What Was Popular In The 80s Fashion? 10 Styles People Actually Wore

Our of everything we remember about the 80s, it’s probably the fashion which is most memorable. This isn’t necessarily because it was good. Quite the opposite. The reason why 80s fashion is remembered is because it was so unbelievably bad. Looking back now, it’s hard to believe that people actually dressed that way. You can check out the Dutch Label Shop to help add authenticity to your 80s throwback. If you’re wondering what we’re talking about, here’s a list of what was popular in the 80s fashion.

Read More: What Items Were Popular In The 80s


Shoulder Pads

Suits with shoulder pads are probably the most notorious piece of 80s fashion. No list of 80s clothing is complete without them. The bottom line is that this trend was simply horrifying. Even worse, some people even claim this trend may be making a come-back.

Leg Warmers

Aerobics and the accompanying workout videos were huge during the 80s. Along with this were the outfits worn in these videos. The strangest piece of fashion in these videos was the leg warmer. As well as looking hideous, this item of clothing seemed to serve no practical purpose.

Leather Jackets with Rolled up Sleeves

Another bizarre look was the leather jack with rolled up sleeves. This was mostly seen on music artist. At one time or another Bon Jovi, Madonna, and Cher all worn this outfit. Probably the best example if Michael Jackson during his Thriller phase.

Animal Print

Thankfully, this trend is more dead than the dodo. Back in the 80s it was a different matter entirely. Some of the biggest stars of that era routinely wore animal print. This included everyone from Joan Collins to Bon Jovi. Even major fashion houses like Yves Saint Laurent followed this trend.

Oversized Sunglasses

If you’re wondering where the trend of giant sunglasses came from, you have the 80s to thank. During that time, most sunglasses brands made oversized frames. This included brands like Rayban, Gucci, and even prestigious lines like Cartier.


Another feature of the previously mentioned workouts video was the leotard, or bodysuit. These items of clothing left very little to the imagination, and were popularized in video by fitness gurus such as Jane Fonda.

Enjoy This:  What 80s Trends Look Crazy Today

Denim Jackets

There’s nothing wrong with wearing a denim jacket. The problem is when you pair it with actual jeans. This combination is technically known as “double denim”, and has not aged well in the years since the 80s.

Harem Pants

What was popular in the 80s fashion were harem pants. This look was first popularized by artists like MC Hammer, who made these pants part of his signature style. Fortunately, like the rise of fall of that artist, these pants also quickly fell out of fashion.

Acid Washed Jeans

Another horrible denim based trend were acid washed jeans. With this trend you took perfectly good jeans and treated them with stuff like chlorine or bleach. This created a look where splotchy white patches covered the jeans. When paired with a denim jacket, this look was truly ugly.

Read This: The 80s : Things You Would Never Hear People Saying

Big Hair

It’s impossible to write an article about what was popular in the 80s fashion, without mentioning the ridiculous hair styles. Bad hair trends go hand in hand with 80s fashion trends. Probably the most iconic look of the 80s was “big hair.” Along with this you had things like perms, mullets, and crimped hair

Also see: Best Things About The 1980s: 5 Things Which Defined The Decade

Kelly W
Kelly W
Dream big, play hard, take the wins and embrace the losses.


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