10 key pieces to get that 80’s look you need this fall Spoil the Madonna inside you.

The 80’s fashion style has been on trend for several seasons now. A shortlist for the key 80’s look is leggings, stirrup pants, Mom jeans, Ugly Sneakers, belt-bags and neon colours. Who could have ever imagined that those excessive trends that we laughed about would not only come back but also have us wanting for more for such a long time? Oh, fashion…

If you’ve seen any fashion shows recently or done a bit of window shopping lately, you must have realised that the 80’s will keep on reigning strong next season too. Animal prints, neon colours, massive shoulders, shiny fabrics, scrunchies – yes, they’re back! -, power suits, mini dresses with puffy sleeves, you name it! 

The trends are loud, bold, shiny and fun because, like Cyndi Lauper used to sing back then, “girls just wanna have fun.” So if you’re into the 80’s your fashion icons should be Madonna (the “Who’s that Girl” Madonna, not today’s rather sad version), Michael Jackson and Prince. And if you need a ritual introduction to the greatest decade, go watch the iconic movies “Breakfast Club,” “Pretty in Pink” and “St. Elmo’s Fire”.

Here you’ll find the 10 key 80’s look that you can – and should – incorporate into your wardrobe ASAP. But as much as we like the 80’s excesses, we suggest you wear one key item at a time, to avoid ending up looking like a member of a hair-metal band or a wax figure of some pop star of that era in a museum.

First of all, warm up to the 80’s with a Madonna video:

1- Belt Bags

Belt bags, or Fanny packs, were very trendy in the 80’s before falling completely out of grace and becoming an embarrassment! But even the belt bags have had a comeback. Fashion houses such as Prada and Gucci have re-designed what used to be a sporty little bag made from synthetic materials like nylon and transformed them into high-end leather bags that you can wear now around your waist or cross-body.

2- Animal Print

In the 80’s, if you were not wearing neon colours, the chances are that you were in animal print! Any animal was welcome; zebra, leopard, snakeskin, from high-waisted pants to shoes, bags or scrunchies, it was a jungle out there, and it will soon be again, so if you should buy only one new item, make sure it’s animal print, we can assure you, you won’t regret it!

fashionistas during fashion week wearing a beltbag and leopard raincoat typically from the 80s

3- Sweater around the Shoulders

Preppy young students and their parents would wear cute pullovers, preferably in pastel hues, around their shoulders in the 80’s, day or night. They would wear the colourful accessory paired with Penny loafers during the week and also on the weekends spent in Martha’s Vineyard and golf clubs. It’s a great styling trick easy to copy and perfect for fresher evenings and fall.

4- T-shirts with Slogans

In the 80’s, the tees with slogans or with a smiley face were big. Now they’re back, not only on the catwalk but also in the streets and on Instagram feeds. Worn under beautiful tartan or velour jackets, or with a suit, they can send political messages or be fun, and they add coolness to any outfit.

fashionistas during fashion week wearing a sweater around the shoulder and logo t-shirt typically from the 80s

5- New Wave Colours

No 80’s girl would ever leave home without at least a splash of neon colour in her look. And because the notion of “less is more” simply did not exist at that time; usually it was much more than just a tinge! But don’t worry, you don’t need to dress from head to toe in New Wave colours, one item in bright yellow, orange, lavender or mint green is enough to brighten up any fall or winter outfit.

6- XXL Earrings

As we told you before, the 80’s huge earrings are back. They are big and sparkling! Think Madonna or Cyndi Lauper when choosing your next statement earrings to complete your look.

two model off duty at milan fashion week with neon makeup and colorful plastic earrings

7- Big Shoulders

One cannot talk about the 80’s without mentioning the ginormous shoulder pads. These oversized items were maybe a tad too much, but designers do not seem to think so and have adopted the 80’s shape in their latest collections with no restrictions! Remember Joan Collins and Linda Evans on the TV show Dynasty? Well, that’s the kind of shoulders fashionistas will be wearing everywhere, so why not give it a try?

8- Ruffles

Ruffles and puffy shirts, for women and men, were a big hit in the 80’s. You will see plenty of that this fall. A crisp white puffy shirt will instantly give you a glam-rock vibe, and it’s perfect to either go to work or to party like it’s 1999.

9- Jeans Jackets

Stonewash jeans jackets were paired with anything in the 80’s, daywear or night dresses. You’d earn extra cool points if you wore yours embellished with plenty of buttons or brooches, preferably with sparkling crystals.

10- Bucket Hats

Rap music and hip-hop were beginning in the early 80’s, and so was the rapper fashion. Baggy T-shirts, baggy trousers, high-top sneakers worn with the tongue out and no laces, and of course, the Bucket Hats! Long before snapbacks, the bucket hats from brands such as Kangol were THE headwear rappers, DJs and skaters would wear.

Images via Shutterstock

By Selma

I am the editor-in-chief of notorious-mag.com and co-founder of vienna-skincare.at. I have also been working as creative director at 407.media, a marketing agency headquartered in Vienna, Austria, with offices in Hamburg, Germany, and Madrid, Spain.