Are Your Clothes Affecting Your Self-Confidence?

The clothes you wear can have a huge impact on your self-confidence and is such an important part of your self-care, yet so many women struggle to know what to buy or wear on a daily basis.

Many of us have never been taught how to choose clothes that suit us and that we feel comfortable. 

This means that many of us over buy outfits, choose the wrong fit or colour for our shapes and we never feel happy in what we wear.

This can have a huge knock-on effect on our self-confidence. If we are not happy in the clothes we wear, it shows on different levels.

Stylist Elizabeth Hambleton shares her views on how style is not the same as fashion, and that you can have a great closet of clothes that you feel confident wearing, without wasting time and money.


Meet Elizabeth

After styling thousands of women one-on-one, Elizabeth created Closet Confidence to help women find more joy and less stress when getting dressed.

Elizabeth Hambleton

She wants to help you rock your look so that you feel confident not matter what your day holds.

Elizabeth wants to turn getting dressed everyday into a more fun experience for all women.

Are Your Clothes Affecting Your Self-Confidence?

How to Contact Elizabeth


Gillian Duncan 0:00
Hello, and welcome to this podcast from Clarity Junction. Today, stylist Elizabeth Hambleton joins me to discuss why your choice of clothing and what you wear can have a huge impact on your self confidence. Elizabeth will share with us why it's not all about fashion, but more about style, and how you feel in the clothes that you wear. So keep listening for some great tips and advice on how to start building a collection of clothes that will make you not only look great, but feel great, and why this is an important part of your self care. My name is Gillian Duncan, Positive Life and Wellbeing Coach inspiring women to lead the life they want, and I am delighted that you're here with me today.

Hello, Elizabeth, welcome to the Clarity Junction podcast.

Elizabeth Hambleton 0:54
Hi, thanks for having me.

Gillian Duncan 0:56
Thank you so much for taking the time to chat with me. I really do appreciate it. Today, you're here to discuss the impact that taking care of your appearance can have on your self confidence. I love this topic. In today's society, we are often told that it's not what you wear but who you are, which is a fantastic message, but there's also a flip side to this, and what you wear can actually reflect who you are. So, there are many mixed messages out there and it's no wonder that we're left confused as to whether we should bother with style, or just wear the comfiest clothes we can find, regardless of how that makes us look. But before we dive deeper into the subject, would you like to share a little bit about yourself? How did you come around to be a stylist?

Elizabeth Hambleton 1:49
Yes, I would love to. I actually have a background in fine art. And my first job out of college was working in an art museum and I really enjoyed that, and I really liked working in a creative environment. But in an art museum, you're really around other people's creativity more than getting to be creative yourself.

Gillian Duncan 2:13

Elizabeth Hambleton 2:13
And so after about five years doing that, I wanted to make the switch to something where I could be more creative, and so I started working in fashion as a personal stylist. And I did that for, for about five years as well. And the interesting thing was during that time, I styled almost 10,000 women,

Gillian Duncan 2:34

Elizabeth Hambleton 2:34
across America.

Gillian Duncan 2:36
That's amazing.

Elizabeth Hambleton 2:37
Yeah, it's a lot. It's a lot. I worked for a major company, and so I styled for them, but individually like one on one, and the thing that I really noticed that I just had a passion to help solve was that so many women were adding clothes to their closet, in an attempt to find their confidence or to feel better about themselves, but they weren't really getting there. They were adding these clothes, but they didn't really love them. They just got them because someone else told them to get them. And so that's when I was like, I really want to start my own business where I help women address the mindset and kind of the spirit of getting dressed, as well as giving a really actionable techniques, rather than trying to sell them more clothes that are just going to continue that kind of dissatisfaction pattern that I think so many of us get stuck in.

Gillian Duncan 3:39
Yeah, definitely. So when I think of personal styling, I think of, you know, the celebrities that are on the red carpet, and you know, they've all been styled and they're wearing these wonderful, amazing outfits or you can see them, you know, going out to restaurants and they've all been dressed by a stylist. Is that really what it is? Or can it be for, like everybody else, you know, like myself?

Elizabeth Hambleton 4:09
Yeah, I get that question a lot. And I think it's so important. And the thing about personal styling is that it is personal, it should be for your life. And there is that kind of high end celebrity or socialite version out there. But I also think it's just so important. It's not about how you look, it's about how you feel. And I always say that fashion is what you wear, but style is about how you feel in your clothes. So, it's finding that way to feel great and what you wear and to feel confident and feel good showing up for your life. Whatever clothes help you do that, that's what you should be wearing. And that's what sometimes people need help figuring out for themselves.

Gillian Duncan 4:54
Right. So, you know, coming from a busy life, you know, there's I'm working Mom, I know you are too. And there's a lot of people listening that are juggling, you know, so many things in life in this modern day that we have, you know, we've got work, we've got family, absolutely everything going on around about us. So, you know, it takes a lot of time, does it not to think about your style? And perhaps, you know, like myself, I just tend to grab and go, if it fits me and it looks alright, then that's what goes in my closet. But is this worth taking that extra time to think about?

