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18th Oct 2022

This is the age we give up on trying to be ‘trendy’ – according to research

Jack Peat

It also emerged 45 per cent experience ‘FIS’ – fashion imposter syndrome

Brits give up trying to be ‘trendy’ at 35 – the same age as Drake and Blake Lively.

A poll of 2,000 adults found 37 per cent feel overwhelmed by the volume of trends sweeping the fashion pages and social media feeds.

And 38 per cent don’t have the confidence to try new fashion fads.

But nearly half (49 per cent) struggle to strike a balance between ‘trendy’ and ‘age appropriate’ when it comes to their outfit choices, with 58 per cent feeling too old to wear certain clothing.

While 38 per cent feel judged by others when trying to stay ahead of the fashion curve.

Despite this, embracing new trends is a walk in the park for 34 per cent, although 21 per cent lack the confidence to experiment with new clothing.

The research, commissioned by online personal styling service Stitch Fix UK, also found 41 per cent think the latest styles never suit them, while 27 per cent don’t think they are right for their body type.

For others, it’s down to practical reasons, as 19 per cent struggle because they don’t know how to style what’s in season, and 37 per cent find it’s too expensive to keep up with the constant churn.

It also emerged 45 per cent experience ‘FIS’ – fashion imposter syndrome – where engaging in new fashion trends and styles outside of their comfort zone leaves them feeling inauthentic and lacking in confidence.

In fact, more than 38 per cent would love to give current on-trend styles a go, but aren’t confident enough.

To help Brits overcome ‘fashion imposter syndrome’, Stitch Fix has partnered with cognitive psychologist and author of The Psychology of Fashion, Dr Carolyn Mair, who said: “At its core, imposter syndrome is an internal psychological phenomenon in which people experience an inability to internalise and accept their success – a form of intellectual self-doubt.

“Because imposter syndrome isn’t restricted to any specific life experiences or contexts, it’s unsurprising that it’s found to be rife when it comes to fashion and how we express ourselves by our style choices.

“Trends come and go so rapidly it can be overwhelming. Even when we want to, we can still lack the confidence to explore new styles. We feel stepping outside of our comfort zone lacks true authenticity. Why? Clothing reflects and conveys many aspects of the wearer including their self-image, mood, aspirations and group membership.

“These aspects of identity are deeply rooted, and because we prefer clothing that is aligned with our sense of identity, we can feel discomfort and dissonance when faced with the latest trend – feeling like an imposter.”

The study also revealed the decades that are among the nation’s favourite for fashion, with 2020–present (23 per cent) beating the noughties (16 per cent) and 90’s (15 per cent) for the top spot.

And 49 per cent have stowed away items from decades gone by in the hope they will full circle and become trendy once again, including baggy jeans, bomber jackets, cargo trousers and denim jackets.

While 38 per cent have even handed old clothes down to younger generations because they’ve done just this and become trendy again.

In fact, 48 per cent of those polled, via OnePoll, love that nostalgic feeling of watching a trend from a previous decade make its way back onto the catwalk.

It also found 40 per cent think having a personal stylist would help them adopt trends in a way that works for their own shape and style.

Farrah May Archer Boadi, personal stylist at Stitch Fix said: “Trends evolve with such pace and as a result can sometimes feel unattainable and unachievable within our day-to-day looks.

“The current decade is seeing fashion become even more fragmented, but this doesn’t have to be a bad thing – it’s about choosing what aesthetic works for you.”

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