Is there such as thing as ‘British girl energy’?

What comes to mind when you hear the words ‘British girl energy’? (Picture: Getty)

What comes to mind when you hear the words ‘British girl energy’? (Picture: Getty)

When it comes to fashion, what images does the term ‘British girl energy’ evoke? Ugg boots, Crocs, dresses with pockets, Uniqlo bags?

And, more broadly, perhaps being overly apologetic, sending chaotic voice notes to your friends on the bus, and being an expert in discussing the weather.

Replacing Edward Enniful, who recently retired as the editor of British Vogue, Chioma Nnadi used the term when discussing her new role, and it’s gathered traction online.

‘I realised just how much growing up in London shaped me,’ she told a Vogue Club podcast. ‘I’ve been talking a lot with my friends about this idea of British girl energy; it’s just an irreverence, kind of cheekiness, it’s not too polished, and it’s a little bit undone.’

Chioma’s description is simultaneously bang on and somewhat vague; we sort of know what she’s talking about, but we still have questions.

As TikTok continues to dominate fashion trends, we’ve seen the rise of ‘cool girl aesthetics,’ ‘clean girl aesthetics’ and even the ‘Mob wife,’ all of which have taken hold in the UK.

At present, the reigning British trend (particularly in middle class London) seems to be Ganni (or Ganni-style tie-up jackets, at least), striped M&S trousers and, until Rishi Sunak was recently pictured wearing them during an interview, Adidas Sambas.

So, is there really a universal British girl chic? Arguably not.

As with many countries and their respective fashion trends, it’s impossible to summon just one image that gives ‘British girl energy.’ It isn’t a cookie cutter and we don’t all look the same, but there are some notable tropes many of us are a sucker for.

Nike Air Forces are a British classic (Picture: Getty Images)

French women have a reputation for adorning classic, dressed-down looks, with a certain je ne sais quoi, while Scandinavian women have a similar reputation for looking effortlessly fashionable (and yet, still casual).

Comparatively, searching TikTok, ‘British girl energy’ and ‘British girl aesthetic’ brings up visuals of flared jeans, tote bags, and oversized leather jackets, as well as Pandora bracelet charms, fluffy Primark PJs, and Nike Air Force trainers.

Meanwhile, a quick, democratic Instagram poll asking for suggestions threw up: ‘high rise jeans, crop top and leather jacket’ and ‘Reebok Classics,’ while the general vibe (fashion aside), supposedly gives off: ‘a lot of makeup,’ ‘you know where you stand,’ and ‘Alexa Chung vibes.’

Historically, fashion and aesthetics have been tied to musical taste.

During the ’60s you had mods and rockers; in the ’70s you had punks; the ’80s was all about the New Romantics and ’90s fashion was heavily influenced by the Spice Girls, Ibiza club culture and grunge.

More recently still, emo bands such as My Chemical Romance, Fall Out Boy and Panic! At The Disco heavily influenced fashion in the Noughties. At the same time, R&B and hip-hop stars inspired many looks, from crop tops …read more

Source:: Metro


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