“The Clothes We Wear”

Lindsey Shirley

We’ve all done it. You meet a person for the first time, and you immediately you make a firsthand conclusion about who that person is. You look at their appearance, their clothes, their shoes. You form assimilations about their lives:  if they really are a good person, if they’re really someone you’d like to hang out with, if they are even remotely interesting. And in a matter of seconds, you may think that you’ve got it all figured out: this person is just like everyone else.

It all comes from a biologically rational standpoint, really. Even as less technologically advanced people, we’ve learned to examine something, make a good assumption about it, so that it doesn’t later make us uncomfortable or put us in harm’s way.

But, what is so much rash assumption making us as a society? It’s been on many people’s minds and concerns: Will they judge me? Like the once popular “Don’t Judge Challenge” online. It’s just what we are inclined to do.

And no matter how many times you chant “stick and stones,” words still can hurt. They can form our basis of self-worth and self-esteem and make us question the things we thought we liked about ourselves.

With the idea that we all carry a certain weight of “baggage” around with us, wherever we go, in mind, the damage those words could bring seems even more palpable.

Just looking at a person’s clothes, what can we see?

A person who wears nicer, designer clothing is potentially deemed as someone who has more money; whereas more plain or non-name brand clothes could be seen as a sign of lower class or even poverty. When little do you know by simply looking at them, that designer outfit now has put that person in a wealth of credit card debt, and the “non-brand wearer” is saving up for a new car.

Gosh, aren’t we a judging society?

Some Studies even show that clothing attractiveness is linked with actual physical attractiveness. Also finding that unsuited clothes may make someone less desirable than tighter-fitting clothes. Not only do we gather these things at an initial look at someone, but we treat them accordingly. Prejudice in clothing, anyone?

There’s no doubt that a nice outfit is flattering to anyone, and could even make them seem friendlier, “classier,” or smarter. But like your rear view mirror, not everything is as it appears. Shouldn’t our culture be smarter than the prejudice we’ve so well learned?

An outfit the flows “just right” can truly be a major confidence-booster, but this a personal effort, and in essence, is really no one else’s concern.

What can clothing do? Make you feel more comfortable in yourself and your appearance?


But make you a target to everyone’s assumptions? I’d hope not.

There is a lot that clothes and appearances, don’t show. The collection of memories, experiences, and thoughts a person has is truly no comparison between a slighted perception someone has conceived.

We are not our parents, we are not our old shoes, and most definitely not yesterday’s outfit.

We are not the clothes we wear.