Elizabeth Hambleton 5:34
Yeah, I think it can make such a huge difference in how you feel about yourself and how you feel about your day. That it really is. I have a couple different things about that. I think that especially as women and moms, it's easy to put yourself last. But you've gone through a lot of transitions as a mom, especially physically after having kids, like you deserve that self care to find what fits and what suits your new lifestyle because for a lot of women, what they were before kids and what they were after kids is really different for so many reasons.

Gillian Duncan 6:09
Yeah, definitely.

Elizabeth Hambleton 6:10
Their weight's different, what they're doing, you know, like, it's just not practical to wear a silk blouse every day for most of us. You know, you're gonna get ketchup on it. So you know, it's just, it's like a reality. And you've gone through a lot and you deserve to feel good. I also think that a lot of moms, obviously no shade to the dads out there, but you kind of set that wellness tone for your whole family. And I know that I want my kids to remember me when they look back on our, like their childhood, as someone who was like vibrant and put together and confident and not someone who just kind of like made it through or just kind of stumbled around, right? You want them to have that great mental image of you and I think that how you present yourself to the world is an important part of that. And also, I think, the good news for all of us, it doesn't have to be expensive and you don't have to reinvent the wheel every day. It could be you take the time once to really sit down and think about what you feel confident in what you feel good in, you can really edit your closet to have those things and then you'll have those go to outfits that you know you feel good in, and you don't have to be thinking on a busy morning, 'Oh my goodness, what am I gonna wear? I just don't know, it's all starting from scratch', because you'll know like, 'Oh, this looks great with this. And I felt great in it. And it's good for this time of year'. And it'll actually be less stressful than when you haven't put the time in to think about it once and you just open the closet every morning and kind of think, 'Oh, I have nothing to wear', which is what so many people do.

Gillian Duncan 7:56
It's a bit like preparing meals isn't it? It's always good if you have a meal planer for the week rather than coming home every night saying, 'Oh my goodness, what will I eat?', and running to the shops and trying to find something at the last minute.

Elizabeth Hambleton 8:07
Yeah. And then if you have the right ingredients too, right, you think, 'Oh, if I only had a shirt that matched this skirt that's been sitting there for a year', it's kind of like not having the lettuce when you want to make a salad.

Gillian Duncan 8:19
I think we've all got a few items in our closet that well, you you won't, but I know, everybody else probably has those items in the closet that they've bought, and they've thought, 'That's really, really nice', and they've bought it and they'll say, 'Oh, I'll match it up with something later', and they never do. And it does, you're right, it sits there in the closet, and you never wear it. Never wear it. In fact most of the time we've maybe gained weight, lost weight, and next thing you know, it doesn't actually fit us or this or the fashions gone out. And it's still been sitting there, unworn.

Elizabeth Hambleton 8:49
Yes, I think that happens to everyone. And I just want to encourage people to give themselves some grace that, you know, we all make mistakes shopping, and there's always times when you think, 'Oh, I'm gonna get into that pant that's like a little snug, you know, in like a month or a couple of weeks or after the holidays or whatever it is', but it doesn't really happen. And everyone's done that. So yeah,

Gillian Duncan 9:14
Yeah, I've done that a few times, and I've used it as motivation to maybe lose weight or tone or do something. And you know, it never works. It just doesn't work. For me, it's better to lose the weight first, and then go shopping. And in the meantime, find something that actually I can wear and is comfortable and something I enjoy, as you say, wearing. I would like to go back to that comment you made as well about how it doesn't need to be expensive. So again, when you talk about style, and you talk about fashions, you have in your mind, you know, expanse, and also clothes that come in and out of fashion rapidly. And so you're always haven't update your wardrobe just to sort of keep up with the trends. I mean, I worked in retail for a number of years, and I worked in closed shops. And I know that, you know, every season it the whole thing comes in and it goes back out again. There's different colour boards, there's different schemes, different stories that the shops are trying to tell us each season. And, you know, it's all based on the, you know, obviously the fashion week's and everything that they have running. And, you know, you're kind of left feeling, 'Oh, gosh, okay, so, spring's out, so now it's summer, and that colour's out so I can't wear this. And then oh, my goodness, and we're coming into autumn and then we're coming into winter. And I have to have a separate budget to buy all these clothes'. But I like that point that you just said about, it doesn't need to be expensive.

Elizabeth Hambleton 10:47
Yes, I think for sure. I think that can feel so overwhelming for people when you think, 'Oh, I have to get all new stuff'. And I have just a really quick tip for that. I would say that for your clothing, like the actual pieces of the clothing, the shirts, the tops, the dresses, if you're trying to minimise how many pieces you have or how often you have to rebuy, go fairly classic with the clothes and then use accessories which are often a little bit less expensive, to really add that new look to it. Like, I'm actually in Texas, so headbands have been so hot right now, and they have been like this whole last year. But if you just add, and that's I know not everyone's cup of tea, but if you add a headband to the jeans and sweater you have from last year, it instantly looks more current. Or if you add a leopard print flat which is available at virtually every price point on the market, anywhere from just a local shop all the way up to designers offer that, and just like a little, a little bit of leopard print makes it feel more current or things like that. And it's just so much more accessible to switch out an accessory than your whole outfit. And that's a really quick way and an easy way too, if you feel like, 'I don't know how to put a whole new look together', just try adding a really current accessory, and you'll be amazed at how much that can update the basics that you have year over year.

