Love me, love my clothes. According to a mail survey of 13,000 Glamour magazine readers, a mother's response to her daughter's clothes greatly affects the daughter's self-image. Sixty-two percent of those surveyed whose mothers were positive about their clothes had a better self-image and more confidence about clothes than the 20 percent whose mothers were critical, and the 18 percent whose mothers didn't even notice what they wore. "This 'Mother Impact' is so profound that not only does it supersede other self-image influences, such as income, marital status and profession, but it also mitigates the father's impact. A critical mother or one who didn't notice how her daughter dressed could undermine the effect of a positive father, and a positive mother could override a father's negative influence, boosting her daughter's confidence," the magazine concludes from its survey, developed and analyzed with the assistance of Patricia Mulready of New York University.
Among the other conclusions of the survey:
* Ninety-five percent of respondents say they have changed the way they dress in the past five years, particularly buying better clothes and using accessories more effectively.
* The influence of men on a woman's style of dress, while stronger than friends or coworkers, diminishes drastically when women reach age 20 and continues to decrease as she gets older.
* Comfort is a major factor in dress, ranking over style, individuality, authority and other factors.
* Most women would be happier with $2,000 to spend on clothes than a new romance or weight loss.
* By a ratio of 10 to 1, respondents consider they look better with clothes on than off.