Fashion Down Under: Trends According to Australian Teens

I recently spent a few weeks in Australia on an exchange program. I spent my time in three different areas: Melbourne, Sydney, and Port Douglas. During that time, I interviewed my Australian friends and paid close attention to Aussie style. From my interviews and observations, for your viewing pleasure, here are the Do’s and Don’ts of Australian Fashion.

Disclaimer: Obviously, I myself am not Australian, and this list is not all fact. If you yourself are Australian and find yourself wearing or not wearing many of these items, I am not telling you that you’re not stylish; these are simply my observations.




1. Windsor Smith Boots

On the city streets, these are ALL I saw. They are a bit tighter and more horse-riding-esque than the boots I generally see in America. Also, these usually come with a heel. Windsor Smith makes great shoes; however, they are generally around $150. A store with very similar shoes is called Lipstik, where I got myself a pair for $65.


2. Fisherman Sandals

I know what you’re thinking (or at least I can guess): Who wants to wear fisherman sandals? These sandals are actually very cute and very reminicent of the early 2000s. These are a great option if you want to dress up a summer outfit while sticking to sandals.


3. Triangl Bikinis

Based in Australia, these bathing suits are popular both there and in the states. Coming in lots of colors with the notorious black outline and neoprene material, these bikinis are super cute and versatile. However, they are also $80 (plus shipping) and may not be the best for every body type. For less expensive alternatives, I suggest Target and Cotton On.


4. Bright colors/graphics

Despite it being winter in Aussie land when I visited, every shop featured bright colors and designs. Although it is easy to pull off the bright colors, some of these patterns are hard to find. Some of my favorite Aussie shops that you can check out include Princess Polly, Dotti, and Sportsgirl.


5. Stripes

Not a particularly wild trend, but I felt it was prominent enough in Australia to mention. Stripes were everywhere, especially in black /navy and white. This look is definitely easily achievable.


6. Loose, Cotton Shorts

In the U.S., this trend is slowly making its way. However, in Australia, I saw a lot more of these flowy, loose shorts than high-waisted jean shorts as you may find here. I love this trend and think it is a much more comfy alternative to denim. I have seen these kinds of shorts in most U.S. stores, such as Forever21, Pacsun, and Brandy Melville.


7. Top/Bottom Sets

An alternative to the dress, a common style was to wear matching top and bottom sets. This offers something a bit different from a dress while still keeping a certain unified look. Sometimes these come with a cropped top to display some skin in between the top and bottom while others overlap. It’s really up to you!




1. Uggs

Although Uggs are Australian, they are used primarily for indoor slippers. According to my Australian exchange, no one wears them outside the house.


2. Leggings

When my exchange was visiting me in America, she was thrown off by the common use of leggings as pants. Here, it’s become very popular and acceptable to wear leggings in replacement of jeans. However, in Australia, this is not the case.


3. Knee Highs

On a cold day while visiting my exchange’s school, I suggested to her that she pulled up her knee high socks to keep warm: big mistake. She, along with her friends, laughed and shook there heads as if to do so would be social suicide. Outside of school, despite it being winter, I saw no one wearing knee highs.


4. Beanies

In the U.S., beanies are commonly worn during winter — or any season, really. However, I only saw one or two people actually wearing one while I was in Australia. So I guess beanies are also out.


So there you have it! My trip to Australia really opened my eyes to new styles, which I can’t wait to adapt to fit my own US born style. Hopefully, some of these Aussie trends inspired you, too!

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