We have an emoji for you, Gen Z, but we might get in trouble with your parents.
First of all, Gen Z, the ’90s called and said to quit disguising your clone-like style as a unique aesthetic of baggy pants- and Doc Marten-embellished grunge. And, please, stop with the $80 pre-ripped jeans and faded Nirvana T-Shirts with gray sweatpants — it smells like teenage desperation.
Your lack of flair for anything unique to your generation is obvious through your continued copying of those who came before you, but somehow you’ve managed to make those previous trends seem boring. If we, the millennials you love to hate on TikTok right now, seem a little harsh — good. We love our skinny jeans and side parts and our subcultures. Where is your originality?
We applaud your ability to incorporate comfort and functionality into your wardrobe, as is evident by the above-mentioned sweatpants, and baggy sweaters and oversized tees and white socks and Birkenstocks and overall Larry David-approved looks we see in every one of your Tik Tok videos and Instagram posts. But why do you stop there? Where’s the individuality? Where’s the grunge spirit you love to exploit with these accouterments?
In the ’90s, grunge wasn’t king, though. It lived alongside a widely accepted Goth movement, as well as fashion icons like Kate Moss. It was versatile. What pool of subcultures do Gen Z kids have to choose from?
Me watching all my much younger Brooklyn College friends https://t.co/zcUPXgVntv— daileemarie (@daileemarie) February 2, 2021
For a bunch of Tide Pod connoisseurs, you love handing out fashion advice to those of us who’ve successfully rocked bodysuits, ponchos, mixed prints, overalls and even capes. Skinny jeans should be at the bottom of your list of grievances with us.
Millennials have copied from other generations, too. But the difference is, we’ve done it well and with good reason. When the mainstream originally shined a light on low-rise jeans and your now beloved bleached, face-framing hair in the early aughts, aka our adolescent years, some of us decided to throw it back, for example, to the age of disco with bell bottoms and cropped tops or really rage against the machine with full-on Brigitte Bardot bangs.
We used style as a sense of personal expression throughout our youths. What does Gen Z do with it? We used it to rebel, to make a statement, to stand out. We addressed the sexism in school dress codes while also mastering the art of the Canadian Tuxedo — a real magic trick. (Ignoring the Britney and Justin travesty of 2001. Shame our generation all you want on that one.)
Gen Z, take a queue from millennials and find a little originality. And, for the love of all things fashion, burn your bucket hats.