By Julius Williams
Most of us know that the world of fashion is constantly changing and evolving, but what some of us fail to realize is that this makes the concept of trial-and-error a necessity in the process of its evolution. Trends come and go over the years. While some are considered ground-breaking and inspirational, there are others that the world would’ve been better off without. In this list, I’ll delve into a few trends that we used to adore, and explain why we were delusional in following them.
10. Brightly Colored Skinny Jeans
This fashion staple, once donned exclusively by the weird white kids in school with the Skelanimals backpacks, was quickly popularized following the dawn of The Jerking Era in 2009. In this time, hip-hop artists like New Boyz had everyone, (myself included), asking their moms to buy them a bright red or worse yet, purple pair of skinnies. Retailers like Spencers and Zumiez quickly became the go-tos for all of our fluorescent fashion needs. Everyone rushed to get their hands on the color that nobody else had, until everybody had all of the outlandish colors and we realized how much we looked like walking Pixie Sticks. To this day, I regret wearing purple skinny jeans in public, and will slap anybody that reminds me of those dark days.
9. Studded Leather Belts
This was around the same time as the colorful skinnies, and equally as disastrous. The only difference? We knew they were annoying. Everyone who owned one of these belts has experienced the pain of unexpectedly stepping on one of the studs, (they fell out OFTEN). The materials used to make the belts were usually low-quality, so the belts would fall apart after only a few wears. But did that stop us from going out in our half-degraded belts and looking like idiots? Not at all. I remember my mom had to take mine from me because she was tired of finding the studs all over the house. Back then I thought she was hating, but now I see how that could be frustrating. (She was still being a hater though).
This is probably the one that I was the MOST invested in. I never really liked sports, but I’d be damned if I let that stop me from owning at least one snapback for every sports team. Some of the go-to brands for snapbacks were New Era, Mitchell & Ness and Tisa. Long before the #NoCap wave, you were seen as a lame if your fit was missing its most vital piece. Even if you didn’t want to wear it on your head, there was no excuse when Chris Brown made it cool to wear them on your belt loops. Some even went as far as wearing a snapback on their head, and one on every belt loop! I have to give credit for this trend to artists like Big Sean and Tyga. While they were iconic for trending them at the time, let’s be real: anything directly attached to Tyga is blackballed.
7. HUF Socks
I can’t tell you how many times I got sent to detention for wearing socks with bright purple marijuana leaves on them, or how many times I got out of detention by telling teachers they were stars. The image of the “stoner” was widely accepted as the “cool” thing to be, mostly due to artists like Wiz Khalifa who rapped almost solely about weed. Not only did this make our parents come to hate rap music, but it also put a big, bright “I DO DRUGS” sign on our foreheads. The sad part is, some of us didn’t even smoke weed, and just wanted to look like our favorite rapper. From an adult’s point of view, advocation of drug abuse made you just as guilty as the kids skipping school to roll up, so that didn’t do anybody any good.
6. Silly Bands
This innovative idea quickly took a dark turn when tweens everywhere became addicted to what were widely known as “silly bands”. The idea itself was actually quite simple: a rubber band, but it was a crazy shape and color. Harmless, right? Absolutely not. When kids realized how much fun it was to collect, trade and show off silly bands, no one could have just one. Soon, everyone had armfuls of the things, cutting off much-needed blood circulation and advertising our inability to accessorize. It’s also worth mentioning that they were a terrible distraction in the school setting, as kids would often flick them around and show them off in class. I’ll never forget when Ms. Jones confiscated my silly band collection, (which went up to my elbows), but in the end, I’m glad she did. I like my rubber bands how I like my movies: straight to the point.
5. Candy Wrapper Hair-Bows
I never quite understood the appeal in “fashioning”, (see what I did there?), used candy wrappers into accessories, but that doesn’t mean thousands of girls didn’t. I shit you not, people actually did this. I remember my little sister asking me to turn her M&Ms bag into a hair bow and the look on my face when I realized she was serious. It’s not like it was ALL bad, though. After all, this trend was cheap, easy to do, and left your hair smelling like your favorite candy. It almost seems like a good idea if you can overlook the fact that you’re wearing literal trash.
4. Fishnet Leggings
Do you want to know the one thing that’s worse than leggings with a hole in them? Leggings with hundreds of holes in them. When I try to picture these being pitched at a board meeting, the only reason I can think of that these were actually approved is that they saved manufacturers a ton on the cost of fabric. This god-awful trend was the bane of fathers across the nation. Apparently, nobody wanted their 16-year-old daughters walking around looking like Grand Theft Auto prostitutes.
3. Oversized Tees
Thanks, Soulja Boy. You know the feeling when you’re picking out an outfit, and you find the perfect top, but can’t find a suitable bottom? No worries, you can just wear a shirt that covers the top AND bottom. I’m almost certain that this trend caused Gildan’s sales for 5XL shirts to skyrocket like never before.The funniest part wasn’t the fact that the shirt almost touched the ground, or even the oversized denim shorts that usually accompanied them, but the fact that people still managed to sag their pants below the shirts. Luckily, it came and it went, but I think we’d be better off if it never came in the first place.
Words can’t even begin to illustrate my utter disdain for sagging. Since I was a kid, everyone around me made a point of showing off their skid mark-riddled boxers to the world. I’m sure we’ve all heard how the trend originally started, (if you haven’t, do some research). The part that vexes me is why young men thought this was cool or attractive in any way. There’s a reason belts were invented, and that’s not so we can spend $300 on one only to still sag our pants. This is really a bad idea no matter how you look at it. After all, how do you expect to be able to outrun the police when your pants are around your ankles?
1. Bootcut Jeans
…..Need I say more?