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How Celebrities Influence Fashion

Last week I was in Paris for my study abroad program at the London College of Fashion. Aside from visiting all the typical tourist attractions as a group we were given a lot of free time to explore Paris. On our way to dinner one night my friends and I saw a huge crowd outside a ridiculously expensive and luxurious looking hotel. Upon asking around we found out this was where the Kardashian family, Rihanna, and many other celebrities were staying for Paris Fashion Week. Curious about who might emerge from the hotel, we waited for a good hour outside the gates of the hotel. Finally, Rihanna came running through the doors and into her car. As soon as the paparazzi and fans got wind of her presence they started climbing the gates and screaming. All of that excitement for one person. 

This obsession with celebrities and pop culture is nothing new. We love to follow the lives of the people singing our favorite songs or who act in our favorite films or television shows. It is not enough to listen or watch their work—we want to know who they are dating, where they travel to, and most importantly, what clothes are they wearing. Celebrities have so much influence on the fashion industry. They are the ones who sit front row at all the major fashion shows, can afford to wear designer clothing, and are constantly being photographed. If we see a celebrity wearing something we like we scour the Internet and stores for something similar or identical to it.

Take, for example, Kate Middleton. Her fashion sense has spurred ‘The Kate Effect’ and has resulted in countless sold-out garments and accessories. In just two hours of the family photograph with George going viral, the Seraphine dress Kate wore was sold out. In 2011, the white dress Lindsay Lohan wore to court also sold out within a matter of days. Or most notably, the panther claw print dress Kate Moss designed for Topshop sold out within fifteen minutes and resulted in many fights between shoppers at the store.

While it is completely understandable and normal to admire the clothing of your favorite celebrity, that does not mean you need to copy their every look just for the sake of dressing like them. Fashion is about you, your personality, and interests. Just because Beyoncé is wearing those coveted shoes does not mean you have to sacrifice your personal taste (or money) to look like her. Save yourself the time and money and only invest in celebrity fashions you actually like.

Abigail is a senior at the University of Wisconsin-Stout. She is majoring in Retail Merchandising and Management with a concentration in Fashion Marketing and has a double minor in Business Administration and Spanish. Aside from being a Style Writer for Her Campus, she is involved with Campus Crusade for Christ (CRU) and Street Level Ministries. In her spare time she enjoys collecting art, watching Hallmark movies with family and friends, and going on adventures. 
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