If you are stuck at home right now, dreaming of cocktails, dancing at the club, and going out with your friends, this article is for you.
Yes, it may be a little torturous to daydream about the partying days pre-COVID, but hey, it shall pass! And when it does? We’ll all be going out in full glam and will never take nightlife for granted again.
Let’s chat about the best 1980s club fashion outfits we can recreate in 2020. And hey, if you’re getting ants in your pants, turn your lounge into a club complete with low lighting, 80s pop tunes, and sticky cocktails.
Time for 80s fashion eye candy!
- Metallic jumpsuits
What’s better than a jumpsuit? A metallic jumpsuit. We’ve seen this look in recent years worn by the stunning Gigi Hadid, Kelly Rowland, Jennifer Lopez, and Tracee Ellis Ross.
- To keep the look in the vintage 1980s lane, go for gold lame, shoulder pads, collared tops, rolled-up sleeves, belted waists, and tapered pant legs with pleated volume at the hip
- Think of a loose-fitting boiler suit…but make it shiny
- Sequined dresses
Remember Kylie Minogue in that teeny, tiny “XO” sequin dress? Iconic. Sequined dresses (and blazers, and pants, and tops) were big in the 1980s, celebrating the fun, camp, and bold atmosphere of long nights on the dance floor.
- Look for sequined mini dresses with wide shoulders and puffed sleeves, or sequined midi-dresses with thin straps and cowl necks for a whisper of disco (see 80s Diana Ross for reference)
- Tone down the Vegas-showgirl vibe with chunky heeled ankle boots or even cute sneakers
- Metallic spandex leggings and oversized sweaters
Stay comfy on the D-floor with leggings and a sweater, 80s-style.
- Shop for metallic leggings and oversized, off-the-shoulder sweaters you can roll up at the sleeves
- Style it up with high heels, big hair, and full-glam makeup complete with sexy smokey eyes
- Rara mini-skirts and corsets
A skirt and corset will always be a flirty, feminine party outfit no matter the decade, but it was certainly hot in the 80s (hello, Madonna!).
Plus, Carrie Bradshaw (in throwback, spinoff, and real-time episodes) wore this look, and Carrie is never wrong.
- Look for satin fitted tops and bustiers and pair with a tutu-style tiered skirt
- Pair with fishnets and heels for full-circle 80s party scene style
- Double-denim mini and cropped jacket
Double denim was hot back in the day and has made a major comeback in recent years. The Canadian tuxedo is club-ready as long as the proportions, styling, and beauty choices are on point.
- Trawl Etsy for an acid wash mini skirt, (preferably with a ruffle) and a matching cropped denim jacket with puffy shoulders and fringing along the chest
- Wear with a crop top or lace long-line bra, ¾ leggings, pointy heels, and neon accessories
- Multiple accessories
If all-out 80s style just isn’t your thing or you’re limited as to what you can find, make it work with accessories.
- Keep your base outfit simple, such as cute jeans, a top, and heels as a blank canvas for layered accessories
- Pile up bracelets, necklaces, earrings, and style your hair with faux flowers, headbands, or a hat embellished with brooches
- Shoulder-padded blazers
80s blazers were designed to give women a bold and dominating silhouette (girl power!), with shoulder pads, voluminous sleeves, and often an oversized, menswear-style shape. Some were cropped, with a cinched waist and double-breasted buttons, others were boxy and long.
- Wear a wide-shoulder blazer with a pair of ripped, tight jeans, cowl neck tank, and heels for no-nonsense partying
- Leotards and belts
Workout-style clothing isn’t only for the studio or the gym, it’s just as at-home in the club if you style it right. Hey, we live in a world where yoga pants and gym tops are considered brunch wear! I mean if Jane can do it and look amazing so can we!
- Wear a spandex leotard with an elasticated belt cinching the waist. Pair with skinny jeans and heels, or a mini wrap skirt and tights.
- Metallic tiered dresses
Be a 1980s prom princess for the night!
- Wear a strapless metallic mini dress with a tiered skirt, ruched bodice, and sweetheart neckline
- Modernize the look by pairing with ankle boots, rockstar-style messy hair, and a smokey eye
- Glam-rock with a dash of gothic inspiration
Get moody for the night and channel glam-rockers like the guys from Poison, Pat Benatar, and Def Leppard.
- Find tight leather pants, mesh tops, and leather sleeveless jackets
- Style with colored hair (or a high-quality wig)
- Fuse the look with goth with red lips, ultra-dark smokey eyes, contoured cheeks (with red blush), full-length black lace gloves, and multiple layered cross necklaces
- Jeans, sneakers, and blazers
Be a clean-cut, preppy college guy or gal for the night.
- Look for light-wash blue denim jeans, fresh white sneakers, and a colored blazer
- Wear a pale pink polo shirt with a sweater tied around the shoulders (like Carlton from Fresh Prince of Bel-Air)
- Make it a little edgier with a short crop-top underneath for a little peek of skin
- Spandex bodysuits
The bodysuit is a beloved item in the current decade, as a clear revival of an 80s staple. Not only are bodysuits flattering but they’re great for layering with almost anything whether it’s club-worthy or gym-ready.
- Wear a plunging spandex bodysuit in metallic silver or gold, layered over a plain cotton tee (tight so it doesn’t bunch up), with high-waisted, wide-leg pants and heels
- Clashing Patterns
The 80s were clearly all about fun, big, bright, bold trends, where more is certainly more. The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air (though it started in 1990 it was still a fantastic reference point for 1980s hip hop fashion, and preppy style as demonstrated by Hilary).
- Cut a youthful path by layering busy patterns and bright colors for the club, such as a tartan skirt with a polka-dot shirt and an animal-print hat
- Or, try striped wide-leg pants with a floral blouse and beaded beret
- New Romantics
The New Romantics style was feminine (or androgynous), over the top, and ornate. The look featured plenty of ruffles, silk, lace, velvet, leather, and foppish styles referencing the dandies of long-ago periods.
- Pair tight leather pants with knee-high boots, a ruffled blouse, brocade waistcoat, velvet military jacket, and a silk scarf
- Use a pale foundation and carve out the cheeks with opaque, angular blush
- Think Boy George, Spandau Ballet, and David Bowie
- Tight Bardot dresses and slouchy boots
A sexy way “to 80s” at the club is with an off-the-shoulder, tight Bardot dress paired with slouchy boots (check out the Bananarama ‘Nathan Jones’ single cover for inspo!). The guitar-wielding ladies in the ‘Addicted to Love’ video are also a timeless reference for this club vixen aesthetic.
- Layer a Bardot dress with sheer black tights for a slinky, figure-hugging look, and complete it with glossy red lips and dramatic kohl-rimmed eyes