Dopamine Dressing: What is it and how to do it right

26 July, 2023

Did you know that dressing up can bring you joy? We know, most of you are used to seeing the process of choosing the outfit and looking in the mirror as a stressful event. But, instead, why don’t you try wearing something that will release that dopamine? Seems complicated, but we’ll explain everything in this article.

What is “dopamine dressing”?

  • Let’s face it: it has been quite a difficult and negative period for everyone. First, the pandemic, then the war and now it seems that all these events are having a negative effect on our lives. We crave happiness, joy, and a moment of peace, and we want to let these feelings out with one of the most ancient forms of expression that we have: dressing up. But why is it called “dopamine dressing”? Our bodies produce dopamine and our nervous system uses it to send messages between nerve cells. Dopamine has many functions and, when it is released in large amounts, it creates feelings of pleasure and reward, which motivates us to repeat a specific behaviour. In theory, this specific behaviour could include the feelings we have when we buy or wear new clothes.
  • The designers have understood the general mood and started spreading colour in their collections. Let’s take for example Valentino’s bright pink: a colour that defined an entire year and keeps being associated with the brand. Or Bottega Veneta’s bright green, or Versace’s multi coloured and patterned dresses. There are a lot of examples, and while some prefer quiet luxury, others can’t wait to show the world their “true colours”.

Tips and benefits of dopamine dressing

The idea of certain hues having therapeutic qualities is something which has been talked about and investigated for centuries. Colour therapy and chromotherapy have long been of interest to cultures dating back to Ancient Egypt, and have been integrated into interior and environmental design. Colour is closely associated with emotions; there are colours even in our language – we say we are ‘feeling blue’, ‘seeing red’, ‘green with envy’ or ‘in the pink’. When we wear colourful clothes, the associations have the power to change the way we feel and even the way we act. Of course, the associations and the feelings are subjective; for example if you associate a yellow jumper with happiness, then you will embody that feeling of happiness when you wear it. But there are some shades that are commonly perceived as joyful. Let’s see which ones.

Colours for dopamine dressing

We already mentioned it, but yellow is certainly one of those colours that make you feel happy when wearing it, or when you see someone wearing it. All those bright colours, such as orange, green (that also represents hope), pink, cobalt blue, have the power to change the way you feel. Of course, considering the subjectivity of this theory, you should always choose colours you like: for some, wearing black could actually instil more happiness than wearing brighter shades – and this is all down to an individual’s personal associations with that particular shade.

Dopamine dressing looks

As you may expect, dopamine dressing works better in summer, when we’re all more willing to wear colours, but this doesn’t mean that you can’t wear bright colours the rest of the year. We want to show you 3 looks that express perfectly what we mean with “dopamine dressing”

1. Shine bright in the sun

Yellow is certainly the main character of this outfit but, combined with shades like orange and green, it is also empowered with positive energy. We chose a pair of printed palazzo trousers to pair with a bright yellow blouse. Everything, even the accessories, is very cohesive and convey the joy of dressing.

2. Dopamine talks neutrals, too

We get that not everyone will feel comfortable wearing a lot of bright colours together. In this case, what you can do is match brighter shades with neutral colours like white. For this outfit we suggest you pair white denim and a pink top: on top of that, we wanted to add a kimono, a must-have for summer, but in a very joyful print.

3. The greener, the better

Wearing green is perfect if you want to radiate positivity and, in particular, a feeling of hope. We chose a green skirt paired with a blouse that is characterised by its soft print base colour; this look boosts a soft energy, which is really calming and ideal for those days when you feel overwhelmed and stressed.

A £10 gift to get dressed by your Personal Shopper

Which colours are able to lift even the worst Monday mood? What garment makes you vibrate on any occasion? Live a summer full of good vibes and start enjoying dopamine dressing today!

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