Y2K Fashion Trends That Have Risen From The Grave and Are Now Hip Again

Y2K Fashion Trends That Have Risen From The Grave and Are Now Hip Again


Y2K fashion is stealing the limelight once again with its distinct aesthetic. Take a look at some of the flashy returnees from this era!

Related: They’re Back: Y2K Beauty Trends You Need To Try

When you think of the Y2K era, what comes to mind? Do the likes of Queen Britney Spears’ emblematic music, classic kids’ shows, Paris Hilton’s princess attitude or bedazzled attires suddenly register? While there’s surely a lot of symbolic moments and things to remember from the era, one thing that surely stands out for all is the outré fashion that everyone sported during this time. 

It’s true that Y2K styles generally get a bad rep (skirts over pants anyone?), but like many things in fashion, Y2K style is back and it’s red hot. In fact, it’s the odd styles that many proponents from Gen Z—the group we can thank for putting Ed Hardy back in style—seem to embrace the most.

Here are some of the trends that are back:

Beaded Lanyards/Chains

Before being swallowed by social media and the definitive dot-com boom brought by the new millennium, one can say that back then life was simpler. Point is: it was a time when putting in effort and patience into creating friendship bracelets or chains out of beads and nylon strings were fairly common. 

Photo Courtesy of Instagram (@roses_are_rosie)

Butterfly Aesthetic 

To have a better idea of what Y2K fashion looks like, just think of butterfly designs, but on everything. From hair clips to prints—everybody was in love with this aesthetic. 

Photo Courtesy of Getty Images
Photo Courtesy of Instagram (@mariesteller)

Chunky Rings 

Vibrant, playful and simply, eye candy—chunky rings are nothing short of fun.

Mind you, rings were not the only chunky ones during this era. “Chunky” was a whole category in this period. The same vibe could be found in footwear, too. Hence, the simultaneous rise of chunky platforms, sandals and sneakers. If you’re not convinced of this item’s comeback, check out these platform sandals from Balenciaga’s new season.

Photo Courtesy of Instagram (@elissejosonn)
Photo Courtesy of Instagram (@kyliejenner)

Low-Rise Jeans 

This is one Y2K style comeback that many Millennials fear. This fashion craze was one that came with an unspoken requirement: chiseled abs or at the very least, a flat stomach. However, with body positivity being more and more prevalent, one shouldn’t have to bat an eye at the former prerequisites. Today, it’s made to simply strut confidently in—no matter your size. 

Photo Courtesy of Gotham GC Images

Denim On Denim 

If this trend were not to appear during the mid-aughts or in 2021, you might even call it a fashion disaster or tacky. That’s not the case though, as it’s making a strong resurgence and it looks amazing. 

Photo Courtesy of Instagram (@haileybieber)
Photo Courtesy of Instagram (@gigihadid)
Photo Courtesy of Instagram (@bellahadid)

Bucket Hats 

Besides butterfly hair clips, these hats were also considered an iconic accessory of this period. It initially soared as a well-used item by hip hop artists. However, the Y2K era evolved into something bigger, something brighter—bedazzled, to be specific. In the present time though, the trend has moved on to less eager and visually blaring bucket hats. 

Photo Courtesy of Instagram (@iamsofiaandres)

Shiny Metallic Outfits 

Quick brief: the Y2K vogue was inspired by when technology, like the internet, was making big waves. The big jump in tech signaled fashion to reflect futuristic characteristics. In reference to technology and dystopian films like The Matrix, glossy outfits that sported silver or pearlescent shades were born. 

Photo Courtesy of Instagram (@oliviarodrigo)

Tie Front Tops

This aesthetic is nothing short of “baby girl” vibes and sexiness. In 2021, you will find this trend modernized in pastel tones and ribbed textures. These pair well with other Y2K pieces too such as low-rise jeans and chunky sneaks. 

Photo Courtesy of Instagram (@chiefilomeno)
Photo Courtesy of Instagram (@lovipoe)

Velour Tracksuits

All thanks to Paris Hilton’s signature baby blue Juicy Couture tracksuits, the velour tracksuit is one that’s easy to recall and in this case, to recycle in fashion. On top of this, they’re actually pretty cozy athleisure to don. 

Photo Courtesy of Instagram (@jennierubyjane)
Photo Courtesy of Instagram (@jennierubyjane)

Corded Earphones/Chunky Headphones

While this might not exactly fall under the category of Y2K fashion, corded earphones were often mixed in with outfits. It was part of the mid-aughts as well. Now, even at the age of Airpods supremacy since its release in 2016, corded earphones are making a comeback that no one has expected. Out in the streets, fashionable celebrities are seen walking with wires from their pockets. The bold transfer is being attributed to the cool “don’t talk to me” vibe and its reliability as compared to battery-operated Airpods. 

Photo Courtesy of Getty Images
Photo Courtesy of Getty Images

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