At its best, fashion is subjective and anything and everything can happen. In 2022, people can claim to have done their thing more than ever.
Still, some of the most compelling fashion criticism comes in the form of The Worst-Clothed List, a franchise coined by critic Richard Blackwell. As a barometer of and to determine what works and what doesn’t when it comes to pop culture, it’s worth making a “worst-dress list.”
Note that Blackwell also published a list of “Fabulous Fashion Independents” frequently populated by those he deemed “worst-dressed”. Some would argue that you aren’t considered really cool until you’ve graced the worst dressed list.
In this spirit, HuffPost has curated the 10 worst fashion trends of 2022 and asked stylists to explain why these looks can go wrong.
meet the critics
Beverly Osemwenkae New York and London based style expert and founder of ProjectBee Wardrobe Consulting. Her company’s services are uniquely designed to help you build your individual image and develop your personal style.
chelsea volpe A Manhattan-based fashion and still life stylist known for her unique mix of vibrant colors and imagery. Her clients include Bloomingdale’s, Estie Her Lauder, Highsnobiety, Hypebeast, Paper Magazine, Vogue, Women’s Her Wear Her Daily.
1. Night sunglasses
Julia Fox, October 25, 2022 in Los Angeles, CA.
“It’s amazing how many twenty-somethings I’ve seen so far wearing ultra-luxury sunglasses and hopping around the New York night scene,” Volpe told HuffPost. “Isn’t the darkness dark enough for you? Darlings, it’s not chic, and frankly not practical, to wear Balenciaga sunglasses to your local Bushwick dive bar.”
2. Y2K aesthetics
A model walks the runway at the Blumarine fashion show during Milan Fashion Week on September 23, 2021 in Milan, Italy.
Osemwenkhae is not a fan of glitter, hearts, or butterflies when it comes to dressing up. “There are a few things that remain in the early 2000s, like the Y2K aesthetic. Dressing up is not flattering.”
3. Floral dress like a seaside grandma
Anne Hathaway at the 75th Annual Cannes Film Festival on May 19, 2022 in Cannes, France.
The coastal granny look was all the rage this summer, but Volpe felt the barrage of floral patterns was completely basic and not meant for good. “Wearing your grandma’s bathroom wallpaper in the form of a dress is so outdated. Shall we swap out the old-fashioned Nantucket florals for something more interesting?” I’m here.
4. Low rise jeans
Julia Fox on March 31, 2022 in Los Angeles, CA.
Low-rise jeans are making a comeback this year, why? “Low-rise her jeans highlight the wrong parts of the body,” he says Osemwenkhae. Of course, style is subjective, and so is the feeling of empowerment that comes with it.There was a shock value associated with it. Twenty years later, showing the thong trend feels a little hollow statement-wise.
5. Cargo pants
Guests at Paris Fashion Week on July 6, 2022 in Paris, France.
Another pant faux pas that made waves in 2022, in Volpe’s opinion, was the prevalence of cargo pants. “Parachute-sized cargo pants aren’t cute. If the pants make him look like two garbage bags merged into one tragic nightmare, that’s a problem.”
6. Platform flip-flops
Kendall Jenner in Los Angeles, CA on March 24, 2022.
This isn’t the first time platforms have appeared in footwear, the style has been around since the 1970s. The 1990s saw platforms on everything from Mary Janes to sneakers, but according to Osemwenkhae, the most aggressive platform is his flip-flops, which are making a comeback in 2022. When styling your resort wear this winter, opt for something more classy.
7. Brands without accountability
Conscious consumerism is a mainstay of Gen Z, quick to use purchase choices to signal brands that they are uncool, or worse, offensive and inhumane. “Wearing a walking billboard for anti-Semitism is not trendy, I love it. Adidas happy with Kanye debacle. She noted the outrage people felt as to why Adidas took so long to cut ties with Kanye West. ‘ added. In her December of this year, Balenciaga unveiled her two campaigns, prompting allegations that the brand tolerates the exploitation of children. TikTokers responded by destroying Balenciaga merchandise in their feeds.
8. Micro mini skirt
Simona Carucci (left) and Anacarla D’Arravo (right) wear the Miu Miu Micro Skirt Trend during Paris Fashion Week in Paris, France on March 8, 2022.
How short is the mini? For Osemwenkhae, wearability is key. “There are cut-off points that are too small to be practical to wear.” She said she was ready to ditch her miniskirts and revive slip midi skirts instead.
9. Lingerie as evening wear
Jessica Wang during New York Fashion Week outside Carolina Herrera in New York City on February 14, 2022.
After two years of lockdown loungewear, Volpe said: But, according to her, lingerie belongs in the bedroom, and evenings in 2023 require a little more substance in her wear.
10. Skinny jeans
A model in skinny jeans on May 20, 2021 in New York City.
Painted pants are outdated. Osemwenkhae pointed out that it’s time to replace her skinny jeans with “relaxed straight his jeans.” It’s easy to wear and it’s a style that makes your body line look beautiful. She added that the fit is “proportionally attractive, especially for pear shapes.”