Gone Digital: 7 Fearless Brands Born on the Internet

I’m not saying I was up until 2 a.m. scrolling through Instagram last night. But if I had been swiping—say, from my feed to my Explore page to a dozen new accounts, for example, for the better part of an hour—then it may have ended up with 23 new screenshots and a log of photos in my private Instagram folder.

Yet when I woke up in the morning, there they were: a clutter of screenshots and snaps saved to my Instagram Collections, taking up valuable space on my phone’s shrinking storage plan. As I thumbed through the evidence of my late-night digital deep dive, I found videos of a fashion show perched on a cliffside outside Marseilles, a new swimsuit brand based right here in L.A. I had never heard of before, snaps from Amangiri with an outfit I wanted to research, a vintage Prada bustier destined for my closet… Collectively, they’re all discoveries in the world of fashion that struck me as worthy of holding onto. And this, my friends, is what’s helping to change the tide in fashion.

Now, more than ever, there’s an opportunity for young brands to get their start in the industry. In years past, fashion was often dominated by a few big names, models of limited diversity and body types, a handful of major retailers, and brands with brick-and-mortar stores. In large part, it’s because of the way the industry was built. There have always been huge barriers to entry, and it continuously has been run by a small group of people at the top.

The internet, though, and platforms like Instagram, are helping to democratize the whole system—meaning that any one of us can launch a business and have a voice in fashion. Here, we’re highlighting about-to-break brands that were born on the internet and aren’t adhering to the traditional retail path. Instead, they’re thinking social—and really, digital—first. Welcome to the new guard of fashion in 2018. Prepare to fall in love with these fearless brands.