17 Bare Midriffs of the Early 2000s That Attempted Sexy, But Were Just Plain Awkward

Mark my words. I will eject myself from civilization the day society deems the ultra-low rise, pubic-bone baring jeans of my youth cool again. Born of the Abercrombie generation, the bare midriff trend of the early 2000s was a cultural fluke to say the least. For a few years there, design proportions were just off. Shirts were just too short and pants were far too low, leaving the midriff open to a chilly draft at any given moment. Not to point fingers, but I blame Britney. 

Let's travel back in time to an age of chandelier belly button rings, grommeted belts, and casual butt-crack. Get a load of these 17 awkward moments from the early 2000s midriff trend, and you'll never take a crop top with a high-waisted jean for granted ever again.

Image: Getty Images

Lindsay Lohan

Lindsay’s torso and her legs have dissociative identity disorder in this look. 

Christina Aguilera

Can we call this “black tie tankini?”

Britney Spears

This shirt is literally meant for an 18-month-old with freakishly long arms. 

Lacey Chabert

Business on the top and bottom; party in the middle. 

Hilary Duff & Amanda Bynes

The poster girls for shrunken shirts circa 2003. 

Alexa Vega

You know your waistband should be higher when you can see your tanline. Just saying. 

Britney, again...

Guhh, is she wearing a horse bridal as a belt?


Peek-a-boo boy shorts. 

Jessica Biel

Despite her sweater, Jessica Biel is rapidly losing heat through her happy-trail region.


“A few inches of lower abdomen” should’ve been Jojo’s debut album title.

Ashlee Simpson

Just a little more fabric, and you’re good. 

Avril Lavigne


More Avril... It's necessary.

Rock on, hip bones. 

Vanessa Minnillo

Was I the only one who went to middle and high school with a throng of girls dressed just like Vanessa Minnillo in this picture?


Oh, Rih. You had such good intentions. 

Cristina Milian

Everyone’s got front row seats to the sparkly belly button ring and cargo pant show. 

Britney Spears

Britney’s upper pubic bone: MTV VJ at-large.