The Aesthetic Style: What Is It and How Can You Implement It?

Generation Z has flooded social media with an aesthetic that combines vintage and modern elements. Find out how to identify the "aesthetic" style and apply it in both your clothing and decoration.
The Aesthetic Style: What Is It and How Can You Implement It?

Written by Jonatan Menguez

Last update: 08 April, 2023

Pastel colors, plaid shirts, shoulder-length haircuts, and brightly and harmoniously decorated rooms. Although these descriptions may seem to have little to do with each other, they are all part of aesthetic style, a comprehensive fashion that encompasses much more than a way of dressing.

The term aesthetic is linked to beauty, harmony, and everything that is attractive to look at. In this wide range of possibilities, defining the boundaries of style is complex. Even so, there are some characteristics that must be present.

Discover how to implement a trend that combines retro and current elements in the personal outfit, in the room, and in the general decoration.

What is aesthetic style?

This is a trend widely adopted by young people and adults associated with Gen Z – that is, the group of people born between 1993 and 2001. It became popular through social networks, especially Pinterest, Instagram, and TikTok, sites where videos, images, and outfits identified with the aesthetic style are common.

But this fashion transcends a way of dressing; it consists of a lifestyle, which includes accessories, decoration, and digital profiles. The term “aesthetic” is associated with everything that presents a visual harmony. Art, natural beauty, and whatever is pleasing to the eye are the backbone of this fashion.

Whether the result is closer to elegance or a more urban look, it can be implemented with numerous garments and in different formats. It’s a wide universe that can easily be adjusted to your personal preferences.

So much so that it’s subdivided into numerous categories, some linked to gothic, others to grunge, and others to 1990s pop.

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What is the aesthetic style?
The aesthetic style can be implemented both in clothing and home decoration.

Where does it come from?

To talk about aesthetics is to enter a historical philosophical category. An article in Sophia, the philosophy magazine of the Salesian Polytechnic University of Ecuador, suggests that aesthetics addresses the difficult problem of beauty and its relationship to artistic objects, nature, and humankind.

However, in fashion, young people have adopted the term aesthetic to refer to a style that oscillates between vintage and current. In recent years, search engines such as Pinterest and TikTok have been plagued with results related to the word.

Its origin can be traced to the vintage fashion of the 1980s and 1990s, albeit combined with current elements. This is the reason why it isn’t considered a 100% vintage style.

Many consider its first appearance to be on the social network Tumblr. There, people who adopt this style began to mix the outfits of those decades with the gothic trend and modern details.

How to implement the aesthetic style in clothing

With the elements mentioned above, a trend emerged that is expressed in different areas, although it has its central place in clothing, hair, and makeup.

The aesthetic style combines plaid shirts with baggy pants, along with sports shoes and shiny accessories. Beyond the subcategories it has, the following garments are cross-cutting.


To wear an aesthetic style on top, you can opt for garments such as oversized sweatshirts, tops, or crop tops (if the weather is warm). If you want to orient your outfit to the grunge aesthetic, plaid shirts or long-sleeved shirts fit very well with the trend.


There is a great diversity of garments that can be applied in the lower sector. As far as pants are concerned, wide-leg jeans or joggers are widely used since they’re loose-fitting garments. Biker pants are also common, but in this case, they’re tighter. As an alternative, it’s possible to opt for plaid skirts.

Footwear and accessories

Footwear depends on the garments chosen for the upper parts. Within the aesthetic trend, sneakers such as Jordan or Air Force 1 are very popular.

For more formal options, it’s possible to include platform boots. As for accessories, the main protagonists are the baguette bags, along with necklaces, belts, and high stockings.

Grunge, indie, and vintage syles all intermingle with certain clothes and colors to achieve the aesthetic style.
The aesthetic style applied in the clothing varies according to the subtype (gothic, grunge, pop, etc.).


Hair is one of the central aspects to this trend. The general rule is that the length should not go beyond the shoulders. Within that range, it can be worn loose, in braids, up, or in buns. As in other details, pastel colors are prioritized, so dyeing some strands with gray or pink fits very well.

Makeup and social networks

In makeup, the aesthetic trend shows its diversity and openness, as it can be adapted to the desired subgenre. It’s possible to apply a natural style or opt for the experimental. What is usually practiced by those who adhere to this movement, is the publication of images full of emojis.

The little exaggerated filters on the face and the use of editors such as PicsArt reign in the aesthetic trends of Instagram, TikTok, and Pinterest. The backgrounds are also taken care of, which can be occupied by gothic-style libraries, pleated curtains, or desks with notebooks and markers in pastel tones.

Different categories of aesthetic styles

The breadth and variety of this trend led to the creation of numerous subcategories. So many that one user of Tumblr, the network where the movement emerged, created an entire encyclopedia to describe them. The following are some of the most important ones:

  • Indie. This is focused on the brown range, this sub-style prioritizes denim fabrics and high waists.
  • Art Hoe. This is one of the most worn outfits in the trend, which prioritizes tie-dye prints, cycling tights, and a general aesthetic linked to art.
  • Space. As its name suggests, this is oriented to space. For this, it often applies starry garments, with space or NASA backgrounds. You can opt for astronaut-like metallic glitter.
  • Minimal. Minimalism is applied to numerous aesthetic branches. Within fashion, its central colors are neutral, along with straight and simple lines.
  • Vintage. Much of the aesthetic sense comes from the trends of the 1980s and 1990s. To focus on the vintage, you can wear jean skirts, turtleneck tops, or T-shirts with inscriptions.
  • Grunge. Adopting a grunge style within this trend involves using the famous plaid shirts, which can be combined with fishnet stockings and similar prints. Wide garments with reddish, white, and black colors star in the aesthetic grunge style.
  • Coquette. This sub-style is characterized by an antique, historical aesthetic, with a priority on pink and pastel tones. Floral prints, necklaces, and hats abound.

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The aesthetic style in decoration

The concept of beauty that characterizes this trend can also be transferred to harmonious decoration. In general, aesthetic rooms present well-lit spaces with garlands and neon signs. There is no lack of natural elements, such as wooden furniture and plants.

In addition, the incorporation of details that refer to vintage, such as record players or allusive pictures, stands out. As for the colors of walls, furniture, and fabrics, the main range should be soft and pastel tones. For example, pink, beige, brown, and even light blue.

An integrating and adaptable style

Finally, it’s important to highlight that this trend is very adaptable and varied since it’s so all-encompassing. Many specialists argue that it can be exhibited in different areas, such as decoration, clothing, and even the digital profile. The important thing is to adjust the personal style to one of its categories.

There are many references in fashion, music, and social networks that bring the style to the forefront and with whom you can seek inspiration. Among them are singers Olivia Rodrigo and Natalia Lacunza. In addition, the general aesthetics of the series Euphoria and the style of its protagonists is closely linked to this trend.

All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.

This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.