Have you ever wondered what your personal aesthetic was? What does it even mean to have an “aesthetic”? And if you don’t have it yet, how do you find it? It might seem like a tough task, but fret not – with our help, you should be able to discover your aesthetic in no time.
Having an aesthetic means identifying with a certain aesthetic, style, or fashion. It shows in the way you are presenting yourself and expressing your personality. A person that identifies with an aesthetic will dress in a certain way, decorate their house in a specific way, and have a taste for certain media that correspond with said aesthetic. It will often go beyond just clothes or makeup – it will be more like a lifestyle. In this way aesthetics can be interchangeable with the concept of subculture; an example could be Goths or Punks.
Of course, that’s just what works for some people. It doesn’t mean that you have to incorporate your chosen aesthetic into your daily life. It’s fine to make moodboards, participate in discussions or fantasize about an aesthetic without actually living it.
There are many different aesthetics out there. You don’t have to strictly label your style, nor do you need to pick just one aesthetic. You should feel free to explore and be happy.
If we wanted to write about all the aesthetics out there, we would fill out several books. We’re only going to talk about a few of them that seemed to gain a lot of traction recently.
Cottagecore is an aesthetic that romanticizes farm life and the countryside. It’s centered on an idea of simple life, rejecting modernity and capitalism, and existing in harmony with nature. People who identify with Cottagecore encourage self-sufficiency and traditional handicrafts such as gardening, sewing, baking, etc.
Typical symbols of Cottagecore are cottages, flowers, strawberries, and mushrooms. Cottagecore is associated with earthy, naturally-occurring colors, such as green, brown, and yellow. Nature is one of the main visuals of the aesthetic, with the most common subjects being wild fields, forests, and gardens.
Cottagecore fashion can be either feminine, inspired by historical trends (mostly from the Romantic or Victorian periods), or fall more onto the practical, cozy and whimsical side. The colors tend to be naturally occurring or muted. The fabrics are often natural, such as cotton, linen, knitted yarn, etc. Cottagecore clothes tend to be bought secondhand from thrift stores or vintage shops. True to the aesthetic, the hair and makeup tend to be more natural, with the hair often worn loose or in braids. Some prefer their makeup more fairy-like and fantastical.
VSCO girl (or boy) is an aesthetic and subculture named after a VSCO photography app. A person identifying with VSCO can be described as laidback, positive, and relaxed. The VSCO aesthetic is also often associated with eco-friendly attitudes and concern for the environment. That explains the main symbols of a VSCO girl: Hydro Flasks (reusable water bottles), metal straws, or “save the turtles” stickers.
VSCO girls can often wear oversized T-shirts or sweaters, leggings, Nike shorts, or mom jeans. They will wear Birkenstocks, Vans, or Crocs. Beach themes are a hallmark of the style. Scrunchies, Pura Vida bracelets, or shell necklaces are popular accessories within the VSCO aesthetic. Instant cameras or Fjällräven backpacks are a hit with VSCO girls too.
Makeup is often kept simple for a natural, “no makeup” makeup look. Lipbalm and skincare products are popular. VSCO girls prefer low-maintenance hairstyles, such as a messy bun or a simple ponytail.
E-girl, an abbreviation of “electronic girl”, is a term that has been around for a while. The current definition of E-girl has become popular around 2019, used to describe girls who are edgy, but cute and seemingly innocent. Content put online by e-girls (and e-boys) tends to be flirtatious and even sexual; eye-rolling and an “ahegao” expression (imitating climax) are common. E-girl puts a lot of value on individuality.
E-girl style can be described as a mix of emo, scene, and mall goth fashion combined with Japanese street fashion and K-pop fashion. Outfits often consist of baggy clothes, mesh shirts, plaid skirts, platform shoes, chokers, and beanies. E-girls like to dye their hair, tie them in pigtails or wear bangs. They usually wear heavy makeup, with a blush on the nose imitating anime, winged eyeliner, and fake freckles.
Preppy is a subculture in the United States that is associated with old private Northeastern university-preparatory schools, and it describes a student or alumnus of these schools. The term used to be associated with certain speech, vocabulary, dress, mannerisms, and etiquette, reflective of an upper-class upbringing.
Nowadays those who enjoy the Preppy aesthetic pride themselves on how timeless it is. In reality, the Preppy aesthetic goes in and out of fashion. Classic Preppy outfits for women include tailored skirt suits, low heels, wrap dresses, shift dresses, silk or cotton blouses, and jewelry with a refined style. Brands such as Ralph Lauren, Burberry, or Elizabeth McKay are perceived as having Preppy styles.
Dark Academia is an aesthetic revolving around classic literature, high education, the pursuit of self-discovery, and a general passion for knowledge and learning. The aesthetic is influenced by Gothic, the 1930s and 1940s fashion, and upper-class European cultures of the 19th century. The key motifs of Dark Academia include books, history, literature, novels, old buildings, and mystery. The color palette includes earth tones, black, brown, and tan. The season of fall and dreary weather are common themes.
Dark Academia fashion is inspired by different periods, including the Victorian period and 1930s-1940s. Outfits worn by Dark Academia followers include cardigans, blazers, dress shirts, plaid skirts, Oxford shoes, and clothing made of houndstooth and tweed. This style could be described as high class, sophisticated, and extravagant. Multiple hairstyles can fit the aesthetic, except for the more modern, alternative ones. Makeup should be either kept neutral or mysterious and almost femme-fatale-like.
Art Hoe aesthetic is based on a love for art, a connection to nature, painting, and flowers. It’s symbolized by women who love art and nature. Plants, flowers, and bright colors such as yellow are popular motifs. People who identify with Art Hoe aesthetic value creativity, diversity, uniqueness, nature, and art.
Typical Art Hoe fashion includes anything associated with art or things printed with artists’ works on them, graphic tees, converse sneakers, and overalls. Art Hoes are often drawn to a vintage aesthetic, thrift stores, and lesser-known fashion brands. They also like to DIY their clothes, paint or embroider on them. Popular hairstyles include space buns or straight-up messy hair. The makeup is usually colorful.
Do you want to find out what your personal aesthetic is? Take the quiz and get your answer. Good luck in finding your vibe!
How many questions are in the quiz?
There are 20 questions.
How many options can you get?
Cottagecore, VSCO, E-girl, Art Hoe, Preppy, Dark Academia
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