types of aesthetics
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Types of Aesthetics: 20 Fabulous Looks

An aesthetic is a personal brand or a specified, identifiable lifestyle. Often an internet presence, aesthetics define social media accounts and are very popular with today’s youth. Wonder what aesthetic speaks to you? Keep reading to learn about types of aesthetics and 20 fabulous looks.

What Is an Aesthetic?

Aesthetic

At its simplest, an aesthetic is one’s collective personal style. Aesthetics are often a form of identity expression for teenagers or a means of attaining connections and community with like-minded folks.

While typically thought of as a fashion statement, an aesthetic is much more, bleeding into lifestyle choices such as hobbies and home decor. While personal style is nothing new, different aesthetics communities gained massive popularity on the social media app Tik Tok during the pandemic.

Types of Aesthetics: 20 Fabulous Looks

1. Aliencore

Aliencore

Image source: Pinterest

Aliencore is an aesthetic built around science fiction. The color palette typically includes neon colors, purples, blues, greens, and black, while visuals often involve aliens, blacklight, and holographic imagery.

An everyday mood or theme within the aesthetic is a feeling of loneliness or isolation and the sense that there’s a far-off place one belongs.

2. Art Hoe

Art Hoe

Image source: Pinterest

Visuals in the art hoe aesthetic often include nature, paintings, painting accidents, flowers, shades of blue, stripes, polaroids, mustard yellow, visual art, and sometimes classical art. Overall the aesthetic revolves around art culture and creating a space for your personal artistic preferences.

Clothing often consists of mom jeans, converse, Doc Martens, graphic tees, artistic socks, and overalls. Created by the user sensitiveblackgirl on Tumblr as a means of creative reclamation, the aesthetic has since been whitewashed.

3. Baddie

Baddie

Image source: Pinterest

Conveyed by many social media beauty gurus, the baddie aesthetic depends on maintaining a modern, conventionally attractive appearance.

Created by “badass” hip-hop and popularized by famous personalities such as the Kardashians, “luxurious baddie” celebrities include Cardi B., Meg Thee Stallion, and Lil Nas. Everyday fashion items include crop tops, tight jeans, tube tops, bodysuits, hoop earrings, acrylic nails, and expensive designer brands.

No baddie outfit is complete without a full face of makeup, complete with contouring, fake eyelashes, full lips, thick eyebrows, and wigs.

The color palette often involves metallic shades with colors like golds, silvers, blacks, and reds. Baddies enjoy pampering themselves, social media influencing, and reading popular magazines while keeping up with celebrity gossip.

4. Cabincore

Cabincore

Image source: Pinterest

The cabincore aesthetic romanticizes rustic living, specifically in remote cabins far from a capitalistic society. Everyday activities and settings include cabins, forests, campfires, hiking, and biking.

Colors are all-natural and include dark browns and reds, maroon, burnt orange, auburn, and all shades of greens. Popular fabric types include flannels, leathers, wools, and durable denim, meant for lots of time in the rugged outdoors.

Clothing must be cozy and practical, like thick coats, vests, jeans, corduroy trousers, beanies, watches, hiking boots, wool socks, flannel button-ups, and sweaters.

5. Cottagecore

Cottagecore

Image source: Pinterest

Possibly the most well-known aesthetic on this list, cottagecore entails a romanticized agricultural lifestyle inspired by the traditional English countryside. Boosting comfort with a dash of adventure, cottagecore idealizes baking, foraging, handicrafts, animal rearing, flower crafts, sewing, picnics, writing, gardening, and reading antique guides or self-help books.

Fashion consists of flowy fabrics, a natural color palette, florals, layers, gingham patterns, embroidered plants, animal and insect designs, overalls, lace, and hand-crafted accessories.

There is some controversy surrounding the aesthetic, criticizing its simplification of agricultural labor, romanticization of colonialism, and lack of sustainability while posing as environmentally focused.

6. Country

Country

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A country aesthetic is typically found in the American midwest and inspired by rural farmers. Praising conservativism and tradition, significantly associated items include alcohol, guns, guitars, mason jars, pick-up trucks, hay, fields, red barns, dive bars, and wood decor.

Fashion includes burlap, denim, flannel, cowboy boots and hats, and flashy belts often in the color scheme of red, white, and blue. Unlike other aesthetics on this list, most people exhibiting the country aesthetic are not making a conscious effort to do so.

7. Dark Academia

Dark Academia

Image source: Pinterest

The dark academia aesthetic romanticizes the western university life of the 19th century, celebrating pretentiousness with a focus on self-discovery through education and classic literature. Idealizing intellectualism, popular themes in dark academia include mystery, criminality, anger, self-destruction, secret societies, and decadence.

