Words by Maja Metera
TikTok had bad reputation before COVID-19 happened seen as another silly thing that Gen-Z came up with. Well, at this point it became a blend between Instagram and YouTube as it combines aesthetic requirements and editing skills of both platforms. People started using it not only for comedy but also to show off their creativity. This way fashion left shopping hauls of YouTube and became a part of day to day art form available to the common public. TikTok became a place to present your personal style and identity through fashion choices. As a result of this many different fashion aesthetics have formed and are prevalent on this platform.
Now more and more tiktokers use their accounts to inspire people to experiment. Fashion side of TikTok provides us with compilations of outfits for certain occasions in multiple styles, and with a little help from “For You Page” algorithm, helps is find our own style.
E-boy & E-girl
It’s a modern spin on emo kids. They characterise with usage of chains and keeping it in monochrome. Classic outfit would entail black-and-white stripes turtle neck with an oversized T-shirt that has a simple, dark print on the front. This all would be tucked into high-waisted, baggy trouser or a pleaded skirt and fishnets. Both e-boy and e-girls prefer their hair black or brightly colour. Add some matching or black make-up and you are ready to take over “Molly Rocks In My Green Tee” sound.
If a style could speak, this one would say “F**k gender norms.” This aesthetic combines usually very masculine traits like beards with glittery eyeliner and lipstick that match perfectly chosen high-heels and dresses. That is if they feel comfortable enough. The base of FemBoy style is introducing feminine shapes like tying an open shirt above the bellybutton. They usually also wear long hair. Do not mistake them with Drag Queens who dress-up as women and create a stage persona. This is a day to day style.
Imagine going on a lovely walk in a field, picking up flowers and dancing in a warm summer sunlight. I bet that without knowing about it, you pictured someone dressed in cottage core. It could be a girl that loves looking through her grandma’s closet to find a light, flowy floral dress with puffy sleaves. She would wear almost no make-up or just a bit to look sun-kissed. This aesthetic is inspired by the feeling that comes to mind when we idealise farming or light gardening. It is rather a feeling than actual work since many cottage core – also known as Farmcore or Countrycore – outfits would be very impractical. Nonetheless, this style revolves around nature and is full of naturally occurring or faded colours including brown, baby pink, olive green, ivory, maroon, beige, dusty rose pink, light yellow and baby blue. It also look really cute in white for a wedding day.
One of the aesthetics most varied in shades and colours. It divides into light, dark and art, pastel and many more. The point is that you are supposed to show that you are interested in culture and wisdom with your clothes. It looks very British/European – cozy, full of jumpers, cardigans, wool and trench coats. In this style, a book of classic literature counts as an accessory. Depending on which ‘side’ of academia style you choose, you would either dive into existential crisis or a positive enjoyment of arts. Shades are dim, a bit “off” and usually earthy. Autumn is their (and mine as I am sucker for academia) prime time.
This aesthetic did not originate on TikTok but on Tumblr and is strongly inspired by the 1990s. Even though it was accused of being “whitewashed”, the community celebrates diversity and is very much inclusive. Thanks to “arthoes” mom jeans made their comeback and we can leave the house in a messy bun and still get complemented. Anything that would be associated with artists – especially such as Van Gogh. They will quite literary wear art on themselves – famous paintings on socks, paint stains on jeans or brushes in their hair. Their main colour is yellow so hated by other aesthetics – and any other primary colour. “Arthoes” share their love for Fjallraven Kånken Bags and Vans with VSCO girls we know from Instagram. An equivalent of an arthoe for those who identify as men is a softboy with their also vintage-themed clothing.
I always thought that everything already was a trend and yet it never ceases to amaze me what else we and the younger generation will come up with to freshen up the style of our parents and grandparents.