Your Complete Guide to Dressing Like It's 2003 (In a Good Way) This Summer


Whether you're spotting it on celebrity Instagram feeds or Fashion Month runways2000s fashion is without a doubt taking over the 2022 zeitgeist. And with summer approaching—a season that practically promotes wearing nothing but Y2K-inspired micro miniskirts, scarf tops, and tube dresses—the era's influence on modern-day fashion isn't going away anytime soon. 

To help keep you on top of arguably the biggest macro trend of the summer and importantly, also avoid going too far into the early aughts (the 2000s weren't without fashion faux pas, after all), we went ahead and found 11 outfits for summer that toe the line between 2003 and 2022 (in a good way). Keep on scrolling to check out our 2000s meets 2022 dressing guide for summer.


(Image credit: @emilisindlev)

Though you can't exactly say that pairing a white tank top with jeans is a "2000s fashion trend," takes on the combo from that era absolutely have noticeable differences from those from other decades. For instance, the jeans back in the aughts (and now) were always low-rise and usually somewhat baggy, while the tanks were either super long (dated) or slightly cropped (fresh).

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(Image credit: @aniyahmorinia)

Scarves worn as tops are Y2K dressing 101, which is why they're seeing such an uptick in popularity in the 2020s. Paired most often with baggy jeans or denim shorts in the summer, the versatile top style is as easy as fold-and-tie. Nothing more nothing less. Throw on some hoops, cat-eye sunglasses, and a retro shoulder bag and you have yourself a 2000s outfit that's just as appropriate for today. 

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(Image credit: @claire_most)

From the baby graphic tee to the baggy parachute pants, this look is 2000s fashion at its core. The tiny, sporty sunglasses and colorful Nikes are just an added bonus. 

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(Image credit: @endlesslyloveclub)

Despite what many photos would have you believe, 2000s fashion wasn't all about bright colors, chaotic layering, and shimmery fabrics. Rather, there was an entirely different side to the era's aesthetic that was much darker, grungier, and made almost entirely of leather. 

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(Image credit: @meganadelaide)

Is there anything more 2003 than a spaghetti-strap camisole and drawstring pants? Let us know if you can think of anything. Throw in a choker, tiny sunglasses, and a hobo-style shoulder bag and you could almost believe this outfit was actually worn in the early aughts rather than 2022. 

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(Image credit: @champagnemani)

Going out in the 2000s consistently included micro minidresses—from halter styles to cutout alternatives—though the most popular of all the going-out dresses from the time were tube dresses, preferably those in bright shades and spotted with vibrant patterns. Just catch up on old episodes of The Simple Life for proof. 

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(Image credit: @discodaydream)

FYI, 2000s dressing is all about putting together items that at first glance you maybe wouldn't style together, but once you do, you fall in love with the combination. Such is how we grew to adore this combo of a tube top, a knee-length skirt, and knee-high boots. Add in the iconic Balenciaga Cagole shoulder bag and poof, you've traveled back in time—at least sartorially, that is. 

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(Image credit: @camillecharriere)

Bikinis were much more than just a beachwear staple in the aughts. Instead, they were worn for all occasions, making logos and other patterned styles essential for any 2000s-inspired wardrobe this summer. 

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(Image credit: @moeblackx)

Thanks to Ashton Kutcher, Paris Hilton, and Nicole Richie, trucker hats are the unofficial accessory of the early aughts, with all three wearing iterations of the cap style—often from Von Dutch—to after-parties and red carpets alike. Now all that's left to do is throw in some baggy jeans and a cutout top.

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(Image credit: @slipintostyle)

The only dress style rivaling tube dresses from the early aughts are asymmetrical dresses, whether they are one-shouldered or feature an uneven hemline. It's hard to know what about the style made them so popular at the time (and now), but something about the lopsided silhouette made them rule throughout the decade. 

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(Image credit: @himichelleli)

For an effortless though notably Y2K-inspired everyday look, you can't go wrong with a micro miniskirt and a one-shoulder top, two pieces that were as prevalent on the red-carpet scene in the aughts as Lindsay Lohan, Paris Hilton, and Christina Milian. 

Next: I Faced My Fears by Testing Out Every Intimidating Denim Trend From the 2000s

Senior Fashion Editor

Eliza Huber is a New York City–based fashion editor who specializes in trend reporting, brand discovery, and celebrity style. She joined Who What Wear in 2021 after almost four years on the fashion editorial team at Refinery29, the job she took after graduating with a marketing degree from the University of Iowa. She has since launched two monthly columns, Let's Get a Room and Ways to Wear; profiled the likes of Dakota Fanning, Diane Kruger, Katie Holmes, and Sabrina Carpenter for WWW's monthly cover features; and reported on everything from the relationship between Formula One and fashion to the top trends from fashion month, season after season. Eliza now lives on the Upper West Side and spends her free time researching F1 fashion imagery for her side Instagram accounts @thepinnacleoffashion and @f1paddockfits, running in Central Park, and scouring eBay for '90s Prada and '80s Yves Saint Laurent.