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Audrey Hepburn's Givenchy gown worn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s named best movie dress
Audrey Hepburn’s gown worn in Breakfast at Tiffany’s has been named the best movie dress ever
And with little black dresses sported regularly on the red carpet by modern celebrities like singer Taylor Swift and actress Scarlett Johansson, there’s no doubt the design has stood the test of time.
So it’s no surprise that a little – or long – black dress has become a wardrobe staple and is the go-to outfit women choose to boost their confidence, research has found.
Women feeling flirty may pick red, the colour of passion, for first dates, parties and nights out.
But black is the classic colour they think makes them look most sophisticated – the view of 47 per cent – and gives the best first impression (25 per cent).
And 44 per cent say they feel most confident wearing black – with red a distant runner-up (16 per cent).
Two thirds power dress in black for job interviews and 55 per cent prefer to wear black to work.
Women typically play safe on social occasions too with black the most popular colour for dinners (35 per cent), nights out (34 per cent), first dates (31 per cent) and anniversaries (19 per cent).
The iconic black Givenchy dress was worn in the classic 1961 film
As children all over the country start school this week, black is also the top choice for mums on the school run (19 per cent).
In the fashion world black is never out of style
Women also prefer black lingerie in the bedroom (19 per cent) ahead of red (13 per cent), white (11 per cent), pink (10 per cent) and blue (six per cent).
Fashion psychologist Professor Karen Pine said that women are much more likely to be judged on their clothing than men and black is typically their go-to colour.
She said: “Dressing in black immediately makes us feel sophisticated – think of the black-tie event – and we rarely dress youngsters in black.
Popstar Taylor Swift on the red carpet
“Therefore it is the colour most associated with maturity, strength and sophistication.
“Power dressing starts with black; it is the ultimate colour symbolising authority, success and capability.
“When we put it on we immediately internalise what it stands for – we start to feel strong, serious and powerful and our inner confidence gets a huge boost.
“Confidence is most important to us when we are faced with a significant occasion like a job interview or a date, where we want to make a powerful impact and where the first impression really matters.
“In the fashion world black is never out of style. It is the colour that suits everyone and it goes with everything, so we can wear it confidently without worrying over whether or not we made the right choice.
“And if we want body confidence, then black is the go-to colour. It is super flattering because it absorbs light and makes our overall silhouette appear slimmer.”
The handful of social events where women prefer another colour to black include attending a wedding, researchers found.
Female wedding guests are most likely to sport blue (22 per cent), followed by pink (18 per cent) and purple (13 per cent).
Blue is also the most popular colour when meeting a partner’s parents, cited by 22 per cent – followed by black (14 per cent).
And white is the ‘in’ colour for beachwear (18 per cent), followed by blue (12 per cent) and yellow (10 per cent).
Researchers asked 1,100 women of all ages their favourite colour of clothing for particular occasions.
Actress Scarlett Johansson is also a fan of the little black dress
While black was almost always their top pick, brown invariably came bottom.
Less than one per cent would feel confident wearing brown to an interview, date or other special occasion.
Grey is seen as good for work; blue or pink perfect for weddings; and white, yellow and orange come out of the closet for trips to the beach.
Almost a quarter – 24 per cent – of women will tell a friend if they dress badly, found the survey of 1,500 women carried out for deodorant brand Sure Invisible Black + White.
And nearly one in five – 18 per cent – copy a friend’s style if they like it.
The survey was carried out for antiperspirant brand Sure Invisible Black + White.