When it comes to style and fashion, it’s useless trying to fit in. There are so many ways of expressing yourself through clothing. I feel like people are scared of being judged which is why they avoid developing their own style. I see so many people wearing the same clothing items, and it’s quite depressing!

Developing your own style is one of the easiest ways to build your confidence. It’s your opportunity to show the world who you are. Here are three students at Laurier Brantford with unique styles. We can all learn something from them.

Mahaq Farooq

Describe your style

I don’t think I’m the most fashionable. I’m very lazy; it’s usually just tights and a sweater for me. I like to look a little dressy so I can feel better about myself.

What/who are the influence of your style?

My mum and my sister (influence my style). If I need clothes I go to my sister’s closet. She is very fashionable! My mum has very good fashion sense. She is someone I like to look like.

How important is fashion and personal style to you and why?

Fashion is very important to me because it’s the only way I can express myself. I’m not the type of person to join clubs because I’m shy like that. When people see me they’ll be like “Hey, she looks good! I like what she’s wearing!” Fashion is who you are. It’s a gateway. I’m not saying anything, I’m expressing it.

Tips for people that struggle with personal style

You don’t have to worry about what other people think. If you like it and it makes you happy, you should go for it. I struggled with that so much in high school. I had these blue pants and I’d wear them to school a lot. I’d get so nervous and thought people were going to judge me, but it made me happy and I looked good!

Rawan Shannak

Describe your style

I tell people I don’t have a style. Sometimes I like to look classy and sometimes I like to look gangster. I grew up in a predominately gangster dressing area. There were lots of sweatpants, Adidas outfits and Jordans were a big thing. Sometimes I rock jays and other times I rock Steve Madden looking shoes.

What/who are the influences of your style?

I admire Rihanna because she doesn’t have a style. Rihanna encompasses everything. I’m inspired by things that draw my attention. I basically get dressed blind. I put things together and I don’t think about it too much. Sometimes when you try too hard to look good you look basic.

How important is fashion and personal style to you and why?

Fashion is extremely important to me. It’s something I was having a very hard time with. In Brantford I get looks because of what I wear sometimes. People would look at me funny, and thought that because I dress a certain way that I thought highly of myself. I look at it as a form of expression. Some days I look homeless and other days I look like I could walk a runway.

Tips for people that struggle with personal style

Try not to fit into a certain category. Take what you like from people and apply it in different ways. Whatever makes you comfortable. There is literally no other way. I’d advise people that struggle with personal style to work on themselves and to understand who they are. If they take care of themselves everything will fall into place.

Raquel Teichroeb

Describe your style

I’m influenced by international styles. I try to keep track of fashion around the world. I mix it with my signature items. I have this pair of Doc Martens red leather boots which I wear all the time in the winter.

What/who are the influences of your style?

I was really influenced by Sailor Moon. I really loved the way she dressed in that show.

How important is fashion to you and why?

Fashion is very important to me. I wanted to go into fashion and be a fashion designer. People are always surprised when I’m like ‘I’m actually a Public Health student!’ It’s something that’s a part of my life. I need to wear stuff that is close to my personal style or else I feel out of place and really uncomfortable.

Tips for people that struggle with personal style

It’s something that’s natural to me. It’s not really a conscious thing. Everybody has something familiar that they’ve kept with them for years. You have to mix that into the things that inspire you and incorporate it into things that you wear.

All photographs courtesy of Mike Rykov/The Sputnik.