The 7 style essences are all about finding the right clothing shapes and details that will harmonize with your features.
We all have different types of beauty and are perceived in a different way than others. This is why sometimes some lines look stunning in some people, but when we try them, we feel like it washes us off. So, we wonder if there’s something wrong with us, but really we just need to find our essences.
What is a style essence? It is a perceptible reflection of your inner self with a mix of your clothing lines. It’s the union of the way you perceive the world, your vibe, and how you reflect it on your outer self. Your facial features, the way you walk or talk can incluence your essence.
How is it different from the Kibbe Body Type System?
David Kibbe developed a system that includes 5 main families:
It focuses on the body and how much yin or yang (roundness or sharpness) each body has. As well, he shows how each body should dress differently accodring to its shape, rather than forcing us to try to fit in the body shape that is trending. The Kibbe Body System is about embracing your body, dressing in similar shapes to look better in our own skin.
However, Harriet McJImsey was the one who matched the yin/yang balance of each that these families and proposed that there where 6 main archetypes: Dramatic, Athletic, Classic, Romantic, Gamine, and Ingenue.
Kitchener’s style essences, included an important 7th essence; The Angelic also known as the Ethereal.
The main difference between the Kibbe Body Type and the 7 Style Essences is that Kibbe is more about who you are, and the essences more about how you’re perceived. For example, you can be a dramatic and have very sharp features, but you are perceived as sweet and even look younger than your age. These complement each other and help you achieve a harmonious aesthetic that actually looks good on you effortlessly.
why is it important to know your style essence?
Knowing your essences —which is important to mention we all have more than one— will give a better understanding of your style and your image. Which will help you showcase your most authentic self, and feel much more comfortable with your dressing day by day.
Essences consider some traits that are “felt” rather than explained.
The 7 essences are also categorized as YANG and YIN. There are essences that feel sharper and other that look softer. The Yang essences are the Dramatic, Gamine and Natural. Then we have the Classic essence, which is a balance between Yin and Yang. Finally, the Yin essences are the Romantic, Ingenue, and Angelic.
The yang essences are often focused on sharper shapes with a lot of structure, or heavy materials, while the yin essences focus on softer, rounder, more delicate shapes and fabrics.
The 7 Style Essences Explained
For a dramatic, fashion is all about expression.
A trait a Dramatic has: they express a lot through their faces, but specially through their eyes.
This is the most yang essence and it looks better in rectangle shapes. Its dressing lines are long, straight, and angular. So, wearing blazers and structured pieces will always harmonize with a dramatic’s face.
Dramatics look powerful, intense, confident, and bold. People usually perceive them as intimidating, as its facial exprensions tend to also be very strong.
A key to knowing if you have dramatic essence: A man’s suit looks great on you.
For a gamine, fashion is all about having fun.
A trait a gamine has: creativity, as they naturally mix patterns and add color to their outfits in a unique way.
This is part of the yang essences, but they approach life in a more playful way. Gamines look better in rectangle shapes, but with more color. Their dressing lines are shorter than a dramatic, straight, and even oversized. Clothes that look boyish and childish is usually what looks best on them.
Gamines are playful, rebellious, original, and peculiar. People usually perceive them as young and rebelious as they can be petite, but have a creative style.
A key to knowing if you have dramatic essence: Children-looking clothes look natural on you.
For a natural, fashion is all about confort.
A trait a natural has: free flowing hair without looking messy.
They are also part of the yang essences, but their approach is more casual and relaxed. Naturals look better in large and irregular shapes. Their dressing lines are long, relaxed, natural textures and abstract shapes. Clothes on natural fibers, and layering their outfits are key.
Naturals are laid-back, relaxed, fresh, and practical. People usually perceive them as physically strong and approachable.
A key to knowing if you have natural essence: You look put together in activewear.
For a classic, fashion is all about being timeless.
A trait a classic has: presence and elegance without trying.
This is the balanced essence of Yin and Yang. Classics look better in balanced silhouettes and shapes, nothing too soft nor sharp. Their dressing lines are neither long or short, but in between. Conservative pieces look better on them.
Classics are formal, traditional, tidy, elegant, and timeless. People usually perceive them as someone they should respect.
A key to knowing if you have classic essence: You pull off minimal timeless outfits without looking boring or old-fashioned.
For a romantic, fashion is all about feeling confident in their skin.
A trait a romantic has: they tend to be flirtatious and seductive sometimes without being aware of it.
This is part of the Yin essences, with a sensual approach. Romantics look great in luxurious fabrics like silk or satin materials, fabrics that are soft and drapped. Their dressing lines can be short and fitted, wrapping the body softly around the curves. Open necklines and flower prints look stunning on them.
Romantics are mature, sensual, feminine, or glamorous. People perceive them as someone very confident in their body (even if you have insecurities, others can’t perceive them). Can be intimidating or very attractive.
A key to knowing if you have romantic essence: You can wear a tight-fitted dress with an open neckline looking effortlessly good instead of awkward.
For an ingenue, fashion is all about embracing their feminity.
A trait an ingenue has: they tend to look younger and cute without trying.
Another Yin essence, with a small-scale yin approach. Ingenues look great in soft delicate materials, puffed sleeves, small flower patterns, and ruffles. Their dressing lines are small and flowing, round shapes, compact hourglass figure. Delicate details in clothing and vintage items look better on them than in any other essence.
Ingenues are cute, youthful, innocent, feminine, or pretty. People perceive them as delicate and harmless.
A key to knowing if you have ingenue essence: You can wear short puffy dresses or peter pan collar necks without looking childish.
For an angelic, fashion is all about standing out gracefully.
A trait an angelic has: they tend to look like a mystical creature.
The most Yin essence, with an ethereal approach. Angelics look beautiful in textures, draped fabrics, shiny materials. Their dressing lines are tall and long just like their vertical line. Ornate details and transparencies make angelics glow.
Some features an angelic essence can have:
- They look or are tall.
- Oval face.
- Low contrast in their faces (their eyebrows are soft instead of bold and dark).
- Peculiar facial features.
Angelics are unique, ethereal, old souls, or someone who looks like they doesn’t belong in this era. People perceive them as mysterious.
A key to knowing if you have angelic essence: Shiny, iridescent, metallic long dresses make you look like a goddess instead of overshadowing you.
not sure how to convine your style essences with your personal style, color analysis, and Kibbe body type?
we can help you with that by following these 2 steps:
Contact us with the subject “Essences.”
Let us know how you would describe your personal style, what your Kibbe Body Type is, and seasonal color. If you don’t know or you’re not sure, tell us what you know and or try our Complete Style Consultary here.