Mumsnet Logo
My feed

to access all these features


To think if I start dressing better I might actually FEEL better mentally?

30 replies

Borninatrap · 07/07/2017 20:38

I'm a midwife and a single parent. I spend my life in my uniform, scrubs, pyjamas or my 90's grungy/student uniform of jeans and jumper & converse or leggings, comfy cotton dress and Chelsea boots.

I am permanently tired as I have negotiated early shifts/long days FT. I have underlying depression from childhood trauma. I'm also a stone overweight (nearer 11 stone than 10).

So, today I went for an interview. I wore the type of dress that Susanna wotsit wears on that morning programme on itv. Did my make up and straightened my hair. I looked like the obstetricians in clinic at work. Smart but not businessy. In control. And I borrowed my sisters black (not high but clicky) heels. My interview was at 9am so dropped kids off at breakfast club-got a compliment (usually they see me looking rough at 6am haha!). Did interview, felt confident. Went out for lunch with my mum and sister, they both were very lovely. Picked kids up from school (v.rare) all the school mum's were equally nice and complimentary about how I looked. Ex picked up DC's (he's an abusive arse so wouldn't compliment me anyway) but he said I looked posh.

So AIBU (and is my self esteem so low?!) that I actually felt good (been a while tbh) today due to a nice dress and a few compliments & to start looking at improving my wardrobe? I'm 37 so maybe I'm just maturing (my younger self would have balked at how shallow I am being) but if it makes me feel less shit it's worth a try isn't it? Anyone else changed their dress sense and found they feel better?

OP posts:

TheFifthKey · 07/07/2017 20:40

Oh, it definitely helps. You don't have to be "done up" every day, but just in flattering stuff helps. Hair brushed, clean skin, make up if you like it, figure-flattering stuff (a more fitted t-shirt, or a skirt that hits at the right point on your legs)'s essential for me.


Piratesandpants · 07/07/2017 20:42

Well if you dress well and feel good you usually feel confident. When you show confidence you often get compliments. It's not about being shallow. You can use it your benefit if you want to.


mineofuselessinformation · 07/07/2017 20:44

I 'power dress' if I know I have a tricky situation coming up - it definitely helps me feel... Stronger, I suppose.


ReluctantlyRedundant101 · 07/07/2017 20:44

I also started investing in better (more expensive) make up & watching you tube tutorials on putting it on. Definitely made me feel better (I'm 45 btw)


Borninatrap · 07/07/2017 20:45

The dress is only a 16 quid flower print from Asda (grabbed after a long shift) but there's dresses out there that just fit aren't they?) I felt like Christina Hendricks in mad men Grin it's that style. Plus I'm a hinge! I'm so glad I'm not getting flamed for being shallow.

OP posts:

Borninatrap · 07/07/2017 20:48

Oh god, sorry for typos! reluctantly can you recommend any YouTube tutorials? I've been doing my make up the same for years. Everything I see is young girls with no forehead lines and full of highlighter. I would love to watch someone a bit older for tips.

OP posts:

KC225 · 07/07/2017 20:48

Yes. I think I think if you know you look best you walk a little taller and have a air of confidence.

Good luck with the job OP


sycamore54321 · 07/07/2017 20:49

No, it's definitely a "thing". Not to say that dressing casually is bad but if you are in a situation or a time of your life when lots of things are out of control, presenting a polished facade can definitely put a tint on how you approach lots of other things. Enjoy!


RiverTam · 07/07/2017 20:49

Yes, I think so. I've started ironing far more of my 'casual' clothes, after years of hardly ironing anything - it does make a difference.


Screwinthetuna · 07/07/2017 20:50

It's not shallow at all. Go and treat yourself and make yourself feel good!
Sometimes even wearing a new top makes me feel like that; I'm more likely to touch up my makeup and smile a bit more at others and be more chatty because I FEEL better in myself.


BernardsarenotalwaysSaints · 07/07/2017 20:51

For me it's matching naice undies that does it. I can be in jeans & tshirts but if I've got those on I feel fab. So yes I think it can help. Hope you get the job!


QueenofLouisiana · 07/07/2017 20:51

Yes, I definitely feel better when I am properly dressed- not necessarily dressed up, but clean hair, make up and clean clothes.

