Whether it’s a nod to Carrie Bradshaw or Bratz Dolls, ’90s nostalgia has become one of the biggest trends of this generation. Unlike the minimalist styles that came before it, Y2K style is bold and fun — think rhinestones and neon color-pops. Featuring everything from second-skin mini skirts to awkward high-waisted jeans and androgynous cargo pants, the aughts revival offers a mood-boosting palate cleanser from the overwrought minimalism of recent years.
With a distinctly twee aesthetic that’s more Sienna Miller than Stevie Nicks, this trend is rooted in the era of self-discovery and personal empowerment, which shows in the fashion. From paisley bandanas to bucket hats, there are plenty of ways to show off your inner Gen Z. Kitsch accessories run amok, from retro cherry earrings to miniature see-through backpacks (to hold your virtual pet and Nokia 3220, of course). And if that’s not enough, it seems the coveted belly chain has made a comeback too.
To get into the spirit of Y2K style, start by picking out some key staples that will add instant flair to your wardrobe. Then, find a way to make them your own. The cornerstone of any Y2K outfit is, of course, a pair of skinny jeans and a crop top or jacket. Metallic puffer jackets have emerged as the go-to option, but you can also try a ribbed cardigan in a bright shade or a fitted babydoll tee emblazoned with anything from francais to The Rolling Stones lyrics. For a more casual take on the look, opt for wide-leg denim jeans and a vintage Von Dutch Trucker hat. Round out your look with a pair of high-waisted black boots and a baguette bag.
Another must-have accessory is the paisley bandana, which comes in a variety of different colors and patterns. Wrap it around your neck or head like a headscarf for a carefree summery vibe, or wear it as a hat with skinny sunglasses and a scrunchied ponytail à la the members of Mis-Teeq. A patterned beret is also an easy way to give your look a Y2K edge.
When it comes to your hair, don’t be afraid to go big. From slicked back scrunchie ponytails to oversized bows and butterfly clips, the Y2K trend is all about embracing a playful side. The best part? These accessories are a great way to hide a bad hair day.
Whether you’re looking to channel your inner Carrie or Avril, this is a style that lets you embrace your inner teen and let your carefree personality shine. So, what are you waiting for? Put on a song by Britney Spears or a classic Spice Girl and start building your Y2K wardrobe. Just don’t forget your Tamagotchi or record player!