Gillian Duncan 12:20
That's a brilliant tip. So even anything like some new earrings or jewellery, or a belt, or a scarf, maybe a new purse, you know, that sort of idea. And that should freshen up your outfit.

Elizabeth Hambleton 12:33
Yeah. And the great thing about accessories too, is they always fit and you really end up wearing them more than your average piece of clothing because if you buy a new handbag, most of us wear it every day.

Gillian Duncan 12:46

Elizabeth Hambleton 12:46
Versus, even a pair of say jeans or something that you you do wear often you're not gonna wear them every day. For the most part.

Gillian Duncan 12:53
Yeah, yeah. And I love scarves. So it can be an excuse to go and buy some.

Elizabeth Hambleton 12:57
Yeah, there you go.

Gillian Duncan 12:58
Yeah. Oh, you talk on your Instagram about finding your 'authentic style'. I don't think I've ever had an 'authentic style', to be honest. I think I've gone through various looks throughout my life. So yeah, I'm a bit mixed up with that one. But how does someone go about, someone like me, go about finding their style, if they just sort of feel they've never had one particular style?

Elizabeth Hambleton 13:23
Yeah, I think this is actually even more common than it used to be with all the Instagram influencers out there. You kind of see someone and they look cute and something and then you think, 'Oh, maybe that's me'. And then you see someone else may look cute, something different, and then it can be kind of confusing and overwhelming.

Gillian Duncan 13:38

Elizabeth Hambleton 13:38
But I would say that I think that, a couple things. I do think everyone has an inherent style. It's just a question of kind of finding it. And I use style really loosely. Like, I don't want this to be about rules or for people to feel limited or boxed in. And just, I think everyone should know that your style changes. Changes with the seasons. Changes with your life, you know, so just because you choose one thing one day doesn't mean that you have to be wed to it for the rest of your life. And that you can think of style really broadly. Just if you ask a lot of people, most women sort of are drawn to dresses, or they're not. Like a lot of women like dresses, and like the ones who like them tend to really like them. And some women just don't love dresses. They prefer pants or jeans.

Gillian Duncan 14:33
Yeah, that's me. That's me. I'm never been a dress girl.

Elizabeth Hambleton 14:35
It's that simple.

Gillian Duncan 14:37
I've never been a dress person.

Elizabeth Hambleton 14:38
Great, so that's gonna be your simple starting point. Just to say like, you know, I really am drawn to pants and jeans and that's going to be part of my style. It doesn't have to be like boho jeans necessarily like you know. Just start there and think, do I like colours that are bright or do I like neutrals? And then you kind of like work through some kind of basic questions, to make it feel less overwhelming, because most people kind of know those answers. I also think, just a little trick is if you go in your closet with what's currently in there, and you think, what's my favourite piece in this closet? Or what would I wear if I went out to dinner on my birthday, right? You tend to like go for your favourites for those kinds of things.

Gillian Duncan 15:22

Elizabeth Hambleton 15:23
What that item is, is a clue to your style. Like, if that's a sequined mini dress, that's probably a different style than if that's like an oversized black sweater. And there's not a wrong answer. It's just, those are clues, if you kind of listen to them to like, 'Oh, maybe I like a more feminine look, or maybe I like a more neutral look, or maybe I like a really colourful look'. And then you can kind of take those clues, where you listen to what you really love, not versus, like, what someone else does, and kind of start to build out the pieces and look and say, 'What items in my closet. really suit that and which ones are maybe not the right thing anymore?

Gillian Duncan 16:05
And how important is it to go through that closet and go through and sift through it and get rid of the things that you no longer wear? Is that really important to be able to move on and have a clear mind when you go into that closet to choose what you're going to wear?

Elizabeth Hambleton 16:23
I think that is super important, and probably the place that everyone should start and I'm constantly doing it in my own closet. So, it's not like you do it once then, like, you're free to change your mind and think later, 'oh, this is wrong'. I work with a lot of moms especially.

Gillian Duncan 16:40

Elizabeth Hambleton 16:40
And, I really feel strongly that if you've had babies recently, or like even, maybe it's not that recent, but you still have kind of pre-baby or pre-something clothes in there that are too small.

Gillian Duncan 16:56

Elizabeth Hambleton 16:57
I really encourage people to get rid of them. If you feel like you really, really think you're gonna get back in, or you feel like financially, that's overwhelming to get rid of these clothes, because you're just not sure, then I encourage you to either put them in like a spare closet, or the least to put them in the very back of your closet. Because I think for so many women, it's just a little bit defeating, to go through clothes that are too small. Because a lot of times if you listen to the subtle messages in your head, when you're going through those clothes in the morning, it's like, 'Oh, like I'm a failure. I can't, I didn't get into this, it's already been a year. It's already been this much time, or, 'Thought I'd be back in these by now', or, or even like, 'I lost the weight. But, you know'. Like I had two c sections and like, I just am not quite the same shape I was before our kids, you know. So it's like these things that feel like failures. But that's just not a really positive mindset when you start the day.

