A New Influence: Concerning Fashion, Originality and the Media

  When you look at yourself in the mirror, are you a reflection of yourself, or a splitting image of mainstream fashion restricted by social expectations? 

Personal style: it’s a term tossed around so much, that I’m afraid has lost its meaning. Thousands upon thousands of new “trends” have undergone this “cycle” of style…and to be completely honest: fashion is lacking in new concepts and ideas. Inspirations of the past used to be exciting unexplored territory; it was a new way of thinking and viewing the world through clothing. However now, our so called “ideas” are just things of the past, reinvented, modernized, sometimes even perfected. Still, in retrospect: I still find myself asking the questions concerning our creativity and if we truly are all lookalikes in a way. The vast majority of us wear extremely similar clothing consisting of the usual tee shirt and jeans, shorts, leather jackets: the basics. Not that there is anything wrong with this. Really. But…the feeling that fashion has stopped trying to think of new styles and ideas is quite saddening. “Reinventing” is all the industry seems to have left. 

Why is it that nothing in the fast-fashion society surprises us now? Remember when newspapers covered shocking fashion statements that make loud social movements in the form of clothing? Have we seen everything?

Although at first glance, this seems like a horrible revelation: it isn’t a total fashion let-down for our society. The media has long impacted our choices in clothing: what’s acceptable, what looks good, what lets everyone around you know that you are of high status. Now, people are just stopping: and although not a “boycott” against mainstream fashion: its very much a change in how impactful we let that expectation be. 

Some people strive for difference, and originality: to be themselves. On the other end of the spectrum, there are others who rather reject the ideas of style altogether: a term known as “normcore”, who’s philosophy revolves around fitting in and not stressing about the ever-changing trends they can’t be bothered by to care about. I find myself agreeing with both groups.

Maybe we’re tired of being told what to wear, of what the new trends are and what we should look like. What colors are in. What hairstyles you should learn. Maybe the media saying “be different” to everyone, just causes everyone into a never ending cycle of their “new” and “different”. You aren’t different for long though. Everyone always ends up jumping on the bandwagon of what’s new. But who could blame? If we all go out of our way not to shop in popular clothing stores, and thrift: we will all look the same again. 

It seems inevitable. Well, not exactly. It’s called: underground trends and fashion subcultures. And this attitude of being yourself and “rebelling” against social barriers in clothing is what truly takes advantage of our freedom. Some of these are well known, others not so much. However, you may have heard of grunge, metalcore, hipsters, lolitas, etc etc. that all convey the idea that difference is important as well as not be afraid and having the confidence to wear anything that inpsires them.

I think we need more of these people. Until then however, we should attempt to boost our confidences to be who we truly are to express ourselves through our own style.


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