that both men and women find symmetrical faces sexier than asymmetrical ones – and the same is true for clothing. So if you’re planning a killer look for date night, make sure it ticks the symmetry box.  For those who really want to make an impression, wear animal print. It's said to spark the love and arousal response, which subtly increases blood pressure and shortness of breath – ideal for setting pulses racing. Plus, it's one of this season's biggest trends so you're guaranteed to impress on the fashion front, too. 


DRESS TO IMPRESS


EMBRACE YOUR WILD SIDE


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FASHION INSPIRATION, TRENDS AND ADVICE

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