Fashion is the process of dressing in clothes that bring out the best of one’s physical body. It includes not only clothing and footwear, but also jewelry, hair, makeup and attitudes.
In the Western world, fashions are often cyclical. At one time, Europe might favor Turkish fashions and at another time, Japanese fashions. For example, blue jeans made it to the runways of Paris and London. Today, modern Westerners have a wide variety of clothing options.
Fashions are created through a combination of economics and social forces. The availability of fashions is largely dependent on the amount of money consumers spend. Increasing demand for fashions is encouraged by consumers’ desire to keep up with trends. Consumers may be influenced to buy new clothing by advertising or by seeing runway fashions.
The fashion life cycle can be defined as a sequence of five stages. Each stage represents a phase in the development of a trend. The first stage is the initiation of a trend. During the introduction stage, people begin to notice and identify trends. They then begin to copy them. This is often done by following the fashions of those who are most popular. Those who are not in the public eye are not likely to adopt the same style.
Fashions are also influenced by the social groups and subcultures in which they are prevalent. For example, a boy with green hair and multiple piercings might be perceived as an outsider. But a businessman might see him as a conformist.
Fashion can evoke a feeling of sameness, or it can connote differentness. It can be an understated whisper or an all-knowing wink.
The fast-paced changes in fashion are rooted in the negative aspects of capitalism. These changes encourage waste, unnecessary consumption and uniformity. As a result, consumers are forced to purchase new clothes. However, these changes can also help promote creativity.
A change in fashion can be seen as an expression of the emergence of new forms of sexuality. Women’s fashions have a greater diversity than men’s. Thus, gender becomes the primary display of fashion.
Fashion is also a way for individuals to represent the cultural idea of gender. When women choose to wear a skirt instead of pants, they indicate that they are expressing their feminine side. Wearing clothes can also be a way to negotiate and understand the environment. Clothing can even serve as a political weapon. During the Vietnam War, military members wore uniforms.
The fashion system is a large and complex business. Millions of workers are involved in the design, manufacture, and distribution of clothes. Internet communication has expanded the range of people involved in the fashion industry. Social media channels are a vital part of forecasting and selling trends.
The Internet has also helped speed up the production and distribution of clothing and accessories. Some retailers have tried to introduce the “see now, buy now” concept. Many have used bloggers to help predict and sell trends.