Stylish dress should be appreciated, not criticized

by ALEX PEREZ//Feature Editor

Throwing your graduation cap in the air is a symbol of letting go of your adolescence and moving on to bigger and better things.

But does that mean that you have to completely discard your own personal appearance just because somebody says you should?

Nowadays, college students come to class dressed in last night’s pajamas with their Starbucks coffee and, in some cases, with a blanket to keep them cozy during their 8 a.m. lecture. As a society, we are becoming more and more used to this fad that is now becoming a norm and is starting to translate into high school as well.

The standards of physical appearance has gone way down in recent years for college students. If you actually take the time to put on makeup or even jeans, you are chastised for trying too hard.

For guys, wearing jeans and a button-up instead of gym shorts and a T-shirt is seen to be nice, and it even makes them more attractive to some people. But for women, it is completely different. The usual campus outfit for girls consists of any type of leggings with a hoodie or oversized t-shirt from your dad’s closet, paired with Nike running shoes and messy bun to top it all off. Yeah, sure we all have our off days when we just do not want to put effort into anything. But when you actually do take the time to get ready, people make comments and make you seem like you are in the wrong.

I am a strong advocate for allowing people to wear whatever they want. But don’t chastise others if what they are wearing is not your cup of tea. Girls, if you want to wear a full face of make-up to your history class, go right ahead. If you don’t, that’s perfectly fine too. This norm for college students has become strongly practiced by most, so when someone decides to dress up, it’s completely out of the ordinary.

My first week back this semester, I made it my goal to take pride in my appearance and to break the habit of just wearing leggings every day. I actually enjoy putting together outfits and wearing the latest trends, as well as coming up with some of my own. But nobody would ever know because I was always in athleisure at school.

The first week was great and full of really cute outfits, but was also accompanied by looks of almost confusion from different people as if I was breaking the law. As I went about my day, every girl I saw was in some kind of lounge wear outfit, and it made me feel out of place like I should not have tried so hard that morning. Then I realized that I shouldn’t care.

People are coming to class looking like they just rolled out of bed, and that is now becoming the norm for a college campus. But the same people always comment on other people’s outfits, saying that they wish that they could look like that. Well, news flash, you can.

It takes the same amount of time to put on a pair of jeans as it does a pair of sweats. I have been asked how I wear jeans to class, and I responded with “just like every other pair of pants.” It is such an absurd question to most, but, honestly, it has become a popular question among girls on college campuses. This leisure trend has gotten to the point where the girls who wear jeans and tried in the morning almost degrade their outfit by lunchtime and end up saying that they do not look good, when, in reality, they look perfectly fine.

Don’t get me wrong. I absolutely support anything that anybody wears, whether it’s sweats and an oversized t-shirt or a two-piece dress. You are your own person and should be able to do whatever you want. But do not criticize others for their choices.

Spreading love and acceptance is important and should be practiced between everybody at any age. When you see any girl on campus, you should compliment her on whatever she is wearing. Whether it’s stilettos or running shoes, both students are in the same place trying to better themselves.

So ladies, please show love to each other instead of chastising each other for outfits. Just because it is the norm does not mean it is the only way of life.

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