Attempting to fit in by following fashion norms and the latest trends is something multiple teens (including myself) succumb to. Many of us are afraid to stand out against the traditional "norm" with our appearances sticking only to muted colours and well known clothing brands. For a vast majority of people it is not a matter of what they feel comfortable in but instead what helps them fit in with those around them.One clear turning point is the stage between childhood and adolescence, the simple carefree mind set seems all but lost, patchwork dungarees and slightly over sized hand-me-downs are traded in for new 'must have' outfits that all teens seem to be wearing. There is a certain stigma attached to those who dont follow these seemingly unspoken ''fashion rules'' with so many victims of high school bullying being singled out just because their appearance is different from their peers.
The media encourages us to follow the latest crazes, many articles are aimed at young teens of both genders promoting the idealised (and frankly unrealistic) appearance. From a young age children are taught they must look a certain way in order to be accepted by others , girls should wear pink and like makeup and boys must be masculine and stay away from 'girly' colored clothing. With this mindset ingrained on so many of the population no wonder it's hard to break out of the traditional norms, however its not just magazines that address fashion in this way. With the influence of social media now stronger than ever sites such as Twitter and Facebook often draw in their audiences by posting articles dissing celebrity fashion choices.This in turn may encourage the younger generation to dress in a certain way that wont draw attention. Although that is one major negative side to social media there are also many positives, apps such a Instagram allow users to express themselves through photographs with many accounts created especially for style inspiration. This can act as a confidence booster for those who aim to be unique with their style choices and promotes the idea of standing out.
One thing to notice is that so many well known celebrities have made a successful career out of defying the norms and being different from their competitors. Australian born singer 'Sia' for example is one of them, she is well known for her bold style choices when it comes to performing, eccentric wigs, hats and bright colours have all become a key part of her artistic identity. This unique style has lead to much success, with 25 million songs sold world wide, a large proportion hitting the top 10 and number 1 albums in Australia, The United Kingdom, Canada and the USA.
Yet another performer who gained her fame through her own unique style is Lady Gaga whos name acts as a giveaway for her quirky appearance. Gaga is renowned globally for her bizarre meat dresses and telephone shaped hats and although this may seem slightly extreme for a day to day style her confidence and lack of regard for what other people think is certainly something we could all learn from. With a net worth of $275 million it is clear Gaga has had a vast influence on society today acting as an idol for many.The one of a kind style both these women have leave them perhaps the most notable performers of the 21st century.
So next time you turn down a jumper for being 'too bright' or mutter to a friend about the outfit of a passer by, think about it, consider what makes you happy. Go your own way and if that means stepping out of your boundaries then so be it,Be confident, be comfortable and be unique.
Published by Anezka Turek