11 Iconic Trends That Defined 2010s Fashion

Here are some of our favorite (and least favorite) trends from the past decade…

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Joan Smalls
Joan Smalls wears mom jeans, a clutch, and an off the shoulder top — three hot 2010s fashion trends | Pacific Coast News

As the decade draws to a close, it’s time to look back on the past ten years and the many changes we’ve seen in the style world. Here at CF, we’ve been blogging about fashion since 2007 (!!), so it’s safe to say we’re pretty well versed on the trends of the past decade.

Also, as fashion fans, we absolutely love reminiscing about past trends and how we wore them. (And maybe cringing just a little.)

{RELATED POST: The Ultimate Guide to 2010s Makeup}

So, with all that in mind, let’s take a look at some of the trends that have defined this past decade! Here’s our full breakdown of 2010s fashion and the trends that defined the decade:

Crop Tops

2010s fashion - crop tops: Outfit with knit crop top, denim pencil skirt, camo print hat, taupe sneakers
Pacific Coast News

The crop top was a trend that spanned the decade — we first blogged about them in 2010 and we haven’t stopped talking about them since.

The trends started off with cropped t-shirts, then moved to bralettes, and soon the possibilities were endless. Today, you can find an iteration of the crop top in just about any clothing store.

Skinny Jeans

2010s fashion - skinny jeans - photo of red jeans

Skinny jeans first became a huge trend in the late 2000s and early 2010s, replacing the boot cut and flare jeans of the early 2000s. They came in every color and pattern imaginable and were quite controversial at the beginning!

Colored skinny jeans were also a huge trend we saw in the early 2010s — girls owned them in every color from white to neon pink.

In recent years, we’ve started to wear jeans with looser silhouettes and more subtle colors, though the skinny jean silhouette shows no sign of going away entirely.

Matching Sets

Yellow plaid set
Forever 21

This trend picked up a few years ago and hasn’t slowed down since. The trend originally focused on matching crop tops and skirts, but has evolved to include trendy suits and athleisure combos.


Julianne Hough
Pacific Coast News

The mid 2010s saw the rise of athleisure — combining activewear with everyday clothing, in a cool, fashion-y way. Leggings were a big part of this 2010s fashion trend.

While leggings had previously been worn with dresses, skirts, or long tunic tops, they started to become more accepted when worn on their own.

Despite the ever-controversial debate of whether or not leggings are pants, they helped kickstart the athleisure movement.

Color Blocking

Simone Biles in a blue and black dress at the Glamour Women of the Year Awards 2016
Joe Sutter, Pacific Coast News

Color blocking was the biggest thing in fashion at the beginning of the decade, when you could see it adorning dresses, tops, shoes, and more.

Recently, the trend has resurfaced as fashion has taken on a ’90s influence, though in less bright colors than we saw in 2011.

Anything from VS Pink

Pink top

This wouldn’t be a 2010s fashion post if we didn’t take a minute to pour one out for VS Pink.

A few years ago, it was almost impossible to set foot in public without spotting several outfits featuring the popular Victoria’s Secret Pink loungewear. This trend has (thankfully?) all about died, but we’ll never forget the days when our favorite sweats had PINK written across the butt.

Clutches & Mini Bags

Clutches and mini bags — aka bags that couldn’t fit much of anything inside — were the darlings of nearly every fashion blogger in the 2010s!

They could be casual or formal, simple or quirky. They instantly made every outfit look more polished, but could also be a bit inconvenient to carry around. This trend has only picked up steam at the end of the decade, but we’re expecting to see the return of larger bags soon.

Off the Shoulder Tops

Hilary Duff wearing an off shoulder blue top, white flared jeans, and chunky heels
Pacific Coast News

Cold shoulder and off the shoulder tops have been everywhere the past few years. Despite causing some interesting tan lines, this fun style has been a summer favorite.

Fanny Packs

2010s fashion: Fanny pack
Nordstrom Rack

Towards the end of the decade, the fashion world decided to embrace the fanny pack.

While this item had previously been seen as a purely functional, less than stylish accessory, the useful little bag has since become a fashion statement. It comes in endless designs and fabrics, and these days you’ll see influencers everywhere wearing them cross-body style.

Mom Jeans

2010s fashion trends - Mom jeans
American Eagle

Mom jeans made an impressive comeback during the latter half of the 2010s. While they, like the fanny pack, used to be associated with a lack of style, this type of jean thrived as ’90s fashion returned, driven in part by the normcore trend.

Worn with sweatshirts, cropped tops, or boxy jackets, mom jeans proved to be deserving of a place in our closets. They’re a total staple of 2019 fashion and we’re absolutely in in love with them.


Urban Outfitters

Another trend that made an impressive comeback in the late 2010s, scrunchies became synonymous with the VSCO Girl style.

One of the most practical trends of the decade, scrunchies easily add style to the wrist or hair. We’re expecting this trend to stay strong into 2020.

What was your favorite 2010s fashion trend?

How many of these 2010s fashion trends did you wear? Are there any we missed? Let us know in the comments!

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