Inspired by the gothic renaissance, baroque, and neoclassical art, fashion staples include turtlenecks, oxfords, sweater vests, cable knit, dress pants, trousers, tweed, plaid skirts, pleated skirts, pencil skirts, cardigans, blazers, trenchcoats, smocks, loafers, silver and gold jewelry, satchels, wire-frame glasses, knee-high socks, and wristwatches, often in black, dark brown, forest green, dark orange, cream, gold, and burgundy colors.

Ideal activities include calligraphy, reading, studying, drunk conversations, dinner parties, horseback riding, squash, chess, and supernatural experiences. Dark academia photography is almost always dimly lit, typically by candles, focused on dark architecture and dreary weather, often involving an element of violence.

8. Dollcore

Dollcore

Image source: Pinterest

Originating in Japan, drawing inspiration from ball-jointed Japanese dolls, the dollcore aesthetic is primarily a creative photographic pursuit. Outfits typically consist of poofy, sheer, lacey, ruffle fabrics, dresses, collars, waist aprons, tights, platform shoes, and ribbons.

Essentially, dollcore entails partaking in “dolling,” where participants turn themselves into living dolls with the help of BJD Kigurumi masks and ball-jointed zentai.

Unfortunately, dollcore creators frequently experience sexual harassment, fetishization, and pornographic content. Luckily the model who popularized dollcore, Lulu Hashimoto, created the hashtag #dollmaskfc as a safe space for those in the aesthetic only for self-expression and artistic ambitions.

9. E-Girl

E-Girl

Image source: Pinterest

The e-girl, or electronic girl, is an aesthetic for females who enjoy geeky pop culture, Japanese influences, anime, gaming, Monster energy drinks, nu-metal, conventions, and cosplay.

Fashion often includes striped shirts, fishnets, ripped jeans, and lingerie. E-girls usually style their hair into elaborate hairstyles with pieces dyed a different color, pigtails, bangs, twintails, and space buns.

Make-up usually consists of winged eyeliner, blush on the nose, contrasting lipstick, faux freckles, and artistic doodles below or around the eyes.

10. Hypebeast

Hypebeast

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The hypebeast is a masculine aesthetic that closely follows popular trends at all costs purely to impress others and gain social standing. Fashion trends include designer shoes, snapbacks, and sweatshirts, name brands, and celebrity apparel being of utmost importance.

Color schemes are usually white or black with contrasting oranges, teals, or reds. In addition to fashion, the hypebeast enjoys guns, new technologies, top model cars, and urban art.

A member of the hypebeast aesthetic often has a hard time trusting others and an abundance or appearance of cash flow because money is essential to upholding the hypebeast lifestyle.

11. Indie Kid

Indie Kid

Image source: Pinterest

Above all, the indie kid aesthetic values independence and individuality, and those in the aesthetic often live or present themselves like they are in a coming-of-age movie. Popular hangout spots include gas stations, and most “indie kids” embrace skateboarding.

Inspired by 2000’s fashion, clothing is usually baggy jeans or pants, shirts with collars, converse, air force ones, vans, crop tops, and oversized hoodies in bright colors.

12. Light Academia

Light Academia

Image source: Pinterest

Although very similar to dark academia, light academia focuses on optimism, gratitude, joy, and self-discovery through education and classic literature. In contrast to dark academia’s dark colors, light academia’s color scheme often includes pale colors and shades of tan, cream, gold, burgundy, brown, banana yellow, navy blue, and beige.

Standard clothing pieces include blazers, turtlenecks, corduroy, cardigans, cable knit, button-ups, linen shorts, dress pants, trench coats, overcoats, uniforms, Mary Janes, headbands, glasses, hair clips, leather accessories, brooches, pearls, and berets.

Popular past-times in the light academia aesthetic include calligraphy, impressionist art, nature photography, hanging out in high society coffee shops, people watching, pressing flowers, antique shopping, badminton, archery, and frequenting art galleries, libraries, and museums.

13. Minimalist

Minimalist

Image source: Pinterest

Originating as a genre of art, minimalism turned into a lifestyle revolving around removing clutter and unnecessary things from your life. Dependent on simple visuals, plain vibrant white and muted solid colors are needed to keep things simplistic.

Clothing items usually consist of button-up shirts with collars, unsophisticated belts, khaki pants, jeans, and solidly colored t-shirts. Subgenres of the minimalist aesthetic include pastel minimalism, indie minimalism, and matcha minimalism.

14. Royalcore

Royalcore

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Royalcore finds its inspiration from the traditions of European royalty, implementing the features of western European monarchies. The aesthetic focuses on architectural details, such as castles with marble columns, archways, spiral staircases, turrets, crenelations, lavish gardens, and grounds.

Fashion includes velvets, satins, silks, wools, cashmere, angora furs, leathers, laces, embroidery, and regalias like crowns, tiaras, and diadems paired with pearls, cameos, gloves, and clutch bags.

