ately, dopamine dressing has been having more than a moment in the fashion scene and it’s coming in with vibrant tones. From chic streetwear to Insta-ready coordinations, the brighter the hue, the louder the statement. While colors play a huge role in this type of dressing, the crux is to feel good in whatever outfit you choose to wear.
What is dopamine dressing?
According to the National Institute on Drug and Substance Abuse, “Dopamine is a chemical responsible for sending or stimulating behaviors that make you feel good.” Its release is triggered when you are doing something enjoyable. Dopamine is responsible for your sense of pleasure. The idea behind dopamine dressing is to don clothes that you naturally love to wear, as they help boost your mood and confidence. Psychologically speaking, what we wear affects our self-image, how we feel, and what we think of ourselves.
The term “Dopamine dressing” was coined by a fashion psychologist named Dawn Karen, popularly known as “The Dress Doctor” by the New York Times. She authored a book called “Dress Your Best Life.” Before the pandemic, Karen was looking for a natural way to boost dopamine. After Karen renamed “Mood enhancement dress” to “Dopamine dressing,” the trend immediately took off and everyone started using it.
This trend may have been born due to the pandemic, and its effect on our style. During the lockdown, we became accustomed to nap dresses, sweatpants, and at most, dressing for Zoom meetings. Although it might seem like we’ve long moved on, winter is approaching, and people still want a semblance of joy in their outfits. For the most part, the moody hues of the colder seasons have been replaced with vibrant colors and statement-making ensembles. This isn’t to say you should get rid of neutral tones if that’s what makes you happy.
How Dopamine Dressing became popular
Dopamine dressing became viral on TikTok and Instagram when fashion profiles and social media influencers started embracing the trend.
The effect of dopamine dressing can be seen in our current fashion trends. For instance, the cheerful Very Peri was named Pantone color of 2022, and accessories like opera gloves and feathers are now ubiquitous on runways. Dopamine dressing trends also include miniskirts, royal core, and 2000s nostalgia. With this trend, people are no longer dressing for occasion alone, but to achieve a pre-desired mood.
A fashion expert at Stitch Fix, Whitney Keefe, said she noticed an increase in demand for dresses with sequins, bold prints, and bright-saturated colors. She also stated that people are now expressing themselves through their wardrobe more than ever.
Check out 6 tips on how to adopt dopamine dressing properly…
#1. Consider how you feel
Since dopamine dressing is about showcasing the mood you wish to create, the first thing to do is determine how you feel or want to feel. It will be worth it if you spend a few minutes of your morning thinking about how you feel and the color, texture, and print that can make you happy. When you figure it out, rock your fashion.
#2. Start with what you have
One thing good about the dopamine trend is that it doesn’t require you to break the bank to feel happy. A little shopping here and there, but for the most part, everything you need is almost always in your closet. Dig up those clothes you feel beautiful in, and slay!
#3. Be socially inspired
Social media has made things easier than ever. By going through your social media feed, you can get inspiration from Instagram, Pinterest, and TikTok. Even watching fashion videos can give insight into how to adopt this trend like a pro. It’s so interesting to see how social media has accelerated and defined so many fashion movements and has brought people together to collaborate and be inspired.
#4. Leverage color therapy
Color therapy or chromotherapy will help you determine the colors you are comfortable with. Color therapy has been used since the days of our grandmothers. They help balance the body’s energy, and it is also shown to help heal both physical and mental health. It is scientifically proven that some colors bring out different emotions, and our individual feelings toward color are highly subjective.
In dopamine dressing, it is paramount to dress in colors that will make you happy regardless of the trends. For instance, it doesn’t matter if hot pink is the moment, if you’re not feeling the hue, let it be. There are so many other colors on the wheel to ride with.
#5. Experiment with some texture
What you should know is that while color plays a very important role in dopamine dressing, texture play is also important. Fabrics like tulle, tweed, and crochet continue to grow in popularity and can serve as fresh inspiration for your style. I highly recommend mixing and matching pieces to create a whimsical take on your style.
#6. Take it one piece at a time
Some individuals choose to go full cold turkey into the trend, but if you’re gradually sliding into the trend, it’s advised to take it one piece at a time. When putting on an outfit, start with one piece, like a dress, a pair of shoes, or an accessory. Look at yourself in the mirror and observe how the look makes you feel.
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