The iconic decade of grunge fashion, bowl cuts, and overalls from the 90s had passed, and now it was all about the frosted lips and side-swept bangs, as the most casual decade known as the early 2000s took over. During this time, fashion trends varied more than ever, with teens taking over alternative fashion and young adults following athleisure trends. However, no matter where people strayed, it always came back to the latest influence of the music industry, as well as current celebrity fashion trends, as the 2000s were truly a decade of media influence unlike any other.
With so much going on in this decade, it can be hard to sum up the biggest trends in just a few sentences. So, to give you a deeper look into the changes in the fashion world that took place through the early years of the ‘00s, we’re going to delve into everything you need to know about the fashion of the 2000s. From its history to its styles, let’s dive in and get started with a complete guide to the 2000s for both men and women.
History of 2000’s Fashion
To start, when it comes to the 2000s fashion, much like the previous decade, the ‘00s were heavily influenced by music and media. Celebrities were beginning to have more influence, TV stations like Disney Channel were in their prime, and all-around people were spending a lot more time paying attention to the latest fashion from celebrities as well as the music industry, and had quickly begun to incorporate it into their own styles.
Casual clothing and leisurewear were definitely the biggest trends of the early 2000s. Baggy pants, graphic tees, headbands, tracksuits, hoodies, and denim were becoming the new norm for men and women, and trends from different subcultures quickly began to mix. Hip-hop/rap fashion also took off thanks to well-known rappers like Eminem, while the punk and emo subcultures also took off amongst teens thanks to artists such as Avril Lavigne and Blink 182. It was side-swept bangs, colorful hair streaks, and chokers galore, as emo fashion brought a new rebellious and tom-boyish dynamic to alternative trends, becoming a staple point for teens and young adults.
As you can see, the 2000s had many icons and many trends that came and went, but it was ultimately a time of anything goes with more cultural expression situated around young people. While subcultures of the time differed greatly, it was personal expression that took its place at the front of the line more than ever, making its way into mainstream media that many teens and adults followed religiously throughout the ‘00s.
2000s Fashion Icons
Now that we’ve gone over some of the history of the 2000’s fashion, let’s talk about some of the major icons of the decade. Here’s a brief list of some of the top fashion icons of the 2000s for both men and women.
Female fashion icons
1. Lindsay Lohan
The first major icon of the decade was Lindsay Lohan. As one of the biggest it-girls of the 2000s, Lindsay was one of the most publicized actresses of the time, thanks to her iconic roles in movies such as Mean Girls and Freaky Friday. On or off-screen, Lindsay always wore the hottest outfits, including low-rise jeans and crop tops and truly became synonymous with early 2000s fashion.
2. Britney Spears
Next, it wouldn’t be the 2000s if we didn’t mention the iconic Britney Spears. Although the pop star’s career took off in the 90s, her flashy and stylish looks never subsided through the early 2000s. Throughout the decade, she could be seen wearing everything from flared low-rise jeans to crop tops, and even trendy velour tracksuits. Britney was and still is on-trend to this day, with her fashion choices from the early 2000s as some of her most iconic.
3. Christina Aguilera
Next, Christina Aguilera was another one of the most popular pop stars of the early 2000s. Known for her sultry style, Christina broke away from the good-girl norm of her time and truly took a risk in terms of fashion. From short skirts to mini tops, Christina was scandalous, and the public loved it, which quickly helped to elevate her status in Hollywood to one of the biggest bad-girls of the time with the most seductive moves.
4. Paris Hilton
Next, Paris Hilton was definitely the epitome of fashion all throughout the early 2000s. As the first person who brought the velour tracksuits, Dutch trucker hats, and rhinestone-embellished clothing into the public eye, Paris was and still is considered a legend in the fashion and beauty industry even today. Everything she wore was high-quality, luxury, and trendy beyond words, making her one of the most iconic role models to many young women through the early years of the ‘00s decade.
5. Avril Lavigne
And finally, Avril Lavinge was the true representative of punk fashion throughout the early 2000s. Her signature look featured items such as loose neckties, converse, band-tees, cargo pants, tank tops, and colorful skirts. The casual and rebellious look of this punk-pop princess can only be described as tomboyish, which is what made her idolized by alternative and emo teens everywhere.
