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Editorial NRInglês

Y2K style: a passing fad or important 2020s trend?

I have to be very honest with you, dear reader: I didn’t use to be too keen on fashion. Many things related to it even seemed alien to me. But, during the 2010s I became a fan of Drag Race, where fashion plays a pivotal point in the competition; I started getting interested in makeup, which is part of the fashion world in itself; and I went into classrooms to be bombarded by students who not only loved fashion, but also wanted to discuss it. And as time and groups went by, the trends and fads students followed came and went faster than I could follow – thanks Instagram and Pinterest. For some unknown reason, however, one style came back to life and apparently, we’re going to have to get used to it: the Y2K style.

The Y2K was an important moment of changes in the way we used technology and learned about things. Famous pop and hip-hop stars were charting heavily and we finally had access to their music and photos in a way that had never happened: the internet had arrived! And now, in the 2020s, the feeling of nostalgia for that time is fervent! Artists have readopted oversized and baggy pieces of clothing from the early 2000s as well as jerseys and loud colors can all be seen trending yet again.

But… what is Y2K fashion so we can discuss it with students? Well, it’s a campy style filled with loud heavily-saturated colors on tops and colorful pleated skirts accessorized with a baguette bag; the dreaded double denim made up of low-rise jeans and oversized denim jackets or crop tops; baby tees cropped above the belly button; shiny materials combined with chunky sneakers and colorful lensless glasses; all that topped with big belts that aren’t actually keeping trousers in place. It is all just a crazy mix of ideas that wanted to represent the worldwide technology boom of that era, whilst being heavily inspired by the Bratz Dolls, films like The Matrix and Mean Girls, and tacky accessories all at the same time.

Even though it seems weird and confusing, this is the style in which many of us have grown up with. This is why to me, it’s more than understandable that we want to relieve those glorious days when we simply wanted to look like our favorite artists. Now we can actually be like them, look like them, take photos like they did and influence others with our own style. I can’t say for sure whether this will be a passing fad like many that have come before, but hell, do I enjoy the idea of dressing up just like Britney and Justin Timberlake did in the 2001 AMAs and not be judged by it.

About author

Anico Perfler is an English teacher, materials writer and academic consultant at Troika. She holds the Cambridge ICELT and has been in ELT for 10 years, mainly working with teaching and materials writing. In addition to that, she has taught over 15 groups of PREP courses for both IELTS and Cambridge Exams, including B2 First and C1 Advanced. She often talks about issues related to representation, gender and diversity to promote social equity focused on the lives of transgender individuals.
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