Americans have the reputation of being tragically unfashionable, but if you ask an American, she will answer that she’s merely more “casual”, less willing to dress formally. American men stereotypically come home, throw away their work suits and then spend the rest of the afternoon in baggy sweatpants. And indeed, USA is more casual than Europe and many other cultures. America seems very similar to Western Europe, but they are very different in terms of climate. In many places in America you can get burns from your own steering wheel. And indeed, many women would simply discard suit jackets when working because their only purpose would be to absorb sweat.
An American women was surprised when she noticed that many French women wear plaster at their heels, because their elegant dress shoes rubbed against the sensitive feet. In America, a woman who is wearing impossibly tall high heels is not probably the CEO or a succesful attorney; she’s more likely to be an assistant or receptionist. Why? Because women with power can dress what they like and they make their own rules – if they want comfort, they will embrace it. And even though stereotypical American person is overweight, many of them live more active lifestyle – and so for them it’s more practical not to dress up after work.
Americans consider themselves more socially mobile, they think that their success is owed mostly to themselves. That’s not exactly true, but nevertheless many Americans dress informally, in order to show others they’re “regular Janes”, and that’s why they don’t have many formal ways of adressing other people.
Many Americans describe themselves as friendly, but in many cultures, this is deemed as very superficial. The casual style of many Americans can be very off-putting. My friend from Oman has recently said something to the effect: “In my country children are encouraged to behave like children, and in America children are encouraged to work, drive and date like adults. And as a result our adults are mature, and American adults are childish.”