Dopaminergic dressing: can clothes really be the source of our happiness?

Izzy Rodney

You’re probably sitting there wondering: what is the dopamine bandage? As a newly predicted trend in 2022, it’s all about dressing up in clothes that will help boost your mood. Is it true ? Can clothes really be the source of our happiness? Izzy Rodney talks.

the term was invented by Dr. Dawn Karen, an American fashion psychologist who studies how color, image, style, shape and beauty can affect human behavior. Dr. Karen has two Notions known as the “Mood Illustration Dress” and “Mood Enhancement Dress”. They came after she was sexually assaulted and suffered from depression and anxiety.

The Mood Enhancement Dress, aka Dopamine Dressing, was a concept she came across while researching opioid addiction. She explains that people are not themselves addicted to opioids but rather to the chemical that is released in the brain when taking them: dopamine. The Mood Illustration Dress known as ‘Serotonin Dressing’ is best suited when you are in a calm state of mind.

It has been found through research that brighter colors can elicit more positive emotions

Dopamine is a naturally occurring chemical in the human body. It is a neurotransmitter, which means it sends signals from the body to the brain. Dopamine plays a role in controlling a person’s movements, as well as their emotional responses. The right balance of dopamine is vital for physical and mental well-being.

It was during the pandemic that Dr Karen prescribed one of her clients (who was battling depression after several of her patients died from Covid-19) to wear anything yellow in order to increase dopamine levels – our pleasure neurotransmitter.

Similar to writing a prescription for medicine, it was now a prescription for clothes. Following the prescription of the color yellow to his patient, they reported that not only did they feel “tremendously better, but it brought her out of her depression.” It has been discovered through research that brighter colors can elicit more positive emotions.

She Underline that ?“Yellow is the number one color representing happiness, joy and hope. I would add that it is based on individuality. A person can be attracted to a color in childhood. What was their happy color when they were kids? It could also have been a favorite print or texture. Other popular colors for Dopamine Dressing include purple, pink, green, and blue.

It’s not about wearing the next “must have” but rather about one’s individuality and the joy it brings.

Dr. Karen suggests that from the moment we wake up, we should reflect on how we feel, whether angry, sad, happy or excited. By invoking mindfulness, it will help us figure out how we feel and want to feel and allow us to dress according to our mood. She suggests that we shouldn’t wear our pajamas for more than three days either, because pajamas are usually worn when you’re in a calm, less intense mood and so if you’re already depressed, they could make your mood even worse. nad !

Demi Colleen, a beauty blogger, points out that she hated anything pink and only dressed in black for years. But now her mindset has changed, with pink becoming her favorite color. With her own trending hashtag #demisdopaminedressing, she spread the word about this upcoming trend and how everyone should get involved. She said it’s not about wearing the next “must have” but rather about her individuality and the joy it brings to that person.

Chances are the majority of us wake up, go to our wardrobes and just grab the easiest or most comfortable piece of clothing – unless we go out! I know for myself that I will often be oblivious to what I choose to wear simply because I am in a hurry or don’t spend too much time deciding what I would like to wear. However, there are three key questions (which Dr. Karen tells us to think about) we should ask ourselves to understand why we wear certain things:

  1. Are you wearing this item to hide, to bury something you don’t want to come to the surface?
  2. Are you wearing something to validate someone else?
  3. Or are you wearing something to validate yourself?

I think what’s most important, what psychologist Elizabeth Lombardo sums good enough, does It’s not about the color per se, it’s about what you associate with that color. So, while it is recommended to wear bright colors such as red, orange, yellow and pink, it all depends on what makes you feel comfortable and your personal preferences!

Good Dopamine outfit to all!

Izzy Rodney


Image courtesy of Charles Etoroma Going through Unsplash. Image license found here. No changes have been made to this image.

Image in article courtesy of @demicolleen Going through @instagram.com. No changes have been made to this image.

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Elizabeth J. Harless