2021 Fashion: What the Future Holds


Matthew Chen and Sophia Mannino

Even though most Americans only wore comfy sweatpants during quarantine, 2020 was a significant year for fashion — fashion that continues to progress into 2021.

With the popularization of men wearing skirts and dresses by celebrities such as Harry Styles, the line between gender specific fashion is becoming increasingly blurred. Social media platforms such as TikTok show that there seems to be a shift towards an androgynous look.

Workwear has risen in popularity as well. Companies like Carthartt have become popular for their brown workwear jackets. Similar to a denim jacket, workwear jackets create a rustic look and serve as a good piece for layering. Another trend in fashion is formal streetwear. Collared shirts are popular again but with new twists. Often, they are layered under sweatshirts or paired with casual wear. People no longer dress to fit into categories, and instead express themselves by blending different styles.

Jewelry has also increased in usage. While the chain trend began in early 2020, the new trend in men’s jewelry is pearl necklaces. While traditionally worn by women, pearl necklaces have become popular among all types of aesthetics. Rings which once only signified marriage have been added to the casual arsenal of a fashionista. All types of rings from thick bands to thin wire rings have emerged as a coveted accessory.

Tiny glasses, shoulder bags, and bucket hats, were popular crazes from the 90s and early 2020s, revived in 2020. This year many trends can be attributed to social media star Emma Chamberlain. Across many platforms, when it comes to fashion, her supporters have acquired a “what Emma says goes” mentality. A viral TikTok captured her influence over fashion perfectly saying, “it’s ugly until Emma Chamberlain decides it’s not”. She is credited with the return of yoga pants, flared and ribbed pants, bright neons, and puff-sleeved tops.

Fashion trends often follow aesthetics put forth by television and film. With the release of Netflix original, “Bridgerton”, we experience this once again. The show is an escape to 1800s London upper class life. The lavish ball gowns inspired the revival of corset tops.

Although trends are hard to predict, the mixture of media and fashion culture has created new aesthetics. While certain trends are popular now, it is uncertain when something new will pop up and become the next big thing.