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Y2K Low Rise Jeans Are Much More Than Just A Piece Of Clothing

The opinions expressed in this article are the writer’s own and do not reflect the views of Her Campus.

One of fashion’s great magical powers is its ability to constantly change. It only takes a blink of an eye for one piece to fall out of fashion and another takes its place, quickly catching everyone’s attention.

These changes not only allow completely new things to come into the spotlight but also for the revival of items that were popular in past decades. With the return of y2k fashion, the feeling of nostalgia is inevitable. But fashion is not only about feeling like that, it is also a social aspect.

Behind every fashion trend, there are it girls

It is impossible to think of Y2K fashion without considering low-waisted pants and skirts. Coupled with maximalism and the vibrant prints and colors of other items of clothing, the fashion during the beginning of the century became iconic and unforgettable.

The history of low-rise pants began in the 1960s. But the models that can easily be named super-low came to the spotlight in 1995 with Alexander McQueen. Some models even revealed part of the groin and the beginning of the buttocks.

Despite the start on the runways, there is nothing like an it-girl (or several) to spread the piece even more widely in young people’s closets. The immeasurable influence of Paris Hilton, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Mariah Carey, and Beyoncé turned the piece into a phenomenon and gave low-waisted jeans a permanent place in fashion history.

But what do all these women have in common? They are thin. And it is a big problem when only people with standard bodies are considered role models

Y2k is more than an aesthetic

At the height of the 2000s, all the models and celebrities who influenced young people were super skinny. Among the major influences of y2k, there was the style called heroin chic, which started in the 90s. Heroin chic consisted of the use of drugs inside the fashion industry, resulting in increasingly skinny models in magazines and on runways. In this chaotic scenario, the extremely thin body became the model to be followed by women. No wonder, precisely at this time, there was a considerable increase of pro-bulimia and pro-anorexia groups on the Internet.

Hip dips: a controversy

The super-tight low-waisted pants caused changes in women’s bodies. These modifications are known as hip dips.

The condition refers to sinking in the sides of the hips, in the area between the thigh and the buttocks. Very tight pants, such as many of the jeans worn in the 2000s, can stimulate tightening of this area exaggeratedly. The younger the girls wore tight clothes, the deeper their hip dips could be, since they were still growing.

Nowadays, several women seek plastic surgery to correct their hip dips, many because of insecurity about their bodies and the desire to wear pieces such as low-waisted pants.

How is gen z reacting to this situation?

This discussion started to spread within TikTok thanks to Gen Z. The “Fashionable or just skinny?” trend went viral on the app and provoked a very interesting reflection. By analyzing the looks of influential women like Hailey Bieber and Kendall Jenner, who have already appeared with y2k outfits, it was discussed whether they are really super stylish or just have standard bodies. The debate also questioned if a fat woman wearing the same clothes would be considered a fashion icon.

After all, we have to wear what makes us feel comfortable and happy, no matter what. But it is always important to keep in mind that looking stylish is still highly tied to being thin. Fashion trends still do not reflect the reality of the huge range of bodies that exist in the world. Shouldn’t fashion be for everyone?

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This article was edited by Amanda Oestreich. Liked this type of content? Check Her Campus Casper Libero’s home page for more.

Giovanna Ragano

Casper Libero '24

Journalism student at Casper Libero. Passionate about literature, fashion and TV shows. Always listening to Lana del Rey or Danna Paola on headphones.
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