For more influential female fashion icons of the 2000s, be sure to check out wearzeitgeist.com for more information.
Male fashion icons
1. Ashton Kutcher
For male fashion icons, one of the biggest icons of the 2000s was Ashton Kutcher. Most known for his role in That 70’s Show, Ashton’s acting career quickly spiraled from there and quickly brought him to legendary status in no time. Not to mention, Ashton’s style was incredibly unique, trendy, and bad-boyish. He rocked the long, shaggy hair, trucker hats, and leather jackets so well and quickly caught the attention of both men and women because of it.
2. Jesse McCartney
Next, Jesse McCartney was another trend-setting heartthrob of the early 2000s and inspired men and women alike. With his dirty blond hair, graphic tees, and skinny jeans, Jesse was the epitome of the 2000s fashion and inspired many people, especially the younger generation, through his look and his sound all throughout the decade.
Next, Eminem was another major artist that was truly everywhere throughout 2000. While he was rapping for many years prior, his songs ‘My Name Is I’ and ‘The Real Slim Shady’ put him directly in the public eye and made him an instant sensation. On top of that, his look would also inspire the next generation of rap lovers through his casual hip-hop fashion choice of large shirts and bagging pants, making him a true icon of the early years of the decade.
4. The Backstreet Boys
And finally, The Backstreet Boys were another huge pop boyband in the 2000s and were most known for their song “I Want It That Way.” However, The Backstreet Boys also had a truly iconic 2000s look that featured jackets, jeans, frosted tips, and sneakers that easily made them into trendy fashion icons that reached a variety of different subcultures of the time.
For more influential male fashion icons of the decade, be sure to check out thefashionwolf.com for more information.
Popular Styles for Women of the 2000s
Next, when it came to the popular styles of the decade for women, the 2000s were very diverse and featured everything from midriff-baring models to loose-fitting, cargo pants-wearing punk rockers. However, there are a few key styles for the decade that were more popular than others. Here’s a quick guide to them.
Starting off, just like the popularity of the trend in the 90s, crop tops were a huge part of the early 2000s. Popularized by many iconic women in Hollywood, including Britney Spears and Avril Lavigne, crop tops were one of the most common trends that teens and young women were wearing and came in a variety of styles, but were most commonly worn in colors of white, pink, red, and black.
To complete the look, crop tops were commonly paired with low-rise pants, cargo pants, and denim skirts, depending on the look you were going for, and frequently exposed more areas of a woman’s stomach than the majority of crop tops of today.
The next style of the 2000s was cargo pants. From skaters to punk rockers, cargo pants were one of the most common casual outfits to wear and were made popular by a variety of celebrities, including Hilary Duff, The Cheetah Girls, and bands such as 3LW. This look featured large, baggy, loose-fitting pants with large pockets down the leg and typically came in colors of green, grey, and beige.
Next, the ‘00s were all about creating fashion from comfort. For that reason, tracksuits were the way to go for both casual and stylish trends. First made famous by Juicy Couture, these two-piece tracksuits were popularized by famous icons of the decade such as Paris Hilton and Britney Spears. These luxury loungewear suits were also typically colored in bright colors such as blue and pink and were often embellished with rhinestone logos on the front and back. It was also popular to mix track pants such as this with designer shoes to elevate the look further.
Next, when it came to casual wear for women, the ‘00s casual trends were all about being as comfortable as possible. Because of this, popular trends of the time included denim on denim, jeans with jeweled embellishments, denim skirts with studded belts, tracksuits, and cargo pants. For tops, the ‘00s were all about showing your midriff, so cropped styles were incredibly popular, while other looks included airbrushed tees, graphic tees, band tees, tank tops, and dresses over jeans.
Next, when it came to the shoes of the 2000s, there was a variety of shoes a woman would wear for different occasions. However, here is our list of some of the most common shoes and popular trends that you would find women wearing in the 2000s.
