Fashion common sense: it is not a hard thing to come by, but some people just don’t seem to have it. It’s always upsetting to walk happily down the street and have your day ruined by some chick making a flagrantly bad error in fashion judgment. If you fear you are one of these people, don’t panic. Common sense misjudgments are usually a quick fix. First, make sure you’re not any of the following:

Angela Cesere

Are you “Girl Who Wears Clothes Two Sizes Too Small?” The ubiquitous GWWCTSTS is probably the most visually offending fashion criminal on campus. How do you know if this is you? Look down. Is your shirt so busy stretching over the top half of your torso it doesn’t even cover your probably flabby stomach? Are you wearing a wife beater under said shirt to cover up the half of your stomach your shirt was supposed to cover? How about your pants; do you have a muffin top? (For those unaware, a muffin top is defined by the American Dialect Society as “the bulge of flesh hanging over the top of low-rider jeans.” ADS also voted it one of the Words of the Year.) If you have no muffin top, do you see visible panty lines? Or worse yet, a camel toe?! If the answer is yes – I’m sorry for you.

Listen. Wearing clothes a size too small does not look good. It does not make you skinnier. You are still the same size, you just look stupid. Don’t you want to be classy? Don’t you want to look good? Just because you can put it on, does NOT mean it fits. If you are GWWCTSTS and have finally realized your folly, put this paper down. Get up slowly, without calling attention to your self. Calmly walk out the door and outside. As you step outside, immediately break into a brisk yet urgent sprint to your residence. Once inside, run to your closet and change your shirt! Hopefully you own something that fits properly. If not, you may have to do a major wardrobe overhaul.

Not nearly as bad as the girl who doesn’t know her size is “Girl Who Doesn’t Realize That It’s Winter.” When it is January in Michigan, it is not right to walk around outside with a white knee-length linen skirt and no coat. Use common sense. Is 20-degree weather the signal to walk the streets in flip-flops? When you wear spring clothes in winter, everyone can see you looking cold and uncomfortable. Shivering profusely is certainly not a very attractive quality. However, if you do want to wear a skirt in cold weather, there are ways to go about it without freezing your legs off. Tights, leggings, or knee socks worn with skirts are stylish ways to help keep you warm and prevent you from looking foolish. Just make sure you are not wearing a blatantly spring look, like white shorts with a white t-shirt that says “IT’S SPRING” on it.

Males are not excluded from a lack of common sense. “Girl Who Doesn’t Realize That It’s Winter” has an equally dangerous male hybrid: “Boy Who Doesn’t Realize That It’s Winter.” BWDRTIW loves to wear shorts so much, he thinks it’s cool to wear them in sub-arctic temperatures. Though it can be scientifically proven that males are generally less fashionably skilled than females, that is no excuse for being all up in my face with shorts in January. It’s okay BWDRTIW, now that you realize that it is senseless to expose your legs in freezing weather, all you have to do is put on some pants. And don’t worry, you only have to wait seven months for the warm weather to come to wear your shorts.

Finally comes “Girl Who Can’t Wear Heels.” Heels are great – they look good and they give you height. But remember, only wear heels out if your feet can handle it. Nothing is more hilarious than seeing “Girl Who Can’t Wear Heels” trying to look cute by wearing them, and then after five minutes, walking around like she has a stick up her butt because her feet hurt. If you are not used to the heel, don’t wear three-inch pumps out when you know you have a long day. Not only will your posture make you look bad, people will laugh. If you are desperate to wear heels but don’t know how to go about building up your foot endurance, try starting out small. The kitten heel is a great option for those not used to heels. Wedges are also good – they provide much more support for the foot than the skinny heel.

If you’ve realized yourself as one lacking fashion common sense, it is not too late to get back on the right track. Help yourself, help society – look in the mirror before you leave the house.

Faria can be reached by e-mail at jabbar@umich.edu.

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