Social and Psychological Aspects

The Search for Authenticity through ‘Style-Fashion-Dress’ among Adolescent Latina Immigrants

  • Mary Alice Casto (University of Nebraska–Lincoln)
  • Jennifer Paff Ogle (Colorado State University)
  • Maricela DeMiryjn (Colorado State University)
  • Amanda Morales (University of Nebraska-Lincoln)
  • Alyssa Smith (University of Nebraska-Lincoln)


The work explored how adolescent Latina immigrants to the US navigate their culture of origin and their culture of settlement through the lens of Tulloch's (2010) concept of "style-fashion-dress". Participants included 12 immigrant women, ages 20-23 (mean age=21.25 years), who identified as Latina and immigrated to the US before age 15. Data collection focused on participants' memories of their immigration experiences during adolescence. This retrospective approach captured change over time in the acculturation process. Analyses revealed that, as they sought to negotiate diverse cultures and forge a sense of "who they were becoming" through the acculturation process, participants confronted varied dilemmas of identity, frequently underpinned by an overarching goal of "knowing" or "locating" the authentic self and expressing that self through style-fashion-dress. Two key identity dilemmas were observed:  (a) Identity Confusion" Who Am I? and (b) Straddling Two Cultures: Feeling Caught and Conflicted.

Keywords: identity, dress, Latina, immigrant, adolescence, acculturation, athenticity

How to Cite:

Casto, M., Ogle, J. P., DeMiryjn, M., Morales, A. & Smith, A., (2020) “The Search for Authenticity through ‘Style-Fashion-Dress’ among Adolescent Latina Immigrants”, International Textile and Apparel Association Annual Conference Proceedings 77(1). doi:



Published on
28 Dec 2020
Peer Reviewed