Fashion and first impressions

JaLynn Hardy

Are you being judged by what you wear?

What people wear may show more about their personalities than most would like to admit. If they dress conservatively, some people may assume they are “preppy.”

Credit: Andrew popik

I?m sure I?m not going too far by saying that at some point in a gal?s life, she?s changed her clothes 10 times before going on a date or out to the bars. In fact, you could have the perfect makeup and hair and still be unsure of what to wear.

Sometimes we?re so concerned that we need a second opinion about our outfit choice. And for those who are not as fashionably inclined, it is nice to have a true friend tell us what they think.

Why do we fret over what we?re going to wear? We?re social creatures, and we want to be considered attractive in the ?right sense? for first impressions.

For instance, say you?re preparing for a date one evening with a guy you hardly know but who you?re very interested in. While looking through your closet, you?re faced with the timeless puzzle: a closet full of clothes and nothing to wear.

But, you don?t have time to look for a new outfit, so you pick out a little black dress that comes just above the knees and is a little low cut in the front. ?No. No. No,? you think, ?I don?t want him to think I?m trying to impress him, and what if I?m too dressed up.? It?s back to the closet for you.

After deciding on a satin halter top with a pair of nice black pants, you look in the length-wise mirror and realize your tan lines are showing in the back. But you can?t go out like that.

Literally, at least for me, it could be an all-night thing. My bedroom is usually trashed by the time I?m finished ? with clothes everywhere and a friend who is about to murder me because I can?t make up my mind.

Do our clothes really speak for us? I know from talking with my friends that girls can be very catty and will easily make fun of another?s style of clothing. ?What was she thinking when she put those lycra spandex pants on before going out,? is not an uncommon phrase.

It?s not just girls. Everyone makes quick judgments about people based on their demeanor and what they wear. If a girl is dressed too revealing, she?s considered to be a slut. If she?s very conservative and preppy, she?s considered a snob or a prude.

Some people dress to get attention while others want to shy away from it.

Loud colors like bright pinks, oranges and reds just scream to me that someone wants to be noticed, or they?re probably an enthusiastic person.

Jamie Young, freshman business and accounting major, said she doesn?t pass judgment based on appearance.

But freshman interior design major Janine Leisure said the way a person dresses does influence her, adding that a person can tell a lot about someone by how they?re dressed.

?If they?re dressed sporty, they?re athletic. If they?re dressed up, they care how they look, and body piercings are just intimidating,? Leisure said.

Whether people think they do it or not, it?s natural to try to find out about a person through how they talk, dress and carry themselves.

It is important to allow a person to be who they are and try to understand the differences there may be between you. Clothes won?t tell you everything about a person. Give them time to show themselves ? they may someday end up being one of your best friends.

JaLynn Hardy is a senior broadcast journalism major and the fashion columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact her at