Freedom: Personal Style – Helen Showalter

Right now I am wearing a pair of black suede wedges, dark wash skinny jeans, a black bandana worn Rosie The Riveter style, and a white tee that says “Fall Out Boy Hasn’t Been Good Since…” and then lists the names of their albums down the front of the shirt. I looked in the mirror and I smiled, happy what this outfit said about me, how it made me look and, most importantly, how it made me feel. It says I’m a little bit punky, a little bit cute. It says if I catch you looking at my chest, I will ask you about your feelings on Fall Out Boy’s discography… and if you have something smart to say about it, I’ll probably give you my number. It made my legs look nice and longer since, at 5 foot 3 inches, I could use the boost to my height and my confidence.

This outfit made me feel good about myself. It made me feel like me.

The freedom of personal style is exactly that: personal. You get to wear whatever you want. You get to show the world a part of yourself. You get to say anything you want about yourself. It’s really personal. If you want to wear crocs? Go for it. Head to toe Urban Outfitters? That’s your choice. Uggs? By all means. (Screw the haters, I have tried them on, I know they’re comfy as hell and if that’s what matters to you then I encourage wear them every day.) If you can look at yourself and feel happy and confident, that is all that matters. Work those ugg boots.

The way we dress is one of most powerful forms of self expression we have and so many people overlook it. What we put on each morning can be a reflection of our interests, who we are inside and the person we want to be. We can say whatever we want about ourselves. It doesn’t tell the world everything about us; we can’t throw on a tee shirt and let everyone know what’s going on beneath the clothing, inside of hearts and our heads, but we can give them an idea if we’d like. I’m not saying that you can judge a person by what they’re wearing. It’s true, you can’t judge a book by it’s cover, but I will say this: books have covers for a reason.

I’ve always found that I am happier when I leave the house feeling good about what I’m wearing and what it says about me. You don’t have to be a fashion expert. I’m sure not. To be quite honest, I don’t care about fashion. I care about is feeling good about myself. If I like my outfit, it really helps. I’ve learned to love clothing because of the opportunity for confidence and self expression a cute dress can bring me. If I’m having a crappy day, I’ll throw on heels. What you’re wearing can make a difference. Developing a sense of personal style will do wonders for your self esteem, no matter what that style may be. So if you want to wear jeans and tee shirts, wear jeans and tee shirts. Same with mini skirts. Same with cargo shorts. Same with chicken suits. Same with whatever you want to wear. If you feel confident, sexy, happy, like you’re saying what you want to say about yourself, that’s all that matters.

Go open up your closet and show the world who you are today.

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