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Top 10 Fashion Trends of All Time

VO: Lisa Yang
Script written by George Pacheco and Genevieve Methot Nostalgia for one, coming right up! Join MsMojo as we countdown the top 10 fashion trends of all time. For this list, we chose the fashion trends that have defined generations for better or worse. Special thanks to our user mac121mr0 for submitting the idea on our Interactive Suggestion Tool at

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Top 10 Fashion Trends of All Time

Nostalgia for one, coming right up! Welcome to MsMojo and today we’ll be counting down the top 10 fashion trends of all time.

For this list, we chose the fashion trends that have defined generations for better or worse.

#10: Yoga Pants

Women love wearing them, men love seeing them, and high school principals all over are up in arms about them. We’re talking about the garment that revolutionized workout gear, that sexualized casual wear and that contributed to the popularity of jeggings, leggings, and all of the other comfortable-yet-fashionable bottoms. Whether you’re a member of the Lululemon obsession or you just adore Kate Hudson’s trendy Fabletics, if you’ve never had the feeling of a high quality synthetic blend wrapped around you in the most form-fitting, yet flattering way, your life has yet to know the true meaning of luxury. No matter how you feel about yoga pants not being real pants, there’s no question that the trend is here to stay.

#9: Streaky Hair Highlights/frosted tips

The man bun may be the 2010s most recognizable hair fad, but ten years ago it was all about the highlights, low lights, and frosted tips. Made trendy by pop culture icons like Kelly Clarkson during her American Idol grand debut and Christina Aguilera when she was a dirty diva, it seemed like everybody back then was getting their hair did. Since there were so many colours and styles to choose from, getting streaks was a fun way to express one’s creativity. Just ask every single member of NSync. Hair streaks have evolved and become more subtle in this decade, but we have a feeling they’ll be back again someday.

#8: Acid-Washed Denim

For everyone out there who wears any sort of distressed jeans, you have these gaudy grandfathers to thank for your keen sense of fashion. Acid-washed denim – preceded by stonewashed jeans, which used pumice to attain its faded appearance - is a type of denim that has been worn down and made to look weathered and well worn. Though pumice is also used to attain the acid-washed jeans look, no acid is actually used during the distressing process, despite its name. The end result is not only a cool-as-hell, rockin' pair of jeans, but also a soft and comfy one, as well, as the weathering process breaks down the denim, making it instantly feel like your most favorite thing in the world.

#7: Rapper Clothing Brands (Specific brands: Rocawear, Sean John, Ecko)

Hip hop fashion has been around since the 70s when artists began to express themselves by wearing certain clothes that achieved the street style aesthetic that was unique to hip hop culture. More than just throwing together Timberland boots and low-hanging baggy jeans, almost every rapper you could think of was also demonstrating their fashion forwardness by designing their own brands. Rocawear, Sean John and Apple Bottom Jeans are all the successful spawn of famous rappers who’ve not only defined hip hop fashion of the 21st century but who have built prosperous multi-million dollar empires around their name.

#6: Wild Hair

Ok, it's no secret that the 1980s were practically defined by weird, wild hair. There's just no escaping this fact, and it was prevalent in nearly every aspect of popular culture. From the music, to the movies to network and cable television, it seems as if everyone felt the need to one up his or her neighbor in terms of how crazy, how high or how bizarre he or she could get his or her hair. Business-casual mullets, hair metal perms and new wave extension experiments? Yeah, the ‘80s had ALL of that.

#5: Boho Chic/Coachella Fashion

Coachella and the other music festivals have brought back the bohemian look for the millennial generation. Whether at a concert or just hanging out, the boho chic look channels the ghost of Woodstock in the summer of ’69 and the romanticized gypsies of yore. Flower crowns, leather fringe, floppy hats, oversized beads and gladiator sandals can be worn at the same time or separately for a little more subtlety. Of all the trends on this list, this is the only look that has made a big splash in the world of interior decorating. Crocheted blankets draped over furniture, mismatched pillows and a riot of color choices are all part of the package for those who consider themselves true bohemians.

#4: Crop top

No other item of clothing in the 2000s single-handedly drew a line between girls who were comfortable with their bodies and the rest of us. How else were fourteen-year olds supposed to show off their belly button rings? By today’s standards showing off a little tummy (especially without the added coverage of high-waisted Levi’s) won’t even scandalize grandma, but back then that was the line that didn’t get crossed, at least for a little while. Paired with low rise jeans, we have Britney and Christina to thank for that kind of hyped up sexuality and for helping the crop top mark the end of teenage naïveté.

#3: Neon

It almost seems like a cliché at this point, but neon really WAS everywhere during the 1980s, permeating nearly every facet of popular culture. And why not? Brightly colored clothes were a fashion statement: a rallying call out to any within eyeshot that said, "HEY! LOOK AT ME!" Bands especially seemed to pounce hard on the neon trend, trying on a seemingly endless array of attention-grabbing, gaudy neon colors, meant to drive as many eyeballs back to what they were doing. And you know what? It worked.

#2: Plaid/flannel shirts

As ironic as it sounds, the grungy plaid look was a much a fashion trend as it was an antidote to mainstream fashion. In the 90s, wearing a plaid flannel shirt buttoned, unbuttoned or tied around the waist meant that you were likely part of the scene that glorified not giving a damn. Guys like Kurt Cobain and Eddie Vedder immortalized the trend, which was probably completely unintended. Because the style was usually accompanied by unwashed, uncut hair, ripped jeans and converse, it may have gotten a little cleaner but it never really went away. Seattle Grunge may be locked away in the past but flannel and plaid shirts have made a roaring comeback in the 2010s.




The ‘Jersey Shore’ Look

Hipster Beards/Man Buns

Halter Tops

#1 Aerobic / Athletic Gear

That pulsing, undulating beat. The skintight leotards. Those crazy exercise moves. Folks in the 1980s were obsessed with the culture of aerobics and athletic gear, and it showed. The popularity of aerobics brought with it the decade's penchant for legwarmers, leggings and stirrup pants, and combined it with jazzy, upbeat classes of group exercise. Indeed, it wasn't uncommon for folks to walk around town wearing their aerobics or athletic gear, regardless of whether or not they even intended to do any actual exercise. It was enough just to be seen rocking the fancy gear, proving that you, too, could get "physical" like Olivia Newton-John... that is, if you wanted to.

So, do you agree with our selections? What is your favorite fashion trend of all time? For more stylish Top 10s published daily, be sure to subscribe to MsMojo.

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