Clothing Is a Mode of Non-Verbal Communication

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Crossed arms, dilated pupils, and fake smiles are all examples of nonverbal communication. However, the one that may have the biggest impact on a person’s opinion of the wearer is the type of clothing he or she is wearing. Clothing is often the first impression of a person that someone gets, whether it is accurate or not. People often use clothing to indicate their age, gender, political views, and economic class. Without even realizing it, most people make assumptions about a person based on their clothing. People make assumptions and pass judgment about other’s emotional, moral, education, and social prestige (Dynamism of Fashion Among Female Undergraduates and its Effects in the Sight of Beholders in a University of Education, Nigeria 2011). We commonly expect people to dress a certain way before we learn anything about them personally, or their qualifications. So often, people try to pick out their nicest outfits when they are attempting to make a good first impression before the employer ever ask them any questions. First impressions are very important and clothing is usually one of the prime factors in determining them (Pelham 2010).

A person’s personality and cultural beliefs can be communicated through their clothing options. Clothing can also be used to tell whether the wearer is conventional or audacious, outgoing or aloof, casual or organized, a leader or a follower, or poised or insecure. However, making assumptions like the ones previously stated can be mistaken (Dynamism of Fashion Among Female Undergraduates and its Effects in the Sight of Beholders in a University of Education, Nigeria 2011). Clothing styles such as very tight clothes may be suggestive, showing off, or possibly even unappealing, while clo...

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...be identified as an Indian or as Hindu while she may very well be neither (Pelham 2010).

I am often told that people are watching me. Not to hear what I say, but to see what I do, how I do it, and even what I’m wearing. While they watch me, they are forming their own opinions. Whether or not their opinions are factual is not the point, the point is that they are basing their assumptions on nonverbal communication. The outcome is that nonverbal communication can be misconstrued at any time; it just depends on the person analyzing it.

Works Cited

"Dynamism of Fashion Among Female Undergraduates and its Effects in the Sight of Beholders in a University of Education, Nigeria." Academic Leadership The Online Journal 9, no. 2 March 2011. Web. 20 March 2015

Pelham, Libby. Clothing as a Form of Non Verbal Communication. July 12, 2010. Web. 20 March 2015

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