On a campus filled with thousands of people, self-expression is important. One way that Cal Poly Pomona students express individuality is through clothing.

CPP has an Instagram account run by students dedicated to showcasing the unique style of students.

The account is known as cppfashion and is updated daily.

There are candid photos of the stylish outfits of students on campus, while other posts are of individual students posing for the photographer.

Second-year communications student Dominique Smith, the manager and creative director of CPPFashion. Courtesy of CPPFashion

Posts usually include a full body shot of the outfit and are followed by close-ups of unique pieces incorporated into the outfit.

Dominique Smith, a second-year communication student, is the manager and creative director of the account.

Her job is to oversee everything about the account.

This entails coming up with posting strategies, deciding what image the account should have, deciding how to best reach the target audience of college students and planning future goals.

The fashion account goes as far back as 2013.

The account was started by an engineer alumnus, who loved photography and was interested in fashion.

He noticed that although many students come to class in sweatpants and flip flops, there are those who make the effort to take their look a step further and provide an insight to their style, even during an 8 a.m. class.

Today, Smith runs the account with help from a few other content creators.

“There’s no guideline regarding the kind of fashion we feature. We don’t do strictly high fashion or anything like that. If we like the vibe of the look or something that catches your eye,” said Smith.

The photos on the account are very diverse. One post has a unique men’s hairstyle, while another is a candid of a student with a cheeseburger backpack.

“The past photographer took photos of people who would make you turn your head. Looks that just impress others. I personally look at some outfits and go ‘wow.’ I think that needs to be recognized. It makes them feel good and gets more students to see that and gain inspiration.”

Lareen El Rifaei, a fourth-year marketing student was featured on the page last year. Photos courtesy of CPPFashion

Meri Krier, a second-year communication student who is minoring in apparel merchandising is also an important member of the fashion account team.

Krier is the account’s media content creator.

Her job is to post Instagram Stories on Mondays and Fridays that consist of “holy grails,” which are posts featuring different vintage shops and thrift stores that have stylish clothing at affordable prices.

When Kier is choosing what stores to feature on her stories, price and location are the main aspects she thinks about.

Most stores mentioned are in the Pomona area and are, most importantly, fairly priced.

“We’re all college students who might not be able to afford Urban Outfitters or Lululemon, especially if we’re just looking for a school outfit. Vintage clothing is in right now, and a lot of people like that old-y style of clothes, especially me,” Krier said.

Krier thinks it’s important for fashion-loving CPP students to have an account like this in the palm of their hands.

“When I see someone wearing a cute outfit, it definitely makes me pull inspiration from it, so it’s good we can post about it for others to be inspired as well.”

The Instagram page is also a place for inclusivity and expression.

“We’ve all been there, [at a place] where we wear something new and weird. The account is great because you won’t feel like the only one,” Krier said.

Lareen El Rifaei, a fourth-year marketing student who was featured on the Instagram page, said, “From following the CPP fashion page, I see different styles that I have never seen before. It shows me what a lot of people are wearing and what styles are in.”

El Rifaei, who lived in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, for eight years, says she was raised in an area where everyone dressed nice no matter where they were going.

“Here, people tell me I’m dressed up at school, but it’s just the way I dress. In Dubai you dress up to fit in, not to stand out,” El Rifaei said.  

From dressy to casual, the CPP fashion Instagram page is a place where students’ unique styles and personalities are illustrated through the clothes they wear.  

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