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The ’80s are officially back: here are 11 fashion trends you’ll actually want to wear

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Reflecting on the spring/summer 2023 collections that were shown last September, one thing is certain, the ’80s are back and better than ever.

Over the past two years, the decade famed for opulence and excess has slowly made its way into our hearts in the form of understated ’80s-inspired outfits, thanks to the popularity of trends like biker shorts and oversized blazers. And now, the fashion trends of spring 2023 proved that the fashion world is ready to plunge full force into the whimsy of the ’80s. Young designers from New York to nearly centuries-old European houses have exhibited shoulder pads, slouchy boots, chunky gold jewelry and more during the latest fashion month.

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Now, I know what you’re thinking and trust me, I had my reservations too. Do we really want to bring back blue eyeshadow and sultry leggings? My answer will be forever and forever will be no. However, that doesn’t mean we can’t pick the best parts of the decade to put on our 21st century lives.

Whether you’re curious to see what trends have made a comeback on the runway or you’re just here for a little nostalgia, I’m giving you 11 of the best ’80s fashion trends, their 2022 takes, and some buys to go with it (because, why not? ?).

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Whether it was ruffles, shirring, ruching, or draping, ’80s fashion was dominated by texture, from clothing to accessories. Our favorite interpretation of this by far has been the slouchy boot. It’s an easy way to add some texture to your wardrobe without going overboard with puff sleeves and tutus. Not to mention, they were the go-to look for fashion icon Princess Diana.

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Have motorcycle jackets ever Really old fashioned? This season, the oversized version of the silhouette seemed to be the fashion favorite. For the perfect ’80s pinup look, pair it with a pair of blue jeans.

It’s no secret that designers recycle denim trends from the past. We’ve seen the return of the low-rise bootcut jeans of the early 2000s to the ultra-loose, ultra-long skater jeans of the ’90s. Why not acid wash? Invest in a complete ensemble à la Dolly Parton. Or, for a more subtle version, opt for an understated skirt.

AG Jeans

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Haruko Vintage Distressed Denim Midi Skirt

Oversized blazers have been everywhere this fall. Whether paired with slacks for the office or a sparkly mini dress for a night out, they give off the effortless cool-girl look we can’t help but fawn over. When using one for your look, remember that bigger is better.

All Saints

Oversized blazer Corin

Designers of the 1980s were famous for their use of bright colors. Take this iconic photo of Iman Abdulmajid strutting down the runway for Claude Montana’s spring/summer ’86 show as an example. Today, we can turn to designers like Ester Manas and Undercover for bold, striking shades reminiscent of their ’80s predecessors.

Marquis Almedia

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Yellow draped sweater

This shot of Grace Jones walking in Azzedine Alaia’s Spring/Summer ’86 couture show may or may not be why my love for hooded dresses runs so strong. They are elegant, majestic and leave a lot to the imagination, which is why they are so attractive. Plus, they appeared in shows across the board this season, securing their spot on the 1980s comeback list.

Delicate jewelry has been the standard for the past few years. However, recently we have noticed a shift towards thicker and more artistic styles. Take notes from ’80s supermodel Kelly Emberg, who paired a gold necklace with a spaghetti strap dress to strike the perfect balance between excess and minimalism.

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Infatuation Necklace in Gold

When it came to the ’80s, the more lace the better. The material was initially popularized by pop stars of the day, but later caught on with the younger generations, making the fabric a staple of the 1980s. As we all know, what goes around comes around. And this time the trend has stayed true to form without much modern alteration.

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Long Sleeve Lace Top

Just like today, the ’80s were all about mixing the masculine and the feminine. At the time, the power suit served as a feminist symbol for women entering the male-dominated workforce. More recently, it has become a signifier of androgyny and the decline of gender binaries in fashion.

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Wool-blend pleated mini skirt

Shoulder pads go hand in hand with the power suit trend of the 1980s. At the time, their purpose was to create a more masculine shape. Today, they symbolize the rejection of our loungewear to work from home. When it comes to shoulder pads, we say go big or go bigger. Become a true ’80s icon in a luxurious silk dress. For a more understated look, try this long sleeve from The Frankie Shop.

Off-the-shoulder necklines

For a decade that was over the top in almost every way, the ’80s understood the power of being subtly sexy, which has been a breath of fresh air as we’ve moved away from the overt sexiness of Y2K fashion. A style that we believe encapsulates that certain I do not know what It’s the off-the-shoulder look that’s been popping up everywhere lately.

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