Gillian Duncan 18:00
No, you're completely right. I'm the same as you, I've had two c sections as well, and not only does your body change because of the operation that you've had, and the scar tissue that you get, you know everything all changes the shape. You naturally change shape after having babies, anyway. You know, you widen naturally, your bust gets bigger, and everything, you just end up with more curves than you started off with. And so what you could fit in before having kids you really can't fit into afterwards. And I think the media, when it comes to going back to you know, celebrities, I think they put a lot of pressure on women to find that pre-baby shape. And for a lot of us, it's never going to happen, and we shouldn't feel so down on ourselves about that. As you say, we should go in there and say, 'Well, those were pre-baby clothes. It's now time to have mum clothes you know, stylish mother clothes'. You know, ones that we can go out, and we can be confident wearing and, as you were saying earlier, about being that sort of role model for your own children, for them to look at you, see a confident woman, and going out there feeling good, getting out into the world. I just think that's more important than beating yourself up about those pre-baby clothes and not being able to get into them.

Elizabeth Hambleton 19:23
Yeah. And you have to remember to like, those celebrities have so much help. You and I could look amazing if we did that for a living. Like if we had a personal trainer who came every day and we had our meals prepped by a chef who calculated the calories like,

Gillian Duncan 19:38

Elizabeth Hambleton 19:38
with that much help all of us look good.

Gillian Duncan 19:41
You know, I don't think I'd want to. To be perfectly honest with you.

Elizabeth Hambleton 19:45
I agree.

Gillian Duncan 19:46
I actually prefer not to have all that influence and all that pressure. I think that becoming a mom for me, yeah, sure, it changed my shape and I had to get used to especially after my second section. You know, it was a big change in my body, but you know, I wouldn't get rid of the scars for anything, because, for me the shape that I am now and the scars that I've got from the sections, they actually make me who I am. They tell me that I'm a mom. I'm actually really proud because, you know, I was able to have my kids safely because there were emergency sections. And yeah, okay, we would always want to lose the odd pound here and there, but I think at the end of the day, we have to be comfortable in our own skin, and again, finding clothes that compliment us really makes a difference.

Elizabeth Hambleton 20:31
Right, and just not compare yourself to other people because it's easy to forget what they do during the day or how they're different or just different. I mean, we all have that one friend who did slim down just effortlessly but that's not most people.

Gillian Duncan 20:45

Elizabeth Hambleton 20:45
And there's, there's no reason to feel like that's better. Like society kind of implies that, oh, that's better or more successful, but it's not. If you had a healthy kid and you're raising your kid and you know like,

Gillian Duncan 20:59
And you're healthy yourself. Yeah

Elizabeth Hambleton 21:01
Yeah, then that's what's, that's what we should all be aiming for.

Gillian Duncan 21:06
So you mentioned that, you know, we all have that friend that, you know, can have the baby or can eat the cake, and, you know, wherever they do, they always seem to keep a shape, but they also always seem to look good in anything that they put on. What's their secret?

Elizabeth Hambleton 21:25
You know, I think for a lot of people that the secret is, is finding what you feel good in because there's an Audrey Hepburn quote about this, a bit like, 'Happy girls are the prettiest girls'. And it's kind of the same idea that when you feel good in your clothing and it, it suits you, it fits you, it, like, it makes sense. You're not fidgeting with it. Then you're going to feel great and you're going to look great. When you're uncomfortable, or you're trying to kind of pretend like you're someone else, it generally doesn't totally work. And you kind of hear that phrase, like, 'How do I pull it off?'. Like, you kind of pull off clothing in the sense of like, it looks good on you, when you feel good in it. And I think that's something that a lot of women have never even been told, is to think about how do you feel in something? Not just, 'Do I look skinny in this?'. I feel like when I, when I work with clients, that that's what they always want, right? They want it like, do I, 'Does this flatter me or do I look skinny?'. Like that's what they're going for, but it doesn't necessarily, even, don't even think about how do I feel in this? Does it bring me joy? Do I feel happy? Does my reflection in the mirror reflect, like, the vision I have for my life because that's gonna be so different for everyone in terms of what you really need in your closet, and that's part of, kind of the journey is figuring out, you know, if you work in an office and it's very professional, then you're going to need different clothes than someone who is maybe a teacher and in grade school or someone who stays at home with their kids or, and that's fine, you know.

Gillian Duncan 23:20

Elizabeth Hambleton 23:20
We shouldn't feel pressured to have a certain, one certain thing, because what works for everyone is going to be different.

Gillian Duncan 23:27
Yeah, sure.

Elizabeth Hambleton 23:28
And then I do actually have an online course where I do help people to, to learn kind of the basics about style that no one ever taught them. Things like interesting ways to pair colour and things to think about in terms of the silhouette of your outfit, how shapes go together, and things like that, because some of those little tweaks can make a huge difference in your like overall result.

Gillian Duncan 23:53
Just going back to the comment that you made about how your clothes make you feel and you can tell the difference. When somebody is comfortable and when somebody is not, it is a complete giveaway, really. You can see people fidgeting, trying to always straighten their outfits. You know, you can see just their overall stature really, whether they're comfortable or not. And then you have other people who seem to glow, don't they? They seem to have this wonderful air about them. They're relaxed. They don't, they're not worried about their clothes, that sort of edge has been taken off. So, I guess that's what we see isn't it? We see either the person who's fidgeting and uncomfortable, and you feel, you feel it for them, you feel uncomfortable for them. And then you've got this other person who's confident and in glowing, and not caring about? Yeah, and that's what comes across, I think, isn't it?

