Trippy Clothing Trends to Try Right Now
Trippy clothing is a fashion trend that never seems to go out of style. Although the look of psychedelic clothing was inspired by 1960s culture—think Woodstock, lava lamps and peace signs—its bright colors and laid-back hippie vibe have continued to appeal to every generation since. But there's a lot more to this style than meets the eye. Read on to discover some of our favorite trends in psychedelic outfits.
What are Trippy or Psychedelic Clothes?
First, let's look at what makes for truly trippy or psychedelic clothing (sometimes misspelled with an "a" instead of an "e", as in psychadelic clothing). In the 1960s, there was a specific culture of a psychedelic experience brought on by taking hallucinogenic substances, which was often known as a "trip" (which is where the term "trippy clothing" comes from). The culture was also made up of non-users who enjoyed the colorful aesthetic and political message that came from it.
The art, music and clothes of the time reflected this style, which was filled with vibrant neon colors as well as distortions in patterns and shapes, similar to those brought on by the hallucinogenic experience. Music festivals like the iconic Woodstock brought people together in a peaceful vibe for a collective psychedelic experience.
Nowadays, psychedelic clothes are more often seen in rave culture, which embodies a similar philosophy and style. Hallmarks include brightly colored shirts and dresses with patterns that look like optical illusions; icons like flowers, peace signs, mushrooms, rainbows, stars, spirals and swirls; and any image that tries to replicate the experience of having visual hallucinations.
Trippy Clothing Fashion Trends
For the perfect psychedelic outfit, you should definitely know the main fashion trends in trippy clothing. Here are a few of our favorites!
Optical Illusion Chic
Optical illusions are a big part of this style. Some are simple black-and-white checkered patterns that resemble waves and swirls when you look at them from different angles.
Others are bright neon spiral patterns that look like spinning circles or pinwheels.
Bright and colorful optical illusions are a feature of psychedelic fashion because they create visual hallucinations that simulate the rave aesthetic. Different trippy clothing brands have different types of optical-illusion prints, but all of them play with the concept of distorted images, trying to trick your brain through your eyes.
Tie-dyed clothing, with its trademark colorful swirls and white line patterns, rose to major popularity in the 1960s when music icons like Janis Joplin began wearing it. Although this style can sometimes be associated with a summer camp project or funky wall hangings, in recent decades it has totally evolved. Current trends in trippy rave shirts take tie-dyed fashion to the next level, with new color schemes and wild shapes.
Sunglasses with colored lenses are the perfect accessory for your psychedelic wardrobe. Popular colors include shades of blue and various yellow tints, with frame shapes in a circular wire-rimmed style, ala John Lennon. Since these glasses are a fashion accessory, you don't need to have an eye exam—just trippy style!
Beads and Fringe
Another way to accessorize this vibe is with long beaded necklaces, especially ones made with natural materials like wood or turquoise. Purses with fringe, especially in suede, are also trendy complements to trippy apparel. There are even man bags trending in psychedelic outfits. Picture the raw cotton cross-body bags and hobo bags made with multicolored threads in trippy patterns and you'll have a good idea of how men can also get into this trend.
Trippy clothing wouldn't be complete without its traditional message of peace and love, most often seen in the peace sign. This sign is found in necklaces, on hoodies and on t-shirts, and sometimes comes along with political messages against war and promoting happiness. And how about some dangly peace-sign earrings to complete the look?
Flowers are all over this trend, whether they're the typical cartoon-like psychedelic flowers you might remember from images of Sixties-era VW camper vans or more elaborate flower designs that look like wafting smoke or liquid bouquets. For truly trippy clothes, the flowers have to be in colors you'd never really find in nature, like acid green and neon orange.
Melted and Merged
Because visual hallucinations that inspire trippy looks tend to meld and blend objects together, trendy patterns in psychedelic fashion also have a "melty" look about them, as if everything is dripping or sliding down. The key is to break down the boundaries of visual reality and create something unreal, like a solid that becomes a liquid.