Fashion stylist tips: what your style says about you

“We asked an expert what our style said about us, and here’s what we learned”

Have you ever wondered what your style says about you? We sent team Stylist to have their own fashion choices analysed, and this is what they learned. 

Love them or loathe them, our clothes introduce us to the world before we so much as have to say a word. First impressions are irrefutably a thing, and the style in which you present yourself to the world often asserts who you are to people who don’t know you.

If styles could speak, though, what would they say about us? How would they summarise themselves? Would yours be sweet, delicate and amenable? Or would yours be anarchic, boundary-pushing and outrageous?

Henrietta Shirazu is a stylist who specialises in helping people to summarise their styles, which, in turn, assists them in decluttering their stylistic lives. To streamline a style is to understand it better and allow it to not overwhelm you, after all.  

Fashion stylist tips: what your style says about you
Henrietta Shirazu is a stylist who analyses what people's style says about them.

Shirazu’s process is simple: you start with a quiz, in which you answer questions about your style and personality. Next, you send Shirazu images of your everyday outfits for a week, who then analyses them and your style and what it says about you. Finally, your results are presented to you.

“Based solely on your outfit, people will ascertain how you feel about yourself and your body, how much influence you have over people, how smart you are, how much power you have,” she tells Stylist. “From this, people will then decide whether or not they want to get to know you. This is usually done on a subconscious level.” 

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Shirazu references “enclothed cognition”, a term coined by Hajo Adam and Adam D Galinsky, researchers from Northwestern University, in their 2012 experiment that endeavoured to discover the ways in which clothing influences a person’s psychological state and performance levels. The study essentially deciphered that wearing the clothes that we feel speak best to who we are not only increases our psychological state but also enhances our performance in tasks.

“Clothing creates external judgments,” Shirazu notes. “Studies show it also holds power over our internal self. What your clothes say to you makes you act in a way that portrays that belief to others. This means how you dress is important for yourself because the former influences the latter.”

As the old adage goes though, the proof is in the pudding, so we sent three members of Team Stylist to see Shirazu to have their styles analysed. This is what they learned. 

Leah Sinclair, senior lifestyle writer

Fashion stylist tips: what your style says about you
Leah's style is straightforward and effortless, just like her personality.

Outfit notes: Leah’s style features mostly black, structured garments. She favours rigid fabrics that hold their shape and are long-lasting. Most of her pieces are masculine-shaped and loose fitting. 

Overall style assessment: Leah finds power in the masculine; she loves structure, symmetry and likes to be coordinated. Comfort is a priority for her but not her sole consideration when getting dressed. The minimalist style could mean that she is independent, dependable, resilient and reliable. She can be stubborn, she dislikes change and finds it is difficult to do new things even if they work out well. Leah’s also slow to become comfortable in new situations. 

Lauren Geall, digital writer

Fashion stylist tips: what your style says about you
Lauren's style reflects her delicate and nurturing nature.

Outfit notes: Lauren’s style is classic and feminine. She favours comfort [and clothing that appears] nurturing, confident, consistent and positive. Soft loose clothing with rounded sleeves and floral patterns. Neutral colour pallet with pops of bright colours. The dresses she reaches for vary in length and colour, while the patterns, necklines and overall garment shape are replicated across several outfits.

Overall style assessment: Lauren finds comfort in nature. She has a tendency to wear florals, which highlights her femininity and delicate nature, and gives off nurturing vibes. There are few sharp lines or unnatural structuring in any of her garments, which indicates that she likes to be unrestrained and shies away from rigid structure. Lauren dresses for herself and doesn’t feel the need to make grand gestures with her clothing.

Meeka McKenzie, social media assistant

Fashion stylist tips: what your style says about you
Meeka's style nods to her private and introverted disposition.

Outfit notes: Meeka dresses with the intention to be comfortable and confident. She prefers muted colours and isn’t at all flashy, but is reserved and is more about embracing an understated elegance.

Overall style assessment: Feeling comfortable is a high priority for Meeka. Her moods are greatly influenced by her appearance and she dresses for herself first and the world second. She finds comfort in the known and doesn’t like to let go of control completely, as seen in her weekend co-ord ensemble. Meeka values her privacy and is a little introverted. She keeps her style fluid and when needed will change to fit the occasion, as seen in her all-black power outfit, so she can expand minimal energy on putting herself “out there”. 

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Images: courtesy of writers