Power Pose, What about Power Dress?


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Today in class Andrew talked about how different body language creates different power levels. After looking at the results of the research study, it was concluded (although the study was small) that using 'powerful' body language could, in turn, make you more powerful (higher levels of testosterone and lower levels of cortisol, which is the hormone balance of powerful people). 
One question that I thought about after class was if your body language can make your hormones more like a person of power, could the way you dress also influence your hormone levels to make you more powerful? I know we've all heard the saying "Dress for Success", so, is it really true? 
dress-success-1-slide.jpg
In one study, it was found that makeup and dressing nice can earn you more money (money, in my mind, tends to be in the same category as power). The study was conducted in Shanghi, China, and it analyzed data from different resources, looking at a persons category of attractiveness, how much money they spent on beauty products, and their earnings at their job. The study's conclusion was that the more attractive a person is, the higher their earnings are, whether they are naturally attractive or utilize makeup is not a factor. 
Another study I found relating to how your appearance influences your confidence (or power) was not directly related to one's clothing but one's complexion. The study was once again observational and charted a person's levels of confidence when their acne was bad, and after acne medication cleared up their skin. 
Although the studies I did find were not on actual clothing selection, it does tell us that someones appearance does matter for confidence and earning potential. Making a logical jump to the conclusion that overall appearance, including clothing, influences self confidence and power is what I took away from the studies I was able to find. 

4 Comments

This is article is very interesting! I've heard the color of clothing you wear can affect the way people view you and the way you act. For example, many women find that if they were a red dress they are more confident and find themselves to stand out more! This article shows what colors correspond to what attitude.. check it out! http://www.indobase.com/fashion/men-fashion/apparels/western/informal-wear/philosophy-of-colors.html

I am a business major and I cannot tell you the amount of times I have heard that the way you dress and appear can make or break whether you get that dream job. Sure it's not the most important detail, but as they say "first impressions last". While looking into this topic, I found a blog that discusses what to and not to wear. The basics should be known. For females, don't wear anything too revealing. It's surprising to see that regardless of the major or profession, the way you dress influences the way you behave, how you are perceived, and your seriousness towards the profession.

Appearance is so important in today's society especially when it comes to the professional world. Sometimes, people get carried away and think that dressing well is only to impress people. It's important you mentioned dressing well correlating with a person's confidence. I looked further into this phenomenon and found that recent studies show that dressing a certain way can actually help people perform better on certain tests. For instance, subjects who worse a doctor's or scientist's coat performed better on the Stroop Test.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-leadership/post/new-study-what-you-wear-could-affect-how-well-you-work/2011/04/01/gIQAssHomR_blog.html

What a good question to ask! I think this is a really relevant topic, especially to us college students who are aspiring young professionals. There was no study to determine what kind of clothing makes you the most successful, my question, which stems from the picture you featured, is this:

Sometimes, like in your picture that you featured, I think women think that to be taken seriously in order to become successful they need to dress masculine.
If being more attractive means more success, wouldn't it be the opposite - that women should dress very feminine to accentuate their attractiveness?

I couldn't find a study to specify any of this, but here is a slideshow from glamour magazine featuring "17 Outfits Guys Love". I tried to find correlations, and although there is nothing out of the ordinary, the slideshow doesn't have super masculine outfits.

http://www.glamour.com/fashion/2011/01/17-outfit-ideas-guys-love

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