Outfit confidence (how to get it and how to feel good in what you wear)

Outfit confidence – and how to get it – is something I’m asked about A LOT. Over the past few weeks, I’ve got you organising your wardrobe and thinking about your style personalities but how do you bring that all together to create confidence in the outfits that you put on each day?

I’ve shared my tips in this week’s Lunchtime Live video. Spoiler alert: a lot of confidence comes down to how you feel as a person. Be kind on yourself and seek out professional help if by thinking through this you realise it’s something affecting you on a much deeper level.

These are some of the things you that you might be feeling about the outfits you wear:

  1. I feel self conscious in outfits.
  2. I feel like I should wear more colour.
  3. I feel like I should tone it down.
  4. I don’t want to stand out.
  5. I do want to stand out.
  6. There’s no way I could wear that.

In any given week, there are few people who don’t run through the whole gamut of these feelings. They are all normal feelings but each of them can wreak havoc with your outfit confidence. Each speaks to our inner self, that part that likes to tell us we’re not good enough. Many of these feelings are steeped in mistaken, damaging beliefs we may hold about ourselves and how we look, which is a total shame because all we’re trying to do here is get dressed in an outfit that helps us to feel confident.

So how can you dim the noise on those feelings and create outfit confidence?

  1. Always go back to your style personalities. Get clear on YOUR style personalities. The personalities that lift you up, right now, not ones you may have dressed for 10 years ago. Once you’re clear on your style personalities, test out each outfit you put on to see if it’s in alignment with one of them.
  2. Don’t ignore your style personalities when dressing for the everyday or a special event or occasion. You want the outfit confidence in an everyday outfit as much as you do for a party or event. The difference will be dressing to a dress policy or suggested event dress code.
  3. Outfit confidence also comes from dressing in clothes that are the right fit and feel for you. Everything from fabric feel to cut and how an outfit sits on your body can mean the difference between feeling confident in an outfit or not. If you’re pulling, tugging or desperate to pull a garment off your skin, it’s not going to help with confidence.
  4. Learn to love the body you have. Body acceptance is a muscle best exercised daily. All those layers of BS we’ve been served up for generations about how a woman should look can bring our outfit confidence crashing down in seconds. Have a listen to my chat HERE. And please reach out to a professional if this is an area that’s really difficult for you.
  5. The other BS women have been served for too long is the notion we have to dress a certain way because we’re of a certain age or size. Buying into this only serves to undermine our confidence. Wear the outfit because it makes YOU feel good, not because someone has told you it’s an appropriate choice for your age or size.
  6. Play with your outfits. This doesn’t necessarily mean making a huge leap out of one of your style personalities. It means having fun with the process. It’s pushing the boundaries of your style to keep things fresh and fun. Look for the spark in your eyes when you put on an outfit. If the spark isn’t immediately there, you certainly won’t be able to force it.
  7. Photograph your outfits. You don’t need to share these photos publicly but if you file them into folders on your phone, you’ll soon have a personal record of outfits you like to wear. You could file them into your style personalities or keep a folder of outfits that instantly made you feel AMAZING. Conversely, regularly photographing your outfits will help you to see at a glance why an outfit DIDN’T bring you confidence. 
  8. Appreciate other people’s style and their style personalities. The emphasis here is on the word appreciate. This isn’t about comparison. And it’s certainly not about putting someone else’s style down. The comments I sometimes receive and I see on other outfit posts are horrendous and steeped in the commenter’s insecurity. Instead of tearing another woman down, how about seeing that person rocking an outfit and oozing confidence. Admire them! That person’s style might be the polar opposite to yours but learning to appreciate others and how they choose to show up with confidence in the world, gives us permission for us to do the same.

Go forth and play with your style, dear friends. Life’s short. Wear the clothes that make you feel good today.

Outfit confidence - and how to get it (Nikki Parkinson - Styling You)

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