Love it or hate it, celebrities continue to hold an immense influence over fashion. Before a trend becomes popular, you'll usually find it being worn by a star, and the masses will think it's ugly at first. I know that sounds ridiculous, but hear me out on this. The celeb set's '00s uniform (a trucker hat, a velour tracksuit, Ugg boots, and rimless sunglasses) was deemed "ugly," but it's now the defining look of the era. The R&B and hip-hop icons of the '90s would be called "ghetto" for wearing a tiny crop top, low-rise baggy pants, and oversize hoop earrings, but now, the ensemble has become a go-to night-out look for women of all backgrounds. And let us not forget how there has always been an uproar throughout history about how clothing (e.g., the miniskirt, shoulder pads, leggings, and even suits) challenges the norms of what's "acceptable" for women to wear in public. Fashion and any rising trends have always been a large indicator of where the culture is at, and it often pushes, or drags, the culture forward whether we like it or not.
So what trends could we say are worth watching right now? Ahead, I've done some digging through recent celebrity street style imagery to identify seven "ugly" trends that are continuing to bubble up. Whether they'll end up defining this era or whether you'll even wear them yourself is undecided yet. But if history tells us anything, these celeb-approved trends are bound to be seared into our collective memories and cause a stir in the process.
1. Sporty Sunglasses
Photo:Photo by NINO/GC Images
WHO: Kim Kardashian
WEAR: Balenciaga sunglasses
If you can believe it, there was a point in time when activewear wasn't seen as "acceptable" everyday apparel. But as celebrities championed athleisure attire and luxury houses like Bottega Veneta, Louis Vuitton, and Balenciaga embraced sportier elements in their collections, we began to widely accept more casual clothing. Years of spotting celebrities in leggings have laid the groundwork for sporty sunglasses becoming a thing. And while our editors adopted this trend early on, I'll admit that even we were a little shocked to see Kim Kardashian walking around in Italy wearing an oversize pair of sporty sunglasses and eating gelato. But also, we love to see celebrities serving a "weird" little look.
Photo:Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for The Met Museum
WEAR: Givenchy Haute Couture gown
Of course, it's no secret that Kardashian has long been someone who isn't afraid to dabble in an ugly trend, but it's been equally surprising to see other celebrities look at this trend with a set of fresh eyes. Take, for example, Spanish musician Rosalía wearing a Givenchy Haute Couture gown with sporty sunglasses to the Met Gala. These shades being worn at one of the most stylish events of the year is the receipt for proving that the future of this trend is looking very bright indeed.
2. Drippin' in Denim
Photo:Sean Zanni/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images
WHO: Alexa Demie
WEAR: Balenciaga Le Cagole XS Shoulder Bag With Rhinestones in Grey ($7000)
Denim has become a mainstay in people's wardrobes worldwide, but there was one point in history when men only wore them during the gold rush era. It took a culmination of films, political movements, and the rise of iconic brands like Levi's to cement blue jeans as a must-have in women's wardrobes. There's now no debate about the importance of denim, but there are still mixed feelings about wearing head-to-toe denim. More recently, Euphoria star Alexa Demie turned heads when she wore a Balenciaga denim jumpsuit to the brand's Resort 2023 Fashion Show. And while the look is a bit more daring—some may even say ugly (not me, though, for the record)—it's proof that our beloved denim is ready for a new take.
Photo:Steffman-RTimages / SplashNews.com
WHO: Dua Lipa
WEAR: Bulgari Jewelry; Diesel bag, bralette, jeans, and boots
If you needed further proof that head-to-toe denim is the new thing among the celeb set, look no further than this look from style icon Dua Lipa. She was spotted a few months ago in New York City wearing a full F/W 22 Diesel denim look. If anyone can get us to thirst for the denim drip, it's Lipa.
3. Trucker Hats
WHO: Megan Fox
One thing you have to realize about trends is that they always come back around eventually. With the return of the Y2K aesthetic, I was waiting for the moment I'd spot another star in a trucker hat, and that day has come. The trucker hat was popularized by celebrities in the '00s thanks to brands like Von Dutch, Ed Hardy, and Palm Angels. Collective memory may have tried to suppress the grip this trend had on us all, but it seems that celebrities are ready again to bring it back into the fold.
It's been spotted on a few stars, including our former cover star Megan Fox, and it's also been donned by the one and only Rihanna. History tells us time and again that when she pulls up to the function serving a 'fit, it's bound to be the next big thing. And if anyone can convince us to give the trucker hat a second trial run, it's Rihanna.
