’90s Outfits: The Biggest, Baddest Looks From the Decade Offer All the Spring Style Inspiration You Need

If you’ve noticed a whole lot of ’90s outfits popping up on the timeline lately, you’re not the only one. The decade is fully back, baby. Don’t believe us? Scroll through the thousands of Getty results from the era—or take a gander at any of the IG mood boards dedicating to documenting the period’s biggest fits—and then bang our line. The hallmarks of ’90s style have once again thrashed their way to the forefront of the menswear psyche, and frankly, we kind of saw it coming.

Look closely, and the signs were there all along. Cargo pants are cool! Fanny packs are back and better than ever! Graphic tees have never been wavered! Heck, the shaggy mohair cardigan Kurt Cobain wore performing on “MTV Unplugged” almost three decades ago—a veritable ’90s icon in its own right—sold for a whopping 300k at auction a few years ago.

Today, though, the ’90s outfits worth emulating are the ones that don’t borrow from the period’s defining aesthetic so literally. So we distilled the core elements of the look into six key categories, none of which call for the hairstyle of an era-specific heartthrob to pull off. Mixed and matched alongside the pieces already in your closet, they represent the easiest way to ape the ’90s look without veering into cosplay. You could say they’re…all that and a bag of chips. (But please don’t.)

Big Ol’ Baggy Jeans

Pooling, wide-leg jeans—the kind gloriously offbeat dressers like Justin Bieber and Pete Davidson swear by today—remain a calling card of Y2K-era fashion, but the cut first took off in the decade that preceded it.

BDG baggy skate-fit jeans

Image may contain: Clothing, Apparel, Pants, Denim, and Jeans

Polar Skate Co. big boy jeans

Y/Project peep show jeans

Rev Run-Approved Tracksuits

’70s-indebted tracksuits—crisp, understated, best paired with a thicket of unkempt chest hair—might be all the rage right now, but the ones we’re talking about here are cut from a different cloth entirely. Comfortable, crinkly, and usually made from a lightweight nylon blend, they hearken back to a time when hip-hop luminaries like Run-DMC were on the cusp of becoming the world’s biggest influencers—Adidas shell-toes, swishy pants, and all.

Image may contain: Clothing, Apparel, Fleece, Coat, and Jacket

7 Days Active Colour-Blocked Nylon Half-Zip Track Jacket

7 Days Active striped nylon track pants

Reebok Classics vector track jacket

Image may contain: Clothing, Apparel, Pants, Denim, Jeans, and Shorts

Reebok Classics vector track pants

Image may contain: Clothing, Apparel, Jacket, Coat, and Blazer

Telfar x Converse track jacket

Image may contain: Clothing, Apparel, Pants, and Suspenders

Telfar x Converse track pants

Adidas adicolor classics “Beckenbaur” track jacket

Image may contain: Clothing, Apparel, Pants, Denim, Jeans, and Tights

Adidas adicolor classics “Beckenbaur” track pants

MTV-Ready Flannel Shirts

Flannel shirts weren’t invented in the ’90s, but their association with the era’s grunge scene forever lends them an aura of counter-cultural cool. Layer one over a hoodie or a long-sleeve T-shirt and accent with a healthy dose of stick-it-to-the-man ‘tude.

Image may contain: Clothing, Apparel, Shirt, Sleeve, and Long Sleeve

Wax London “White” shirt

Wrangler Authentic heavyweight flannel shirt

Needles 7 cuts plaid flannel shirt

Image may contain: Clothing, Sleeve, Apparel, and Long Sleeve

Red Carpet-Worthy Bucket Hats

The ’90s were a downright wild time. ’90s fashion? Even wilder. How else to explain the mind-boggling array of bucket hats on display, perched precariously on the heads of A-listers (with very relaxed notion of conventional dress codes) step-and-repeating their way through a decade’s worth of premieres? Turns out, all those newly-heralded style icons were onto something.

Rip Curl sun rays terry cloth bucket hat

Image may contain: Clothing, Apparel, Sun Hat, Hat, Cap, and Baseball Cap

Post-Imperial beaded striped indigo-dyed bucket hat

Image may contain: Clothing, Apparel, Hat, Human, Person, Sun Hat, and Face

Nicholas Daley hand crochet bucket hat

This-Is-How-You-Win Leather Blazers

Leather was everywhere in the ’90s—on vests, pants, knee-length trenches—but no supple cowhide piece looks cooler today than the leather blazer. Throw one on with a turtleneck and tinted shades to kick the sleaze factor up a notch—and imbue your ’90s-inspired get-ups with a little stylistic verve borrowed from the decades before it.

Fear of God Leather blazer

Image may contain: Clothing, Apparel, Coat, Overcoat, and Jacket

Sunflower “Jet” single-breasted leather blazer

Image may contain: Clothing, Apparel, Suit, Overcoat, Coat, Tuxedo, Human, and Person

N.Hoolywood faux-leather blazer

Image may contain: Clothing, Apparel, Jacket, Coat, Human, Person, and Leather Jacket

Acne Studios leather sport coat

Spotlight-Stealing Necklaces

Take it from Tommy Lee: Nothing transforms a plain Jane tank top and blue jeans into a rockstar-level look more efficiently than neckful of chunky-as-hell jewelry.

Image may contain: Accessories, Accessory, Jewelry, and Bracelet

Lorette Colé Duprat “Ras De Cou” necklace

Image may contain: Chain, Necklace, Jewelry, Accessories, and Accessory

Miabella paperclip link necklace

Image may contain: Bracelet, Jewelry, Accessories, and Accessory

Martin Ali “Gunnar” necklace

Miansai Cuban chain necklace

Leave a Comment