Forget what you know about matching colors and coordinating accessories — according to Science, you're doing it wrong. Researchers at the University of North Carolina, Duke, and Carnegie Mellon found that "maximum fashionableness is attained when outfits are neither too coordinated nor too different." Not convinced? Neither am I. Let's delve a little deeper into their reasoning, shall we?
In this study, psychologists surveyed 239 people from Amazon's Mechanical Turk service. They asked them to rate drawings of men and women's clothing based on how fashionable, good, and liked they were on five point Likert scales. The subjects were given 30 different color combinations of outfits that were either "matchy-matchy," "clashing," or somewhere in the middle.
Their findings suggest a "simple answer" to the question of what to wear:
"Select a color combination that is neither completely uniform, nor completely different. Certainly, moderate matching is not the only key to fashion, which varies across time and culture and depends upon many factors including cut, design, and trendiness. However, these studies reveal that, with all other factors held constant, the Goldilocks principle predicted judgments across four different color palettes in both men’s and women’s clothing."
By the way, the Goldilocks Principle is exactly what you think it means — finding a balance between extremes. While I think we can all agree that balance is key in building an outfit, I'm not about to throw away all those color-coordinating and print-matching lessons I learned from the fashion mags over the years. If you're feeling a little bit conflicted, here are 6 stylish celebs who prove that being "matchy-matchy" can be uber fashionable.
1. Solange Knowles
Solange is the queen of print mixing and matching, and in this case, proves that wearing a coordinating blazer and culottes screams hot couture.
2. Rachel Bilson
Rachel Bilson shows that a matching pencil skirt and crop top can look just as seamless and arguably more stylish than a one-piece dress.
3. Kendall Jenner
Kendall Jenner looks killer in this sexy Cookie Monster blue pantsuit.
4. Gemma Arterton
British actress Gemma Arterton displays how adorably stylish a bright red midriff-baring co-ord can be.
5, 6, and 7. Samira Wiley, Lupita Nyong'o and Nicole Behari
Now, this is what we call a triple threat.
8. Miley Cyrus
An all white pantsuit = super chic. Miley Cyrus knows what's up.