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'80s fashions making a comeback

Based out of Dallas, Texas, Mary McCoy is a writer and social worker for disenfranchised women and children. She's a single mom, lover of Texas barbecue, and a die-hard fan of yoga

'80s fashion

30-something Carrie Bradshaw of Sex and the City was a fashion icon for millions of women in the last decade. She sported on-trend styles of the late '90s and early '00s that were, by and large, attractive and alluring. The teenage Carrie Bradshaw of the upcoming '80s-era CW show, The Carrie Diaries, will likewise showcase the latest fashion trends, thanks to the recent resurrection of '80s styles.
Get Carrie Bradshaw's '80s style
The Carrie Diaries

For good or bad, it's time to welcome back the hottest trends of the 1980s. Hold on to your shoulder pads.

1

Miniskirts

Mini skirt with express

Frankly, the miniskirt should remain in fashion for as long as women have legs, because it remains surprisingly versatile and sexy. But you don't have to wear an acid-washed version to bring the fashion back to life. You can dress up a miniskirt with a sequined top and high heels, or dress it down with a sweater, leggings and boots. The key is to find a length that makes onlookers think, "Wow, she's hot," rather than, "Wow, she's a total train wreck." A micro miniskirt — one that barely covers your assets — is seldom a good idea. Try to find a skirt that falls just above your fingertips when your arms are at your sides. We like Express miniskirts for their versatility.

2

Oversized tops

Oversized top from Victoria Secret

An oversized top doesn't have to make you look like you've given up on life. The main trick to update this '80s staple is to avoid Day-Glo prints and scrunchie tie-backs. But... bonus! A well-designed oversized top can be both sexy and extremely comfortable. Pair an oversized top in a sheer or thin fabric with dark-wash jeans for a stylish update to this retro look. Victoria's Secret has a great selection of oversized tops, including the one featured here.

3

Lingerie outerwear

White House|Black Market corset top

Lingerie as outerwear may sound like a very poor idea, circa Madonna's "Like a Virgin" music video. And really, it is — unless you know how to tastefully incorporate a splash of sensual underwear into your evening outerwear. This does not mean you should yank your thong out for the world to see. Instead, find a lingerie-inspired corset that can double as a shirt. You can layer it underneath a blazer, or wear it by itself with a fitted pencil skirt. White House|Black Market has this featured tasteful corset top that we like.

4

Shoulder pads

Dress with shoulder pads from ModCloth

Bigger is not better when it comes to shoulder pads. But shoulder pads are actually kind of great when they are used in moderation. They can provide structure to a dress or jacket, which truly refines an outfit for work or play. Moreover, a demure shoulder pad can also balance out your shape if you are concerned about the size of your lower body. Just ask Kim Kardashian. Modcloth has a variety of dresses and blazers that feature shoulder pads.

5

Metallics

A metallic addition to your wardrobe will provide a touch of glamour and fun to your outfits. The trick is to not wear more than one metallic at a time, and to pair the metallic piece with a neutral. If you're a little nervous about wearing a gold or silver shirt, you can start small with a fun metallic nail polish or eye shadow. Bobbi Brown has a great selection of metallic eyeshadows and polishes available online at Sephora.

Bobbi Brown metallic eyeshadow

More '80s inspiration from The Carrie Diaries

AnnaSophia Robb as Carrie Bradshaw
AnnaSophia Robb as Carrie Bradshaw
AnnaSophia Robb as Carrie Bradshaw

More on The Carrie Diaries

Star spotlight: AnnaSophia Robb
Top TV fashion icons of all time
Then and now: Carrie Bradshaw’s road to chic

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