5 Early 2000s Trends You Always Wanted To Rock, But Your Parents Refused To Let You Leave The House In, Young Lady

Growing up, I wasn't exactly the most stylish kid, but I always enjoyed expressing myself through clothing — the early 2000s trends were just bizarro enough to ensure I did just that. There was my tie phase of fourth grade, the year I pretended to like skateboarding just for a pair of plastic Air Walk sneakers, and, as my mother calls it, The Khaki Dress Debacle Of 1999. My style may not have been consistent, but I always knew what I liked. No matter the time period, it's a universal truth that strict parents hate how teenagers dress. For the most part, my prim parents were pretty good about letting me dress how I wanted as long as I looked tidy and respectful. And then I turned 15.

It was the early aughts and skin was in. Jennifer Lopez wore that green dress, Paris Hilton had turned velour sweat suits into appropriate school attire, and Britney Spears was my (and every other girl's) style icon. It was an era of truly terrible fashion... and I loved every bit of it. My poor mother's rules never stood a chance. She would say, "Absolutely not!" and march me back upstairs, but I always found a way to change in the school bathroom. My midriff was bare, my skirts were tiny, and I dreamed of a navel piercing. If you were a teenager from 1999-2004, these are the five pieces your parents forbid you from wearing. Clearly, they were trying to ruin your social life.

1. Lace Up Jeans:


Tied jeans were rocked by literally everyone from Lizzie McGuire to Shakira. I somehow managed to sneak two pairs of these classy numbers into my closet. In case you didn't, they were super low cut jeans that were held up with a tie instead of zippers and buttons. Often times, said tie could be used to make the already-low-cut-pants even LOWER. They were a risky business, since they came undone with nearly every movement and often showed off a bit more butt than anyone intended. We thought we were being cute and cheeky (pun intended)... but we were wrong.

2. Belly Shirts

Nowadays, crop tops are all the rage, mostly because high waisted skirts and pants are too. Back in the early '00s, however, waistbands barely hit the pubic bone, which meant belly shirts were baring a whole lot more. Depending on the style, you could have up to a foot of skin exposed! My mother was horrified when I arrived home from a party in a belly-baring tee with the Got Milk logo emblazoned across my chest.

3. G-Strings

Inspired by Sisqo's "Thong Song," we all wanted to accessorize our tie-up jeans with G-string straps. Pulled up uncomfortably high, we showed off our "whale tails" at every opportunity. Seriously, bending over was practically a national sport. Victoria's Secret won most of my allowance money with their rainbow of colors and patterns that I proudly rocked as soon as I left the house. How I was never sent home from school is still a mystery.

4. Bandana Tops

These daring halters were often just large bandanas tied in the back. Even I didn't attempt this gravity-defying style, but it was a favorite of singers like Christina Aguilera and Beyoncé, giving heart palpitations to nervous parents everywhere.

5. Belly Rings


You can blame Britney and Paris Hilton for this bedazzling trend. My fear of needles kept me from actually going through with a belly button piercing, but a surprising number of girls found a way to bling out their navels. A lot of them ended up with an infection. If you're gonna pierce, it's best to go with a legit professional.

Images: Getty Images (2); GifSoup (1); L.Llyod/Wikimedia Commons (1); Mick Hutson/Getty Images (1); Alex Dram/Flickr