Most people put a lot of thought into what they’re going to wear that day. We obviously want to look good for our job. But at the same time, there are always lingering questions about how to balance style and professionalism. This issue became even more difficult to answer as the COVID pandemic swept through the world. People suddenly needed to add masks to their daily routine. The majority of people simply grab a mask and get on with the day. But some people put a little extra care into making sure that their mask matches their overall sense of style.

It’s not too rare for people to put that extra bit of work into their choice of a mask. What is a surprise is when Hillary Clinton comments on how well a mask’s color works with the rest of someone’s outfit. But that’s exactly what happened through Twitter after Hillary Clinton saw Nancy Pelosi decked out in a pink pantsuit with a perfectly matched mask. Now, most people would be thrilled to have Hillary Clinton complement their sense of style. But there’s a number of factors that make this particular comment go from nice to outright groundbreaking. One of the biggest comes from the fact that both Clinton and Pelosi are women working within a system that’s still usually dominated by men. Seeing two strong women celebrating each other was a nice and even inspiring moment. The comment sent a wave of celebration through Twitter users. The comment also opened up a larger discussion of the role of fashion in politics.

Another reason why the comment from Clinton carried so much weight was due to the fact that the former presidential candidate was synonymous with pantsuits. Any comment from Clinton about someone’s choice in pantsuits provides some real gravitas. The tweet also served to raise discussion on the reason why Clinton decided on pantsuits so often in her career. It’s easy to forget that there was a time when Clinton didn’t wear the now popular ensemble. She learned very early on in her husband’s presidency that skirts bring up a lot of complications within very public life. She kept finding herself needing to judge other people’s views and manage the skirt’s position. Over time she realized that a pantsuit would remove the need to micromanage her clothing during the course of a day. There’s really no bad angle when someone’s wearing a pantsuit.

Over time Clinton realized something else about her clothing choices. It was an amazing way to guide discussions in the direction she wanted. Clothing is something that everyone works with over the course of their day. Fashion is one of the most relatable aspects of any situation. We don’t all run for president. But we’ve all struggled to find the right clothing option for any given occasion. Clinton realized that wearing the same type of outfit would lead the conversation toward that decision. It was just too relatable for people to pass on without commentary. This gave Clinton the ability to guide people from that discussion point to areas she wanted to talk about. What’s more, Clinton discovered that she saved time by just going with a single option. It’s become clear that Clinton was deciding on a lot more than just clothing when she put her signature look together. And it’s equally clear that getting a compliment from her on fashion does indeed carry a lot of meaning.