My mind is programmed to think in terms of trends. I see common denominators and they usually have something to do with fashion. Occasionally though, a social trend creeps up on me and when I see it, it’s like BAM. Smoke, lights, wind machine and Mick Jagger appear.
My smoke-lights-wind-machine-Mick-Jagger moment happened when I realized the more I talk to people, the more I read, and the more I observe, the more I see a common thread in what people are attracted to these days. Authenticity. Reality. Humanization. Imperfections.
Let’s start with the rise of the blogosphere. The bloggers that rise to the top, the cream of the crop (I'm beaming from that rhyming situation) are the ones that write about their passions with a pure and clear voice. Their blogs are personal, unique and authentic and therefore interesting, magnetic and attractive. As an alternative to unbiased journalism, so many of us are suddenly captivated by the idea of a biased opinion with a strong and distinct perspective. It's more relatable because it's more intimate. I find it fascinating (clearly).
Take the show Girls as another example. When you ask people why they like the show, very often the response is “I don’t know, but I just can’t stop watching it.” I think the reason that so many of us are hooked is that it is so real. Lena Dunham who writes, produces and stars in the show has this incredible gift for touching on very real experiences and social nuances that most of us can personally relate to or at least know of someone who can relate. It’s not a glorified version of living in NYC (a la Sex and the City) and it’s not a staged version of perceived reality (a la “Reality T.V."). Instead it is an entertaining storyline that is written in a way that accurately represents what really happens in our lives.
Take the last episode for example. The scene where best friends Marni and Hannah are having a phone conversation in which they both lie to each other about everything in their lives being great, trying to keep up their false pretenses because their friendship has been strained lately, was so real. That's how girls are. We are vulnerable, we are flawed, and we tend to throw up walls and pretend everything is fine when it's not. They nailed it.
Another example of this attraction to humanization is Beyonce’s documentary “Life is But a Dream.” (Yes, I’m still talking about it.) She was the one that produced the film and yet it was filled with unattractive angles, personal videos, stories of heartbreak and loss. Why? Because she wants her fans to know what her life is really like. She wants people to know that her success didn’t magically appear and that she’s worked incredibly hard for it all. She wants people to know that she is human. And that makes her so much more relatable, likeable and attractive.
Connecting all of this to fashion, the subjects I (and I assume many others) find most attractive are the ones who dress authentically. The ones who use clothing as an expression of themselves. The ones who aren't trying to be someone they’re not. The ones that don’t necessarily have the same style as me, but have an authentic style nonetheless. The ones who, based on their exuding confidence, I know danced in the mirror that morning. The ones who dress for themselves instead of being slaves to fashion trends.
I’m proud of my imperfections. There are days when I literally have a fashion brain fart and have no idea what to wear because I’m going to be seeing a cute guy. There are days when I think I need to dress to impress because I represent a fashion blog, but instead I feel like wearing my Oprah Winfrey sweatshirt and black skinny jeans, and I do it because it makes me happy. Ultimately, being yourself is the most attractive version of you. Baduhbing badahboom. Mr. worldwide as I step in the room. I just quoted Pitbull and I won’t backspace it, even though I’m mortified. It happened. So what? Who cares? Live ya life.
This attraction to authenticity is no novel concept. Art has been referencing life since that guy named Adam (not the one from Girls) set foot on this planet. But bringing it to 2013 is quite interesting, at least to me.
I'd like to pose one final question: Are we human, or are we dancer?
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