Suits have always been cool, way before Barney Stinson came along and made ‘suiting up’ a thing. Wearing a suit is power symbol as much as a tool for increasing confidence. There’s a lot of psychology behind why suits make people seem more powerful, so let’s find out all about it!
The way we dress is a part of our non-verbal communication. Just like our body language, gestures and facial expression, clothes give people an idea of who we are before we even get the chance to open our mouths. Because no matter how much we try to focus on people’s personalities, we are still visual creatures. What you wear matters, whether you like it or not. And now it’s time to suit it up!
Suits make you look more powerful and professional Why is it that men and women in suits look more powerful and attractive? Suits are status symbols and high status is often associated with recognition, prestige, and social acceptance. And who doesn’t like to be liked? Clothes and suits can also be used to gain a higher rank in the society. 'Dress for success' or 'dress for the job you want, not the job you have' are not just catch phrases people say. Clothes are often used to communicate a certain role or achievement.
Suits and other formal clothing are great for signalling professionalism and even gaining respect. Suits also help in maintaining a certain social distance. More professional but less approachable. While casual clothes evoke familiarity and intimacy. You know… wearing sweatpants to an interview is not really recommended.
But the world of business aside, why do men and women in suits often radiate confidence? It’s also connected to body language. Suits physically don’t allow you to slouch too much or take a pose that would be overly comfortable or familiar. They’re restraining you to look sharp.
The effects of wearing a suit on your brain
When you suit up, you’re actually suiting up you brain as well. It’s been proven that people who wear suits actually feel more powerful. Wearing a suit also makes you think differently. For example, people who wear suits often describe themselves as more competent and rational, whereas people who wear casual clothes view themselves as more friendly and laid-back.
Clothes are a way to express our identity. Who we are on the inside becomes visible to the outside. It is in our nature to judge and evaluate others, especially if we are meeting someone for the first time. The visual appearance is the first step. How you look already sends a message about who you are. Do you want to know a life hack? Instead of whining about how people judge other people for their appearance, use it to your advantage! Decide how you want to be perceived and dress accordingly. Maybe suits are not your thing and that's ok. But maybe suiting up will give you the boost of confidence you need to land your dream job or a dream date.