The Doshas Go Clothes Shopping


By now, we know that people with different constitutions have very different bodies, health histories and personalities. Of course, all these individual differences show up in all other aspects of life. Take shopping…

Everyone has to wear something, I think you would agree. But just what that might be, and how those clothes end up in the closet turns out to be pretty predictable from our understanding of the Ayurvedic constitution.

Vatas might have trouble getting organized enough to actually make it to the mall, but once they get there, they can really get into the assortment of sights and sounds in the clothing aisle. They crave variety, so you will find them often seeking out the new styles and the newest boutiques.

Vatas are eccentric and creative. They like to make a statement. These artistic vatas do their best to put together an outfit that no one has ever seen before. And they tend to have quite avant garde taste, so expect to see a hat from the antique shop paired with work boots from the construction store.

Pittas are attracted to luxurious, regal clothing. Think velvet and silver. They like to impress, too, so they may drop a bundle on the latest style. Pittas are driven and intense, so they like to get in, find the most ostentatious outfit, and get out. They might have the clerks running around madly, and don’t mind making a bit of a scene at the store to get what they want. Expect to see Mr. Pitta in an immaculately tailored Armani suit, and Ms. Pitta strutting in a Dior evening dress…or the closest approximation they can reasonably afford.

To a Kapha, clothing is an unfortunate necessity to cover nakedness, no more, no less. They are just not into the whole fashion scene. Since they are built for comfort, not for speed, they value clothes that fit well and will last a long time, and often could care less what they look like. Even the idea of a Kapha going clothing shopping is a bit of an oxymoron, but they have to wear something, so they occasionally reluctantly drag themselves to the nearest outlet barn and stock up on sturdy clothes that will last as long as possible, in quantities limited only by the wallet. The ideal clothes shopping experience for Mr. Kapha would be a stop at the bargain outlet, where he would pick up 100 pairs of identical, comfortable underwear, followed by an equal haul of one type of pants and shirts. Shopping done for the next 50 years! Expect to see Ms. Kapha in a practical pair of jeans and comfortable shoes.

Of course at various times in our lives we all make extra efforts with our appearance and find some enjoyment in the shopping experience. But pay attention and you’ll find that in our most unfettered phases of life, these tendencies will bear more true than you’d expect.

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The Tea Talk Blog is written by Karta Purkh Singh Khalsa, Yogi herbalist with over 40 years experience.
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