How to Dress '80s Style

Written by helen holzer
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How to Dress '80s Style
Wear neon colours and a mini skirt to return to the '80s. ( Images)

The bodacious styles of the 1980s began hitting the runways again in 2006, and the clamour for fads of the period has continued. From skinny jeans and leggings to jellies and stilettos, the bright, bold '80s have returned. If you are attending a costume party or just want to travel back to the days of Madonna as a trendsetter, you can easily achieve the looks. Think Jane Fonda exercise tapes and "Flashdance" for the athletic look. Emulate the styles in "Designing Women" for power suits. Guys can wear the aviator styles in "Top Gun" or the mellow pastels of "Miami Vice."

Skill level:
Moderately Easy


  1. 1

    Find a top with big shoulder pads. Girls can wear large boxy jackets with rolled-up sleeves; blouses with big, fussy bows that tie at the neck; red leather jackets or dresses with big shoulders. Pick neon colours in yellow, lime or hot pink. Go for extremes in any look you choose, such as workout gear or dance outfits with leggings or large sweatshirts falling off one shoulder.

    Add parachute trousers, stirrup trousers or bleached jeans with rips. Accessorise with numerous bangle bracelets, a bumbag, jelly shoes and banana clips in your hair.

  2. 2

    Pick the Hawaiian look for a "surfer dude" style. Wear Hawaiian shirts or T-shirts worn with colourful surfer shorts. Achieve a more subdued look with "Miami Vice" pastels, wearing a beige suit with a pink or light-blue sports shirt and dress shoes without socks. Find a brown leather bomber jacket and aviator glasses to look like Tom Cruise in "Top Gun." Sport one earring, wear unlaced sneakers or hiking boots and a Members Only jacket.

  3. 3

    Style hair long and moussed with plenty of teasing for girls. Get your inspiration from Madonna or "Dynasty." Wear a headband and plenty of make-up with bright red lipstick as well as blue eye shadow and mascara.

    Look like the famous "hair" rock bands of the era, with guys also wearing their hair long and moussed. Consider wigs to get this look, especially if you want streaks of temporary colour, Guys can slick back their hair, leaving some height on top to look like David Hasselhoff in "Knight Rider."

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