I Wore The Same Outfit Every Day For A Week, & Here's How People Reacted

By
Share
Ad failed to load

After recently doing some serious decluttering in my closet, I have been trying to figure out my personal style. Spending the last six years either pregnant or postpartum left me with a really weird hodgepodge of clothing in my closet, ranging from maternity wear to stuff I wore to the club when I was 21 (the last time I was pre-baby). When I finished my cleaning spree, there wasn’t much left, but what I did have, I loved. It was minimalist and classic, which is a style I can certainly learn to live with.

Lately I've read a lot about the science behind wearing the same style clothing over and over again. Everyone — from Steve Jobs to Michael Kohrs to our own president — has been touting the benefits of wearing the same outfit in repetition. In an interview with Vanity Fair, President Obama said:

I'm trying to pare down decisions. I don't want to make decisions about what I’m eating or wearing. Because I have too many other decisions to make.
Ad failed to load

It sounded really attractive. As a mom raising three kids in single digits, I make decisions all day long about everything. Getting dressed in the morning is the first in a long line of decisions I'm responsible for — and there are some days where I don't even need to leave the house. Granted, the president is making decisions that affect the lives of millions of people, so I get where he's coming from by needing to make one less decision, but I'm making decisions for four people — and that's still a lot. Experts warn of the "fatigue of decision making," so paring down what I was deciding on what I would wear every day seemed like a great place to start.

Not only did a cleaner, simpler closet feel easier to manage, but it also gave way to my favorite pieces. Pieces I could wear day after day, if I wanted.

The Experiment

I decided to test my love for my new minimalist wardrobe by sticking to one outfit for an entire week. It seemed a little taboo, but apparently wearing one signature look is something French women do all the time. Who am I to question French fashion when mere days ago I had a sequined mini skirt hiding in my clothing collection? Wearing one outfit is also popular among the highly successful, like Mark Zuckerberg, who choose to wear the same thing every day to free up their minds for more important work. I picked out one of my favorite fall outfits: black leggings, a black button up, and some riding boots. I wore it every day, all week long, and this is what I realized.

Ad failed to load

1. I Was More Confident

The first day of the experiment I was feeling pretty confident in my look. Because I had chosen one of my favorite outfits to wear, it was easy to feel good when I was out and about in new situations. I found myself going out more often, to book readings and dinner with friends, because I knew I was ready to go at any time for any occasion. I might’ve changed up my makeup or accessories to match the event, but no matter what, I felt comfortable (seriously, leggings and a long button up are SO COMFY) and stylish. I also enjoyed seeing lots of different people, who had no clue I was wandering the city in the same outfit day after day. I got lots of compliments on how good I looked from friends I reconnected with, and I think it stemmed from how good I felt about what I was wearing.

Ad failed to load

I found that I was always happy to get dressed in the morning, knowing I would be comfortable and in one of my favorite outfits. Even though by the end of the week wearing only one outfit got a bit monotonous, I found that I felt good most of the time, no matter what I was doing or where I was going. I was wearing something I truly loved, rather than something I just threw on because it was on the top of the laundry pile. Getting dressed was a more intentional act, and it gave me a jolt of happiness I wouldn’t normally have upon entering my closet.

2. Simple Style Is More Fun

Ad failed to load

One thing I found while wearing the same basics day after day, was that I was more inclined to play up my look with makeup or jewelry. I normally feel like doing my nails or deciding what accessories to wear with an outfit is too much effort, but since I wasn’t deciding on a new outfit every morning, it was sort of fun to add pieces for extra effect. I used to love putting together looks when I was younger (I more time, and no kids), and this brought back some of that styling joy I used to have. I wore brighter lipstick and played with heavier statement pieces. It was fun to focus on these aspects of my style rather than standing in front of my closet trying to figure out what to wear.

