When Madi, Iustina and I introduced ourselves on the now-rebooted Cherwell fashion Instagram (@cherwellfashion – give us a cheeky follow), we each answered the question of what we would like to see left in 2021. All three of us reached the same conclusion: death to y2k fashion. Cheap pink rhinestones, Juicy Couture, low rises and high hems, and plastic beaded jewellery – don’t get me wrong, I lived for this for a while but I am more than done now. I no longer feel like a hot character in Mean Girls when my pants stick out of my trousers and though I still love my belly button piercing, it doesn’t crave the attention it once did. Vogue may disagree with us (I heard Cherwell’s the new Vogue, no?) but we’re agreed that Y2K and its Urban Outfitters manifestations are going out the door, what will we replace them with? What has fashion got in store for us in 2022? Don’t take my word for it but these are my trend predictions for 2022.

Balaclavas

Less of a prediction and more of a comment about recent developments but I am loving the current balaclava reboot. I can’t go on Instagram anymore without having someone teach me how to knit or crochet one. I took the lazy/cheapskate approach and sewed one out of leftover fleece from other sewing projects and I have to say they are very practical – my neck is always warm and I am never in danger of losing my hat because it’s basically attached to me.

Asymmetry

One-shoulder garments are here to stay, no question, but I also want to see more asymmetry in other aspects. On the average night out I lose about 3.4 earrings so my vast collection is almost entirely pair-less. I love matching different dangly earrings (I have a big shell one that I tend to wear with almost anything).

Eighties round 2

We’ve already had an eighties reboot in the past couple years but it’s time for it to come back around in a new guise. I’m talking big bulky-shouldered blazers, skin-tight leggings, sheer dresses, sequins, and, instead of the belt-length minis Vogue’s been raving about, PUFFBALL SKIRTS! I want geeky, over-dressed, over-patterned and gaudy colours. I do not want eighties tamed down – acid wash jeans and baggy cropped sweatshirts. I want foiled metallics and original punk scene grunge. I want my frizzy mop to be fashionable and so desirable people get perms to achieve the look. I’ll even take big chunky pearls as a replacement of childhood plastic.

Layering

The aforementioned eighties style is perfectly enacted with lots of layering (not the mini skirt over jeans early 2000s kind). If a blazer feels to informal for every day, try wearing it in place of a fleece or jacket. I like wearing a hoodie under my blazers to tone it down a bit for my trips to Common Ground (aka the daily fashion show). Sheer items can be made more accessible with tops under or over them.

Uggs?

I wasn’t aware of this resurgence until I got three reels on Instagram in a row of people styling Uggs (I promise Instagram isn’t my only source of trend wisdom) but I am personally ambivalent. Comfort is a big pro with this one but they feel quite Y2K to me and I’ve made my opinions on that matter quite clear. I just hope that if they come back with a bang it comes with sustainability and ethical production.

Very Peri

Pantone’s colour of the year for 2022 is Very Peri, a beautiful purpley-periwinkle shade which I am all for. I also want to see emerald greens, sunshine yellows, and I’m disappointed by the insistence of every recent trend report that head-to-toe white looks will be all the rage. I want colour clashes and chaos.

Make-up – all things bright and beautiful

I recently purchased a wet liner palette from Glisten Cosmetics after, you guessed it, discovering them on Instagram and I am in love. I am no make-up guru but I have been loving waking up in the morning, picking a colour and scribbling all over my eyes like (not so) grown-up face paint. I also bought some luminous green and turquoise mascaras to top it all off. I’m bored of the sophisticated black smudgy liners – bring back colour!

My housemates’ predictions

I was sat in my room with my housemates while writing this article so I thought I’d share their non-fashion-editor wisdom with you all. Ben got an Oodie covered in sloths for Christmas and is sure they’ll be all the rage soon; I’m all for it, comfort and sophistication in one, and thoroughly encourage his decision to wear it on his evening walks around Oxford (see if you can spot him). I personally have been wearing my fleece lined Christmas Crocs everywhere without shame. Nick enquires when we will be returning to office wear. I mentioned that most offices nowadays don’t require a suit and tie. He wants to work somewhere that does. Luke anticipates technical wear making a big come back and I couldn’t agree more. Though his desire for hazmat suits to become a daily look might be a stretch, I wouldn’t complain if the boiler suit revival kept growing from strength to strength. If I were to buy one item right now? A Lucy and Yak boiler suit – in the brightest colour they have.

Image Credit: Sharon McCutcheon via Unsplash


For Cherwell, maintaining editorial independence is vital. We are run entirely by and for students. To ensure independence, we receive no funding from the University and are reliant on obtaining other income, such as advertisements. Due to the current global situation, such sources are being limited significantly and we anticipate a tough time ahead – for us and fellow student journalists across the country.

So, if you can, please consider donating. We really appreciate any support you’re able to provide; it’ll all go towards helping with our running costs. Even if you can't support us monetarily, please consider sharing articles with friends, families, colleagues - it all helps!

Thank you!