Y2K Fashion Is Blowing Up Right Now — Here’s Your Guide to the 2000s-Inspired Trend

by Caroline Harris

Y2K Fashion Is Blowing Up Right Now — Here’s Your Guide to the 2000s-Inspired Trend
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In the early 2000s, it was cool to wear denim miniskirts with Uggs and lace-trimmed camis. My sister owned a Juicy Couture tracksuit and I thought it was so cutting-edge. Together with her rhinestone t-shirts and miniskirts, she looked right out of “Mean Girls.” The 2000s were a quirky time in fashion, with bandage dresses and butterfly clips absolutely everywhere. The ’00s fold-over stretchy pants and velour jumpsuits predated today’s yoga pants and athleisure looks, and midriff-baring tanks were cooler than crop tops will ever be. You may have thought these trends vanished, but actually Y2K fashion is back and better than ever.


Y2K is an abbreviation for “Year 2000,” so Y2K fashion is all about embracing trends from the recent past. The Y2K color palette brims with plastic pinks, shiny blacks, and proton purples. Look to Britney Spears and Paris Hilton for inspiration, along with 2000s movies and shows like “Legally Blonde,” “Freaky Friday,” and even early seasons of “Gossip Girl.” For anyone who was a little older during the 2000s, think of Carrie Bradshaw’s style in some of the later seasons of “Sex in the City.”


There are various directions for channeling late 1990s-2000s fashion. You can focus on athleisure by sporting branded tracksuits, Adidas Yeezys, and Nike sneakers. You can also go for scene style with lime green hair, winged eyeliner, and platform sneakers. E-girls are an excellent example of how scene style is making a resurgence. Between their striped shirts and colorful makeup, e-girls incorporate elements of scene style into their viral videos on TikTok all the time.


Y2K fashion is partly nostalgic, partly aspirational. A Y2K girl doesn’t dig through her closet for her exact outfits from the ‘00s. Instead, a Y2K girl takes style notes from 2000s fashion history to create the outfits she wishes she had worn back then. Fashion influencers like Destiny Joseph and Maya Ichimori are posting Y2K-inspired content, thereby furthering the trend. 


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Painting my vision for 2020 ????

A post shared by Destiny Joseph (@isthisfate) on


We gathered our favorite Y2K-inspired looks from butterfly tanks to rhinestone heels. These blasts from the past are as trendy in 2020 as they were in 2000. 


1 of 11 Image Credits: Zaful

Zaful Women’s Butterfly Graphic Tank


These butterfly tanks are all over Instagram, thanks to influencers like Emma Chamberlain. Style the graphic tank with jeans and a double O-ring belt to further the 2000s vibe.

2 of 11 Image Credits: ASOS

ASOS Design Fluffy Cropped Cardigan


Fluffy, cropped cardigans featured heavily on the Disney Channel, making cameos on 2000s hits like Lizzie McGuire and Hannah Montana. This cardigan is cute and cozy, with triple-button fastening and a powder blue design.

3 of 11 Image Credits: Zappos

Vans Old Skool Platform Sneaker


The 2000s were all about Converse and Vans, and the sporty sneakers are coming back in a big way. In fact, Zendaya stepped out in these exact Vans sneakers while shopping with her rumored boyfriend Jacob Elordi. The Zendaya-approved sneaker can be yours for just $60.

4 of 11 Image Credits: Nordstrom

Nike Pro Fleece Crew Sweatshirt


Y2K girl and Instagram baddie are practically synonymous at this point. This oversized Nike sweatshirt was made for the gram. The hot pink shade will make you pop as you pose for your picture.

5 of 11 Image Credits: ASOS

My Accessories London Exclusive Croc Effect Shoulder Bag


The size and shape of this croc-inspired bag is so 2000s. The white shade goes with absolutely everything, so you can take a piece of the 2000s with you wherever you go.

6 of 11 Image Credits: ASOS

Missguided Rhinestone Strap Heeled Sandal in Black


These rhinestone heels are totally something Paris Hilton or Britney Spears would wear in the early 2000s. The design remains trendy today, and it’s perfect to pair with a slinky, metallic dress during your next night out.

7 of 11 Image Credits: Amazon

True Religion Women’s Stella Low Rise Skinny Fit Jean


Swap out your high-rise jeans for this low-rise design to channel Y2K fashion. To really get into the spirit, you can wear a dress over the jeans like Miley Cyrus did circa Hannah Montana.

8 of 11 Image Credits: Lulus

Sycamore Brown Plaid Mini Skirt


Mean Girls was one of the most iconic movies of the 2000s, developing a cult following that continues to this day. The movie featured countless mini skirts because, in the words of Gretchen Wieners, “we only wear jeans or track pants on Fridays.” This skirt is Gretchen-worthy with a banded waist, A-line hem, and diagonal pockets.

9 of 11 Image Credits: ASOS

ASOS Design Tracksuit with Contrast Binding


We wish we had been cool enough to wear this tracksuit in the 2000s. Layer on a bunch of gold jewelry and your favorite sneakers for your Friday ‘fit.

10 of 11 Image Credits: Sephora

Anastasia Beverly Hills Lip Gloss


In the 2000s, body glitter and lip gloss were absolute musts. Get shimmery, high-shine lips worthy of your favorite forgotten teen heartthrob.

11 of 11 Image Credits: Macy's

Sanctuary Peace Brigade Jogger Pants


No roundup of 2000s trends would be complete without a pair of cargo pants. After all, one of the most memorable Mean Girls quotes is "I saw Cady Heron wearing army pants and flip flops, so I bought army pants and flip flops." These dressed up joggers feature a relaxed fit and camo print so you, too, can look like Cady Heron.