The first shoe trend of the early 2000s was Uggs. Still considered popular fashion today, Uggs can best be described as simple round toe boots with a fuzzy inner lining and beige, sheepskin outer layer that has been designed to create comfort whether you were at home or out and about. These boots were also worn by many celebrities and fashion influencers of the decade, including Beyonce and Sarah Jessica Parker, and are still trendy to this day.
2. Converse All-Stars
Next, another popular shoe trend of the ‘00s was converse all-stars. While these shoes had already been in the public eye for a few decades now, converse majorly took off throughout the decade thanks to the rise of teen actors and musicians, including Selena Gomez, Jordan Sparks, Kristen Stewart, Miley Cyrus, and Avril Lavigne. To this day, converse are still one of the most popular shoe trends for both girls and boys and are bound to remain that way for many years to come.
3. Platform pumps
And finally, platform pumps from the 90s continued to remain on-trend all throughout the 2000s. This shoe can best be described as shoes with an elevated sole across the entire bottom that help to add a few inches to a woman’s height. These came in bright colors such as pink, blue, and orange, as well as calmer colors such as black and beige.
Other shoes of the decade similar to this included T-strap heels, clear heels, square toe sandals, and pointy pumps.
When it came to the jewelry and accessory trends of the ‘00s, it was truly a decade of wearing as many bold and oversized pieces as possible. The colors were loud, the designs were wild, and they were popular with just about everyone. A few examples of common jewelry trends of the 2000s include:
- Butterfly clips
- Hair claws
- Layered plastic bracelets
- Shell-themed jewelry
- Locket necklaces
- Large chunky rings
- Mood rings
- Hair bows
- Beaded bracelets
And more. Of course, every style was different and was uniquely based on the individual in the ‘00s, as well as the subculture each individual was in.
Next, when it came to the makeup trends of the ‘00s, the 90s were a time of reinstallation of bold makeup, while the 2000s were all about bright pastel colors, body glitter, and extremely thin brows. Here are some of the makeup trends of the decade that you would most commonly see:
- Frosted lip gloss
- Thin brows with high arches
- Body glitter that was also used for face makeup
- Heavy pink blush
- Contrasting lip liner colors
- Pastel blue eyeshadow
- Fully lined eyes
- Heavy black eyeshadow
And more. Above all else, the makeup of the 2000s was bold, contrasting, and highly expressive, so you can bet no matter what type of makeup was used, the colors were bright, wild, and totally unique.
Next, when it came to the most popular hairstyle of the decade, the 2000s saw a variety of looks with origins from many different subcultures. However, one of the most common looks included crimps and curls. Popularized by celebrities like Christina Aguilera, women young and old loved this style that can best be described as mermaid hair, as it gave the hair a voluminous, texturized look that was truly flattering.
Aside from this, spiky loop buns, twisted updos, and colorful hair streaks were also popular. Side-swept bangs and layered dyed hair was also trendy in the punk, scene, and emo subcultures and definitely prevailed amongst the majority of young people throughout the decade.
Popular Styles for Men of the 2000s
Now, when it came to the most popular styles for men in the 2000s, hip-hop style was definitely considered to be one of the biggest trends of the time. This was majorly thanks to the rise of several popular rappers of the time, including Eminem, Jay-Z, Nelly, Diddy, and 50 Cent. The hip-hop look for men typically consisted of long t-shirts, baggy jeans, colorful sports jerseys, velour suits, and bubble jackets.
On top of that, hip-hop clothes were also commonly paired with a few key accessories, including sweatbands/headbands, Nike Air Force 1 sneakers, large gold chains, trucker hats, and snapbacks.
Next, another mainstream trend of the early to mid-2000s that was popular for men and women was emo fashion and featured stylish elements from both goth and punk styles. Outfits of this style typically included band tees, skinny jeans, ripped jeans, studded belts, chokers, and checkered slip-ons. To go along with emo fashion, having the right hair was a huge part of the trend. This typically included teased brightly colored hair, hair with streaks, and choppy cuts with side-swept bangs.
To follow this, scene styles that were a branch off of emo fashion also became popular towards the end of the decade and featured pieces such as brightly colored neon shirts, skinny black biker jeans, band shirts, striped tights, and tutus.
