Cult Trends: are they worth the hype?

Is the clock ticking on cowboy boots? How long till they are destined for perpetual disregard?  

Cult trends have dominated our culture for years, however with the boom of Gen Z and the age of Tik Tok, they are moving along at increasing rates. All it takes is a walk into Zara, to return two days later and be faced with a completely new layout and completely new clothes. Trends are moving faster than we can keep up with.  Is that cult item you’re thinking of purchasing worth the hype, or will it fall flat? Are you buying for the brand, or for the item? 

So what are the current cult trends? All it takes is a quick page scroll, or indeed a trip around the meadows, to see it’s the age of the clean girl aesthetic. The ‘scandi’ girl.  Thanks to the likes of Matilda Djerf, the slick back buns, oversized blazers and the ‘done, undone’ look is taking over the streets.  Does Y2K stand a chance?  Personally, I see longevity in the ‘scandi girl’ aesthetic, it encourages timeless basics, slow fashion clothes and neutral colours. Something that Y2K didn’t have, Y2Ks’ clothing was curated in the boom of fast fashion, the products were not made to last. Will you be wearing that sequin tank in 20 years time? Probably not. To avoid buying into the everchanging cult trends you’ve got to ask yourself the key question, is this piece going to last me throughout trends? Or is this just what I’m seeing on Tik Tok? 

What does cult status mean for brands? Is being white hot a good thing? An interesting case study I think with cult trend brands is the Supreme brick. Supreme encapsulates the skater boy movement, this one brand has monopolised the market. Through one off drops, limited stock and logo branding, they have got to the point where they can literally put their brand on anything – for example – a normal, regular brick. Through ingenious marketing Supreme have made their logo highly profitable and led people to ‘cult buy’. Their bricks are selling for up to £1000 and with the average brick costing 40p, it’s a serious mark up. Cult status for brands enables them to make serious profits but not always with longevity. Will Supreme face the same fate as the likes of Topshop or Abercrombie? Probably.  

How can we look out for cult trends? When shopping I often find myself questioning whether I want an item because it’s a cult trend or whether I actually like it in its own right. I often ask myself these three key questions. 

1.Has the item, or the brand, been around for a while? 

2. Is It sustainable/well made? 

3. Is it timeless? Will this be lasting me well into my late twenties? 

 So these are my three top picks of the current trends circulating online: 

1. Uggs 

Uggs have been around for years, and Have undoubtably gone in and out of fashion. However thanks to Matilda Djerf, they’re back. And, personally, I think this cult trend is worth it. An Ugg will always be a slipper, but they are well made, and built to last. And I don’t see slippers you can wear outside ever truly going completely out of fashion.  

2. Parachute pants  

Having owned a pair of parachute pants myself, I just don’t see the longevity in them. They aren’t comfortable, because realistically plastic on your skin never will be.  And alongside this they are undoubtably impractical, wearing them resulted in cold static legs. Not good. 

3. Crocs 

This one divides the nation, so it’s a tricky one, but it’s a no from me. Not only is there no longevity in them but I don’t see them as being practical for streetwear. Surely having giant holes in them is enough? 

In the age of a climate crisis we’re finding ourselves really trying to limit impulse fast fashion purchases and buy clothes and items that are going to last. Maybe next time we should think twice before buying into cult culture.

lila crocs” by loop_oh is licensed under CC BY-NC-SA 2.0.