I’ve waxed poetic on here before about the importance of developing your own shoe style, so I was extra excited to read that a scientific study from the University of Kansas recently came out with a report saying that people tend to accurately ascertain characteristics about other people based on the shoes they wear. In fact, according to HowAboutWe.com, we actually judge about 90% of someone’s personality just from looking at the shoes they have on.
The study asked 63 students to look at photos of 208 different pairs of shoes that belonged to volunteers, who had filled out personality questionnaires. They predicted personality traits based upon the shoes they saw, and did well in guessing. Some of their findings were fairly obvious, but some were surprising.
Practical and functional shoes belonged to agreeable people.
Ankle boots belonged to people with more aggressive personalities.
Uncomfortable-looking shoes belonged to people with calm personalities.
Brand new and well-kept shoes belonged to people with “attachment anxiety” or people who were most worried about their relationships.
Validation? I’m going to say yes.
But really, was this something we needed a study to show us? Don’t get me wrong, I’m always happy to be proven scientifically right. But I think this is one of those times where we probably already knew what was going on, but just never thought about it extensively. And I think it plays out right in front of us all the time.
For example, I have two younger sisters. Lovely girls. But both have completely different shoe styles than I do. Now, occasionally, they’ll walk into my shoe closet and try to squeeze their feet in my shoes. But for the most part, they tend to think my style is a bit more on the conservative side. But this makes sense, because I’m a year away from being 30 and they are 22 and 17, respectively.
So on the rare occasions when they love my shoes enough that they want to wear them, I usually secretly relish in the fact that I still have a bit of youngness left in me (yes, I made that word up lol). More often than not, though – they’ll like shoes that are from my younger days that I’ve managed to still keep around.
To tell you the truth though, I am more conservative than both of my sisters. And shockingly, it’s less about age and more about our personalities. Both of my sisters love to rock miniskirts and tight clothing when they go out. It’s beyond rare that you’ll find me wearing those things, just like it’s beyond rare that you’ll find me in a gladiator pump. It’s just not… me. (Don’t worry – I find other ways to show off my bootyliciousness lol.)
I tend to enjoy a sleek stiletto pump (round toe, pointed toe, peep toe – I don’t care) with a little embellishment. Not extremely flashy, but enough to say “hey look at me, I’m here and I might surprise you.” Well, if you read my post about my perfect date dress, you’ll notice that’s exactly the way I described the dress and pretty much how I described me.
And I’m not alone. Whenever I go shopping, I constantly find myself running into shoes that would be perfect for one of my friends. And guess what? When I take pictures and send it to them – 9 times out of 10, they’re like, OMG, that shoe so is me! And then I’m like, “I know! It practically has your name on it!”
And that’s all because our shoes tell people who we are.
So what does all this mean? Well most importantly, I think it means while we always say you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, people are judging us by our shoes all the time. So it’s important for you to know your shoe style, make sure the shoes in your closet fit that style (and fit you and what you want to present yourself as) and then go out and shop, shop, shop if they don’t.
Do you know what your shoes say about you? I’d love to hear some of your theories… 🙂