Fashion trends have brought about some of the strangest looks like Britney and Justin’s famed denim on denim look. If you grew up in the 90s, most likely you had the biggest crush on Aaron Carter, owned at least three Tamagotchis, and had a drawer full of different colored scrunchies. Well unlock that stuffed drawer because it’s time to wear them and many other pieces famed from the 90s.
I sat down with fashion expert Sonali Lodhia, writer for Vogue India, and The Trend Spotter’s Taylah Brewer to see what makes a trend, what 90s trends are back in style, and their take on all of the recurring styles of the decade.
What makes a fashion trend “trendy”?
“To be ‘trendy’ a trend must be relevant to the moment and the current zeitgeist. While some may believe fashion is random, it’s actually quite representative of the current mood and landscape. A lot of individuals are becoming reminiscent of their pasts especially with the increasing use of technology. While, of course, a trend can’t be a trend without first adopters and followers, these people are embracing styles because they connect with them,” Brewer says.
Fashion trends were started by the elite of society back in the 1800s, according to Bustle. Keeping up with trends was a way of showing that you had a disposable income in which you could just wear whatever you want and never repeat it. When the common class wanted to be like the elite, they would try and take part in these trends and that’s exactly what’s put us where we are today. People idolize celebrities and models and want to look like them as they are now the elite of our society. These celebs are wearing what’s considered to be the hottest trends and the majority of people want to follow in their footsteps. “Kate Hudson could walk out of her mansion in a Juicy Couture tracksuit and then people would want to wear them again,” Lodhia says.
Who follows these trends?
According to Heather C. Anderson, marketing and psychology expert, humans, being the social animals that they are, follow trends because of their want or need to fit into a certain crowd or feel like a part of a community. “If you work in fashion or are a young adult, most likely you’re following these trends. I work in fashion and if I didn’t wear the latest trends, it would just mean that I had a lack of knowledge of the fashion industry. The word ‘fashion’ literally means ‘a popular trend.’ It’s in the word,” says Lodhia.
Time to cut the chit-chat…what trends are back from the 90s?
Carrie Bradshaw once said, “No women who works at W-magazine and lives on Perry Street would be caught dead at a hip downtown restaurant wearing a scrunchie!” But now, scrunchies are back and becoming as popular as they once were. Just over a year ago, big brands like Marc Jacobs, Missoni, and Topshop all released cute scrunchies “that even I would wear! Also, more celebrities are wearing them too which obviously makes people think that this is a lasting style.” These scrunchies are coming in all sort of patterns and are being made out of different types of fabric like leather and fur. The prices of these scrunchies can range anywhere from $5 to $200. It’s almost an investment now to own a scrunchie!
Remember Brenda and Kelly from Beverly Hills, 90210 and their love of their high-waisted light-blue jeans? These jeans got dubbed “mom jeans” in a SNL skit with Tina Fey, Amy Poehler, and Maya Rudolph. The jeans recently reappeared in Topshop stores. Celebrities like Kendall Jenner, Whitney Port, and Candice Swanepoel have been sporting this look and are even making them fashionable to wear at night to a nice restaurant.
Chokers date back to the ancient Egyptians and became a fashion statement among Goths in the 90s when they wore pieces of black, plastic wire. Early last year, Vogue declared that chokers were back thanks to celebs like Rihanna. Oscar de la Renta and Saint Laurent helped bring this trend back and as more celebrities wore them, more stores had them for sale and it took off from there. “I’ve seen choker prices range from two dollars all the way to thousands of dollars. I’m a huge fan of this look and now my neck feels naked if I’m not wearing a choker,” says Lodhia.
The Bardot Look
This impractical, off-the-shoulder look regained it’s popularity in the summer of 2016 when Kate Middleton wore a cold shoulder dress to London’s Natural History Museum. Since then big designers like Chloe featured the Bardot look. “I was in Europe last summer and just shopping in Zara and noticed just how many cold shoulder tops there were. I picked some up and then came back to the US and noticed that these tops were all of a sudden in stores like Topshop and Urban Outfitters!” says Lodhia.
“To be honest, I’ve never really understood this look. I’ve seen it on models on Instagram and rocked by different celebrities, but I think I would look awful if I tried it myself,” says Lodhia. Jelly shoes were huge in the late 80s and early 90s, sported by numerous stars on classic TV shows like Full House and Sabrina the Teenage Witch. These shoes are now big with a lot of famous fashion Instagrammers. Also, during The Golden Globes in January, actress Brie Larson changed into jelly sandals for the after party.
What Is Making The 90s Look Come Back Now?
“I feel it has to do with the amount of show revivals that have come back since the 90s and the prevalence of Netflix in our lives. We’re re-watching old episodes of shows like Gilmore Girls and Friends that showed all these fashion trends and now we’re starting to wear them like chokers and mom jeans. Also, 90s babies are now in their 20s to 30s and these are the individuals making the trends.” Lodhia says. Stores like Topshop and Urban outfitters started featuring certain trends from the 90s in their stores back in November and celebrities have also been wearing these around. “It all works together and now millennials are wearing chokers everyday,” Lodhia says.
“As well as the current echoing of the 90s mood influencing its return, I also believe that timing plays a crucial role. Simply put, enough time had passed to change the way we view past trends from the 90s. If someone had tried to revive the 90s ten years ago, it wouldn’t have worked. Fashion is cyclical and needs a certain amount of time before it can return to popularity,” Brewer says.
What Will Be The Next Trend?
“We’re already starting to see some 80s influences coming through on the recent runways. While I don’t think the 80s revival will be quite as big as the 90s has been, it will definitely have a moment. High-glam evening looks are what this trend will be about. Think sequins, shoulder pads, one shoulder dresses, and bold eyeshadow,” Brewer says.