The mid 2000’s were a strange time. The 90’s had came and went and the era of grunge, denim skirts and Jennifer Aniston was over. Alternative music began growing in popularity amongst suburband teenagers. Due in part by the invention of the newly formed “MySpace”, a social network that was truly ahead of its time.
Centred around individuality, this social network let you customize your profile down to a microscopic detail due to its support for basic HTML. A programming language every emo kid in the mid 2000’s had to learn as a rite of passage. It was also centred around music, and unsurprisingly enough, networking.
A small percentage of users were able to leverage the platform to propell themselves to fame. Names like “Jeffree Starr” and “Andy Sixx” entered the public conciousness as a result.
The platform eventually became a hub for alternative music, alternative fashion and an outlet for a hilariously disproportionate amount of teenage angst.
The website featured a rudimentary “bands you may like” type feature. 10+ years before spotify was even concieved of.
This resulted in a plethora of bands in the scene being granted access to an audience they never would’ve had before. The concept of “digital marketing” was in its infancy – but the proof lay in the pudding for some bands.
Bands such as “Bring Me The Horizon” and even “The Killers” owe a considerable amount of their success to Myspace.
An entire generation of post-hardcore, hardcore and metalcore bands used Myspace as their springboard to success. With that success came the popularity of the aesthetics and ideals associated with these bands.
“Emo” music went from being a relatively niche interested group to a national sensation. As did the fashion the went with it.
Fashion Trends We Loved The Most
1 – Extremely Colorful Graphic Tees
We’re not really sure how or why these became so popular. But you were a disgrace to your friends & family if you didn’t own a handful of incredibly colorful graphic tees. Bonus points if they featured some sort of copyright infringement.
Nothing else could tie together a plain pair of black skinny jeans and black & white converse. There doesn’t seem to be an official name for this fashion trend either. Everyone just vaguely remembers wearing these.
It wasn’t uncommon to see popular bands such as “We Came As Romans” and “A Day To Remember” mimicking this art style on their merch. Who can blame them? a solid 50% or so of their fanbase was already dressed like this anyway.
2 – Bullet Belts / Studded Belts
Long gone were the days of boring old leather belts. “Those are for pensioners” you would think to yourself. It was also totally taboo to wear your belt properly. You had to ensure that it missed a couple of the loops at the back of your jeans to ensure it drooped low. We’re not quite sure why the belt-drooping thing caught on, probably because you wanted to guarantee everyone saw the belt you just sank £30 into.
3 – Multi-Coloured Skinnies
This trend probably caught on as a way of breaking free from the monotony of owning 37 individual black pairs of skinny jeans. If you ever felt like your fluorescent band tee wasn’t quite eye catching enough, this was a solid addition to your outfit. Just be wary that they don’t go completely washed out after a few cycles.
4 – Silicone Bracelets
Who could forget these? They were dirt cheap, clearly indestructible and in seemingly infinite supply. If you frequented any kind of alternative hang-out you’d likely have noticed a ridiculous abundance of these. You could get a silicone bracelet for just about any band you’d ever listened to. You could even get a silicone bracelet for the bands that you were actually just pretending to listen to in order to impress people. (for shame.)
5 – The Hair
It honestly goes without saying at this stage. But the hair was kind of critical to the whole aesthetic. Who could’ve predicted that a grandma haircut would look good on a guy? (apart from anime probably.)
Girls would spend hours backcombing and teasing their hair to get it to sit just right. They’d also have to wash their hair literally every single night to prevent the chemicals eating through their hair.
Guys would undergo a fairly similar hair maintenance process, in which they’d often razorcomb their hair to keep it suitably thing and straighten it until it resembled uncooked spaghetti.
Admittedly, some of us took it too far. But it was all good fun whilst it lasted.
Thanks for the reading!