20 Forgotten ’90s Fashion Trends Poised to Make a Comeback

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Slip Dresses

best 90s fashion trends, halle berry wearing a black slip dress at the soul train music awards in los angeles
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Actress Halle Berry wore this black slip dress to the Ninth Annual Soul Train Awards in 1995. It’s a minimalist look that’s elegant and alluring, no matter what decade you’re wearing it in.

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Plaid Flannel Shirts

best 90s fashion trends, man wearing a colorful flannel shirt
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From Kurt Cobain to Screech on Saved by the Bell, it seemed like everyone was wearing plaid flannel shirts in the ’90s. These days, it’s easy to find flannels at clothing stores and vintage shops if you’re itching to recreate the casual, cozy style.

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Plaid Skirts

best 90s fashion trends, woman, sarah jessica parker, wearing a plaid skirt and long top
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Plaid skirts weren’t just for school uniforms! Back in the ’90s, long plaid skirts were all rage, as evidenced by Sarah Jessica Parker’s outfit, paired with a blue poncho and red heels.

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Horizontal-Striped Shirts

best 90s fashion trends, man wearing horizontal striped green and yellow shirt
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Neon-colored striped shirts, like this green and yellow mix worn by The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air star Will Smith, were a popular street style look. They’re still a fun way to add some color to your wardrobe.

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Overalls

best 90s fashion trends, woman wearing black overalls
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Actress Alyssa Milano wore black overalls to The Lost World: Jurassic Park premiere in 1997. It’s a casual outfit that’s still a great option to wear if you’re in a rush, but want to keep it cute.

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Board Shorts

best 90s fashion trends, man wearing a black cap sleeve t shirt and black board shorts
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In the ’90s, you didn’t need to be a surfer to wear board shorts. Case in point: Actor and rapper Bobby Brown wore this black pair as a casual going-out look. If you’re looking to bring this trend back, consider options with colorful patterns.

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Swirl Patterns

best 90s fashion trends, woman, brandy, wearing black and white swirl patterned pants
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Swirl patterns are still in, especially on flare pants similar to Brandy’s eye-catching ‘fit at the 24th Annual American Music Awards in 1997.

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Faux Fur Coats

best 90s fashion trends, man, usher, wearing a yellow fur coat during awards ceremony
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Colorful faux fur coats were a key component of ’90s style. They’ll keep you warm during cold months, while giving your outfit some edgy appeal — similar to Usher’s all-yellow ensemble at the Ninth Annual Billboard Music Awards.

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Crop Shirts

best 90s fashion trends, woman, janet jackson, wearing a cropped number white shirt
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Crop tops are still popular, and for a good reason. They can elongate those with shorter torsos and show off the midriff area for a touch of sass. Janet Jackson’s look during the 1995 MTV Video Music Awards is a prime example.

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Pleather Outfits

best 90s fashion trends, woman, nia long, wearing a black leather dress
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In the ’90s, pleather dresses and skirts were all the rage. Nia Long wore this shiny and sleek dress to the 1998 VH1 Fashion Awards, showing that jackets aren’t the only way to sport this material. We’ve seen the pleather trend creeping back into popularity this year with tops, dresses and pants.

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Tie-Dye

best 90s fashion trends, women, destiny's child, wearing tie dye dresses
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Tie-dye is back and there are so many ways to wear it! The ’90s was full of colorful tie-dye caps, oversized tees and dresses, including this color-coordinated look from Destiny’s Child.

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Velvet Suits

best 90a fashion trends, woman, gwyneth paltrow, wearing a velvet suit
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Gwyneth Paltrow wore a velvet red suit to the 1996 MTV Video Music Awards. The fabric is an easy yet classy way to upgrade your work wardrobe.

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Bandana Headbands

best 90s fashion trends, woman, aaliyah, wearing a white bandana and black shades
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Matching your bandana with your #OOTD was the height of style in the ’90s, especially on the hip-hop fashion scene.

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Sequins

best 90s fashion trends, michael jackson wearing sequin shirt
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High-shine fabric was a showstopper in the ’90s, from sequin shirts and pants to glittery hair accessories and skirts. Take a page from Michael Jackson and use the glittery fabric to stand out on a special occasion.

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Colored Sunglasses

best 90s fashion trends, man justin timberlake, wearing colored sunglasses
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This chic sunglass trend works for any outfit, especially when you have a collection of colors to choose from.

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Layered Clothing

best 90s fashion trends, supermodel naomi campbell modeling versace dress
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This Versace dress worn by Naomi Campbell is a gorgeous example of the layered aesthetic. A silk gown layered under a long sweater is the perfect outfit for fall.

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Sheer Fabric

best 90s fashion trends, woman, jennifer lopez, wearing a sheer black dress
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The sheer trend dominated the ’90s. See-through materials like lace and mesh are still equally as striking and daring today.

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Leopard Print

best 90s fashion trends, jada pinkett smith wearing a leopard print hat
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From coats and dresses t0 hats and shirts, leopard-print attire was everywhere thanks to its playful and cool aesthetic.

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Track Suits

best 90s fashion trends, whitney houston wearing a white track suit at the super bowl
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In 1991, Whitney Houston gave a memorable performance at Super Bowl XXV in a white tracksuit.

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Corset Tops

best 90s fashion trends, woman, baby spice, wearing a black and purple floral corset and a black long skirt
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Emma Bunton (a.k.a. Baby Spice from the Spice Girls) wore this pink-and-black lace corset in the ’90s.

SHOP CORSETS

Headshot of Mariah Thomas

Mariah Thomas (she/her) is an assistant editor for Good Housekeeping, where she covers home and lifestyle content. Mariah has more than four years of editorial experience, having written for TLC, Apartment Therapy, Women’s Health and Avocado Magazine. She received her master’s degree in journalism at the Craig Newmark Graduate School of Journalism and published her first book, Heart and Soul: Poems of Thoughts and Emotions, in 2019. She’s also the founder of RTF Community a platform for creatives of color to connect, learn and showcase their work. 

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