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How Does Nostalgia Reflect Itself in Fashion These days?

Rosamelia Sanchez | Editor

It is possible that while scrolling through social media apps like TikTok and Instagram, you have come across young people wearing clothing that looks familiar. It seems like everyone’s style now consists of the ’70s, 90s, and 2000s trends.

Many have spoken about the so-called “20-year cycle.” which implies that trends from 20 years before the current year usually come back and become relevant once again. This cycle explains why in the 2010s so many people were inspired by the Grunge style from the 90s. It also explains why today, they find themselves attracted to some aspects of the Y2K fashion from the 2000s.

It seems like nostalgia plays an important role in people’s fashion choices, especially online. As a Gen Zer myself, I can say that I am usually drawn to ’70s and 90’s fashion. Although I did not live through any of these decades, I did grow up watching 90s films like “The Craft” and “I Know What You Did Last Summer.”

These movies shaped what a teenager or young adult is supposed to look like in my head from a fashion standpoint. So, my tween self could not wait to grow up and be the next high school girl wearing high-rise jeans and baby tees. For the record, low-rise jeans were, and still are a scary aspect of fashion I might never be willing to explore.

Similarly, once I turned 16 and started becoming interested in what people were doing in the 70s, I started looking up to those who participated in movements like Women’s Liberation and others. Therefore, I started finding their fashion appealing.

I believe that similar to me, many young people are learning about what was going on in these decades and become interested. Then, they adopt these people’s styles, share them on the internet, and influence other young people. The truth is that these trends were very popular for a reason, so it’s no surprise that we can appreciate them today as well.


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