Do You Suffer From a Fashion Anxiety Disorder? Find Out Now

Chances are you’ve got a hang-up or two. Don’t worry, the (unlicensed) doctor is in.

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  • Fraught with issues of image, identity, and gender, fashion can mess with even the most sound of mind. But while some disorders, like shopping addiction, are recognized by the psychology community, many others have fallen through the cracks. In an effort to raise awareness about these lesser-known conditions, we’ve compiled this informative guide. Consider it the DSM (The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, uh duh) for Prada lovers, if you will.

  • Macklemore Syndrome

    Definition: Named for the popular rap artist, whose song “Thrift Shop” glorifies the procurement of clothing from the Goodwill, this condition is characterized by a conviction that one must successfully source their entire wardrobe from second-hand bins.

  • Obsessive Mirror-Checking

    Definition: The practice of obsessively preening one’s appearance in a reflective surface. Kim Kardashian is reportedly in talks to become the public face of this very grave disease.   

  • Chronic Buyer’s Remorse (CBR)

    Definition: Subject regularly purchases clothing only to be hit with a deep sense of regret soon thereafter. Often comorbid with Chronic Returns Syndrome (CRS).

  • Victoria’s Secret Show-Induced Depression

    Definition: Studies show that 95 percent of all women will experience VSSID at some point in their lifetime, usually after encountering a televised runway show that stars six foot FemBots in bedazzled lingerie. Recommended Treatment: Reassure subject looks aren't everything while reminding her of the time she got in early to Brandeis. 

  • Printophobia

    Definition: An irrational fear of patterns and graphics, often the result of a traumatic childhood encounter with plaid. 

  • Bridesmaid Passive-Aggressiveness

    Definition: Typically occurs after bride makes subject wear a dress so monsterously fugly it makes the flower girl cry.   

  • Mall Aversion

    Definition: An avoidance of going to the local shopping center at all costs. Behavioral rationalization attempts include “I buy all my clothing online,” and, “Wait, this town still has a mall?”.

  • Over-Borrowing

    Definition: Subject suffers the delusion that they are entitled to the entire contents of their friends’ closets.  Condition can often lead to strained conversations and unreturned phone calls.

  • Cameron’s Dad-itis

    Definition: In the 1986 film, Ferris Bueller’s Day Off, the character Cameron Frye’s father is so determined to keep his Ferrari GT in pristine condition that he refuses to take it out of the garage. As it relates to fashion, this disorder manifests as the unwillingness to wear an expensive or precious item due to an irrational fear of ruining it. Symptoms to look for: clothing with price tags still attached, old Louboutins with perfectly intact red soles.

  • Manic Panic Compulsive

    Definition: The obsessive need to change one’s hair color.

  • The Online Shopping Binge/Purge Cycle

    Definition: Driven by the pleasure-seeking Id, subject habitually orders clothing on the Internet they cannot afford.  After the dopamine rush of prancing around the house in a legit Givenchy dress subsides, they neatly pack the item back up, return it to sender, and await a sizeable credit card refund.

  • Office Wardrobe Conformity

    Definition: The herd instinct of female co-workers to start dressing alike. Can be detrimental to those seeking to “stand out” and get the big promotion (i.e. everyone).

  • Generalized Dressing Room Anxiety

    Definition: The sense of dread aroused by the prospect of looking at yourself naked under the unforgiving glare of fluorescent lighting.  For treatment, a sedative and/or medicinal marijuana may be administered prior to shopping spree.

  • Brand Fixation

    Definition: An unhealthy obsession with a particular designer. Often results in purchasing unflattering or unnecessary pieces solely  for the label.

  • Shoe Hoarding

    Definition: The practice of squirreling away a large amount of footwear. See: Imelda Marcos, Carrie Bradshaw.

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