How to Curate a Confidence Boosting Wardrobe

When was the last time you felt as if you were beaming with confidence? Whilst feeling great often comes from within, we can’t help but gaze into our wardrobe each morning wondering – What will make me feel as good today?

When you want to look and feel good, often the first port of call is your wardrobe. Whether that’s a cosy chunky knit jumper or a curve creating bodycon dress, what we wear each day can have a direct impact on our mood and level of confidence.

If you’re comfortable in what you’re wearing, naturally you’ll feel more outwardly positive, but don’t just take it from us! We asked some expert image consultants and psychologists to tell us why fashion impacts our confidence.

Outfits shaped by memory

If you think back to a time when you’ve made a particular achievement or had a great day, you’re likely to be able to remember exactly what you were wearing. This is because we apply psychological anchors to our clothing. You’ll do it without even realising, but the next time you pick up the same outfit you’ll subconsciously be reminded of your positive experience.

So whilst a little black dress may not scream positivity to some, if you wore it on your graduation day you’ll revive that same sense of pride every time you wear it.

Confidence that comes from colour

Much like our own personal psychological anchors, each colour in our wardrobe can send subtle signals. From relaxing hues of purple to heart-racing red, the colours in your wardrobe have a direct impact to your confidence levels.

In fact, these traits transcend fashion. Many interior designers are known to use colour to induce certain feelings and sensations in our environment too.

Of course, there are also social factors to consider with colour. If you’re more of a wall flower, you might not consider a bright red dress as that level of attention would be out of your comfort zone. It’s all about finding a happy medium.

Ask the experts

We spoke with psychologists and stylists to unearth exactly why we turn to clothing to boost our confidence.

Lindsay Kirkwood, Personal and Corporate Image Consultant at A Good Look says: “People are bombarded with images more than ever these days. It’s completely overwhelming.”

She shared a story about a client who described herself as a ‘freak’ and had very little confidence in her appearance. This particular client was so confused and felt that she ‘should’ be doing something different, because who she authentically is doesn’t seem to be portrayed as prevalent and positive. She left at peace with herself and confident that she wasn’t, as she termed it, a 'freak’.” Lindsay taught her client to embrace her own personal style instead of chasing an image of how she thought she should dress.

This begs the question, should we be following the trends? Well, yes and no apparently!

If they suit you, go for it, but don’t force it. Gosia Scarrott from Image Consultant from GSStyling says: I believe that there is nothing wrong in following trends if you know that you are wearing them because they represent your personality and who you are. If you follow trends just to be trendy, just because something is in fashion but has got nothing to do with who you are, then you are a fashion victim and it shows.”

But what makes YOU feel confident?

​We asked some of our favourite bloggers what clothing makes them feel confident. Do you share some style secrets with them?

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Laura from Wafflemama says

"A pair of perfectly fitting jeans always makes me feel good. Bizarrely I have never felt more confident and happy in clothes as when I was heavily pregnant, despite being at my biggest. During pregnancy my favourite was the bodycon dress."

Robyn from The Hat Hippie says

"My Dr Marten boots and a hat make me feel confident particularly as a wheelchair user because before I started wearing these fashion items I often had people stop in the street and stare at me because of my wheelchair. Now, random strangers want to stop me in the street and talk directly to me about my hats or my Dr Martens. It's amazing how much more confident I feel since I started wearing them!"

Kitty from Adventures of A Riot Grrrl says

"I love a good vintage style dress makes me feel fierce and feminine."

Kathy from Glitz and Glamour Makeup says

"A sexy tight dress as I have a nice figure and feel that kind of clothing reflects that."

Zoe-lee from Secret Diary of a Scavenger says

"Ironically, something comfy like dungarees, jumpsuits and play suits. I just feel more confident if I'm comfortable."

Zoë from IKIWN says

"Anything with bright colours and bold patterns. I'm particularly loving my new loud, floral jumpsuit at the moment it makes me feel like I can take on the world!"

Victoria from The Curved Opinion says

"My confidence go to is a floral knee length shirt dress with black edging detail. It embraces both the feminine and slightly edgy of me."

Luisa from Eat Sleep Luisa Repeat says

"I always feel incredibly sassy & like an unstoppable rock star in my (fake) leather jacket."

Jen from Tartan Brunette says

"This really depends on where I'm going, but I would say a pair of heels always makes me feel more confident. They change the whole look of any outfit and the way you walk. In terms of clothing its the simple things like a great fitting pair of jeans which make you feel confident, you have to love the outfit you're wearing before it can make you feel confident."

Kimberly from The Colour Chronicals says

"I love wearing a black bodycon skirt, favourite band t-shirt and over-sized denim jacket! Not only is it so comfortable but I think I look good which always makes me feel confident. Add a chunky pair of boots like my Dr Martens and I'm set."

Tessa from Holly Sparkle says

"Leggings or skinny jeans, over-sized shirt and heeled boots."

Katie from Katie Cupcake Life With Me says

"Something fifties style, that nips in at the waist, then flares out (like a nice skater dress!)"

Natasha from Natasha Kendall says

"Skinny jeans. I think they are flattering on lots of body types and I also love the fact I know they'll go with anything I put on. I can feel comfortable in them too."

Leelo from Beauty By Miss L says

"A versatile knee-length skater dress that brings out my hourglass figure and which I can dress up or down with right accessories."