Elizabeth Hambleton 24:42
Right, like, I think high heels are kind of an easy example of that, right?

Gillian Duncan 24:45

Elizabeth Hambleton 24:46
You could picture someone who, kind of, teeters and looks unsure in heels and then other women who have that kind of power walk in their heels. And obviously, there are ways that you can kind of help go either way, like, you know, if your heel fits and all that. But essentially, like, you can picture both of those things. And I think the thing that I want people to feel the most is like, just release the pressure. Don't feel like it has to be one or the other answer. Just, you know, be honest about which thing suits you. And just lean into that rather than trying to conform to what someone else wears.

Gillian Duncan 25:30
Yeah, I totally believe in that. I totally agree with you. With the heels example, I rarely wear heels now because I have a knee condition and a back condition. So for me, wearing heels can cause me obviously discomfort or pain. So I have to be very careful when I do buy heels. I have to make sure my foot is completely supported. And I only ever wear them for a short period of time. So I couldn't do my nine to five and a pair of heels anymore. So, you know, I wear flat shoes. And I'm only five foot two, and when I first started wearing flat shoes all the time to, you know, my office jobs, I did feel that I, you know, I didn't feel just so confident at first because having the heel gave me the extra height, and it made me feel more confident, you know, been a little bit taller. I know it's a bit strange, but it was just the mindset for me that you know, everyone, everybody else is taller than me I want to be taller. And then when I eventually sort of said, 'Look, this is causing me a lot of grief. This is causing me pain. It's actually not doing my body any good, and I'm suffering from it'. So when I did that, made that decision and went to find some smart flat shoes, then I felt better, you know, in that I'd made that confident choice, and because I had the reason behind doing it, and I found some really pretty flat shoes, then you know my height, that was a different issue. I had to deal with that separately. I had to say, 'Well do you know something, I am not going to grow any taller, you know, I'm in my 20's now I just, you know, that's just not going to happen. I'm going to be this, this height. In fact, I'm probably gonna get smaller as the years go on. So you need to just get, cope with that. I wear flat shoes. This is, this is me, I'm Gillian. I wear flat shoe, and that's who I am. I am five foot two with flat shoes. Deal with it.', you know? So I, I completely accept that whole point that you've just made, you know, some people love them. Some people, it just works for them. And other people, you know, we have to come up with our own, our own style, don't we?

Elizabeth Hambleton 27:41
Yes, I love that. And you I love specifically too that you mentioned that you went out and found nice flat shoes and I think sometimes people get stuck in this mental spot that like, just like. 'I'm too short to find XYZ that fits', or 'I'm, you know, I'm not thin enough or I'm too old or I'm too young or I'm to whatever it is'. But like in the world today, there are so many choices, you can find something lovely that fits you and that serves you well, like there is a good option out there. So there's no need to feel defeated about finding something that suits you.

Gillian Duncan 28:22
It's certainly improved over the years. I mean, I'm now in my 40's. And I remember when I was younger, that finding clothes to fit me was pretty difficult because not only was I short, I was slim as well, and I found it really hard to find women's clothes that fit me because there weren't that many petite sections at the time and I ended up, for a long time, wearing kids clothes, because that was really all I could find or I had to alter clothes. But now, as you say, the choice is so much out there. I mean, pretty much all stores stock different length skirts and trousers, you know, different fittings as well. You know, if you go for a pair of jeans, oh my goodness, it can take all day just trying to find out which fit you are and, you know, which waistline you want. Whether it's a high waist or low waist or which sort of leg you want. Do you want a flare, do you want skinny, you know, there's so much choice out there. So you're completely right that, that there are those options. So it's just a case, I guess, like taking the time and then going back to that whole thing of, 'Oh, well. I'm so busy, I can take the time out', but then we need to justify that time as being part of our self care process. You know, I can see now how the confidence of a person can be affected by what they wear, so feeling, feeling good in what they wear is worth it.

Elizabeth Hambleton 29:51
Yes, definitely. And I think too, especially for any listeners who, you know, are looking for plus sized clothing, I know that the options have gotten so much better. And I think that's just really awesome, because that used to be a very under-served part of our women's audience and they've really improved it. And I just I love that there are more petites and there's tall lengths. I mean, there's just a lot more out there.

Gillian Duncan 30:18
Yeah. And for, for us, them with curves, you know, it's, it's more seen out there that not all things are cut straight up and down anymore, that they are allowing for women to have, have curves and actually be their natural selves.

Elizabeth Hambleton 30:31
Right, be who they are. And that's, and that's good. And that's something, too, that I hear a lot of times that women say, 'Yeah, like I'm hard to fit or the clothes don't fit me', or something, and I just, I would encourage everyone to kind of think about that positively, and to know that there are clothes out there that would, that do fit you and that all the different brands kind of cut their own way but it's, that's about the clothes, it's not that, any, that not that you're the wrong shape or that you are weird or something. Kind of just be, try to be positive about that and know that just like, 'Oh well, this brand cuts this way', and that's neutral for you. It's nothing against you or bad. 'There is a brand out there that cuts for me and I just need to find it'. You know, it's staying positive and not internalising things as a sense of failure. Because I feel like a lot of women will try on, say, you know, jeans at the mall, and then they come home feeling defeated, but just try and remember that it's not about you, nothing is wrong with you, it's just that those clothes, for whatever reason are maybe not the ones that you care for, but don't, don't make that about a failure for yourself. You know?

