Fashion is an ever-changing system of styles, practices and trends. It reflects social, cultural and economic changes. It also influences other industries, including art and music.
People follow different fashions to express their individuality and solidarity with other people. They may wear a certain kind of dress that shows that they support women’s rights, for example. They may also follow a fashion that shows their loyalty to a particular group or community, such as being a member of the gay community and wearing a rainbow colored dress.
In the past, people used to follow fashions that were dictated by the elite of the society – kings, queens and other wealthy people. This gave them an advantage over other people who did not have access to this type of clothing. Nowadays, people follow fashions that are influenced by celebrities and the media.
Fashions vary considerably within a society depending on age, social class, generation, occupation and geography. People who slavishly follow current fashions are known as fashionistas or fashion victims. Fashions also tend to repeat themselves, so a style that was once considered fashionable may reappear at a later date.
It is important not to lose sight of the fact that fashion is not only about the latest clothes, shoes and accessories, but it is also about how you carry yourself, your attitude, personality and mannerisms. Fashion also relates to the way that you use language – some words are out of fashion, and others are in. For example, the word groovy was very popular in the 1960s but has now fallen out of favour.