Complex, Inquisitive, Clever: The INTP Style Pathway

A complex and inquisitive approach to style will aid the INTP developing and expressing her unique style essence

Can style be learned, or do you have to be born with it to have any chance of becoming stylish? Style is deeply, truly personal and depending on which of the 16 style types you prefer, you’ll approach it quite uniquely. Each of the 16 style types approaches their style journey differently. In this article we’re going to discuss the Complex Stylist, INTP: The Style Theorist.

Foundations First

Here at 16 Style Types we differentiate between style essence and style expression, and our focus is on style essence. Which is why you won’t find any specific style advice on your style expression in this article such as which colors, silhouettes, styles of clothing, brands and so on will suit you – and that’s because your style essence doesn’t determine or even indicate what those elements of style expression might be.

Women with the same Style Type, for a variety of important reasons, may not find the same kinds of clothing suit them. What they will have in common, though, are similar ways of acquiring trusted information, evaluating options, making choices, and experiencing style in significant ways, which are the concepts we focus on in this article.

Any images in this post are to act solely as possible interpretations of the spirit of this Style Type, (not as a literal example of what this Style Type may wear, might suit them or what they may choose to wear, and certainly not as a recommendation of what they should be wearing). The images exist only to illustrate and illuminate, not mandate or dictate.

The articles are also published in their Style Type pairs showcasing images which may serve to illustrate the differences (again in essence) in those pairs – so here that means INTP with ENTP.

The Complex Stylist, INTP: The Style Theorist

For many INTPs, style is a statement. It’s important for them to note that style and being stylish are not the same thing. Stylish may be trendy, or what a population considers appropriate. Style is a look, a feel, it’s a way of expressing who you are.

“I’ve noticed that finding and using a framework helps INTPs navigate something that has been difficult before. What strikes me, for me, is it’s just as important to be able to express yourself in your own style, that works with who you are. Style is maybe not as important, but it is close to as important as what an understanding of psychological type does as far as helping you be yourself. Another key question to ask is: does your style match your environment? It’s fine to be head-in-the-clouds professor, but it is just as important to see if your style is actually working in your environment.”.

INTPs enjoy thinking thoughts few other people think and are often very focused on their own thoughts and ideas. Excellent at analyzing, categorizing and theorizing, INTPs can imagine a future that may seem at odds with the practical reality around them. Competence and independent thought are driving needs for INTPs who often defy conventional categorization. Not overly concerned with detailed planning, INTPs nevertheless are skilled in giving their complete focus to significant ideas and projects.

INTPs in their complex and clever way identify the best style pathway for them

Style principles for INTPs finding their style

Here are seven proven style principles for the INTP on her style quest.

It’s a long journey

For INTPs, finding her style may have been, or remains, a long journey requiring considerable effort at the commencement of her style quest.  She first needs to accept the value of paying attention to style and this can be a hurdle some INTPs struggle to clear as their belief in their own competence as the most important thing and the desire for more knowledge can keep them firmly in their heads.

Competency is on the line

Competency is a powerful driver for INTPs so the idea she may be being overlooked or be not taken as seriously as her accomplishments warrant because her style is letting her down can be difficult to accept.

With the right style system to guide, direct and rely on, the INTP can competently enter the style maze and define and travel an original, authentic style journey for herself.

Take the time to gather all data

INTPs often expend a lot of brainpower and time collecting, dissecting and categorizing information and ideas. This can be an excellent tool when coming up with a style approach that feels true, and not a subscription to other people’s ideas or expectations (something to be avoided, even in the style arena where little personal knowledge may yet be acquired).

The INTP is encouraged to research to her heart and head’s content, categorize the salient information, and ask questions of the right people who are sensitive enough to realize how much faith she’s putting in them by asking in the first place.

INTPs are well placed to enjoy the thinking before moving into the doing part.

Categorize and seek feedback

Many INTPs report that finding a categorization system they like, trust and can rely upon helps them define and express their style. They may be on the lookout for refinements to any style system they come across, for what is natural.

INTPs often report that other people commenting on their style can be helpful, as it can open options they were not aware of before. The source must be one they trust implicitly.

Make room for independent decision making

Getting input from others is great intel but in the end it’s simply data – the INTP is still in the drivers’ seat and must live every day with the style she’s chosen.  So it’s paramount that there’s space for her to make her own decisions in her own time. She should not be rushed or pushed.

Shopping with others can be tricky – if they aren’t sensitive to the INTP need for processing time, it can be overwhelming, frustrating and even anxiety-producing.  This is one specific example where space needs to be made for the INTP to manoeuvre in her own way at her own pace.  But this applies to the INTP in all style categories.

Move from concepts to execution

Many INTPs are having so much fun inside their own heads, with endless possibilities and information to be analyzed and categorized, that they can fail to follow through to applied action. And it is this action-taking step that will really make the difference to the INTP on her true style pathway.

At some point, it’s important to stop collecting information, stop analyzing choices and have confidence that the actions she takes will be right for her. Then go do them – take action.

Style is always a work in progress

The turning point is often a realization, an insight prompted by something external such as a comment made by a respected colleague, that their style can be improved, that they would experience fewer obstacles and greater ease in many aspects of their life, from the practical to the esoteric, if they invested in their style.

The stylish INTP needs precise information at exactly the right time to take important turns on her unique style journey.

Complex, inquisitive, clever - the INTP approaches her authentic style pathway the same way she approaches most things in life

INTP style in a nutshell

The stylish INTP will thrive when her abstract and creative thinking shines through and she develops confidence in her style decisions. INTPs have a complex, theorizing style when they are their stylish best.

In the style blueprint (part of the INTP Style Report which you receive when you discover your style type), we describe four stages an INTP is likely to go through as she explores and discovers for herself what style is, and means, to her – a supportive guide for the complex stylist, the INTP theorizing (and manifesting) her authentic style.


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