I don’t know, but I know I’m about to find out.
This post is written from two perspectives. One is mine, and the other is from a cat that lives in the basement of the Zara on 5th avenue in NYC.
First and foremost …
What is “Dopamine Dressing?”
Cat That Lives in the Basement of Zara on 5th Avenue in NYC:
I’ll take this one …
Dopamine dressing is a term used to describe the psychological process of selecting clothing and accessories that evoke feelings of pleasure and reward. This concept, popularized in fashion circles, has its roots in neuroscience, specifically the brain’s dopamine system. When we do something that makes us feel good – such as buying or wearing clothes we like – our brains release dopamine, a neurotransmitter responsible for feelings of satisfaction and pleasure.
This can lead to an increase in self-confidence and improved mood. By deliberately selecting pieces that make them feel good, individuals can use dopamine dressing to access these positive benefits on a regular basis.
Jen: I was looking online for a dress for two events I’m going to this week, and I was frustrated at (what felt like) an endless search followed by a coin toss if something was going to work or not.
I’ve happily used Rent The Runway in the past for single rentals and for their monthly membership.
I then thought about the dopamine effects from dressing in new clothes … especially well made clothes. I then checked out their price and thought for $100, I can get eight items delivered in 30 days.
That comes down to $12.50 per item to potentially increase my dopamine.
What’s an Example of Dopamine Dressing?
Cat That Lives in the Basement of Zara on 5th Avenue in NYC: An example of dopamine dressing could be wearing a particular item of clothing that you know always makes you feel good. This could be your favorite statement necklace, a shirt with an uplifting slogan, or a pair of shoes that make you feel powerful and confident. It is an individualized practice and varies from person to person – but the key is to identify those items that provide you with a rewarding feeling and ensure they regularly form part of your wardrobe rotation.
Jen: My objective is to study if my overall mood is enhanced just by wearing clothing from the Rent The Runway Membership. Each time I wear a rented item, I’ll note my overall mode (including what I had done during the day to isolate the variables of dopamine increases from exercise, sunshine intake, etc.).
Cat That Lives in the Basement of Zara on 5th Avenue in NYC:
Moving on … and for those those who may live with restricted access to the internet …
What is Dopamine? … Really?
Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that plays an important role in many bodily functions, including movement, emotion, cognition, motivation and reward. It is released when we experience something pleasurable and helps to regulate our emotions. When dopamine levels are balanced, it can lead to feelings of happiness and well-being. Low levels of dopamine are associated with depression, fatigue, and lack of motivation.
Explain the Effects of Low Dopamine?
Low dopamine levels can lead to a number of physical, emotional, and cognitive symptoms. Physically, it can cause fatigue, muscle weakness, and restlessness. Emotionally, low dopamine levels are associated with apathy, depression, and loss of motivation. Cognitively, it can impact our ability to concentrate or make decisions. Low dopamine levels have also been known to interfere with the body’s reward system which can lead to cravings for substances such as drugs or alcohol.
What Happens When You Have Higher Levels of Dopamine?
Higher levels of dopamine are associated with many positive outcomes, such as improved cognitive function, increased focus and motivation, better decision-making skills and enhanced creativity. Dopamine has a calming effect on the body and can help reduce symptoms of stress or anxiety. It is also known to increase feelings of pleasure and reward, which can contribute to overall happiness and satisfaction. Additionally, higher levels of dopamine can lead to improved physical performance by increasing energy levels, strength, endurance and coordination.
Jen: I will take ALL OF THOSE THINGS!
Seriously, now that I know I am not only autistic but have synesthesia, I am able to empower myself through these diagnoses by understanding that, “Hey! Sometimes dopamine might naturally be my friend. Sometimes, I might not want dopamine and might want to curl up under my weighted blanket in a dark room and reset myself. OR, sometimes I might want to make dopamine my friend.
SPOILER ALERT: Which is why I’m testing this theory.
What Role Does Dopamine Play in People With Autism?
Cat That Lives in the Basement of Zara on 5th Avenue in NYC: Dopamine plays an important role in the development of autism. Research has found that children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) tend to have altered levels of dopamine in their brains, as well as mutated genes related to the synthesis and metabolism of the neurotransmitter. Studies suggest that dopamine dysfunction may be responsible for some of the traits associated with ASD, such as impaired social interactions, communication difficulties, impulsivity, hyperactivity and repetitive behaviors. Additionally, research has suggested that drugs that increase dopamine levels may help mitigate autistic symptoms such as disruptive behavior or poor concentration.
In Conclusion …
Dopamine dressing is an emerging trend in the world of fashion and self-care that leverages the power of our dopamine system to boost mental wellbeing. By deliberately selecting clothes and accessories that evoke feelings of pleasure and reward, individuals can access the positive benefits associated with a rush of dopamine – such as increased self-confidence and improved mood – on a regular basis. We all have items in our wardrobe that make us feel good when we wear them – it’s simply a matter of making sure they are regularly included in our daily rotation.
Furthermore, by pairing these pieces with other comfortable items to create unique looks, dopamine dressing can serve as a form of creative expression. Ultimately, this emerging trend provides an innovative way for people to prioritize their own mental wellbeing while still looking stylish.
Jen: I’ll see your hypothesis and raise you some actual metrics.