As could possibly be expected from a former child star, justin bieber clothing has received many a fashion transformation through the years. He’s done quiffed hair along with a thick gold rapper’s chain. He’s posed looking buff in Calvin Klein pants. He’s experimented with a floppy fringe and a suit. But although some of his tries to toughen up have already been met with derision, the most up-to-date step in the Biebvolution is actually bang around the fashion money. There have been ripped jeans. There has been oversized hoodies, and oversized Nirvana T-shirts together with the sleeves hacked off. Crucially, we have seen lots of layering – and a lot of raw edges.
Not everyone gets it (“Justin Bieber wears bizarre frayed denim top,” was the Mirror’s response to his Marques’Almeida moment with the Radio 1 Teen awards earlier this month) although the latest incarnation of Bieber ties in a mood that is sweeping through menswear – and may even be arriving within your wardrobe soon.
In a nutshell: scruffiness is hot. Glitzy is out. Deliberately undone and messy is. Think a Wolfgang Tillmans portrait meets 1990s grunge with a tracksuit top and a pierced ear thrown set for good measure. You might dub it a hot mess for males, but the thing you would probably never think of it is hipster – manicured beards needs to be ditched for haphazard facial hair immediately.
Undoubtedly, Marques’Almeida, the label justin bieber hoodie wore on the teen awards, has become integral for the rise in popularity of denim and also of jeans which are hacked off and left raw. Basically, if it’s the level of look that creates parents eyeroll and say: “You given money for that? Do want me to put proper hems on those?”, that has legs. Elsewhere in the catwalk, for his spring/summer 2016 menswear show, Raf Simons sent herringbone trousers that was roughly stop at the anklebone, sat above some Stan Smiths. His shrunken tank knits had a kind of moth-eaten, make-do-and-mend thing happening; close up, the holes over these knits are layered spanning a contrast fabric layer, and, actually, are far nicer than I’ve made them sound.
Justin Bieber’s winter 2015 i-D magazine cover.
This new mood – a kind of anti-luxury luxury – is there in all the glossy style magazines, too, although glossy is definitely the wrong word. Bieber’s recent cover shoot for i-D magazine is an excellent reference point. It sees the pop star stripped back – bleached hair, a smattering of stubble, tattoos. Shot by Alasdair McLellan, one of the more in-demand photographers popular, these pictures possess a typical masculine rawness. Within a short video to accompany this shoot, you can also see acne on his forehead. Imagine. Meanwhile, Tillmans has shot typically lo-fi stories for the latest Arena Homme including one called How Fragile is This Man?, whilst the Russian designer and photographer Gosha Rubchinskiy has photographed ballet dancer Sergei Polunin for Man About Town. The latter sees the shaven-headed ballet dancer wearing retro sportswear with eye makeup and a couple of days worth of facial hair.
Haute scruff was around one of the most talked-about moments from the spring/summer 2016 season: the Vetements show, which had been kept in a Chinese restaurant variously referred to as “tacky” (Dazed & Confused), “cheap and cheerful” (Vogue Runway) and “kitschy” (Business of Fashion) and featured clothes which were all deconstructed awkwardness and models who looked like they had just presented of bed. The majority of them weren’t actually models: Rubchinskiy appeared, wearing a DHL T-shirt (yes, like in the parcel delivery service); even the show stylist, Lotta Volkova, took a start up the catwalk, closing proceedings in thigh-high boots and a raw-edged denim miniskirt. The Vetements influence in vogue is merely set to continue: once the show, among Paris’s most historic fashion houses, Balenciaga, announced that its lead designer, Demna Gvasalia, was to become its new creative director.
Rubchinskiy is an additional of your buzziest names in menswear; since 2012 his label has become supported by Comme des Garçons. His clothes feel like a nerdy carry out Soviet sportswear – think a shellsuit top or 1980s patterned jumper. Snazzy, yet not.
Actually, if everything else fails, the key for this look is actually a vintage-style tracksuit top. Gosha or AMI (next season) for men. Chloe (next season) or Bottega Veneta resort for women (see British Vogue’s December issue, where several tracktops are featured in the “new downtown silhouette”). Basically, it’s all somewhat Damon Albarn circa 1996. How come this humble zip-up sum up this new anti-luxury luxury? Firstly, because it ticks the 1990s box – and also the dexqpky16 is becoming the decade du jour. Secondly, it’s the opposite of all of the justin bieber clothing that has been the headline news in menswear in the past few years. And finally, it’s very easy to chuck on, doesn’t appear to be you’ve made an attempt but suggests that you know what’s happening. Which feels scruffy and modern indeed.
Since you’re here …
… we have a small favour to inquire about. More and more people are reading the Guardian than before but advertising revenues across the media are falling fast. And unlike many news organisations, we haven’t build a paywall – we should keep our journalism as open as we can. So that you can discover why we have to demand your help. The Guardian’s independent, investigative journalism takes time and effort, money and effort to create. But we all do it because we know our perspective matters – as it might well be your perspective, too.