Okay, before anybody gets their panties in a bunch, let me say right now that I personally believe that any trend can be done well in the right time and place. The woman in the photo above, for instance, has managed the impossible and made neon-on-neon look chic. But more on that later.
But when bizarre or high-fashion trends manage to trickle down into high school and college campuses, people wind up walking around looking ridiculous in the name of fashion. Read on for the top 9 trends of recent years that made us all look awful.
1. Head-to-toe neon
The whole point of fashion, apart from self-expression, is to look good. Neon is a very flashy shade of any colour and when done right it looks awesome. A neon purse or belt on a night out can really amp up an outfit. But when you look like a pack of glow-in-the-dark highlighters burst all over you, you know the trend has gone too far. Being trendy is fine, but not when it’s physically difficult to look at you. There was an entire summer when women were literally eyesores, and thank God it’s over.
2. Tangerine anything
As any fashionista knows, there is a colour assigned to each year by Pantone, and clothing stores rush to stock it. In 2014 it was a lavender shade called Radiant Orchid, this year it’s Marsala (a deep brownish-red)… but in 2012 it was Tangerine. Real talk, I don’t know a single person who looks good in Tangerine. Plain ol' orange? Sure. But Tangerine is just one of those shades that looks off on pretty much every single skin-tone natural to human beings. But we all wore it! Because it was everywhere - and we needed clothes that year. Ugh.
3. Faux-fur vests
It’s one thing when girls wear a faux-fur vest to keep warm outside and then take it off indoors. It’s another thing altogether when girls wear them in class. Personally, I like the medieval-glam vibe that faux fur creates. But when you’re using it for any reason other than to keep warm, it just looks weird.
Photo cred - beautylish
4. Feather hair extensions
What was it with feathers in 2010? It started years earlier with feather earrings, which went with that whole boho thing that was going on, but then someone thought it would be smart to semi-permanently attach feathers to their hair. And it caught on. Unless you’re Rihanna, trying to pull off something this “edgy” is just a bad idea. There’s just no convincing way to make feathers look natural on a primate.
5. Super-straight hair
Straight hair is lovely. So is curly hair, and kinky hair, and baldness. And in recent years hair trends have become more inclusive of different hair textures. So why the hell did we think it was a good idea to literally iron our hair every day for the sake of being on-trend? Why!?
6. Gladiator sandals
Okay, they look pretty badass. It takes confidence to pull them off, and when they work, they work. But riddle me this, Batman: who has time to do up those straps, just to look like everyone else? If you like the look of gladiators and wear them every summer, power to you. But thinking about the cummulative hours trendy girls spent putting on their shoes just so they could look like everyone else just astounds me.
How did these even become a thing…? And more importantly, what made me think they were appropriate to wear to school in the eighth grade? Okay. Now you know my deepest, darkest secret. Just don’t wear Crocs. Ever. Moving on.
8. Harem pants
Once again, when worn by the right person in the right context, harem pants can look really interesting and wonderful. For instance, the chick in the above photo is pulling them off relatively well. Seeing every girl in the hallway throwing away their jeans in favour of Hammer Pants, strutting around like they look normal, though? Just boggling.
Photo cred - silkandsuits
9. Fashion capes
Oh, Blair Waldorf - yours was the closet that launched a thousand shopping trips. Your fashion sense was usually so spot-on and inspiring. So why did you have to have to kick off one of the stuffiest trends in recent memory by wearing a cape to school? So many girls looked like total morons, and all because of one scene of Gossip Girl.