I don't think it's shallow to feel better about yourself when you know you are looking your best. It's just taking an interest in yourself, much better for your self esteem.


Ginkypig · 07/07/2017 20:52

Your not being shallow, your raising a good point!

If you make an effort to look after yourself even in little ways like dressing in a way that helps you feel good about yourself or at least "presentable" or making time to eat something wholesome instead of grabbing a bag of crisps, or anything that feels to you like an act which is putting you/your health etc first will in the long run help you to feel that you are valid and worthy of good feelings


QueenofLouisiana · 07/07/2017 20:53

Oh, head over to the style and beauty board- it's a haven of good ideas, tips and bargain buys.


Borninatrap · 07/07/2017 20:59

I think, because of the nature of my job, I'm used to seeing women in labour and post delivery who are (very rightly!) only concerned with comfort and it rubs off. I forget that I'm not a new Mum anymore (DC3 is six Confused so When I'm not at work I'm going to try make an effort. You are all so right, if you feel confident and don't feel slouchy or frumpy confidence increases.

Thanks for the job good lucks Flowers

OP posts:

ReluctantlyRedundant101 · 08/07/2017 08:27

I like hot&flashy on you tube although she's a little bit older than me so she might be a bit mature for you but her make up is very subtle. Lisa Eldridge is also very good. Once you start watching them you soon become addicted!


Bluebellsandsunflowers · 08/07/2017 08:37

I absolutely think it can make you feel better. A few years ago I had bad anxiety and some depression triggered by a family loss, was signed off work and barely left the house. I would often stay in my pyjamas mid afternoon, and would only get ready when I knew dh was coming home from work. I barely slept and just didn't feel myself. I remember once overhearing my sister saying to my mum, "what happened to bluebells? She always used to look so pretty".

I had professional help, but one of the easier things that helped was putting an effort into my appearance again. I bought some nice dresses, started wearing some natural makeup and trying out different styles on my hair. It just helped me to feel more confident I think.

I recommend Lisa Eldridge as well.


BreakfastAtSquiffanys · 08/07/2017 08:44

A bit of effort can make a lot of difference.
Also think about all those happy endorphins produced by those compliments!
You don't need to spend ages and lots money. I wore a skirt last week which always makes me feel good, I've had it so long I had to check the label : George at Asda!


junebirthdaygirl · 08/07/2017 08:48

I think that nurses often feel everything they do must be for others. Ye do such an amazing job all day that ye forget its ok to put yourself first and so what if dressing well is a bit shallow. Its a bit of fun and self care does give you a lift.You sound like you could do with putting yourself first for a change.
I have been visiting a hospital a lot recently due to sick relative and l am completely in awe of the work ye do. But after work ye are allowed to let go dress up even be selfish and take time for yourselves.


Trills · 08/07/2017 08:55

Lisa Eldridge is a grownup who does makeup videos and has a nice calming voice.


Alittlepotofrosie · 08/07/2017 08:56

I did this after having babies. I was stuck in a rut of jogging bottoms so i bought some maxi dresses in the correct post baby size, had my hair done and wore make up. Its amazing what a difference it can make.


ConstanceCraving · 08/07/2017 08:58

I think when you look good as in you're wearing nice clothes, hair and makeup done etc you act different. Even walk different as mad as that sounds.


kkkkaty123 · 08/07/2017 09:02

I'm also someone who dresses accordingly to what's going on in my head op. And I can tell you now when u make a small effort op you feel a million times better. No doubt at all. Make some subtle changes. You deserve it Flowers


SpiritedLondon · 08/07/2017 09:04

I've enjoyed checking out these videos and have found the products she's recommended good.

( she has a video on how to have a more positive mindset as it happens). I definitely think it can give you a boost.


Therealslimshady1 · 08/07/2017 09:07

Yes, makes sense

It's showing self respect (I am worth this effort)

Saying that, I am fairly low maintenance (muddy dog walks, gardening, life) but like to make at least a token effort, for my own sake!

Please create an account

To comment on this thread you need to create a Mumsnet account.

Sign up to continue reading

Mumsnet's better when you're logged in. You can customise your experience and access way more features like messaging, watch and hide threads, voting and much more.

Already signed up?