Van Cleef bracelets, Adidas Sambas and Denim Tears jeans. What do all of these brands have in common? Well, besides lining the closets of some of the most clouted-up influencers on the internet, all of these labels have also recently found themselves on the receiving end of the digital trend comedown. This harrowing downward spiral in the court of social media happens with just about every “hero item” from brands that rise to star status on the app.
For Denim Tears, it was their Cotton Wreath Jeans. Adidas, who has always maintained some level of mainstream relevance, found its most recent sneaker star in their Sambas and are now considered “basic.” Legacy jewelry brand Van Cleef & Arpels has been worn by the likes of Mariah Carey and Beyoncé, so suffice it to say they were never hurting for an esteemed clientele. But their Alhambra motif bracelets have found special favor among influencers online. But now it’s giving people the ick?
Clothing pieces can soar to virality at record-setting speeds, but the comedown is almost quicker. It’s the paradox of exclusivity. Once everyone has it, no one seems to want it, an especially fine line to toe in an era wherein gatekeeping has become one of the most egregious acts one can commit online. In the words of questionable philosopher Drake, “It’s like they can’t get enough until enough is enough — and then it’s too much.” Things are being dubbed “lame” and “overdone” quicker than ever before, and coupled with social media pressures to not repeat outfits, we’re stuck between an overpriced rock and a hard place. The average person can’t keep up, and nor should they want to.
Now, to be clear, there are still pieces from my 2014 wardrobe that make me physically recoil, so I am in no way immune to the revolving door of “ins” and “outs” when it comes to what I choose to wear. But the 2X speed at which these trends are coming and going is not only giving us all digital whiplash but it is unsustainable on a financial, environmental and emotional level. The fashion industry is one of the largest polluters in the world, and the cost of living crisis perpetually has millennials and Gen-Z by the throat.
Trying to keep up with these fashion whims also takes a toll on how we view ourselves as members of our respective and larger societies. That is to say, no one wants to feel like an outcast as it relates to style or anything else. So what is the antidote? Only buy what you like. This may seem obvious or even reductive, but it would prevent a lot of internal anguish that comes about when you see a pair of jeans you spent $200 on sitting in your closet that you haven’t worn in six months cause some influencer on TikTok said they’re “played out.”
When you take the time to curate your own fashion perspective and assemble your wardrobe with pieces you truly love, you are less likely to fall victim to the quicksand-ish nature of our current trend cycle.