Courtesy of Versace; Courtesy of Blumarine; Imaxtree/Reveligion; Courtesy of Roberto Cavalli; Imaxtree/Fernando Claro
Considering the recent return of all things Y2K-related, it was only a matter of time before low-rise jeans and butterfly-adorned pieces made way for darker flashbacks from the past—aka, the return of emo fashion. Anyone who neared adolescence or was fully a teenager from mid-2003 to 2014 can recall when the only bands anyone cared about were Panic! At the Disco, Simple Plan, and Avril Lavigne. Or how, after school (or if you happened to ditch math class), the place to shop for emo essentials was Hot Topic—skinny jeans, tulle tutus, hair bows, studded belts, Vans, and rubber-band bracelets. While this alt movement may catch the most flack compared to others, it’s no less influential.
Emo music goes back well into the ’80s and came to fruition as other alternative movements did. But unlike with other movements, musicians regularly stigmatized this label because they didn’t want their music to be seen as “soft” or too “feminine” with their lyrics often being hyperemotional. This stigma was also, in some ways, transferred to how the culture at large reacted to the emo fashion aesthetic taking over in the aughts—donning this look was not going to land you on any “best dressed” list at the time. But things change, and a search through recent runway collections or celeb looks can tell you that, like it or not, this alternative aesthetic continues to be prevalent.