Tired of outdated stereotypes about what a scientist "should" look like, two scientists have set up a Tumblr blog to to challenge common misconceptions.
The fashion blog, named Sartorial Science, was created by Sophie Powell, a 24-year-old PhD student researching arthritis at the University of Manchester, and Dr Sam Illingworth, a 31-year-old lecturer in science communication at Manchester Metropolitan University.
Powell said she was frustrated by not being taken seriously if she dressed a certain way.
"I often feel that I won't get taken seriously in science if I put too much effort into the way I look," she said.
Powell also runs a fashion and beauty blog called The Scientific Beauty, where she explains the science behind the latest beauty products as well as documenting her experiences as a female researcher. "It would be great to change the stereotype of what a 'good scientist' looks like to other academics," she said.
Illingworth describes the blog as a place to showcase the “fashion fabulousness” of scientists and other researchers.
"The idea is that scientists with an interest in fashion send us a photo of them in their resplendent best, and then answer a few questions about their research and scientific interests," he said.
"From talking to other scientists we knew that we were not alone," he added, "and we wanted to create this blog as an opportunity for other like-minded scientists to share their own fashion influences in an accessible and fun manner."
"We also want it to be a celebration of the fact that scientists are fantastic people with a wide variety of interests, and that they do not at all conform to the stereotypical images of old Caucasian men in lab coats and safety goggles," Illingworth said.
"Hopefully the blog will help to show the general public that scientists are real people too."
"It would be great to see this more diverse image spread into mainstream media too, with less depictions of us all with frizzy Einstein hair and sooty safety goggles," Powell said.
"We hope that people will enjoy checking back with the site, reading the latest entries, learning more about the research of others, and gaining some style inspiration from fellow scientists, too."
"Eventually we also hope to have enough data to be able to start investigating the relationship between scientists and fashion in a detailed study that would be suitable for publication," Powell said. "But in order for that to happen we need lots more posts, so come on, researchers, show us your glad rags!"