I don’t know about you, but I honestly cannot believe that it is December 2nd. Seriously, where has the time gone? I swear that just yesterday it was the beginning of September and I was dreading this challenge. I didn’t know how I would be able to go without buying clothes for an entire semester. It was daunting, an impossible task that at the same time was a challenge I was strangely determined to overcome.

I faced the challenge of receiving wonderful gifts on my 19th birthday and having to stow them away for later. I have resisted the urge to stock up on homecoming gear and I have passed window shops stacked high with beautiful shoes just calling out my name. 

Although this challenge was a struggle most of the time and I found myself getting frustrated over the fact that I couldn’t buy the newest thing on the market, the Fashion Detox Challenge itself taught be a valuable lesson. The constant reminder that I couldn’t buy clothing or shoes revealed to me how big of a role materials play in in life. Honestly, I was embarrassed in how much clothing or a pair of shoes could take a toll on me. When I took the time and thought about how many items I already owned, it became painfully clear that I am in no position in making such a fuss about not buying new clothing for one mere semester.

This challenge has made me realize that the emphasis and importance that we put on disposable, material items is so juvenile. There are so many other important things and issues in the world that we should fixate on rather than whether or not we’re the owner of the lasted fashion fad.

Instead of investing my time in my closet and what I believed it lacked, I changed gears and put my focus into the bigger things. Without the distraction of clothing, I found myself more engaged in school, my friends and other various extracurricular activities. When it comes down to it, even though it is hard to really believe, clothes and fashion really do not matter.

This challenge has taught me that I can wear anything, whether it is the sweater that was in fashion last year, or my simple gym shoes, and still feel completely good about myself. If anything, this whole process has given me more confidence in who I am and I am ready to not let a piece of clothing determine what people think about me, because all that matters is what I think about myself.

I want to thank Dr. Hawley for making me aware of this opportunity that has allowed me to grow so much as an individual in the process and I hope that all of the other participants have had as much as an enlightening experience as I have had.