Rebecca Davis, Glamour magazine
Maybe we aren't what we eat-but according to researchers, we are what we wear. Yes, it took a team of scientists to prove what we've known all along: Not only will your outfit affect the way people view you, but the way you view yourself as well.
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The study, as the New York Times reported, focused on the so-called phenomenon of "enclothed cognition," which basically means the way apparel makes us think. In it, they looked at the ways that items like, say, a white coat will make people act differently. For example, when people wore what they were told was a doctor's coat, their ability to pay attention increased; when they were told it was a painter's smock, or if they just wore their normal clothing, they weren't able to focus as well.
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"I love the idea of trying to figure out why, when we put on certain clothes, we might more readily take on a role and how that might affect our basic abilities," said psychology professor Joshua I. Davis. The lead researcher behind the study, Adam D. Galinsky of Northwestern University, likened it to Halloween: If you dress up like Wonder Woman, you might start walking, talking, and acting like her. (Which might explain the direct relationship between sexy-anything costumes and Halloween hook-ups.)
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Although the researchers say there are more studies needed, I've got enough anecdotal experience in my own life to agree with their findings-look no further than my much-loved cupcake dress, which turns me from a jaded New Yorker into a bubbly party girl in 30 seconds flat.
What about you? Do you believe that what you wear affects how you act? Let me know in the comments!
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