Smells like 90’s teen spirit, looks like one of 2020’s fashion trends. Grunge fashion was first made popular back in the 1980s and 1990s. As rockers like Neil Young and Nirvana hit the music scene, they influenced an entire generation with their signature style. The grunge subculture was born almost as a backlash against the flashy, glitzy aesthetic of the 1980s.
Shopping at thrift stores and looking like you just woke up from a nap on the couch was the order of the day. Doc Martins with floral dresses, t-shirts with ripped jeans – no matter what the OOTD, it was almost always paired with a flannel. Back in 1992, Details editor James Truman gave The New York Times his insight.
“Grunge isn’t anti-fashion, it’s un-fashion. Punk was anti-fashion. It made a statement. Grunge isn’t about making a statement.” Yet it became the ultimate statement for many teens and young adults.
Every decade or so, the style re-emerges. And today’s no different. But with modern grunge fashion, another offshoot has also made its debut: soft grunge. This look lightens the classic grunge style and adds contemporary appeal.
Today’s grunge fashion influencers may hold true to the classic style. Or they could skew toward soft grunge fashion. This bears hallmarks like pastel hair, gothic symbols and metallic or pastel combat boots in addition to the classic flannels, jeans and band tees. No matter what kind of grunge they’re sporting, these influencers are helping to carry on the fine tradition enjoyed by countless rebels before them.
Olivia Emily (@oliviaemilyx)
A little bit grunge, a little bit goth, this London fashion influencer started her blog as a personal diary of her favorite outfits. She has since grown her following to more than 200,000 on Instagram where her feed sports a mostly black color palette. Followers are treated to photos of Olivia Emily in some of her favorite looks, which include accessories like hats, glasses and the occasional crown.
Shots of glossy, jewel-toned and black nails are interspersed with fashion photos of her wearing flannels paired with cute skirts and chunky shoes or combat boots. She also prominently features her boot collection throughout the moody, artistic Insta page.
Emma Chamberlain (@emmachamberlain)
This YouTuber and fashion blogger hit the social media stratosphere sometime in 2018. She has since become a style influencer in her own right. Her YouTube channel, which has more than eight million subscribers, takes viewers into her life and her closet. Her relaxed style has taken over college campuses across the country, with a look that skews heavily toward grunge. Her Instagram account has 8.7 million followers.
Yaris Sanchez (@yaris_sanchez)
PopSugar mentioned Yaris Sanchez as one of the top fashion influencers promoting body positivity and inclusivity. She founded her own clothing company, Dalai by Yaris, where she designed clothing for curvier gals. This influencer is also a model and actress featured in music videos like French Montana’s “Shot Caller.” She’s also been featured in magazines like Esquire and Vogue. She has partnered with major brands, including Good American, YSL and Fashion Nova.
Although her style isn’t strictly grunge, it often incorporates grunge and other 90s elements into it. Chunky boots, band tees and oversized shirts can often be seen interspersed with other looks throughout her Instagram page where she has 376,000 followers.
Fashion Grunge (@fashiongrunge)
Founder of Fashion Grunge, Lauren M. Brown got the idea for her blog in 2008. While living in New York City, she noticed that grunge rock wasn’t getting the appreciation it deserved. And so, Fashion Grunge was born. The blog gave her an outlet to explore the music behind the fashion as well as the fashion itself. As she notes, “While the music came first, inevitably a style followed.”
This fashion influencer’s Instagram page is like a look back into the 1990s. Moody photos, lots of fashion and an artistic vibe attract more than 34,000 followers.
Luanna Perez-Garreaud (@luanna)
Born in Peru and living in New York, this fashion blogger’s Insta page is drenched in punk and grunge. She started her blog to document her daily fashion looks and has since grown to a following of 2.2 million on Instagram. Her vivid red locks set off every outfit to punk perfection while plenty of flannel, combat boots and band tees add grunge appeal. Luanna has taken note of the current trend blending male and female styles, which is another hallmark of grunge’s uber-relaxed yet edgy look.
Instagram influencers like these are helping to keep grunge alive for a whole new generation. While those who sported grunge fashion during its heyday probably never realized that it would someday be a retro trend, that’s exactly what it is today. Baby doll dresses, grandfather cardigans and slouchy silhouettes are seemingly here to stay. Case in point: Doc Martens, the iconic must-have grunge footwear, has its own thriving Insta page with 2.6 million followers.
From thrift store finds to luxurious, high-end fashion made to look relaxed and imperfect, there’s grunge fashion out there for just about every consumer. And there are influencers out there to help connect brands to their grunge-loving audience. Discover influencers like these quickly and easily with a new and exciting marketplace – IZEAx Discovery.