Gillian Duncan 31:49
Yeah, as you say, there's many women that do that. And so if there's many women that are going to the mall and struggling to find things that fit them or, you know, to suit them then, you know, you can't be, can't be alone. There's so many other people that find that challenging. So again, it's about shopping around and just really taking that time to have a look and to try things on. I am terrible at shopping, and you know, I can get really quite down about trying things on, I'm like, 'Oh gosh, not something else I need to try on', and it's such a hassle, and it's, you know, maybe the fitting rooms are, oh gosh, they've got those big mirrors in them and they, oh, I don't want to look in them. And, you know, there's a whole load of reasons why you don't want to try things on but we have to do it, we have to take that time and you know, and it might take a few shopping trips to get there. And, you know, and to find the ideal place that we can go to, but once we find them, you know, we tend to stick with them and we can, you know, feel more confident about going to that shop over and over again.

Elizabeth Hambleton 32:55
Yeah, and I think too that, and I totally fall in this trap sometimes, it's easy to want to buy the thing that's cheapest, but not necessarily the thing that's best for us.

Gillian Duncan 33:08

Elizabeth Hambleton 33:09
But it's going to serve you so much better to maybe, and I'm not saying that you have to spend more to get a better fit, but if you find something that you love, that maybe is a little bit more expensive, if you're able, I would say, invest in a couple things that you really love and that suit you and you feel great in and just buy less overall, you know. Instead of just buying things that are on the sale rack, buy the thing in the shop that you really love. And then just buy one thing that you love versus two or three things that are okay, but a bit cheaper, because those tend to be the things that we don't reach for when we're getting dressed in the morning,

Gillian Duncan 33:57

Elizabeth Hambleton 33:57
and the things that kind of sit and drift towards the back. And sometimes it is, it serves you better overall. You'll get more value out of it.

Gillian Duncan 34:06
They're more impulse buys aren't they, those ones, the ones that are on the sale rack? That's not what you've been in for. And I love this whole thing, we can tie that back up with what you were saying earlier about, you can have that one item, but you can dress it differently each time you wear it. So we can add accessories with it and make it look different. So it might you know, at the end of the day it's worth the money to spend, you know, that one amount of money on one item just so that you have that to serve you in the best way.

Elizabeth Hambleton 34:38
Right and I think you'll end up spending less overall than if you kind of buy, and I kind of talk about this too so on like my Instagram, and like kind of tips to think about when you're shopping. That you kind of buy in colours or and like, I have a closet checklist of basics to think about having, on my website just to kind of give people ideas about, oh, if you have these basics, you're gonna have a lot to mix and match. And then you can add in accessories. And it just feels less overwhelming than like, 'Oh, I need one of everything because...'. It's like we were saying there's just too much out there now.

Gillian Duncan 35:16
Yeah, too much. Too much choice.

Elizabeth Hambleton 35:17
Nobody, nobody can have one of everything and you don't even want to because it's just too much to go through in the morning

Gillian Duncan 35:24
The colours as well. It's so easy to get excited for all the different colours and, and you know, 'one of everything thanks very much', but if you don't have anything that matches then you've not got an outfit to wear. As I say, it's a bit like ingredients isn't it? When you go to cook your dinner, it's all very well having a whole lot of things in your kitchen cupboards, but if they don't go together and do it make a meal then it's just a waste. It's, there's no point having the stuff,

Elizabeth Hambleton 35:49
Right. Yeah, for sure. Like you need to buy like the basic chicken and the basic lettuce to go with your like crazy sauces or something.

Gillian Duncan 35:56
Yeah, yeah, absolutely. Now, you mentioned this earlier about your personal styling course. I wondered if you'd be able to tell us more about that.

Elizabeth Hambleton 36:05
Yes. I developed this course because I after, after working with so many women one on one, I just felt like a lot of women kind of were never taught how to dress themselves in ways that are kind of more strategic. They just kind of put stuff on and they're like, 'I don't know why this does or doesn't feel like it works', and then that doesn't give them confidence. And I think also, the kind of influencer model these days, on things like Instagram, which a lot of women look to, which is totally awesome. I follow people on Instagram too. There's nothing wrong with that. But it's all about that influencer and what she likes, but it's not really about how do I take that inspiration and personalise it to me in a way that makes sense. So I just, I don't sell actual clothes and I don't do affiliate links because I don't want people to feel like I'm pushing products to them, just because 'so and so's' store paid me to tell you that this sweater or this sun dress is awesome.

Gillian Duncan 37:19

Elizabeth Hambleton 37:19
I want people to feel like it's actually authentic. So I, I totally am opting out of the influencer model and instead, I want to help women have the real tools and techniques to confidently shop for themselves. Because at the end of the day, like you know best what you feel good in. And so if you have some creative ideas about mixing patterns and pairing colours and silhouettes and, and pieces to look for, then I think it's totally possible for anyone to feel great and to build a closet that brings them joy at any price point. And I feel like it is accessible. That you just, a lot of women don't have the techniques. They've never been taught them and so they don't know where to improve, but I think it is something that so many people can do and that you will really notice how much better you feel when you have put in a little bit of time and then you can really in the end, like you will save money. You'll save time in a busy morning because you'll know what feels good and I recently did a study that 89% of women in the US have skipped an event because they didn't know what to wear.

