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15 Tried And True College Fashion Trends Ranked From Best To Worst

15 Tried And True College Fashion Trends Ranked From Best To Worst

College fashion trends aren’t necessarily the epitome of fashion, but they do tend to capture practical, versatile choices that are readily accepted on college campuses full of tired, party-going, late-night-studying students. Just like sipping your alcohol of choice out of a water bottle and hitting that Juul every time you get a little bored, college fashion trends are easily and universally recognizable. Not bad, just what it is.

1. Crop Tops And High Waisted Jeans

This look is not exclusive to college fashion trends. A great way to fake an hourglass figure, crop tops, and high-waisted jeans flatter a feminine figure and show off your cute lil’ belly at the same time. ‘It’ girls have been doing this for many a fashion season, and it’s easy to see why.


2. Birkenstocks

Birkenstocks are a major win for college fashion trends. They are extremely comfortable sandals that have good arch support and don’t cram your toes. These sandals can be spotted on outdoor enthusiasts, Starbucks enthusiasts, and real-life fashion icons alike. Sure, you can’t wear them outside during snowy winters, but you can slip them on over socks to go brush your teeth or do your laundry down the hall. Frankly, moms everywhere are pleased.

3. All The Beanies

Another of the college fashion trends that moms are ALL ABOUT is wearing a winter hat to keep your head warm. Great job college! Beanies are cute and sleek and come in many sizes and styles. The best part about beanies is the fact that they hide bad hair days with no problem. This trend should stick around.


4. Personalize Everything

This trend is both cute and necessary! It only makes sense that college students want to personalize their water bottles, laptops, jackets, hats, bicycles, phones, and everything else they could possibly personalize, too. After all, college is a time of reshaping, reforming, and reimagining your identity, and students often do this both externally and internally. 

Some personalized shit also turns out mad cool people. You have to admit.


5. Denim Shirt Over A Black Outfit

College fashion trends don’t mean bad fashion, but overdone? Definitely. Denim can still look great over all-black outfits, just like all black outfits can still look great on their own. It’s the individual pieces you choose for this very tired outfit that makes the difference between a boring look and a cute look. You might want to come off as a bad boy who plays in a band, but black booties, a black crop, and black skinny jeans just won’t take you there, friend. Not bad, just not fashion, and not the look either.


6. Chokers

Necklaces aren’t inherently bad. Did you choose a really cute necklace that you can still wear as an adult? That’s great. A really versatile, mature choice. Did you choose a puka shell choker? Maybe one of those plastic lattice chokers in black or rainbow? Less than satisfactory. Maybe shell necklaces work in specific locations, but that doesn’t make them fashion. Those plastic ones? I guess it could be cool for really narrow, specific, and ironic occasions. I’m curious to see what you’ll do here.

7. Scrunchies And Hair Bows

Why do you think this trend is dated? Scrunchies are comfortable and soft, and not boring at all like normal hair elastics. Hair bows are very sweet and feminine. Yes, these college fashion trends might take you back to the days of girlhood, and they don’t always work in a professional setting, but what’s wrong with a bit of casual nostalgia? Adulthood can be massively difficult.


8. White Sneakers

Sneakers are a good choice as far as footwear goes. Another of the mom-approved college fashion trends, that is, until she realizes you are getting white shoes? 

White is just an impractical color. Sure, white sneakers are having a fashion moment right now, but how long can you really keep them clean? If you like them once they start looking grunge-y, I take it all back. Whatever works for you, my dude.


9. Leggings For Days

So, leggings aren’t fashion, but kudos to you for wanting to be comfortable, efficient, and athletic. Speed-walking everywhere, hitting the gym before or after class, or going directly to sports practice all are great reasons for your adamant wearing of athleisure. If you pair your leggings well, you could even make yourself a stylish little outfit.

Another pro of leggings? Butts are cute. Obviously.


10. Fjall Raven Backpacks

Backpacks are literally the staple possession of college students, but why would you buy a backpack that is too small to fit your school supplies? Does your laptop even fit in there? Are you only storing your snacks and other party essentials in it? Come on guys.

Okay, actually, there are Fjall Raven backpacks that are large enough to fit practical things, but that’s not the backpack of choice for this addition to the college fashion trends list. Y’all need to whip out a measuring tape before you order.


11. Ripped Jeans 

Not all bad. In fact, a great way to wear long pants in the warm weather because they can be quite breezy. Another option? Just wear shorts.

I actually own a pair of ripped jeans, and I like to wear them in certain situations, but they are not exactly the height of fashion. Instead, think of these jeans as a great choice for projects where you’ll get dirty.

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12. Wearing Oversized Tees Like A Dress

Comfortable? Yes. Good as a nightgown? Yes. Fashion? Well, actually, sometimes yes. There are situations in which oversized tees have very much become the fashion. However, if you wear your oversized tees as dresses and then wear shorts so short that you can’t see them underneath? You definitely are a subscriber to this segment of the college fashion trends list. You do you, though. If it works, it works.


13. Layering With Flannels

Yo, this is great. Flannels are cozy and cute, but also the most boring and basic thing ever at this point. You know it, I know it, we all know it. None of us care. Flannel isn’t one of those college fashion trends that is going anywhere, at least, not anywhere fast.


14. Sweatpants As Pants

I love sweatpants, but just because celebrities no longer wish to wear real pants doesn’t mean that sweatpants count as high fashion items. Sort of. It seems you can now acceptably *own* the fact that you are wearing sweatpants.

Can you wear them out of the house? Sure, but you’re still wearing sweatpants. It’s fine. Make sweatpants the look. College fashion trends are all about the easiest way to roll out of bed, after all. Sweatpants as fashion?

Note: you’re still wearing sweatpants.


15. Not Wearing Jackets On Nights Out


If your winter coat *ruins* your outfit, don’t wear that outfit. Another option? Don’t go out. Throw the party instead of going to it. Have one friend over. Have bae over. Watch Netflix instead. Transfer to a warmer climate. Literally, wear your jacket instead of your outfit. Anything.


The best possible option? Get a winter coat that YOU ACTUALLY WANT TO WEAR BECAUSE IT’S MAD CUTE. Don’t @ me. College fashion trends happen, but that doesn’t mean that this one doesn’t need significant improvement.

Are you guilty of any of these college fashion trends? Which college fashion trends are your favorites and least favorites?

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