People wearing skinny jeans with a "canceled" stamp overlaid on top of the image.

Skinny Jeans Are Canceled

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About

Skinny Jeans Are Canceled refers to an influx of videos on TikTok claiming that participating in certain fashion trends, primarily wearing skinny jeans and styling your hair with a side part, makes you old. As the beliefs spread across social media platforms, users who follow these trends began making posts combating them and supporting others who choose to follow said trends making it a frequent topic of online discussion.

Origin

It's unknown who first made the claim that "skinny jeans are for old people," but the belief appears to have spread slowly on TikTok starting in 2020 as users began posting videos to the platform showing them "growing out" of skinny jeans. In some of these examples, people claimed they stopped wearing them in relation to quarantine in favor of more comfortable pants (shown below, left and right).[3][4]


https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6901001461661043970
https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6846745529611750661

Spread

On July 13th, 2020, TikTok[1] user @meanhails uploaded a video claiming the platform has made her insecure about wearing skinny jeans, garnering over 170,000 views in seven months. This video supplies evidence that the belief started prior to this date, though it may not have been as widely known (shown below).


https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6848820778008464645

On August 27th, 2020, TikTok[2] user @momohkd uploaded a bait-and-switch video to their profile where she makes it appear as if she's going to give fashion advice for wearing skinny jeans. Instead, she destroys the skinny jeans in various ways (shown below). The video gained over 417,000 views in six months and is considered one of the primary videos in sparking the more aggressive belief on the platform that skinny jeans are for old people.


https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6865765755649068293

On September 11th, 2020, Nicolette Baker published an article to Arrow[12] claiming skinny jeans are canceled. On December 18th, @akrutiviras uploaded[6] a skit referencing skinny jeans falling out of fashion, garnering over 76,000 views in a month (shown below).


https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6907465620363726085

Throughout January and February 2021, TikTok users began posting videos mocking beliefs that certain fashion trends are dying under the hashtag #skinnyjeans. On February 1st, for example, both @leakoob and @takingmylifebackat42 posted videos to their TikToks[7][8] refusing to get rid of their "old" fashion styles, receiving over 1 million views each in a week (shown below, left and right).


https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6924423499196976389
https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6924445246440885510

In early February, users began posting videos embracing their "outdated" fashion trends using the hashtag #oldtok (examples shown below).[9][10]


https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6925115830812429573
https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6924789744513666309

The belief and posts related to it have since spread outside of TikTok to social media in general, including Instagram[13] and Twitter[14] (shown below).


ONE MINUTE YOU'RE YOUNG AND FUN, AND THE NEXT YOU WEAR YOUR HAIR IN A SIDE PART, OWN SKINNY JEANS AND USE TOO MUCH. IF SKINNY JEANS & SIDE PARTS MAKE ME THEN I DON'T WANT T O BE Joung @msashley.jo

On February 9th, 2021, Yahoo Lifestyle[11] reported on skinny jeans going out of style on TikTok, and on February 10th, Google Trends posted a report to Twitter[5] showing a 700 percent increase in the search term "why are skinny jeans cancelled" as well as the terms "middle part" and "side part" (shown below).


Google Trends @GoogleTrends ... "millennials age range" is a breakout search, past week, US "who is Gen Z" spiked +2,500% "why are skinny jeans cancelled" +700% "Gen Z style" is a breakout, past day Signed,

Various Examples


https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6913971890772004098
https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6905074960738405634
https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6920260671158471938
https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6925926266977750277
https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6922966937110596869
https://www.tiktok.com/embed/v2/6927069960397393158

Search Interest

External References

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