Teenager 80s Fashion


A Stunning Look at 80s Teens Fashion

When it comes to teenagers 80s fashion style, a few obvious style icons spring to mind. There is no doubt that Madonna, Jennifer Beals’s character in Flashdance. The club trends of the 1980s is an example of the bold fashion of the period. During the 1980s, iconic designers like Calvin Klein, Ralph Lauren, and Giorgio Armani reached a pinnacle. Several of these designers became popular because of their casual, “street” looks.

The phrase “big and bright” perfectly describes the style of the 1980s. It was the decade that gave us flared jeans, padded shoulders, gaudy hoops, and other eye-straining fashions. The 1980s saw a rise in trends that celebrated materialism and ostentation. In order to fit in, it was necessary to shell out more cash for branded athletic gear and designer nameplates.

Since the 1980s were a fashion-forward decade, a list of the most iconic fashion choices teenagers wore was challenging. However, we have managed to compile a list of our favorites.

In terms of teenager 80s fashion, here are our top picks:

1. 80s Casual Styles 

Breakfast club - 80s teen fashion
Breakfast club – 80s teen fashion

Of course, the most memorable 80s fashions are the most extreme ones. However, many young people of the era preferred wearing more casual attire. The most popular trend of the 1980s was probably the casual 80s teenager fashion look. Loose, at ease garments devoid of excess ornamentation were typical of this era’s fashion trend.

Not all teenagers 80s fashion was flashy and loud. Most kids were just hoping to blend in with the crowd and avoid the embarrassment of puberty.

2. 80s Teenager Jacket Styles 

Jackets Styles 80s
Patrick Swayze – Jackets Styles 80s

Leather jackets from the 80s are still popular today and the trend is growing. Leather jackets in large, padded shoulders and rolled up sleeves were the most popular styles. There is no better example than Michael Jackson’s Thriller look

Bomber, Biker, and Letterman Jackets were the additional popular jacket styles of the 80s teen fasion.Bomber Jackets 

80s leather jacket mens

Bomber jackets reached the pinnacle of 80s fashion in 1986, following the release of Top Gun. But they were a staple in many American men’s wardrobes even prior to that. A useful byproduct from military service. After the 1980s, bomber jackets, whether made of nylon or leather, became a classic mainstay.

Both teenage Girls and boys wore bomber jackets in the 80s. “Top Gun” and other 80s movies popularized it as a fashion item for all ages.

This jacket was ideal for the mild temperatures in Australia and Europe and it quickly became popular in various countercultures. The Bomber jacket was an important part of the new wave movement. It was frequently worn with t-shirts, Doc Martens, and skinny jeans.

In the 80s, these leather jackets came in many styles and colors and cost anywhere from cheap to outrageous.

Letterman Jackets

Rob Lowe - 80s style icon
Rob Lowe

Since the 1950s, the Letterman Jacket, which is also known as Varsity Jacket, has been in and out of fashion. Now it is once again becoming a sought-after addition to many Gen Z and Millennial wardrobes. 

The Harvard baseball team started sewing large Old English letter “H” patches onto the center of their uniforms in 1865. That’s where it all began.

The “letterman sweater” was a heavy knitted pullover. Not the the collared wool jacket with sleeves that we are all familiar with today. 

These jackets became a fashion staple of the 1980s and 1990s. Early hip-hop groups such as Run DMC as well as NWA sporting it, made it a street staple – Yo !

Leather Jackets

Michael Jackson - 80s leather jacket
Michael Jackson – 80s leather jacket

Leather jackets were the most popular must-have in the 80s, being worn by the music and film celebrities. Michael Jacksons’ thriller appearance is an ideal illustration. Broad shoulder pads worn with the sleeves rolled up.  

3. 80s Printed T-shirts

80s printed t-shirts
80s printed t-shirt craze

T-shirts became a way for political movements to state their cause.

Major brands like Nike, Adidas, and Guess saw the advertising potential of having their logos printed on T’s. 

T-shirts from the 80s could have graphics, slogans, or printed text. Or they could simply be solid colors like neon pink or baby blue. 

4. 80s Teen Fanny Packs

80s Teen Fanny Packs

The fanny pack is the epitome of style and utility, so there’s no need to look any further. These were small pouches that fastened around the waist and provided storage for a few essentials course, the fanny pack’s widespread popularity in the 80s was also due to the variety of vivid colors and patterns it featured.

5. Jelly-Styles Shoes

80s jelly style shoes
1980s jelly style shoes – teenagers 80s fashion

Most of the 80s teenage girls remember jelly footwear. They were made out of a rubbery, stretchy material with vents for airflow. In the 80s, brightly coloured jelly shoes were all the rage, and it’s no surprise that they came in a rainbow of hues. They were on-trend, surprisingly cozy, and are even still worn by some modern women.

6. 80s Sporty Leggings

80s leggings
80s leggings craze

Colored tights and leg warmers were another peculiarly 80s fashion fad. In particular among the workout freaks.

Typically in loud patterns and colors, could stand in for pants, and bold accessories could be worn with them. Leggings were a staple of 80s teenage fashion, and they went perfectly with big, curly hair.

7. 80s Bodysuits

Jane Fonda

The 80s were a decade that were characterized by self-indulgence and self-consciousness. Cher and other fitness enthusiasts like Jane Fonda contributed to the rise of bodysuits as an acceptable piece of activewear.

Jane Fonda (among others) helped cement women’s obsession with dance and physical activity. This is one of the fashion trends from the 1980s that has survived in some form or another into every decade that has followed.

8. 80s Shoulder pads

80s shoulder pads
80s padded shoulders

Shoulder pads were a common feature of many ’80s and ’90s silhouettes due to their ability to enhance the wearer’s shape. Padding contributed to the evolution of boxer silhouettes, which went well with shoulder-baring trends like those seen on jean jackets and off-the-shoulder sweaters. 

It was also commonly seen as part of more formal work attire, such as an outfit a teenager might wear to their job before changing into for a night out with friends.

9. 80s Animal Prints

80s animal prints
Debbie Harry (left) leopard print

Wearing animal prints continued to be a source of inspiration in the 80s. Nonetheless, that didn’t stop famous people from donning wild animal prints in every conceivable way. Animal prints such as leopard, zebra, tiger, giraffe, and python were popular, and could be found on anything from leggings to handbags to skirts to sunglasses.

10. 80s Neon Fashion

On the flipside there were rebellious and outgoing teenagers. The 1980s were characterized by neon hues, garish patterns, and high fashion. From the bright colors of fashion to the neon hues of sports cars to the neon hues of light shows in department stores and bars, neon clothing was ubiquitous.

In the 1980s, neon colors were also used to dress teenagers, with clothing, accessories, shoes, and socks all featuring neon hues.

In the 1980s, teenagers’ hair and fingernails were often decorated with neon hues, and it was not uncommon for them to be dressed from head to toe in neon hues. 

11. Acid-Washed Jeans – Teenagers 80s Fashion

acid washed jeans
acid washed jeans – 1980s

Jordache popularized skintight jeans with narrow legs, but mom jeans’ with a higher rise and looser leg fit were also worn by women. It was the norm in the 80s to wear stone-washed and edgy acid-washed jeans, no matter how skinny or baggy they were.


As time changes, fashion evolves. Designs come and go over time. Extremely rapidly, fads emerge and then disappear. Many fashion trends of leather jackets that peaked in the 1980s have since become entrenched in popular culture and the language of style.

That’s all ! © Glamourdaze

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