If you lived through the ’90s as a sentient teenager, fewer things were more exciting than the approach of Y2K: the colloquial name for the impending computer glitch that would halt the world as we knew it right at the turn of the century. These days the expression is less about data entry errors and more about fashion: It’s synonymous with butterfly clips, Bratz dolls, and everything Britney. But how exactly do you dress Y2K in 2022?
The early-aughts style revival is alive and well at brands like Maisie Wilen, AREA, Miaou, Mirror Palais, and Simon Miller in the form of baby tees, pleated miniskirts, bandage dresses, and flares with ’00s-inspired details like lettuce-hem trim. (A choker, blue eye shadow, and shiny brown lip gloss can complete the look.)
What Is the Y2K Aesthetic?
If there’s any single word that sums up the Y2K aesthetic, it’s playful. Think of Britney’s …Baby One More Time album cover or any Delia’s catalog you may have feverishly flipped through in 2001. At the heart of the Y2K fashion revival is the lightheartedness of a more innocent time—and probably also Euphoria’s reign. That means short minidresses sometimes paired with chunky boots and crystal-embellished everything. Other interpretations include Tom Ford’s era-defining designs toward the end of his reign at Gucci, which means satin dresses cut on the bias, low-slung trousers, and even sexy, gem-encrusted black leather slingbacks—a look that started in the ’90s and was reinvigorated with a little more personality in the early aughts.
Y2K Outfit Inspiration
Trying to glean some Y2K outfit inspiration? Here are a few interpretations of the look that became synonymous with the early aughts, plus the best pieces to shop to get the Y2K fashion look.