Indie aesthetic outfits: how to dress like a ’90s bombshell in 2022

The original cool girl ✌️

picture of drew barrymore surrounded by indie aesthetic clothing & accessories

by Ruby Barry |

What do you get when you mix indie-rock nostalgia, grunge and hella "I'm with the band" energy? You get indie aesthetic - the fashion lovechild of the '90s. Think of flannels, denim, and layering of jewellery. Basically the original cool girl. No, don't think of the cool girl monologue from Gone Girl. We're talking positive cool girl: the epitome of women in the '90s, taking back masculine elements of fashion for themselves. In the nineties, women said goodbye to frills and lace and hello to structured fabrics and earthy tones.

Don't get it twisted, the indie aesthetic genre has changed over the years. Some of the younger generations define indie aesthetic as being more colourful and vivid, named "indie core", but still with the '90s influence of layering and comfort. However, we would define this style as more E-girl than indie. Luckily for you, we've got a guide to E-girl outfits too. What can we say, we are Cher Horowitz-level addicted to fashion.

So, if you want to dress like a true '90s indie gal, follow our guide below. A millennial masterclass if you will. We've got a mood board for inspo, as well as a full guide on where to buy the best indie clothing and accessories.

What does the indie aesthetic look like?

We've created some mood boards to remind you of that authentic indie aesthetic experience. Of course, we have to say hail Mary to the forerunner of indie fashion in the '90s and early noughties: Mrs Drew Barrymore. A wild child in her younger days, the Scream star rocked the indie aesthetic with ease.

pictures of drew barrymore's indie fashion throughout the years
©Getty Images

Elements that she pulled from the indie aesthetic included: floral shirts and dresses, wide-brim hats, flannel, checks, tartan, baggy jumpers, graphic tees, leather jackets and denim shorts.

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pictures of indie 90s aesthetic to create a mood board

Related: Grunge aesthetic: How to dress like a grunge girl in 2022

You can see the indie aesthetic defo takes inspiration from grunge and also a bit of noughties hipster fashion (although not too much - we're not going into moustache shirt territory here). The vibe is comfort with a hint of edge. Looking like this, you're totally ready to stand in the middle of a concert crowd and whisper to the person next to you "my partner's in this band. Wanna come to the after-party?"

So, what do you need to get your indie aesthetic wardrobe started? We've got the only lookbook you'll need right here, with fashion from UK high street shops that won't cost you the earth.

Related: You can now buy Spice Girls LEGO and we're LIVING

CHECK OUT: Where to buy the best indie aesthetic outfits online 2022


Indie aesthetic: where to shop the look in 2022

indie aesthetic
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CREDIT: emmiol

Let's start with shirts and tees...This is possibly the most '90s shirt you've ever seen. We love it. Totally indie.

Acid Floral Printed Bowling Shirt
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CREDIT: oasis

Indie aesthetic includes floral designs, but in more masculine cuts such as the bowling shirt style.

UO Pink Floyd Baby T-Shirt
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CREDIT: urban outfitters

For the indie aesthetic, band tees are a must. We love this Pink Floyd cropped tee from Urban Outfitters.

Women Portrait Print Crop Tank Top
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CREDIT: amazon

These tank tops come in a bunch of different designs but are all indie aesthetic approved. We want to buy them all ud83dude2d. (Btw, reviews recommend you size up.)

UO Tonal Blue Brendan Flannel Shirt
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CREDIT: urban outfitters

You can't be an indie chick without some good ol' flannel.

H&M Checkered Shirt
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You can choose from seven different colours with the H&M checkered shirt, including red, brown/white, black, light beige, light purple, yellow and light grey.

MaNMaNing Women Striped Sweater Pullover
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CREDIT: amazon

Oversized jumpers are truly one of life's pleasures. Basically a wearable blanket ud83dude0d.

Ultra High-Rise Ripped Medium Wash Mom Jeans
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CREDIT: hollister

Next, let's tackle trousers...When it comes to denim, the more ripped, the better.

90s Baggy High Jeans
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However, if you're haunted by your nan berating you for buying pre-ripped jeans, these baggy high-waisted jeans from H&M are also brilliant. You can get them in four different shades.

Ultra High-Rise Ripped Medium Wash Denim Mom Short
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CREDIT: hollister

The sun is finally out, so chuck on your denim shorts and look festival ready.

Sunnydale Check Tailored Trousers
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CREDIT: disturbia

If you're not a denim diva, these checked trousers from Disturbia are indie as heck.

Floral Pattern Cami Maxi Dress
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CREDIT: cider

Let's get dressy up in this ish...Indie aesthetics also brings in elements of '70s hippy culture, which we are always happy to see ud83cudf38.

Advanced Stretch Mini Dress
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CREDIT: hollister

A checkered mini dress is essential indie equipment.

Original & Vintage Boyfriend Trucker Jacket
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CREDIT: superdry

Some jackets for layering up...A good quality denim jacket will last you a lifetime, so it's a fabulous investment for your fashion future.

Stradivarius faux leather jacket in black
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CREDIT: asos

Feel like an indie rocker with this super affordable leather jacket from ASOS (faux, of course, 'cause we love the animals.)

Beechfield Trawler Beanie
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CREDIT: amazon

Accessories are essential...Beanie hats are an indie aesthetic must. There are different beanie designs you can go for, but the trawler beanie is our fav for that '90s feel.

The North Face Logo Cuffed beanie in beige
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CREDIT: asos

We love this light-coloured North Face beanie, too.

ASOS DESIGN Structured Fedora Hat with Size Adjuster in Black
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CREDIT: asos

Would it really be an indie fashion lookbook without a fedora? We say bring the fedora back: if low-rise jeans are having their moment, why can't they?

Mango Bucket Hat
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CREDIT: mango

This bucket hat comes in either lilac or black. The bucket hat is more Gen Z indie core influence, but we love to see it.

MJARTORIA Moon Pentagram Necklace
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CREDIT: amazon

Indie aesthetics can sometimes merge into emo territory. All millennials had their emo phase (don't lie to yourself), so this blend is perfect to bring back the nostalgia.

Chuck Taylor All Star Classic Converse
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CREDIT: converse

And finally, let's finish with some shoes...Every indie girl back in the day had a pair of Converse on their shoe rack. They're a timeless piece of footwear that will never go out of style.

Checkered Classic Slip-On Vans
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CREDIT: vans

This image just gave you violent flashbacks to the early noughties, didn't it? Give yourself a moment to recover.

Vegan 1460 Bex Mono Dr Marten Boots
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CREDIT: dr martens

Kick 'em to the curb with a pair of iconic vegan Dr Martens. We recommend also getting the Wonder Balsam to help break your boots in.

ASICS Birch & Smoke Grey GEL Venture 6 Trainers
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CREDIT: urban outfitters

Pop on a pair of retro-style trainers with your ripped jeans and jean jacket, and you'll be a total '90s bombshell.

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