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Courtesy | WIki­media Commons

It’s just after 4 p.m. as I stumble across the threshold of my off-campus house, drop my bags, pour myself a glass of water, and look at my reflection in the mirror. My gosh. I look like one of those flying monkeys from the “Wizard of Oz.”

Hair bedraggled, shirt wrinkled, pants baggy, make-up smudged. 

“Did I look like this the whole day?” I ask myself, hor­rified. 

I think back to how my outfit looked earlier that morning: my hair was neat and wavy, my shirt ironed, my pants the perfect fit, and my skin close to air­brushed. Did I fall into a black hole in the time between leaving and coming back? How did this happen? 

I have a theory. All outfits expire roughly around 1:59 p.m. EST. 

Don’t ask me how, or why. It just happens, time and time again. Maybe it’s the law of entropy. Or perhaps it’s God’s way of teaching our naive, opti­mistic souls about the tran­sitory nature of life on earth and the material world. But actually, it’s probably the law of entropy. 

I mean, what do you expect from a day full of fid­geting throughout your classes due to your mom-jeans cinching you in all the wrong places, pan­icking as you try to rub the salad dressing stain from lunch off your blouse, and laughing so hard with your friends that your mascara runs, leaving you looking like a raccoon? That’s a typical day-in-the-life for a Hillsdale female, which unfor­tu­nately, is at the cost of looking chic. 

Also, the riskier the outfit, the shorter its lifespan. I put an outfit together at 9 a.m., I feel good about it. It’s on the cre­ative side, sure, but I’m a trail­blazer. Four com­ments and two exposing zippers later, however, by approx­i­mately 11:59 a.m. EST I am a sweaty mess with the con­fi­dence of a pimply, pre-pubescent teen. I must change and retreat into safety the safety of pre­dictability and what I know looks good. 

As there is no end in sight to this unfor­tunate phe­nomenon that plagues all peoples (I’m being inclusive here—but do men actually suffer from this??), I propose a remedy: 

Go home and change. 

Midday, when you’re about to get that itch (at approx­i­mately 1:58 p.m. EST), and your self-esteem is on the precipice of plum­meting, bite the bullet and walk back to your house or dorm, make yourself a cup of tea, take off your wrinkled sweater, brush your hair, and freshen up. Trust me, this is a form of self-care. A time to reex­amine yourself, your day, and your pri­or­ities. It’s a time to boost your self-esteem and make sure you’ll conquer the next half of the day while looking and feeling your best. 

This is nothing but an exercise of self-respect. We are physical beings, therefore the way we look and feel affects our spirits. As you change into some­thing that’s new and wipe the mascara off your face, you are telling yourself that you respect yourself enough to con­stantly be taking care of your body (not just in the mornings and evenings, but also in the middle of your day), and that this is worth it. 

So, do all outfits expire? Yes. But rather than throw in the towel, let’s use this as an oppor­tunity to take care of our­selves men­tally, spir­i­tually, and phys­i­cally.