Next, it wouldn’t be men’s 2000s fashion if we didn’t include all-over prints. First popularized by brands such as Billionaire Boys Club and Brands like Bape, the all-over print style can best be described as a very loud and colorful streetwear fashion that featured patterns over everything. Most commonly applied on shirts and hats, all-over print designs could include everything from popping pastel colors mixed with words and logos, as well as other trendy graphics of the decade such as floral pieces or skulls. Truly, there was no trend like all-over prints, which is why they are still considered to be trendy to this day for many young men.
Next, when it came to casual wear, men of all ages would wear a variety of things when they were going out and about. Most commonly, this included denim, which was considered a staple piece throughout the decade, as well as hoodies, baggy jeans, baggy shorts, cargo pants, polo shirts, graphic tees, leather jackets, skinny jeans, and tracksuits. And, depending on the look the man chose, this would also most commonly be paired with flip-flops, oxford shoes, or sneakers, as well as accessories such as headbands, trucker hats, or snapbacks.
Next, for the men’s 2000s shoe fashion, men had an array of shoes they would wear for different occasions, just as women did. However, in terms of the most common shoes, these were what you were most likely to see a man sporting.
1. Nike Air force 1s
To start, the first most common pair of shoes was the Nike Air Force 1s. Majorly popular amongst the hip-hop industry, these shoes were common amongst men and teens of all ages and can best be described as a form of basketball sneaker available in both high and low-top options. These shoes also typically came in all white with grey accents on the side and would strap onto the foot at the ankle. If you wanted to be anyone in the early 2000s, you definitely had a pair or two of these in your closet.
2. Canvas slip-ons
Next, another one of the most popular trends of the decade that teens and young adults would wear was canvas slip-on shoes. These shoes were most remembered for their black and white checkered pattern and easy, snug fit. Teens of all subcultures could be seen wearing these, however; they were most common amongst the punk, emo, and scene groups, as this design fit their wild, colorful, and alternative style perfectly. However, they could also be seen on the feet of many young adults as well and were considered to be very fashionable.
And lastly, we couldn’t talk about the early 2000s without mentioning the iconic heely. While these shoes were most popular amongst kids and teens, they were a truly memorable part of the decade that many adults of today will still remember and love. These shoes can best be described as a form of sneakers with a removable wheel built into the heel part of the shoe so that you can walk or skate whenever you’d like.
For men’s hairstyles, there were a few common hairstyles that were on-trend all throughout the 2000s. Here’s our list of the most common hairstyles you would see.
1. Streaky Hair Highlights
The first popular hairstyle amongst men of the 2000s was bleached tips and colorful highlights. This included the bleached trend of the 90s that was popular amongst celebrities such as Justin Timberlake and Brad Pitt and was followed by the new generation that popularized hair streaks. This was a popular trend of both men and women of the 2000s with natural colors, such as blond and brunette, to help add additional texture to their hair.
However, colorful hair streaks and dyed hair altogether was also incredibly popular amongst the punk, scene, and emo culture and came in a variety of colors, including black and white, pink, red, and hot pink.
2. The Shag
Next, the shag hairstyle was a popular style sported by many young men, including teen heartthrobs of the time, such as Zac Efron, Cody Linley, and the Jonas Brothers. With this look, the hair was cut in long layers and cut roughly around the edges to give it a more edgy look. While this trend may seem too shaggy now, it certainly had young women of the decade weak in the knees and was considered to be incredibly attractive.
3. The Faux Hawk
And finally, the other big hair trend of the 2000s for men was the faux hawk. Inspired by the traditional mohawk, the faux hawk was a unique, wild, and fun look for men of all ages to rock. This look featured a unique haircut that allowed men to spike their hair up, as well as wear it down if they wanted to. Since this look was versatile, it was easy to wear and style, which made it something that men of the time quickly came to loved.
Overall, the 2000s were a fun decade of music-loving teens, rap-loving bad boys, and pastel and embellishment-loving women that truly left their mark on our world today. Whether it was the rinse of punk and emo fashion or athleisure clothing, the ‘00s were definitely one of the most colorful, versatile, and casual decades we’ve ever seen that still continues to inspire many looks that still thrive in modern-day society for both men and women.