In movies, when a character built to depict cheerfulness is introduced, you’d find that they are usually dressed in vivid colours. Associating bright colours with joy and happiness is not a new concept. In fact, the term “Dopamine dressing” refers to the notion that joy can be instilled through what you wear.
To understand the term “dopamine dressing”, you must first understand what dopamine is. It is a neurotransmitter produced by your brain as part of its reward system. So whenever you do rewarding things, like eating ice cream or laughing it triggers a release of dopamine. This is why it is referred to as the feel-good neurotransmitter.
A lot of research has been ongoing about the effects of colours on the psyche of humans for the longest time. Colour therapy, also known as Chromotherapy, has even been used in the treatment of mental and physical health conditions. It’s also common for us to associate colours with our emotions with phrases like; “green with envy”, “feeling blue” and “seeing red”.
But the term “dopamine dressing” was coined by fashion psychologist Dawnn Karen based on the idea that the way we dress can trigger the release of dopamine. Hence, sending bouts of chemical joy through our system and boosting our moods. Ever since then, the fashion industry has adopted the concept. And it even became a trend on Instagram and Tiktok.
Although Dopamine dressing is most commonly used in terms of colours, it goes beyond that. It also involves certain styles, fits, textures, silhouettes and patterns. As long as you feel confident and good in whatever you have on, there’s a likelihood that dopamine will be released and will leave you feeling happy all day long.
So next time, regardless of where you’re headed, be more intentional about selecting what to wear. Pick an outfit that’s in alignment with the best version of yourself. Don’t just dress for the occasion, dress to boost your mood!