If there's one TV show that epitomizes the gaudy, loud style of the early '90s, it's The Fresh Prince Of Bel-Air . And if there's one way to ensure we ace all the trends of the era, it's by turning to Hilary Banks' style. While her clothes may now seem a little outdated at times, her style was unapologetically cool and chic — two traits that will live on no matter the decade. Plus, with the seemingly never-ending resurgence of '90s trends, what better time to draw sartorial tips from the era of grunge and matching suit separates?
We all know Hilary was the prissy and self-centered character of the bunch. But her unique personal style was off the charts. She was always rocking bright colors, shoulder padded silhouettes (carried on from the '80s no doubt) and chunky jewelry. The best part was that she rocked each and every look with the utmost confidence and poise. These style staples alone would be enough reason to grant Hilary serious inspo status. But she has a lot more wisdom where those came from.
So here are seven style tips courtesy of your favorite love-hate TV character in history. She was certainly a Queen B, but the girl had some serious style way before Blair Waldorf.
1. Take Risks
If there's one thing Hilary Banks was not, it was shy. Her outgoing, extroverted energy was certainly reflected in her wardrobe choices. Frankly, I don't think there was a trend Hilary met that she didn't like, including a four-color, vertical striped blazer. She taught us that having the guts and the confidence to take every trend out for a spin will often lead you to a fun and unique sartorial experience.
2. Up The Ante With Accessories
Sometimes what makes an outfit isn't necessarily the ensemble itself, but the accessories atop it. For instance, a simple outfit can be totally transformed with a chunky necklace, a bright set of bracelets, and a bold pair of shoes. While Hilary's purple halter dress is pretty, the charm necklace and the chunky bracelet take it to the next level. Follow Hilary's lead and revolutionize your basic outfits with statement-making accessories.
3. Matching Isn't All Bad
I'm not just talking about matching your light jeans to a white shirt, but matching your jacket to your skirt and to your hat and to your shoes. Sure, unexpected outfit combinations are cool. But there's nothing like a matchy-matchy look that can make a full ensemble statement all on its own.
4. Look To Stars For Inspiration
Clearly, Hilary is drawing some inspo from Madonna's Like A Virgin days. Just look at the white dress, the gaudy pearl jewelry, and even the lace gloves. Hilary's version is definitely toned down compared to the bad gal attitude that Madonna embraced, but the similarities are obvious.
5. Up The Allure Factor
The '90s weren't exactly a set of years known for sex appeal. Judging from Hilary's ensembles, the better part of the decade was spent in boxy suits, oversized sweaters, and shoulder pads. However, there were moments when Hilary seriously upped the allure factor. The girl knew how to rock cut-outs and a plunging neckline long before they were full-fledged trends. And she looked damn good.
6. When In Doubt, Resort To Classics
While the majority of Hilary's outfits were trendy beyond belief, she also brought out some wardrobe classics. While a four-color, vertically striped blazer is great and all, it's classic pieces like architectural blazers, high-waisted midi skirts, and basic black booties that often stand the test of time.
7. Love Thyself, And To Thyself Be True
If there's one thing that always stayed consistent in Hilary's trendy ensembles, it was her undeniable confidence and poise. No matter what she was wearing, Hilary rocked it as though she were on a runway. No matter what kind of ensemble you're wearing, you should feel confident, comfortable, and your best self in it.
That, my friends, is the style tip Hilary would most approve of.
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