British clothing company Buy T-Shirts Online says the colors you wear play a substantial part in how other people perceive you. They asked 1,000 people what automatic judgments they made of a person just based on the color of their clothing. The results were pretty surprising, and perhaps, not in line with what you might think.
Black was chosen above all other colors as embodying confidence and reliability. Fifty-six percent of respondents in our survey favored it for having that quality, and the gender split was four percent of women and 64 percent of men. Suddenly it makes a lot of sense why the little black dress has been a fashion staple for so long.
In terms of confidence, red was a close second. Fifty-four percent of women voted for red as their go-to color if they want to feel self-assured, and 56 percent of men say they enjoy seeing it on a woman. However, red was also closely associated with feeling a little too confident, or arrogant. This is understandable considering it certainly stands out more than the other colors, so it suggests wanting to be the center of attention.
The lowest on the confidence list were orange and brown, so if you have a carrot-colored pencil skirt, it might be time to retire it. This wasn't terribly surprising to me, because neither of these colors strikes me as terribly flattering, and often come across as dull, or in orange's case, too loud.
However, the big shock (at least to me) was how poorly pink did overall. Only five percent of those surveyed thought that people who wore pink were intelligent. I suppose that says something about the girls in Mean Girls, at least on Wednesdays. But in all seriousness, this judgment is a bit troubling, since pink is stereotypically associated with females. While color coding kids' toys is (finally) starting to go out of style, the perception remains ingrained in us, and it's not flattering. I personally blame Barbie for touting beauty before brains for so many years.
Aside from color, we tend to perceive people differently based on the style and even fit of their clothing. According to research conducted by Psychology Today on 300 adults, there's a huge difference in how people see a man wearing a well-tailored suit, and one that was just purchased off the rack. After volunteers viewed a man wearing practically the same suit (except for the fit) for only three seconds, they rated the man in the tailored suit as more confident, and even worthy of earning more money.
So the next time you're getting ready for a night out, take a deeper look at the color and fit of the clothes you pick. Your choices could be saying a lot more to your date night partner than you think.
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