TikTok is predicting that skinny jeans are coming back in style in 2023.
In 2021, Generation Z officially canceled the millennial denim favorite and declared that tight skinny jeans were “cheugy” (which is a term used to describe something that’s outdated).
In recent years, celebrities, influencers, and shoppers have opted for baggy, wide-fit jeans instead.
Why does it matter? Gen Z is unhappy about the super-tight denim trend’s return. The death of uncomfortable skinny jeans was welcomed by wearers who favored comfort. According to one study, skinny jeans may even damage muscle and cut off circulation to the legs and feet.
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What were the early signs that skinny jeans were making a comeback?
- In December, skinny jeans were seen on the runway at the Celine fall 2023 women’s wear show.
- In recent months, singer Olivia Rodrigo as well as supermodels Kendall Jenner and Emily Ratajkowski were both spotted in skinny jeans.
- Royal style icon Kate Middleton also wore skinny jeans on her family’s official Christmas card in 2022. (Although the Princess of Wales has never really abandoned the denim style)
- Supermodel and “best-dressed guy on TikTok” Wisdom Kaye vehemently defended skinny jeans in a viral video last month.
Why are skinny jeans back in style in 2023?
- Like Recession Core, the revival of skinny jeans is a reminder of the cyclical nature of fashion.
- Gen Z’s love of the 1990s and Y2K era fashion led to the revival of loose, wide-fit jeans and the rejection of skinny jeans. The COVID-19 pandemic also accelerated a shift toward comfortable clothing and baggier silhouettes.
- But now, baggy jeans do not feel quite as fresh as they used to be. Celebrities and fashion brands are gradually favoring skinny jeans.
- Similarly, by the mid-2000s, jeans got increasingly tighter in the fashion world. Along with the rise of emo subculture, supermodel Kate Moss and actress Sienna Miller both popularized skinny jeans over the course of decade. And by the 2010s, skinny jeans were the norm and a major wardrobe staple for most millennials.
- Figure-hugging skinny jeans could be another sign that the the hyper-slim body aesthetic is back — and the body positivity movement is out.
- However, TikTok trend forecasters Victoria Casalino and @glowupu predicted that this year’s skinny jeans would not be as skin-tight as its millennial iteration and would resemble straight leg jeans instead.
But maybe skinny jeans were never dead: In January, Levi’s CEO Chip Bergh told The Washington Post that the company’s two top-selling women’s items were the skinny jeans 311 and the 721. (Although half of Levi’s revenue in the bottoms category in the quarter came from looser and baggier fits.) “The skinny jean is not going anywhere anytime soon,” Bergh says.