3. No One Really Cares What You’re Wearing

Ad failed to load

While I felt super good on day one, by days two and three, I was sort of dreading preschool drop off and pick up. I found myself hoping that no one would compliment me on my outfit, lest they notice that I was wearing the same thing the next day, and the day after that. I wondered what people would think about my single outfit. Did I ever wash my clothes? Did my entire wardrobe get destroyed in a fire? Who knows. While someone did comment on my boots, no one seemed to notice that I was wearing the same thing day after day. I realized most people are too consumed with their own lives to take too much stock in what you’re wearing when you take your kid to school. Even my husband failed to notice, even though he noted how nice I looked on a couple different occasions. The only person who was worried about me wearing the same thing day in and day out was me. By the end of the week, I realized, as long as I was happy with my look, that’s all that really matters.

4. If You’re Going To Wear One Outfit All The Time, Have Two Of Them

Ad failed to load

By the end of the week, I was exhausted by the amount of laundry I had to do to keep up with my singular look. I realized that my minimalist look required more than minimal effort to keep up daily.  It was as if my infant knew that I needed to keep my shirt clean, and therefore made certain that every time he spit up, it landed all over my button-up. I was doing laundry every single day to keep my outfit clean, and I was concerned what I was wearing would get worn down from so much wash and wear. I realized that next time I found an item of clothing I truly loved, I should probably get a couple. It’s good to have a backup so you don’t have to say goodbye to your favorite outfit too soon.

Was Minimalist Fashion Right For Me?

While I fully expected to feel grossed out by my outfit by the end of the week, I found myself more in love with it than ever. Wearing one easy, classic look not only made getting dressed easier, but also more satisfying. I found that I was more comfortable with my “bare” post clean-up closet, and felt that I probably still had more than I needed. I’ll probably go through my clothes again soon, but after my big cleanup effort, I’m not quite ready to revisit closet culling just yet. In truth, I could probably get by with just three or four classic looks. Does that mean I’m going to gut the rest of my closet and live in a totally minimalist fashion? Probably not. I still like to have options when I open my closet in the morning.  But it does mean that I am more comfortable claiming my style as my own, and finding joy in fashion again as a young mom with three kids.

Ad failed to load

Images Courtesy of Gemma Hartley (5)

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

8 Things That *Will* Go Wrong Every Time You Plan A Kid-Free Night

The last time my husband and I went out to dinner alone was… actually, I can’t remember. But I can count on one hand how many times I’ve seen a movie in a theater in the last year. Before we had children we used to go out all the time. But even with …
By Liza Wyles

These Photos Of North West Then & Now Will Take You On A Sweet Trip Down Memory Lane

When Kim Kardashian welcomed her first daughter, North West, with her husband, Kanye West, in 2013, her whole life was changed. The social media and reality TV star became a mom for the first time and her Instagram presence took a very adorable turn.…
By Casey Suglia

11 Photos You *Must* Take During The Last Days Of Your Pregnancy

During my first pregnancy, I took a photo each week to document my growing belly. I stopped around 36 weeks, though. I hated how I looked in those pictures, and didn't think I'd want to relive those moments. I was wrong. My second pregnancy was a dum…
By Steph Montgomery

This Is What It Means If Your Pregnancy Test Changes Overnight

The time between when a woman suspects she might be pregnant and when it is confirmed for sure is the longest of her life. Regardless of whether you are hoping for a positive or a negative result, the odds are good that you are sweating bullets when …
By Shannon Evans

6 Red Flags To Definitely Look Out For After Your Baby Falls

The first time my infant son tried to take a few steps, he tumbled and bumped his head on the coffee table. My blood turned to ice in my veins and I froze. There truly isn't anything quite like the feeling a parent gets when their little one gets hur…
By Sarah Bunton

These 9 Instant Pot Recipes Will Make Even The Pickiest Eater Happy At The Table

Like any parent, I've had my share of parenting hits and misses, but one of my favorite "wins" is my daughter's diverse palate. I don't even know if I can take credit for it, but I would like to think I had something to do with her love for lentils, …
By Caroline Shannon-Karasik

Turns Out, Kim Kardashian's Favorite Mom Products Look A Lot Like Your Own Faves

Being a mom is really hard work, especially for the first few months, and Kim Kardashian West is no different in that regard. Now the mother of three, Kardashian says that there are a few products she just can't live without when it comes to raising …
By Abi Berwager Schreier

