How To Dress Like The 80s With Normal Clothes

The 1980s was an era of bold fashion choices, vibrant colors, and unique silhouettes. If you're looking to channel the stylish nostalgia of the 80s without having to scour vintage stores, you're in luck. With a few simple tips and outfit ideas, you can easily recreate the iconic looks of the 80s using the clothes you already have in your wardrobe. Get ready to embrace the spirit of the 80s and have fun experimenting with these retro-inspired fashion trends.

Tips to Get 80s Looks

The 80s were a time of bold fashion choices, from neon colors to shoulder pads. But if you’re looking to channel the decade without going full-on costume, there are plenty of ways to dress like the 80s with normal clothes. Here are some tips to help you get the look (p.s. buy them secondhand or check out budget friendly sustainable clothing brands to make sure your look is wallet and planet friendly!)

  1. Wear bright colors

    women with 80s style with bright color clothes
    The 80s were all about making a statement with vibrant colors. Incorporate bold hues like neon pinks, electric blues, and vibrant yellows into your outfits. Mix and match different colors to create a lively and eye-catching look.

  2. Highlight your shoulder area

    women with shoulder pad clothes

    Shoulder pads were a defining feature of 80s fashion. Look for blazers, jackets, or tops with padded shoulders to achieve that structured and powerful silhouette. Balance out the look with fitted bottoms to create a flattering shape.

  3. Go for the oversized

    woman oversize sweater

    Oversized clothing was a big part of the 80s look. Look for items like oversized blazers, sweaters, and jackets. You can also look for items with exaggerated details like shoulder pads and big collars.

  4. Choose high-waisted bottoms

    woman with high waist jeans

    High-waisted pants, skirts, or shorts were a popular choice in the 80s. Opt for high-waisted jeans, skirts, or trousers to achieve an authentic retro look. Pair them with tucked-in tops or cropped blouses to showcase the high waist and elongate your legs.

  5. Remember to include a trench coat in your outfit

    woman with trench coat

    A trench coat is a timeless piece that was widely worn in the 80s. Choose a trench coat in a bold color or opt for patterns like animal print or checks to add an 80s twist. Layer it over your outfits for a stylish and sophisticated touch.

  6. Expose the shoulders

    woman wear off-shoulder
    Off-the-shoulder tops were a staple of 80s fashion and continue to be a fashionable choice today. Look for off-the-shoulder blouses or dresses to showcase your collarbones and add a touch of femininity to your ensemble.

  7. Rock a mini-skirt

    woman wear mini skirt
    Mini-skirts were a symbol of the 80s fashion scene. Choose a vibrant and patterned mini-skirt and pair it with a tucked-in blouse or a graphic tee for a playful and retro look. Don't forget to accessorize with statement belts and chunky jewelry.

  8. Consider wearing ripped jeans

    woman with ripped jeans
    Ripped jeans were a rebellious trend of the 80s. Opt for a pair of distressed jeans and pair them with a graphic tee or an oversized sweater for a casual yet edgy 80s-inspired outfit. Add some colorful accessories or scrunchies for an extra dose of retro charm.

  9. Invest in a denim jacket

    woman with denim jacket

    A denim jacket is a versatile and timeless piece that was popular in the 80s. Look for a cropped or oversized denim jacket and wear it over dresses, tops, or jumpsuits to achieve that effortlessly cool 80s look. Customize it with patches or pins for a personalized touch.

Simple 80s Outfit Ideas With Normal Clothes

Creating 80s-inspired outfits doesn't have to involve hunting for vintage pieces. With your existing wardrobe, you can effortlessly achieve the iconic looks of the era. Here are some simple outfit ideas that capture the essence of the 80s using normal clothes.

  1. Match Cycling Shorts With Formalwear

    Pair cycling shorts with a blazer, oversized shirt, and heels for a stylish blend of casual and formal 80s aesthetics.

    woman with short bike and formal wear
    Shop formal wear here

  2. Combine a Biker Leather Jacket with Denim Jeans

    Pair a classic rider leather jacket with high-waisted jeans, a band tee, and boots for an edgy 80s-inspired outfit.

    woman with leather jacket and jeans
    Shop leather jacket here
    Shop jeans

  3. Wear Bold, Bright Colors

    Create a head-turning look by pairing a brightly colored top with contrasting bottoms and accessories.

    woman with bright color outfit
    Shop bright color outfit

  4. Pair Chunky Knitwear With Wide-leg Pants

    Combine a chunky knit sweater with wide-leg pants or culottes for a cozy yet trendy 80s-inspired ensemble.

    women wear chunky knit sweater and wide jeans
    Shop chunky knit sweater
    Shop wide leg pants

  5. Style Oversized Blazers with Shoulder Pads

    Opt for an oversized blazer with shoulder pads, worn over a simple top and skinny jeans, to achieve a powerfully chic 80s look.

    woman with Oversized Blazers With Shoulder Pads
    Shop oversized blazers

  6. Wear High Waisted Mom Jeans

    Style high-waisted mom jeans with a tucked-in graphic tee and sneakers for a casual and retro 80s vibe.

    woman wear mom jeans
    Shop mom jeans

  7. Pair Off-Shoulder Tops with Snug Flared Pants

    Style an off-shoulder top with tight-fitting flared pants or leggings for a glamorous and party-ready 80s outfit.

    woman wear off shoulder with flared pants
    Shop off shoulder pants
    Shop flared pants

With these simple tips and outfit ideas, you can effortlessly embrace the 80s fashion trends using the clothes you already have (if you need to buy something new, check helpful websites like good on you and ecowiser to make sure you're making a an informed shopping decision). Remember, the key to rocking an 80s-inspired look is to have fun, experiment, and embrace the boldness of the era. So go ahead, bring out your inner fashionista and let the 80s nostalgia shine through your stylish ensembles.


Back to blog