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Y2K comes back, let’s talk about it

By Laurene Karajah

Staff Writer

Y2K Comes Back. Let’s Talk About it. 

The early 2000s: Low rise jeans, thongs, baby tees, tiny sunglasses, tiny purses. To average teens at the time, it was the Holy Grail of Fashion. Paris Hilton, Beyonce, Britney Spears, Naomi Campbell and more, were the goddesses. 

Teenagers now are bringing back the 2000s. The reactions to this trend are mixed to say the least. Some would describe it as “gaudy” and some would call it “fun”. 

The social media platform Tiktok had a huge hand in the resurgence. It often dictates the fashion of teens everywhere or even anyone with a phone. No matter how you feel about it no one can stop the resurrection of Y2K with its newfound popularity. 

One of the problems in 2000s era fashion was inclusivity. It was a time of fatphobia, and often excluded plus size people from fashion trends like bra tops, baby tees, low rise jeans, tiny skirts, etc. 

Kate Moss and Naomi Campbell going to Donetella Versace’s Diamonds Are Forever Charity Gala in 1999

Kate Moss, a British supermodel, mentioned in a 2009 interview “Nothing tastes better than skinny feels.” The quote is now looked down upon and labeled fatphobic, at the time it had been used by pro-anorexia sites everywhere. The quote and opinions like it contributed to beauty standards that are still around today.

For the longest time plus size people have been told to steer away from wearing revealing clothing like low rise jeans and crop tops, though as times have changed plus size people are starting to feel more comfortable and have started utilizing the pieces involved in Y2K style. Inclusivity is very important and needs to be applied to all forms of expression, as fashion moves forward plus size voices should be heard. 

Many don’t realize that their favorite Y2K trends originate from Black culture. Black celebrities like Aaliyah, Beyonce, Samuel L. Jackson, Tracy Ellis Ross, set the stage for fashion in the early 2000s. 

From tracksuits to nameplate jewelry, Black fashion started it all. Black fashion icons were often overlooked causing White celebrities to be credited with the start of the trend. It’s not the first time it’s happened. Throughout history you can see style stolen from the Black community. For example hoop earrings originated in 4th century Africa and are now utilized in many different trends including Y2K. 

Companies like Shein have leached onto new trends looking to make quick money off of people looking for cheap and affordable clothing. With the emerging Y2K comeback, fast fashion companies have been capitalizing on the 2000s trends that are in right now. 

Thankfully many teens looking to combat fast fashion are starting to opt for second hand clothing to fill their wardrobe. Second-hand pieces are often picked out for their Y2K elements like velour and bright colors.  People have been flocking to thrift stores and selling platforms like Depop, Thredup and Tradesy, to find authentic clothes from the 2000s.

Y2K came back due to the everlasting 20 year fashion cycle. It can often be held responsible for resurfacing trends.The rule theorizes that fashion trends come back ev

Plus-size model Holly Marston for Refinery29

ery twenty years. Every time a trend

comes back, it supposedly evolves and repeats the cycle over and over. 

In this case, many believe it is the reason for Y2K’s resurgence. According to the 20 year rule, trends now will come back in a couple decades. Who knows how it will be received and what will be done with it, it may even be treated like Y2K’s comeback. 


Featured Image(at the top of this post): Destiny’s Child on the red carpet on August 22, 2000. Jim Smeal/Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

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