The most popular look these days is that there is no most popular look — at least among Tivy High School students.
Current fashion trends are all about originality and self-expression, said Hans Schlunegger, a senior at Tivy. On any given day, students may sport anything from Birkenstocks and necklaces to thrifted jeans and octagon-shaped glasses.
“You’re able to express yourself with what you wear and how you present yourself to others,” Schlunegger said. “That sticks with you throughout high school. There’s endless choices for clothing, and everyone has a different style.”
Another Tivy senior, Grace Guerriero, who plans to study fashion after graduation, attributes the media to the rise of individuality. Pop culture stresses that people should just be themselves, she said.
But it hasn’t always been this way. Guerriero and Schlunegger’s classmate, Race Risinger, said fashion in the past was more focused on who was wearing the hottest brands.
“For my grandparents, for instance, you had to be wearing Levis jeans. That was the thing,” Risinger said. “Now, it’s like nobody really cares as long as they look cool.”
While brands matter less, thrift shopping is on the rise. The youth are looking for the boldest look that makes them feel themselves, Guerriero said. It helps that thrifting often supports local stores and being sustainable.
“We’re trying to find who we are in high school,” Guerriero said. “The stronger identity and the more bold personality you have, it kind of matches your style.”
An increase in thrift fashion means there’s a lot of clothes inspired by, or even actually from, former decades. Stores like Urban Outfitters are catching on, selling the “vintage” look, which could span from the ’40s and ’50s to the ’80s and ’90s. Guerriero prefers items from the ’80s, as do many other teens, she said.
“For my body type, jeans from the ’80s fit me well,” Guerriero said. “That’s kind of like (a) small waist and bigger in the legs — high waisted jeans. It’s easier for me to thrift and find pants and shirts because that was the ideal body type. I’m constantly looking through my mom’s stuff — her shoes, her pants, everything.”
One style from the past that’s still popular among the youth? Vans shoes.
“Vans have never really gone out of style,” Risinger said. “Even though they were super popular back in the day, they’re still super popular today. It’s casual, but it can also be worn with formal stuff. They make nice shoes, but also (they’re) the iconic skateboarder look. That’s never really gone out.”
Guerriero said utility brands are widely used for fashion these days. Lots of teens wear the sport gear — Nikes, Adidas — even just during the day when they’re not doing physical activity.
Another popular fashion inspiration comes from the internet, Schlunegger said. There’s the rise of the eboy, a look inspired by a popular app called TikTok that lets users watch and create short videos. The look features necklaces, rolled up jeans, high socks and skate shoes.
Risinger said many may also find makeup inspiration from the Kardashians.