4 Reasons You Think You Have Nothing to Wear


It happens to the best of us. At some point in our lives, looking at a wardrobe full of clothes, we tell ourselves ‘I have nothing to wear’. We can shop so often and keep adding new pieces to our wardrobe. Despite this, it feels like none of the clothes we own are a good option. Let me tell you 4 reasons why we feel this way.

Overcrowded Wardrobe

Have you heard the term; ‘paradox of choice’ ? It means that the more options we have, the harder it is to make a decision!

In 2000, psychologists conducted a study where they displayed a table with 24 varieties of gourmet jam to shoppers. Next day, they displayed a table with 6 varieties of jam. They observed that having more varieties of jam attracted more shoppers but when looking at purchases, people who saw the small display were 10 times more likely to make a purchase compared to people who saw the larger display.

Psychologist argued this is because when we have a lot of options, we get overwhelmed as making a choice requires more time and effort. Even if we do make a choice, we would get reduced satisfaction with our choice because of all the other alternatives we missed out on.

The paradox of choice also applies to our wardrobe. When we say we have nothing to wear, it might be that we have too much and we are not able to make a decision on what to wear and what to combine each piece with.

Alongside this, we may have too many clothes that have been sitting in our wardrobe for a long time which we don’t really want to wear anymore. Dr. Carol Walsh states ‘we tend to hold on to things that represents our past experiences and life, instead of having a wardrobe filled with things that represent who we are right now’. It may be our emotional attachment to these clothes or the fact we spent money on them that are keeping them there even though we don’t enjoy wearing them anymore.

Buying Wrong Pieces

When we shop, we tend to buy trendy clothes at the time which may go out of style after a while. As I mentioned above, we tend to keep our clothes in the wardrobe for a long time. Unfortunately, not every piece is timeless, and trends move quickly. So when we buy clothes that are not pieces that can be worn for a long time or in different occasions, we can end up with a bunch of clothes that have gone out of style and just taking up space in our wardrobe.

As well as trends, our lifestyles may change with time. Adapting our style to our new lifestyle may mean some of the pieces in our wardrobe do not serve us anymore. Also, bodies tend to change with time due to exercise levels or ageing, even if our weight stays the same, so some of our clothes in our wardrobe may not be the best fit for us.

Photo from: Unsplash

Impulsive Shopping

Sometimes we may buy clothes for the pleasure we get from buying a new piece (it boosts dopamine hormones!). We may see an outfit in a magazine or on someone which looks good so we make the impulsive decision to buy it. We may be buying similar pieces each time we go shopping, clothes that don’t go with the ones in our wardrobe or we don’t need for the pleasure of shopping and end up with a wardrobe full of clothes we don’t know what to do with. It is important to know what is missing in our wardrobe, what we don’t need and shop mindfully otherwise we will be forced to wear the same combinations every day and struggle to come up with outfits.

Disorganised Wardrobe

On top of the above reasons, what makes finding something to wear even more difficult is a disorganised wardrobe. Lili Petit, the founder of Clutter Healing discusses that ‘We only wear 20% of our wardrobe because that’s what is visible to us’. So, it might be that we do have something to wear, we just can’t see it!

I know I always think ‘I forgot I had this’ when I am organising my wardrobe. Next time you think you have nothing to wear, try organising yours, you might find some really nice pieces you forgot you had!

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