Why We Should Bring Back Matching '90s Outfits

by Kat George

The best thing about the end of the '90s (and subsequently the start of the oughts) was matching outfits. In the '90s, music videos were populated by groups of people (whether in the same band, or a performer and backup dancers) in amazingly matching outfits that were the same, but different. The colors, textures, and materials of the outfits all went together, but everyone had something slightly different going on. Think Destiny's Child, TLC, En Vogue and All Saints. Matching group outfits were the sartorial bread and butter of the '90s, and you can thank Tina Knowles for bringing us all the glory of matching outfits via daughter Beyoncé and co.

Nineties fashion and style was truly glorious, and rather than following runway trends, was defined by pop culture. Yes, we all went out and got pube-skimming hipster jeans. Yes, our friendship groups would adopt matching dressing, albeit in less ostentatious ways, and all go out wearing some iteration of a bandana/scarf top. It sometimes makes me sad that fashion takes itself so seriously now. Gone are the days of super fun dressing. We're in an era of super cool nonchalant dressing instead. Here's why we should bring back the golden era of matching outfits from the '90s immediately.

1. Because It Helps Signify Your Crew

When you head out to a party or for a night on the town, what better way to let people know who you're rolling with than for your outfits to match? Obviously, being near your friends and talking to them is a pretty good indication that you know each other, but to really show some serious crew loyalty, there's not better visual signifier than matching outfits.

2. Because Craft Days Are The Best Days

Coming up with matching outfits isn't as simple as going to the store. Remember the outfits have to be similar but different. This requires a sewing machine, some creative embellishments, and an afternoon spent crafting with your buds. Does anything (aside from actually wearing your outfits) sound more fun than that?

3. Because Destiny's Child

If you need some inspiration, look no further than Destiny's Child. They pretty much defined matching outfits for groups in the later '90s, and there isn't a single photo of the group on record that won't make you want to rush out immediately and force your gang into matchy-matchy outfits (although once you show them all the Destiny's Child photos it probably won't take any forcing at all).

4. Because The Friends That Dress Together Stay Together

If you're joined at the wardrobe, there's no opting out of a friendship now, is there? If you and your friends can all get on the same page with coordinated fashion, you're bound to be friends forever. This isn't based in science or anything, but it makes perfect sense.

5. Because It Just Looks So Damn Good

Matching outfits are, of course, incredibly aesthetically pleasing. From the color schemes to the general theme, looking at a group of people dressed in similar but slightly different outfits is like looking at a perfectly curated Pinterest board, but in real life. It's truly breathtaking.

6. Because It's Fun To Dress Up

As I mentioned above, sometimes fashion can be too self-serious. Being effortlessly cool is more important these days than having fun with dressing, and that's kind of boring. Putting effort into fun outfits is, well, super fun! And why wouldn't it be? Coordinating colors and wearing special outfits with your gang seems like a seriously missed opportunity for, say, Taylor Swift and her gang.

7. Because It Gives You A Lot To Do Surrounding Social Events

Social events have a lot of anticipatory build up, but you can really add to that by throwing matching outfits into the mix. Of course, there's always the "what will you wear" conversation with your friends, but who wants to talk about individual outfits when you could all be scheming one big group outfit together?

8. Because You Can Express Your Personality While Still Being Part Of A Team

Do you think Beyoncé would have agreed to matching outfits if she didn't still get to be distinctly Beyoncé? The best thing about '90s matching dressing is that everyone fits the theme, but each group member gets to add their individual flair to their outfit. Unless you're Michelle. Then Tina just puts you in the worst outfit.

9. Because TLC

It isn't just Destiny's Child that will give you a wealth of matching outfit inspiration. TLC held it down for matching outfits in the '90s, and were just as good at it as Destiny's Child were.

10. Because We Need To Bring Back More Awesome Things From The '90s

We're always banging on about how great the '90s were, so why not revive some of those parts we're most nostalgic about? I mean, are you going to complain about the next all girl collaboration music video you see having matching '90s inspired outfits? I didn't think so.

11. Because Think Of The Insta-Value

If you need a more contemporary reason to bring '90s matching outfits into the contemporary era, think about this: your social media photos are going to be totally dope.

Images: Columbia Records; Giphy (6)