4. Low-Rise Pants, Rebooted
WHO: Doja Cat
WEAR: Ottolinger outfit
I hate to break it to you, but low-rise pants have not only managed to reenter the chat, but they also keep trying to chime into the conversation. We knew it was coming when we began to spot low-rise hemlines on the runway, but when celebrities started wearing them in the street again, it was a clear sign this divisive style will stick around. While most of us may still feel traumatized by the fashion mishaps that occurred when test-driving this trend the first time around, it seems that this trend has found a second life beyond the traditional denim iterations of the past.
Photo:Gotham/GC Images Getty Images
WHO: Bella Hadid
WEAR: Chanel sunglasses and necklace; Bezva pants; Miista Brenda Black Boots ($520)
In fact, low-rise pieces have found a new life among the stars, including A-listers like Doja Cat, Hailey Bieber, and Bella Hadid. But what makes this trend a bit more forward in 2022 is that it comes as everything from leggings to leather pants to relaxed trousers. The return of this waistline in these new forms makes it a bit more polished and—dare I say—wearable. Only time will tell if this trend tracks well beyond the spotlight, but it's safe to say that it has gotten a reboot.
5. Panties Out
WEAR: Fendi bag
If you feel like I'm roasting you right now, I can promise I'm not. At the beginning of this story, I told you that this would be a roundup of the most eye-catching trends being worn by the celebrity set. There was no disclaimer that they're actually functional or traditionally "fashionable." And that's very much the case with the rise in what I can only really call "panties out." Part of this trend stems from the visible-G-string movement that was popular in the '90s and recently bubbled up again in the past few years—most notably when Bieber wore a visible G-string to the 2019 Met Gala. But since this, this trend has continued to proliferate in various ways.
Photo:Jeff Spicer/Getty Images
WHO: Rina Sawayama
There are the more traditional iterations of this trend, where you're just showing the whale tail—just look at the denim miniskirt with a visible panty line above spotted on Normani. But there are also the even more drastic takes of this trend, where you're getting a dramatic cutout in the most risqué spots. I'm referencing the butt-cutout dress Lizzo wore at a 2019 Lakers game and this crotch-cutout situation being donned by musician Rina Sawayama. Is it stylish? I can't say, but you have to give the girlies credit for putting it all out there (quite literally).
6. Sky-High Platforms
WHO: Olivia Rodrigo
WEAR: Dsquared2 dress; Heaven by Marc Jacobs Multi Buckle Kiki Boots
Another trend that's bubbling up among the fashion and celeb sets? Sky-high platform shoes. Of course, it should be noted that platforms have always procured a few side-eyes—partly due to their impracticality and sometimes because the overly chunky look evokes those mid-2000s shoes that were not that cute. But newer iterations of this trend and fresh takes on the styling from celebrities have brought back the hype around these shoes.
Photo:Fernando Ramales / BACKGRID
WHO: Lady Gaga
WEAR: Christopher John Rogers Strawberry Dress; Pleaser Flamingo 1050 Boots
While there are dramatic ways to style this shoe trend—just look to Olivia Rodrigo wearing buckle-up knee-high platform heels with a plaid minidress and Lady Gaga donning a bubble dress and sky-high stilettos—you can embrace this trend without fear of breaking an ankle or doing too much. The key to pulling it off lies in opting for new iterations of the style (e.g., those viral Versace Medusa platforms or Barbie-heel platform mules). There are much more modest ways to make this trend work for your taste; you just have to be willing to try it out.
7. Doin' the Bare Minimum
WHO: Kendall Jenner
WEAR: Miu Miu outfit
Hopefully, you've realized that, while we may initially dislike a red carpet or street style look donned by a celebrity, we love the act of hating on it and eventually adopting it ourselves. After all, what would life be without the people who take fashion risks without fear of ridicule? Forget the boring red carpet looks; we need celebrities to push the boundaries of what's "socially acceptable" and set the stage for trends to come. And the most recent pushing includes the sudden embrace of lingerie worn in the streets. There was the naked dress and the visible G-string, and now, there is just baring it all. The celebrity set has embraced the latter feverously as of late.
Photo:Rachpoot/Bauer-Griffin/GC Images GettyImages
WHO: Julia Fox
I'm thinking of Kendall Jenner and Rihanna donning the Miu Miu F/W 22 runway look where crystal-netted and lace pieces are layered over silky underwear. I'm also reminded of when Julia Fox was shopping at the grocery store in nothing but her underwear, a denim blazer, and matching boots. It's a look that begs the question, Did you even try to get dressed? It toes the line between naked and dressed, risqué and redundant, bizarre and forward thinking. It is a trend that is all of it simultaneously.
But no matter how you feel about this trend or any of the other ones in this story, you can't deny the following truth: The style icons in this story give us the bare minimum of what stars should provide—a look. You can't be an icon if you're not giving us something to talk about, think about, and maybe even test-drive for ourselves. Risk-taking is a part of the job, and if it's done right, you'll be cemented into the zeitgeist forever.