Soda Might Hurt Your Fertility, Study Says, & Here's What You Can Do

Who doesn't love sugary drinks? I stopped drinking soda years ago, but I still love gulping down those fancy Starbucks coffee beverages. I don't have a big sweet tooth, but I am a sucker for sugar-sweetened beverages every now-and-then. Turns out, th…
By Annamarya Scaccia

10 Things No One Tells You About Having A Baby In Your 30s

If you're like me, you evaluate the pros and cons of any major life decision. When my husband and I were considering starting a family, I thought about my career, education, and financial stability. I wanted to know how a pregnancy and childbirth wou…
By Steph Montgomery

This Woman Thought She Had An Eyelash Stuck In Her Eye. Then It Moved.

I'm not a person who is easily icked out. As a kid, I collected bugs and thought I was going to be an entomologist and asked Santa Claus for ant farms and nets to catch bees. I'm still super curious about anything that flies and crawls, which might s…
By Karen Fratti

5 Red Flags Your Toddler Isn't Eating Enough

Toddlers are notoriously picky eaters, at least in my experience. You offer mashed potatoes, they want french fries. You give them crackers, they scream for chips. It's frustrating, to be sure, but it's usually their way of vying for independence. It…
By Candace Ganger

11 Ways Your Pregnancy Will Be Different If You Have A Boy Vs A Girl

If you've been pregnant before, you might start comparing your previous pregnancies to that of your current pregnancy. A lot of things can change from pregnancy to pregnancy, based on a whole host of different factors (including how well you remember…
By Lauren Schumacker

35 Moms Share The Most Disgusting Things Their Husbands Do

I'm a human being who revels in challenges. I like when people present me with one, especially if they don't think I can meet or succeed it, and I like taking a challenge on, especially if it's unexpected. So when I aimed to uncover the most disgusti…
By Jamie Kenney

How Having Kids In Your 20s Affects You Later In Life

For parents, like myself, who had kids in their 20s, there are a number of questions that come to mind. When you're deciding what your future will look like, you'll likely consider what this means for your health, career, and more down the line. Thin…
By Tessa Shull

12 Moms Share How They Stay Healthy During Flu Season

Unfortunately, we're in the middle of the roughest flu seasons in recent memory. And we’re not totally out of the woods, either. People around the country are still getting the flu, and, sadly, some of them are having to be hospitalized due to flu-re…
By Priscilla Blossom

8 "Mistakes" I'm Glad I Made During My First Pregnancy

As an adult, I've learned you never really stop hating being told what to do. When I was pregnant I was getting instructions at every turn, from doctors, relatives, and complete strangers on the subway. I would nod and smile but then go about making …
By Liza Wyles

Study: Drinking Two Glasses Of Wine A Day Is Good For Your Mind — Here's Why

There’s more scientific proof that a daily drink or two isn't necessarily a bad thing and could have a place in an overall healthy lifestyle. A new study out of the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) in New York found that — in mice, at le…
By Tiffany Thomas

Research Says Eating Carbs Can Lead To A Healthy Pregnancy, So Bring On The Pasta

In the world of me, no food is better than bread. I know it's supposed to be pretty terrible for you, high in calories, low in protein, and full of that modern-day demon, gluten... but guys, it's really yummy. Especially warm out of the oven, when th…
By Jen McGuire

These Photos Of Prince George Then & Now Will Give You Serious Baby Fever

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting their third child in Spring 2018. With all of the excitement surrounding the new baby, it's easy to forget all of the good times that have already passed. The couple's eldest is already well into the sc…
By Azure Hall

This Is, Hands Down, The *Grossest* Thing Babies Do Inside The Womb

Your baby's life in the womb may be safe and warm, but it's also kind of grody. Seriously, the whole process of growing into a human being includes more than a few icky moments along the way. But this is the grossest thing babies do inside the womb b…
By Lindsay E. Mack