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Seeing Double

“Who wore it better?” is a magazine segment that has plagued generations of women. For those who don’t know what I’m referring to, “Who wore it better?” is a decorated magazine page featuring at least two women, at any celebrity level, wearing the same outfit or something very similar. This page is often a platform for comparison between the two women, especially if there has been prior controversy in the chosen celeb duo. 

graphic by Katie ’24

With the theme of this issue being mimicry, I want to talk about mimicry in fashion. It is common knowledge that fashion repeats itself. As a result, there really is no such thing as originality in fashion design. There are only so many elements to experiment with, so odds are, no matter what you think of, someone has done it before. What we can do is take inspiration from fashion around us and elevate or transform it. Or, the other viable option would be to just wear the same thing. 

The entertainment industry thrives off of degrading women and forcing them to compete, especially when both seem to fit in the same niche. Taylor Swift vs. Katy Perry, Rihanna vs. Beyoncé and Britney Spears vs. Christina Aguilera are prime examples of two people fitting one niche persona or market. In Spears and Aguilera’s case, both women are blonde and edgy but have vastly different singing styles. It’s the perfect material for a heated debate and reminiscent of a saloon standoff in an old Western movie where “there is room for only one of us.” These feuds are often fabricated and highly dramatized by tabloids or pop culture magazines but people eat it up. Aguilera has even spoken out about how disappointing the “rivalry” was and said, “It must have seemed as if we were competing with each other, but, in reality, Britney is someone that I used to hold hands with.” 

Female competition is extremely relevant in fashion. At events such as the Met Gala, it seems as if women are brutally competing to have the most talked-about look while a large majority of male attendees just arrive in some form of a suit. Not only is it acceptable for men to wear the same thing at every event but it is encouraged. On the other hand, women are expected to wear something new and different at each red carpet event, and if by chance there is any repetition across any women in Hollywood, it is publicly made known forever by a “who wore it better” page. 

Luckily for most of us, the pressure isn’t as intense. While there can be some stigma around matching outfits, it isn’t typically seen as a scandal. In all realms, mimicry in fashion can be groundbreaking. Fashion is art and art is rooted in inspiration. Originality is beautiful but it can also be just as meaningful as a remake if done correctly. If you are struggling to find a personal niche in fashion, don’t be afraid to copy what you see around you until you find your own way of things.

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