Overall, the aesthetic praises western beliefs concerning intelligence, morality, skill, elegance, and standards of behavior. Royalcore contains the subgenres knightcore, princecore, princesscore, queencore, and kingcore.

15. Soft girl

Soft girl

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The softgirl aesthetic is astonishingly widespread on the social media app Tik Tok and refers to cultivating a consciously “cutesy” appearance. Closely related to the Kawaii aesthetic, fluffy animals, teddy bears, clouds, hearts, and flowers are common motifs in the soft girl aesthetic.

Colors almost always consist of cream, peach, pink, blue, and yellow. Fashion revolves around well-put-together comfortable clothing such as oversized sweaters or hoodies, plaid skirts, barrettes, light-wash denim, and carefully tied cardigans.

Popular activities include reading, light indie music, baking, drawing, and aesthetically pleasing sleepovers.

16. Space core

Space core

Image source: Pinterest

Spacecore revolves around astronomy and NASA. Those in the aesthetic enjoy stargazing, reading astronomy and space-themed nonfictional books, looking at star charts, drawing charts, and staying up late to use telescopes.

While the fashion consists of glitter, black, space prints, glow-in-the-dark items, neon colors, vinyl fabrics, translucent items, and iridescence, common motifs include galaxies, planets, moons, rockets, globes, observatories, and nebulae.

Interestingly, there’s a simultaneous view of the future and the past, with retro-futurism and the space age of the 1960s heavily influencing the current aesthetic.

17. Surfercrush

Surfercrush

Image source: Pinterest

Most popular near the southern American oceanside, the surfercrush aesthetic was created from the 2000’s beachside fashion trends in shows like Blue Crush, The OC, and Laguna Beach.

Popular clothing items include Hawaiian shorts, halter tops, spaghetti straps, jean shorts, aloha print, Hawaiian print, sarongs, ankle bracelets, and toe rings paired with beach waved hair. The entire aesthetic revolves around proximity to the ocean, and common motifs include surfboards, Pukka shells, and hibiscus flowers.

Activities include surfing, swimming, paddle boarding, boogie boarding, volleyball, tanning, and generally hanging out at the beach.

18. Vintage

Vintage

Image source: Pinterest

The vintage aesthetic is an umbrella term used for a wide variety of aesthetics that evoke nostalgia for a specific time. For example, many vintage aesthetics romanticize different decades, such as the roaring ’20s, the ’50s, ’60s, ’70s, ’80s, and ’90s.

In addition to adopting fashion trends from a particular era, people in the vintage aesthetic also adopt popular activities and indulge in popular culture from their chosen age. People in the vintage aesthetic are considered retro or old-school.

19. VSCO Girl

VSCO Girl

Image source: Pinterest

One of the newer aesthetics on this list, the VSCO girl, is named and based on the popular photo editing app VSCO.

Characterized by their internet and social media presence, the VSCO girl has an air of laid-back pretty. Typical fashion trends include Pura Vida bracelets, scrunchies, mom jeans, friendship jewelry, stripes, and college sweatshirts.

The VSCO girl often has a hydro flask, polaroid camera, Fjallraven Kanken backpack, metal straw, and drives a jeep. Interestingly, the VSCO girl has entirely different associations and visuals for each American season.

20. Witchcore

Witchcore

Image source: Pinterest

What it sounds like, witchcore revolves around a lifestyle of witchcraft. Fashion trends are often gothic and ethereal with vintage clothing, white wedding dresses, victorian nightgowns, cloaks, black lace, camisoles, shawls, skirts, wide-brim hats, dark home-made floral jewelry and crowns, creepers, and lace-up boots.

Typically performed outside, activities often include tarot readings, magic, performing spells, seances, and gem-collecting.

Items found in witchcore are generally natural, like succulents, herbs, mushrooms, moss, and dried flowers.

Other common objects include forests, fields, seashells, candles, lanterns, wands, books, crystals, crystal balls, potions, smoke, tea, animals, and insects such as butterflies, cats, owls, and frogs, human and animal skeletons, moons, suns, and planets.

How to Find Your Own Aesthetic

Aesthetic

Image source: Pinterest

The best way to find your aesthetic is by looking at what already exists and seeing what calls to and inspires you. Once you’ve determined your interests and desired lifestyle choices, creating a mood board on a website like Pinterest can help you organize your thoughts.

Next, go through your possessions, especially clothing, and see what you already own that can contribute to your newfound aesthetic. Then begin slowly adding clothing and items and using time management to incorporate desired activities and lifestyle changes.

Tips

When choosing your aesthetic, be sure to be true to yourself rather than copying others. Additionally, don’t feel the need to limit yourself.

For example, if both dark and light academia calls to you, blend them for your purposes. Lastly, don’t concern yourself with what others view as “cool” because aesthetics should be determined by the individual and what you find intriguing. Overall, an aesthetic should make you feel happy with the image and lifestyle you’re putting forth in the world.

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