4 Easy Ways to Boost Your Mood With Your Wardrobe

In a time when social interactions are limited, unemployment rates are high and simply stepping outside could put your health at major risk, it can be difficult to keep your spirits up. If you’re currently dealing with severe anxiety, it’s important to connect with a mental health professional. On a daily basis, however, there are some basic habits you can adopt to help stay positive — including in the way you dress.

It’s long been said that what you wear impacts your mood. In fact, have you ever struggled to find the right outfit in the morning and end up wearing what you deem a “sub-par” look, only to find that the rest of your day seems to follow suit? Clothes can have a powerful effect on the way we present ourselves and see the world around us. While going into an office or attending a cocktail party may (for now) be activities of the past, consider keeping your normal dressing routines in the mix. From sporting pops of color to adding drama to your ensemble, ahead, discover four ways your closet can give you a necessary pick-me-up.

Skip the Sweats

It’s important to stay comfy while working from home, but if you’ve started to feel unmotivated lately on the job, your apparel choices could be to blame. Research has shown that wearing professional clothing can make you more focused, confident and even improve your abstract thinking. That’s because the brain links certain types of apparel to different scenarios, and functions in ways that coincide with those associations. Conversely, “weekend clothes” can trigger the response of being in relaxation mode; it’s even been found that many women wear baggy sweatshirts and pants when they feel depressed.

So, instead of reaching for that oversized tee, put on a polished dress or structured blouse to make the most out of your nine-to-five. We think a voluminous puff sleeve top inspired by spring ’20 runway trends is a great pick. Just remember to complete the look head-to-toe for the full effect, even if your coworkers otherwise wouldn’t be able to tell you’re pant-less.

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Wear Bright Colors

Studies show that our reactions to colors are often subjective (namely a result of culture and individual experiences), however some evidence suggests we have collective responses to certain hues. For example, warm colors like red can evoke emotions ranging from comfort to anger, while hues on the cooler end of the color wheel, like blue, can call to mind a sense of tranquility. In fact, there’s an entire practice of alternative therapy based off this line of thinking. Called chromotherapy, it uses colored lights as a way to help improve a person’s emotional and physical health.

To test the mood-boosting effects of color for yourself — without visiting a specialist — wear summery hues like pink, yellow and green. For an especially on-trend look, choose neon versions of each. You can also sport some tie-dye, whether in a pre-made piece or one you DIY. Another go-to shade? Orange. As reported by Vogue in conversation with a color therapy expert, the cheery hue is believed to help people deal with change — an especially helpful benefit given the world’s current situation.

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Play With Prints

Yearning for the vacations that got away this summer? Try a tropical-inspired print that prompts daydreams of exotic, sandy shores. For outdoor picnics closer to home, opt for a festive gingham pattern.

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Add on Accessories

As with any outfit during more “normal times,” accessories can instantly make you feel more put together. Try bold statement earrings or a pearl-embellished headband to lift your spirits and earn you compliments during your next Zoom meeting.

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