As of late, there has been a massive resurgence of playground hair. Scrunchies, hair clamps and colourful hair clips are decorating everyone's crowns. 

Image: Giphy

And with every runway show, fashion ad campaign, and new designers popping up all over Instagram introducing some fashion joy in the form of playful handbags, jewellery and clothing reminiscent of candyfloss and sweeties, I can't help but wonder (without sounding too much like Carrie Bradshaw), is this unconsciously intentional? 

Sounds like an oxymoron, doesn't it?

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But is there some part of us that craves this form of lightness, pre-school innocence that seems so unattainable in the midst of Zuma trials, the meteoric rise in femicide cases, Trump and the immigrant policy crisis? Is fashion our outlet?

Of course, it's not an outlet for everyone, but it is certainly trying to spark joy with the masses. 

Here are just a few examples:

Moschino's latest fashion ad campaign shows the imagined Alien Nation...

Doll-like, plastic even, models are shown removed from this world, imagined in another that is, perhaps, more hopeful? (They are out there...)

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Dior's latest menswear runway show saw models carrying Teddy-like dolls inside their bags instead of chihuahuas.

Now they're all over Instagram...

Even Naomi Campbell wants to regress to her Teddy-hugging, blankie-clutching days! (Who wouldn't)

The Teddy theme has also tricked into outerwear, as we're seeing women draping themselves in Teddy's fur...

R799, H&M.

And candy-themed accessories are everywhere, injecting some childhood bliss with every step we take.

Earrings or candy canes?

Fruity bangles or food for thought?

Bracelets that are really helpful when your Zoloft prescription runs out ??????

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Pre-school fashion rising or escapism arising?

Last day of pre-K

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Of course, fashion has always been escapism. The theme changes as trends are reinvented over and over again, yet it's still about decorating your body for some purpose more than just utility. To decorate is to enhance, yes, to look beautiful and interesting, but also to camouflage. Happy dressing can hide or distract from the sad, the monotonous and the hopelessness that often plague our daily feeds.

Lifehacker notes that escapism is just a way of recharging your batteries, like a daydream we just need to step out of reality for a moment. Plus it's actually good for your brain, as without a little daily distraction, you can actually burn out much more easily. Too much could, of course, cause detachment. This form of escapism is usually attained via drugs and alcohol, which can be very destructive. 

So as you fashion doctor, I'm prescribing this, healthier alternative. And yes, fashion psychology is a real thing!

That's probably why dad shoes are here, the humour of it all helps us to take ourselves a bit less seriously. The funnier, more fun, and themed our clothing and outfits are, the less likely we are to feel we are actually humans that are 'meant' to act and be all serious every day. Now, we can just play!

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