Fashion is more of an important pathway to mental wellbeing than meets the eye. It can help people feel good about themselves and connect with others. A “positive relationship” with your wardrobe can also encourage you to take care of your body and, by extension, follow a healthy diet.

Fashion has long been used as a way of expressing uniqueness, self-expression, and personal flair. You may not realize it at first, but your mental wellbeing has a direct impact on how you dress, since your personal choice of fashion is a considerable reflection of who you are as an individual. If you struggle with your mental wellbeing, dressing appropriately can be very tough at first. However, once you unearth your particular style, fashion can help augment your confidence and self-esteem.

Mental wellbeing and dressing appropriately are connected because your personal style, or what I like to call “fashion persona,” is a reflection of how you view yourself. Different styles represent varying aspects of your personality. For example, if you wear bold and bright colors, you’d likely be perceived as being confident and outgoing. If you flaunt neutral colors, you’d be perceived as being more reserved and serene. This can all of course impact the way society acts towards you.

If you’re tussling constantly with your mental disposition, you may experience an inability to express yourself via apparel. For instance, if you possess low self-esteem and struggle with self-confidence, you may feel as if you are out of stylistic options. Wearing bold colors is something that confident individuals are able to do, but for someone struggling with low self-esteem, the task of dressing up really “hip” can be quite daunting.

The key to dressing appropriately when you have poor mental wellbeing is to hone in on the basics. When you live with a heavy mind in tow, you likely aren’t thinking about your garments. You may be in a psychological fog, feeling out of control, or you may just neglect your personal style entirely. This actually impacts your mental wellbeing even further. Wearing clothes that are comfortable and are in line with your individuality is a great way to enhance your brain’s wellbeing.

Focusing on the fashion basics of your wardrobe will keep you out of your head and out of a mental fog, so you can begin to regain control of your state of mind. Once you begin to resume control, you can then swing your attention more towards your personal apparel style. Wearing the basics until you’re feeling better will lift your confidence and self-esteem, which will then help you master the task of dressing superbly on the fly.

When speaking on mental wellbeing, we’re referring to a person’s de facto emotions, their faculty of coping with life, their aptitude to handle stress, and their ability to defy life’s challenges by making austere choices. Mental wellness disorders are just like physical illnesses in that they require prompt attention. If you struggle with your mental wellbeing—whether it’s noticeable by way of fashion or not—seek help. You can receive care in a variety of ways, including psychological therapy, prescription medication, self-help strategies, or a combination of the said three.

Dr. Ali is a freelance medical journalist and copywriter at

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