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Dressing for Success: a look at three women in politics

Since 1921, women have become increasingly involved in the political sphere of Canada. Many MPs in our government are now women and work tirelessly to bring the feminine genius into the public sphere. Examples of these hard-working women, although there are many, are Ruth Ellen Brosseau (NDP), Michelle Rempel (CPC), and Maryam Monsef (LIB). These women are all young, highly involved in their careers, and are quickly rising in their respective parties. For these women to have made such an impact a career path that was once dominated by men is truly monumental for our country and something Canada’ should be proud of.

Something quite striking about these three women is how their ways of dressing reflect the responsibility of their office, and I think it is fair to say that it plays a role in helping them to be taken seriously. People who are often in the public eye, such as celebrities, tend to dress in showy outfits that make them stand out to garner attention with the media.

These women, however, stick to neutral colours and often simple flowing garments – such as seen in the picture of Brosseau – or wear flattering and feminine blazers, as seen in the pictures of Rempel and Monsef. They dress for the office, to make a statement that they come to do their job, and in a way which complements their individual body types. However, they also manage to retain femininity and charm in their styles, which are both similar and unique to each one of them.

Monsef, Brosseau, and Rempel are alike in that they keep their outfits in neutral colours and simple in taste in order to direct the attention they receive towards their ideas and policy achievements rather than their outward appearance. But at the same time, all three MPs are incredibly unique and have styles that are all their own.

Monsef dresses in business attire, sticking to blazers and cardigans. She complements her dark hair and eyes with darker outfits, but pulls it together with dashes of light colours. Brosseau claims the flowing garments. She keeps them simple enough to be professional, but she works her draping jackets and shirts to flatter and draw attention to her slender face and great hair. She works a bit of colour into her outfits to add a bit of flair and personality, but never enough to take away from the decorum of her position.

Rempel manages to take casual outfits and turn them professional through the addition of a blazer to an everyday blouse, or dress pants to a white tee. Unlike Brosseau and Monsef, Rempel more frequently makes her style her own by adding accessories, such as bracelets and long necklaces.

As women, we are all called to be leaders: leaders in our families, in our friendships and communities, and in our society. When we dress according to that call, we draw attention to our talents and signal to others that we are ready and competent to lead. Rempel, Brosseau, and Monsef are great examples of feminine leadership within politics, and their ways of dressing is part of the package they bring to public life.


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