Can your clothes make you happy?

Image consultant Ruth Essex tells us how our clothes can make us happy

shutterstock_59033818I have two beautiful daughters, Scarlet, seven, and Eliza, five, who would never consider any day not special enough to wear glitter and sparkle. “Mummy can I wear sparkly grey tights?” Erm. Unfortunately, not for school. Wearing glamorous plastic heels with their pyjamas? A witches’ dress and a white furry Cossack hat to go to the supermarket? Why not?  So many people smile and it brings a little sunshine to a cloudy day. Choosing their own outfit fills them with joy and helps them express who they are. 

The strange thing is, that many of us started life as Scarlets and Elizas and yet often lose that ability to find joy in our clothes, the way children do. Like our children, not much in our home gets saved for best. Crystal glasses for wine with dinner on a Tuesday evening? Why not? I would rather one was broken than it collected dust in the dresser. And I feel the same way about wearing my clothes. 

Clothes go off, they stop fitting us and we fall out of love with them. I have worn nine strands of pearls on the school run before but so what? I set my own standards and if that means I am a bit, or even a lot, more dressed up then others who cares?  People soon get used to it and as pearls are my signature piece, I loved it.  There is nothing wrong with bringing a little belle époque to one’s day.  And did it make me feel happy? Yes it did.

February is the month of love, and partner or not, self care, self love, whatever you want to call it, this month is a good reminder that it is not helpful to put all the responsibility for our happiness on to someone else and to take responsibility for our own emotions. So, if you have an outfit that makes you feel happy, go ahead and play dress up today. Finding happiness is important. 


Ruth Essex is an Image Consultant at

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