Gillian Duncan 38:45
No way, gosh.

Elizabeth Hambleton 38:46
And to me that's kind of sad if you're missing out on your, your life or you don't you know feel good participating at like your kids classroom party or going to the, the wedding of your, you know, high school friend or whatever it is for you. You don't feel confident speaking at your business conference or something. But like, like life is so precious, you don't want to miss it. Or feel kind of small, because of what you're wearing. Like, we can fix what you're wearing and just set you up for success in all the other areas.

Gillian Duncan 39:24
Gosh, that is one massive statistic isn't it? That's huge. I mean, it really puts a whole different angle on that phrase, 'I've got nothing to wear', you know, really, that's wow, to actually make it so big that it stops you from doing what you want in life. That's just incredible. I don't think I've ever been that bad. I've always maybe taken something, I've worn it just because of the sake of wearing it for that day because, you know, it's what I had and that's just what I've had to wear. But, I've never let it stop me from doing something. So, the fact that it goes beyond that with some people, you know that they actually feel so bad about what they're wearing or what they've got or what they don't have, that it actually limits them in life. That's, that's pretty, that is really sort of sad, isn't it? Yes, definitely. We need to get it sorted.

Elizabeth Hambleton 40:18
Right. And I think it's interesting because I know some people, I think it's very sectional, if this makes sense, and that maybe they feel confident getting dressed for work, but they don't feel confident getting dressed for a date. So they just don't date anymore. Or I've known a lot of moms who have gone through divorces, and then they're entering dating in a new season. They already have kids, you know, they're older, their 30's or 40's. And it feels different than dating in your 20's. So they just avoid it. Or maybe it's the reverse you feel good socially, when you're casual, but you don't feel confident at work. And so you like don't go for that promotion or don't go for like, you know, feel like you can't go to the networking event or something. And so I see that in a lot of women, it's like a specific area where they feel maybe especially lacking in confidence.

Gillian Duncan 41:12

Elizabeth Hambleton 41:13
And that, you know, that's, I just want to encourage women that that is something that can be fixed, if that's the right word.

Gillian Duncan 41:21

Elizabeth Hambleton 41:22
We can,

Gillian Duncan 41:23
You can work on it.

Elizabeth Hambleton 41:24
There are the tools. Yeah. And when I worked for a retailer doing styling, I found that most women who wanted to work with a stylist for the confidence, not because they couldn't pick out a sweater on their own, you know, it was less about the clothes and more about the affirmation of someone, you know, saying that?

Gillian Duncan 41:45
Yeah, right. You can wear that, that's okay. They're giving them permission to wear it. Yeah.

Elizabeth Hambleton 41:49
Yes exactly, they wanted someone to say like, 'You look great in this'. I think it's, you have you know, permission to try something new or to wear a bright colour or whatever it is. But like you can totally give that to yourself, and your, that's so empowering.

Gillian Duncan 42:07
Yeah. So your course will help people on that journey won't it? It will help them to go there and never miss an event again, just because they don't have something to wear or something that don't feel good wearing.

Elizabeth Hambleton 42:23
Yeah, and just I think, to like, like I said, I have worked with almost 10,000 women. So I don't want anyone to feel like, 'This is just me'. I think a lot of women are they're hesitant to say like, 'Oh, I don't know what to wear', or, 'I don't feel confident', or, 'I don't feel good about my body', or, 'I don't feel great about my weight or my hair or whatever it is my arms'. Like that is so universal. And just give yourself some grace about that because so, like pretty much every woman struggles at some point with self image.

Gillian Duncan 42:58

Elizabeth Hambleton 42:59
And if that's not like a lifelong thing for you, I mean, it's probably something that you went through at some point, right?

Gillian Duncan 43:07

Elizabeth Hambleton 43:07
And then just give yourself grace and feel free to admit it and not, don't feel shame or hung up about it that, this is so universal. We've all been there.

Gillian Duncan 43:18
Yeah, we can stay 18 forever, you know, we've got to, we've got to grow up, go on and we've got to grow up, you know, as I say, what I wore when I was, you know, 17/18 I would never wear now, you know, I wore all black. I was pretty much goth. I wore biker boots and short skirts. You know, I wouldn't dare leave my house now, as you know, a 40 something, with kids going dressed like that because it doesn't reflect me now. It doesn't reflect who I am. And I would feel uncomfortable mainly as well because I've, my figure's changed and so the short skirts just don't complement my look anymore. So yeah, we just can't stay the same. And again, I think as we get older as well, we tend to lose muscle tone a little bit as well. So we start thinking, oh gosh, we've got to hides and we've got to wear baggy clothes. That's the other thing. We go from extreme, one extreme to another. So yeah, as we get older, we just basically wear big baggy clothes. And again, that's, that's not helping us at all. That's not given us our feeling of feeling attractive.

