Sunday, March 30, 2014

Why do young men and women dress the way they do?

Everyone thinks they know how to dress and look good... but if that was true, then why do celebrities pay professional stylists to dress them for important public events?  

Most women are of the opinion that they know how to dress…. and that men just don’t understand female fashion. But if you were to ask ten men to comment on how a woman is dressed, and most of them gave negative opinions, then she is likely to change her style of dress immediately… in spite of her previous confidence that she looked good in what she was wearing.

Men on the other hand, are almost the opposite. If a woman didn’t like the way a man was dressed, he’s likely to say something like “Well I think I look ok!” But if you then asked ten male co-workers to comment on how he is dressed, and most of them gave negative opinions, then he is likely to change his style of dress… in spite of his previous self-assuredness that he looked ‘ok.’

This difference is due to the male and female response to the 3 primal values that influence the way we all dress. Those values are :
  • to fit in and be accepted by our social group
  • to be a bit different and raise our status in that group
  • to be sexually attractive to potential mates within the group.
However the interesting point is that men are more inclined to be influenced by values #1 and #2… while women are more inclined to be influenced by values #2 and #3.

What that means is that men are often more influenced by what the other men in their social group think. And so they tend to follow fashion trends that are popular within that group... even when the style of clothing is not considered to be attractive by the opposite sex.

It's all about being 'accepted by the pack'... and some common examples would be :
  • wearing caps backward and high on your head
  • wearing your pants low to expose your underwear 
  • wearing pants that are baggy in the bum and/or the crotch
  • wearing extra long baggy shorts and looking like a lost little boy.

Women on the other hand, are often more influenced by whether or not they’re considered to be attractive. They don’t care too much about fitting-in with what other women are wearing… in fact they’re happy to be different and stand out from the rest of the pack. However dressing in an overtly sexual way (showing as much flesh as possible) doesn’t always create the best possible impression… especially in a business or professional environment.
So it seems that both men and women could benefit from a more balanced expression of all three primal values. Girls could consider dressing less sexy in the workplace... and guys could consider dressing more sexy when they're out on a date.  Just a thought! :)

It's a Primal Thing.

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