Thursday, February 16

8 Retro Fashion Trends Making a Comeback in 2023

Fashion, much like the history, tends to repeat itself. The current generation of fashion-forward youths might not realize it, but their parents and perhaps even their grandparents have donned some of the styles they are wearing now. Crop tops, tulle dresses, and chunky sneakers? There’s a good chance of finding similar pieces of clothing and accessories in a grandparent’s attic or even a seemingly untouched corner of a parent’s closet. Perhaps these articles of clothing will look a little worse for wear due to the ravages of time, but they won’t necessarily look out of place compared to the outfits you might see in a crowd.

If you’re an avid fashionista, following retro fashions should definitely be on your radar. Knowing that a current trend has been done before can give you better insights on how to style it, plus you’ll have the awareness to keep an eye out for it in thrift stores. You might even get lucky with a vintage find from your family’s collection of old clothing. Stay up-to-date and check out this list of retro fashion trends that have cycled through the ages and are back in mode again.

Leather Pants

Photo by cottonbro

Leather pants have a reputation for durability and style, which makes them an enduring classic for any wardrobe. However, even the ones made of faux leather can be quite an investment. If you’re not up to shelling out a hefty amount of money for a statement piece like this, you can opt for leggings and tights that are designed to mimic leather. These lighter and more affordable alternatives also offer greater freedom of movement and will look good no matter the season.

Bike Shorts


Cycling shorts are garments that are designed for comfort and greater movability. These days, though, these shorts are breaking out of the gym and hitting the streets. Bike shorts are quite a hit with today’s fashionable crowd, even if they aren’t actually engaged in cycling activities. Most people tend to pair these shorts with loose tops and oversized jackets to balance the snug fit at the bottom. If you’re a biker, lean into the trend by putting on a sweater or tunic over your biking outfit, and you’re good to go.

Knee Socks

Photo by Alesia Kozik

If you have old but still decent-looking knee socks at home, now is the best time to flaunt them. These socks are great for adding charm to different types of outfits, no matter the season. You can style your knee socks by pairing them with a skirt, shorts, or even a long shirt. In more formal settings like the office, people tend to stick with knee socks in neutral colors like black and tan. If there’s no dress code, however, feel free to add a splash of color to your outfit by pairing it with a pair of socks that feature a quirky design.

Crochet Tops

Crochet tops celebrate the creativity and tenacity of handcrafters. If you have a crocheted cardigan or even a crop top, show it off, as this intricate needlework is quite in style. Wear your crochet top with a pair of nondescript denim jeans or shorts so that the handcrafted piece can shine in the spotlight. If you’re at the beach, pair the crochet top with a crochet bottom to complete the look.

Regency Dresses

Soft pastel colors, eye-catching accessories, and fabrics that flow with the wind—that’s the modern take on regency dresses. If you have a hyper-feminine dress that fits the criteria, be it a hand-me-down from your mom or a precious heirloom from your grandparents, let it see the light of day. “Regencycore” dresses, as these are known these days, are back in vogue thanks to the popularity of period dramas like Bridgerton. Complete the look by wearing pearl earrings, a satin hairband, and soft curls.

Sheer Fabrics

Once the temperature starts rising again, sheer fabrics will likely dominate the streets. Clothes made of sheer material will complete an outfit that’s meant to showcase a bit of skin. You can, for example, use a sheer dress as a coverup if you’re spending a few days by the sea. But if you want to imbibe the flirtiness of this look without actually revealing any skin, wear a nude or black-colored layer underneath for coverage.

Thick Headbands

Head accessories were huge before the 21st century, and now they’re coming back in the form of thick, cushy headbands. You can go with a plain fabric headband with lots of floral details, or even a crocheted, knitted, or beaded piece. These hair accessories can be used in a myriad of ways, such as keeping your hair out of your face while at the gym, on a lunch out with friends, or even just while walking around town.

Bucket Hats

Photo by cottonbro.

Bucket hats are the perfect accessory for just about any outfit. They can go well with dresses, jeans, jackets, and even athleisure. It’s no wonder, then, that this accessory is a hit with fashionable folks this year. Black and tan colored hats can easily mix and match with whatever you wear, but you can also play with color and use a bright-colored bucket hat to act as the focal point for an otherwise monotonous outfit.

Retro fashion trends are a great way to celebrate past styles and reconnect with fashion history. Have you checked to see if you already have any of these items at home? How would you style them to reflect a more contemporary sensibility?



  1. I'm getting so old, I'm seeing a lot of fashion trends on their third repeat.

    1. lol Elizabeth, fashion is all about trend.

  2. Anonymous2/16/2023

    Leather has been everywhere and I need to get some pieces in my closet still! I have noticed socks are getting taller again and the ankle and no show ones are going out.


    1. I think I might jump on the socks trend.

  3. What's old is new again. Even some of the life hacks I see Gen Zs sharing on TikTok, I'm thinking "ya, I figured that out 30 years ago". Thank you for sharing your fashion insights and this post with the Fine-Whatever link-up.


  4. Nice article! Thanks for sharing this post with us. I really enjoyed reading this post. Thanks for sharing.

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