How to Rock the 90s Cool Girl Aesthetic This Fall

Guest post by: Sue Seabury

When it comes to fashion, one of the best things for thrifters is that it goes in cycles and old becomes cool again. There’s so much fun fashion out there that you can reuse and recycle, all while looking super stylish! The 90s was an awesome era. It has something for everyone, from minimalist to rebel. Edgy yet casual, the decade was effortlessly chic. The 90s not only influenced fashion for decades, they were important enough to come back in full force. Keep reading to learn how you can totally rock the 90s cool girl aesthetic this fall.


Grunge was a dominant 90s music movement that carried over into fashion. At its core, grunge is about rebelling against the fashion rules by de-emphasizing the shape of the body. Personal expression is the name of the game and layering is a key feature. Style grunge to best suit your identity be it with high rise baggy jeans, chainlink accessories, or head-to-toe black, complete with biker boots. Flannel, utilitywear, bowling shirts and floral dresses are more classic grunge options. Best of all, all of these items and more can be found at secondhand shops!

Hip Hop

For the record, Silicone Valley was not responsible for popularizing the hoodie. That’s right, you can thank 90s hip hop stars for bringing that staple piece to the forefront. Also, grunge wasn’t the only music to permanently influence fashion. Grunge and hip hop have more than a few things in common, including baggy clothes. The oversize white tee was a staple of the 90s hip hop scene and it is once again. Another hip hop must-have is jeans, particular if they’re loose coveralls. Bonus points for wearing them with one strap undone. As far as jeans go, head-to-toe denim was also a hot 90s look, so if you dig it, go for it! Big, bold patterns are another sign of the times for 90s hip hopsters. Also born in the 90s: streetwear. If hip hop is your scene, keep your eyes peeled for iconic pieces like Timberland boots, puffer jackets, and denim in all its forms.


Unisex clothes have been popular for the last few years, but dressing like a girl is also trending strong, and let’s face it, we’re glad it is because girly fashion is so fun! Britney Spears was a fashion icon of the 90s who was (in)famous for many things. Love her or hate her, her taste in fashion influenced a generation, and one of the things she was best known for was her ultragirly style. Crop tops with flowy pants, oversize hoop earrings, and of course hair scrunchies are absolute must-haves. Sparkles, spangles, velvet, silk, anything that proclaims your love of being a girl is in this fall. If you love girly gear, feel free to shop vintage brands, but you don’t need to. Anything pink or with a frill will fit this vibe.


Minimalism is awesome news for thrifters be they college coeds or career women. Basic slip dresses were a staple of the era and they are in style again for this retro trend. Tailored pants have also made a comeback and are a great investment. Knee-length slip skirts are showing up everywhere this fall, and there’s a better-than-decent chance you already have one in your closet, so start shopping there first! Another sexy and chic 90s look is the streamlined maxi skirt. As for fabric, it’s your choice: knit, silk, or linen, pick the one that best fits your personal aesthetic. Pick a natural color if you plan to use more detailed accessories.

Also hot this fall: the humble white tank top. Pair one with any of the above-listed trending 90s bottoms styles or straight-leg jeans for a timeless minimalist look. As the temps cool down, slip on an oversize oxford shirt or, if you really score big at the vintage outlet, complete the look with a leather blazer. And even though you like to keep things simple, a cute bucket hat or artsy beret is a quick and easy way to add some instant character to your outfit without looking overdone.


You would be excused for thinking rebelwear is the same as grunge. It has some similarities, but it is different. For rebelwear, think tough and dark: leather jackets, leather pants, ripped black jeans, combat boots, band tee shirts, and choker necklaces (spikes are optional).

Chunky Shoes

Yet another 90s fashion trend that’s back is the chunky shoe. This counts for all styles, including sneakers, sandals, and boots. Now’s the time to hit the thrift shops and stock up on every platform shoe you find. You’ll look chic and at least a few inches taller!

One of the best ways to transform an outfit is with accessories. We’ve already mentioned several must-have pieces for this fall, including hair scrunchies, hoop earrings, and choker necklaces. While black lipstick or nail polish are optional (unless you’re going full goth), butterfly hair clips, crystal pendants, and mood rings are essential. A bandana for the head or wrist is also standard for rebel and hip hop looks. And no 90s fashion ensemble would be complete without a fanny pack.

Author’s Bio:

Sue Seabury is passionate about bringing the latest fashion news to her readers. She is a regular contributor to The Pearl Source blog.

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