Let your style break the ice at your next academic conference or networking event.
There are a lot of life hacks across the internet that aren’t really life hacks so much as they’re just...life.
Life hack: Hungry? Eat food!
Life hack: Messy house? Clean it!
Life hack: Need blog traffic? Make up a life hack!
Listen up though, gals and nonbinary pals: this one is legit.
Life hack: uncomfortable at academic and networking events? Change your clothes!
Your clothes influence more than just how others perceive you; they have a strong influence on how you perceive yourself, as well. Researchers studying Enclothed Cognition found that we attach meaning to individual articles of clothing. Wearing those clothes changes our thoughts and beliefs and translates into changes in our performance.
Just as Diana Prince changed her outfit to go into battle as Wonder Woman, we can do the same. For networking events or other anxiety-inducing moments, wearing clothes that we associate with successful people, intelligent people, or just plain cool people influences our thoughts and aligns our behaviors with the traits associated with our clothes. This, in turn, fosters that belief about us in others.
You can also use this to hack other areas of your life, too. Put on an apron, for example, when you can't put off cleaning your room any longer. Or put on a blazer when you work from home and have a deadline to meet (cough cough not that we know anybody who's doing that right now.) Even glasses, if you associate them with studious people, will make you more studious.
In 1932, when Marlene Dietrich wore a tuxedo to a film premiere, it was a scandal for the ages. And in 2009, when Michelle Obama wore a sleeveless dress for her first official portrait as First Lady of the United States, we just barely avoided an apocalyptic cleansing by fire and fury. Or, at least, the backlash was so swift and damning that you’d think the stakes were at least that high.
Let’s not spend a lot of time explaining why that’s so dumb. We are, thankfully, evolving. Slowly. Marlene Dietrich didn’t stop wearing men’s suits just because people wanted her to be more stereotypically feminine, and Michelle Obama didn’t start wearing suits just because people wanted her to be more...armless? I DON’T KNOW. They both did their own thing, dressed how they felt the most confident and comfortable, and we get to wear pants and keep our arms as a result.
Shenova’s bold high-fashion designs for women in STEM are as individual as you are, and just as hard to ignore. They’re more than just head-turning, though. They can take your career to the next level. Here's why:
There’s nothing else quite like Shenova’s designs. They attract a lot of attention...and compliments. That confidence boost has the ability to change your thoughts, beliefs, and actions, according to the study on Enclothed Cognition.
Here’s one of our customers sharing her experience with our Gravitational Waves Dress:
"A great talking piece. I wore my dress to a university reunion. People loved talking about it, gave lots of compliments on how it looked on me and it was really comfortable. Win-win-win."
We’re not sure if we’re name-dropping or fangirling, but we can’t keep it to ourselves: we’ve heard on three separate occasions that Neil DeGrasse Tyson recognized our designs and KNEW SHENOVA’S NAME when he saw our customers wearing them at events he attended. Neil DeGrasse Tyson. Recognized our designs. And remembered our name.
We’re still not sure how to process that information. But we do know that there’s no point to networking if nobody remembers you or your name after the event. As our customer shared in her experience with the Code Poetry Dress, Shenova designs help you stand out and be remembered in a good way:
"Dare to Stand Out! The Code Poetry dress is my 3rd Shenova dress. I LOVE Shenova! I work for a software company, and these dresses have taken my style to a whole new level. I own the Fibonacci dress, as well as the Periodic Table dress. You have one time to make a first impression, let Shenova show you the way. ❤❤❤❤"
Similar to wearing a team jersey, our designs serve as a beacon for others in your field. People with similar interests or who work in the same discipline approach our customers knowing that they've identified someone with whom they can speak about a shared interest. Unlike wearing a team jersey, however, a Shenova dress has not, to our knowledge, started any bar fights.
One of our customers wearing the Fibonacci Sequence Dress had this to say:
"Great conversation starter! I'm an academic mathematician and I've never bought any maths- themed clothes before. This dress is beautiful. It is nicely subtle: the Fibonacci spiral just looks like a stylish pattern to the casual observer, and the numbers aren't noticeable until you get fairly close. But when a fellow mathematician sees it, there's instant recognition. It's also amazingly comfortable - which I didn't expect for something so figure-hugging. I have worn it to a meeting of mathematicians this week and it was the perfect icebreaker."
Whether you’re defending your dissertation or accepting an award, Shenova helps you make a statement. Check out the Women in STEM collection to see if there’s a design in your field, and add yourself to our mailing list to be among the first to know about new releases. Don’t see a dress in your field yet? Send us an email with your suggestion!
We want to know about your networking experiences, whether in the Neuroscience Retina Dress or a little black dress you found on the clearance rack at TJ Maxx: what do you do to feel confident and prepared for networking events? What is the best advice you’ve received or would share with someone new in your field about networking?
Let us know in the comments below!