Elizabeth Hambleton 44:24
Right. Yeah, for sure. And I think attractiveness specifically, sort of that feeling of feeling flirty or feminine is something that a lot of women lose, but you are maybe a mom or you know, a businesswoman or something but you're also a woman and there's nothing wrong with wanting to feel a little flirty or a little sexy. If you know go on a date with your husband or you know, with someone new or whatever it is like yeah, just give yourself that space to be you.

Gillian Duncan 44:55
That's right. And if people don't like what you wear, then that's their problem. It's not yours. That's the other thing.

Elizabeth Hambleton 45:01
Yes, absolutely. I agree with that.

Gillian Duncan 45:05
And you also mentioned that you have an ultimate closet checklist as well, on your website, would you be able to tell us a little bit about that?

Elizabeth Hambleton 45:12
Yes, I kind of put that together because I had a lot of questions about where do I start with cleaning out my closet or, or buying new things either way. And so it's just a checklist of, of basics that I think, you know, pretty much everyone could benefit from. And what I did that's a little different from most, is that for some of the things, I organise it by type rather than super specific item. So an example of that would be like, I say that you could have either a casual miniskirt or pattern shorts. So I live in Texas, and it's super hot here.

Gillian Duncan 45:55
You're lucky.

Elizabeth Hambleton 45:56
People wear shorts of all ages, right? Like Yeah, I think In other parts of the world, maybe shorts are seen as more of a kid thing. But when it's 103 degrees Fahrenheit,

Gillian Duncan 46:05
Yeah, you've got to wear something light.

Elizabeth Hambleton 46:08
Everyone's in shorts. But so not everyone loves shorts, right? So just think of it as you don't need everything, but what would suit a certain occasion. Like a casual skirt would be an option or like a nicer short. So trying to help or like I have kind of on there like a novelty jean for people that are more casual, or work from home or in a creative industry or whatever. It's kind of fun to have one pair of jeans that's a little bit special or different, right? But I go through that could be embroidered or it could be studied or it could be distressed or, you know you don't have to have all of them, but you can start by thinking like okay, what's my one pair going to be? And it kind of helps guide you both in cleaning out your closet and when you are looking to add new pieces to think, do I have all these things and is there something on here that I don't own that would help add versatility to the things I do already own. I really think it's key to feel like you can make multiple outfits from pieces that you have is having those good building blocks, like we were saying about meals, having those key ingredients set, help extend the life and versatility of other pieces.

Gillian Duncan 47:24
So what we need to do is we need to go onto your website, we need to download this checklist. Yeah. And we need to go through our closets and go through the checklist and pull out anything that doesn't fit us any more, anything that doesn't serve us anymore, anything that we don't really love or anything that makes us feel uncomfortable when we wear it. We need to get rid of those things. And we need to go through that checklist and see what we have from there. And if we do and that's what we should focus on the next time we go and go shopping for our clothes.

Elizabeth Hambleton 47:58
Yeah, I think everyone would be amazed at how much it will streamline your mornings.

Gillian Duncan 48:03
Yeah. Then once we've done that, we can go over and look at your styling course. And see about joining up to that.

Elizabeth Hambleton 48:11
Yeah, and I'm on Instagram as well. And if you ever have questions, you know, feel free to DM me, I'm always here to help. And I just love to encourage women to feel confident and go after life, whatever that means for you.

Gillian Duncan 48:26
That's brilliant. I know that having some clothes that make you feel good, and raise your self esteem will definitely help you and keep you motivated and inspire you to go on and achieve your goals and achieve your dreams in life and not be that huge percentage that just walk away from everything just because they don't feel that they've got the right outfit to wear. That is shocking. I'll never get over that. It's mad. Okay, listen what I'll do is I'll put all the links to your website and your Instagram and your checklist and details about your course on this podcast's show notes, so that people can go there and they can find out how they can reach out to you, how they can get in touch with you, and get onto that website and have a look at your personal styling course. That'd be absolutely awesome. So I'll do that. I'll put that on on the show notes. And I'd just really like to say a big thank you to you for chatting so much with me today. It has just been so informative. It's given me such a different outlook on how important it is to choose clothes that not only are comfortable fit, that they fit well, and they make me less anxious when I wear them or not fidgeting with them. But also clothes that make us feel good inside. The ones that we feel proud to wear and ones that really reflect our own personality. So I really appreciate how taking care of your style can really become a part of your self care programme. So I really thank you for coming along and sharing your story and all this information with us today. It's really given me something to think about. And I'm sure it's giving everyone else something to think about too. So, yeah, everybody, head over to the podcast notes and get all those links and head over and see Elizabeth, and say hello to her on Instagram. So thank you so much for joining me.

Elizabeth Hambleton 50:24
Well, thank you for having me. I just want to encourage everyone and say that you've got this and it's totally looking good and feeling good is something that you can achieve. And however you do that for yourself, I just encourage you to make that a priority. It's been great chatting with you.

Gillian Duncan 50:46
That's all for this episode. Thank you so much to Elizabeth Hambleton for sharing her tips, advice and suggestions on how to become better at selecting clothes that will make us feel more confident. To find out how to get connect with Elizabeth, visit clarityjunction.com/confidencewithclothes. Here you will find links to Elizabeth's website, Instagram and Pinterest pages. From there you can find more about her online personal styling course and her free ultimate closet checklist. 

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