BOULDER, Colo. –

Beauty, trendy, attractive, fashionable.

These buzzwords, along with many others, cross the minds of the general public on a daily basis.

Although the true influence of how these words affect society is not known, there is no doubt they often linger in the subconscious mind.

People are socialized from a young age to believe that true beauty is on the inside and that appearance should not matter.

While it would be nice if that cliché were completely accurate, it just doesn’t seem to have the credibility that people would like it to.

Fashion and beauty are not only judged and analyzed today, people have been critical about appearance throughout history. The choice people make every morning about what to wear and how they’ll present themselves for the day really is an important one.

The mass media in general — and specifically popular reality shows such as “What Not to Wear” — focus on the importance of looking professional in society, and why it matters.

Many people in today’s society constantly tell themselves that their personal image and style doesn’t matter and that they should be able to look any way and wear whatever they want.

However, if that were the case, then why is fashion and status so closely related? And why are certain TV series that encourage a more sophisticated outer appearance so popular in today’s society?

Everyone has their lazy days where all they want to do is stay in their sweats and baggy T-shirts as long as possible — I know I do.

While those moments are perfectly acceptable from time to time and in the comfort of one’s own home, those who look like they just rolled out of bed and put very little effort into themselves are often negatively scrutinized.

Now I’m not saying that personality does not matter, because it most definitely does. However, the fact of the matter is that it takes a while to really get to know the true personality of someone, and that what a person looks like has a lot to do with the formation of initial judgments.

Society is full of judging, and when people don’t exhibit their outer appearance in a presentable way, they are often times looked down upon.

When I asked 20 students around my age (20) whether or not they thought fashion was an important factor in society, all but two of them said they believed it to be so — although most of them wished it wasn’t.

While I have to admit it is rather sad that so much judgment is based solely on how people look, I believe that it is an aspect in society that will not be overcome anytime soon, for it cannot really be avoided.

Hopefully now most of you know how big of a decision you really are making when you wake up and get dressed every morning — and that always appearing in a presentable manner is extremely important.

Kayla Soibelman is a junior at the University of Colorado and a member of the Gamma Phi Beta sorority.