Defined by almost everything from religion, social habits, language, music, arts, food habits, work habits, dress and appearance and more, culture is the characteristics and knowledge of a particular group of people. Based on the original meaning of ‘culture’ which turns out derived from the latin word “colere’, Culture relates to actively fostering growth. ( Kim, 2015 ) Having said that, as the countries or environment changes and grows, so does the cultural diversity.
Out of all the characteristics that are used to differentiate one culture from another, ‘dress and appearance’ is the most noticeable expressions of one’s culture. Everyone grew up in a different environment and the environment will shapes how a person dress and act. For example, it is perfectly fine for fat people to go sleeveless in western country but not in Asia. In the west, percentage of fat people are higher but on the other hand, in Asia, everyone is so petite and small size while being fat is somehow looked down upon in most places. Hence, seems like it is fine for a chubby women to reveal her arms and legs in the west but it is somehow weird for a chubby Asian to wear such clothes. This shows how the environment can shape a person’s perception and the way they dress and act.
Besides that, considering how the environment determines how we dress, people we hang out with also affect the way we dress. Nowadays, people alter the way they look just to meet socio-cultural needs. Different from the example I mentioned just now, this group of people changed the way they dress to be recognized and accepted as a member of the certain social group. To be honest, I think there is certainly fine to alter one’s look to occupy a position within the group that he or she wanted to be. However, our personal style is evident in our own behaviors, when one started to dress like another, will his or her behavior changes as well? People generally expect their behavior and thought is far more conscious that it really is. Truth be known, it’s not. ( Theimageexpert, 2014 )
In my opinion, when one started to dress like another, their thought processes and related behaviors will become similar. For example, just like how best friends tend to look alike because they think and act in the same manner. In my case, I’ve had three close girl friends that I have known for seven years since secondary school and we always get that a lot. I guess that is because how we behave are more or less similar, even our action and the way we speak.
Long story short, I just wanted to share that environment definitely shapes culture, and what we wear will affect the way we think, feel, act, and how other people define us. I guess is the best to dress the way that will best influence or develop our best behavior. It’s more like empowering ourselves with clothes rather than letting the clothes to define us.
” Don’t dress for others, dress for yourself. Clothes should be an extension of what you represent and what you feel inside. “
– Marco Pierre-
How Does Clothing Affect Your Behavior? | Image Management Consultant at Conselle Institute. (2014, September 24). Retrieved from https://conselleimageconsultant.wordpress.com/2014/09/24/how-does-clothing-affect-your-behavior/
Kim Ann. (2015, February 19). What is Culture? | Definition of Culture. Retrieved from http://www.livescience.com/21478-what-is-culture-definition-of-culture.html
What is socio-cultural environment? definition and meaning. (n.d.). Retrieved from http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/socio-cultural-environment.html