Fashion Trends and Popular Shoes Worn in the 80s

Updated on November 11, 2019
Brinafr3sh profile image

Sabrina is a connoisseur of popular culture and appreciates the nostalgia of 80s fashion trends.

Trendy 1980's popular music culture
Trendy 1980's popular music culture

What's the Inspiration Behind the Fashion Trends of the 80s?

Most of the 80s trends came from television shows, commercials, and music videos. If famous people like Michael Jackson wore high-water pants on TV, then they would become a fashion trend. Some people remember "alligator shirts," and some remember the ever-so-popular Jheri curls.

Most people in the 80s got fashion trend ideas and inspiration from TV shows like:

  • Different Strokes
  • Dynasty
  • Silver Spoons
  • Miami Vice
  • Family Ties
  • The Facts of Life

Madonna was an iconic trendsetter in the 80's.
Madonna was an iconic trendsetter in the 80's. | Source

Musicians and the Fashion Trends They Made Popular

Music videos also had an effect on 80s shoe and clothing trends. The music videos and musicians behind these trends were:

  • Madonna
  • Michael Jackson
  • Boy George
  • Cindy Lauper
  • Jody Watley
  • Prince
  • Duran Duran

What Shoes Were Worn in the 80s?

Shoes worn in the 80s were fun to wear—at least children thought so. The 80s shoes bring back good memories for many people of the decade or era. As a child, I'm glad to have owned pairs of LA Gears, Crayons, Jellies, Click-Clacks, Pumas, K-Swiss, Reebok, Lottos, and other brand name shoes.

Some children didn't get to wear all the name brands and had to wear shoes from local grocery stores. Parents in low-income areas had to buy styles that they could afford for the time being, and these shoes were called "bubble yums" by other children.

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Freestyle Hi in 1985Espadrilles
Freestyle Hi in 1985
Freestyle Hi in 1985 | Source
Espadrilles | Source

The Most Popular Shoes of the 80s

  • Jellies
  • Crayons
  • Stacie Adams
  • Vans
  • Converse All Stars
  • Gas
  • Buster Browns
  • Penny Loafers
  • Boat shoes
  • Karate shoes
  • Crocasacks
  • Louis Vuitton
  • Adidas
  • Fila
  • Lotto
  • Guess

Popular Shoe Styles Continued

  • Gucci
  • Pumas
  • K-Swiss
  • LA Gears
  • Nike
  • Reebok
  • Swede flats
  • Leather flats
  • Leather hills
  • Leather pumps
  • Leather sandals
  • Espadrille
  • Oxfords
  • Dr. Scholls (Click Clacks)
  • Tassel Moccasins
  • Timberland's men casual wear

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Air Jordan 1Suede PumasSuede was a popular style of leather.
Air Jordan 1
Air Jordan 1 | Source
Suede Pumas
Suede Pumas | Source
Suede was a popular style of leather.
Suede was a popular style of leather. | Source

Hottest Trends of the 80s

Popular clothing decor
Airbrush art
Chunky jewelry and necklaces, bracelets, anklets, rings, hoop earrings; 14-karat gold
Name brand blue jeans; stoned washed, stretched, bell bottom, and the skinny jean
Snakeskin style, belts, purses, and shoes in many colors
Acrylic fingernails
Airbrush designs and snakeskin acrylic nails
Michael Jackson and Janet Jackson were early trendsetters of the 80's.
Michael Jackson and Janet Jackson were early trendsetters of the 80's. | Source

The 80s Were One of the Most Fun Fashion Eras

Watching TV shows from the 80s era brings back a few memories.Some of the fashion trends of the 80's are still popular today like Nike shoes, hoop earrings, boat shoes.

During the 80s, some people wore "airbrushing" art on nearly all their clothing. People also wore big chunk jewelry as necklaces, bracelets, anklets, rings. Wearing 14 karat gold was the trend. Blue jeans, especially name brands, were really popular: stone washed, stretched, bell bottoms, skinny jeans, etc. Eighties accessories were Hot! Belts with jeans were a huge fashion statement, sometimes made of snakeskin, in many colors. The snakeskin style also appeared in purses, shoes, designs on acrylic fingernails, and other items.

Females in urban areas wore acrylic fingernails often as a fashion statement, with airbrush designs and hoop earrings.

Shoes Worn in the 80s Poll

Have You Wore Shoes Recently that Came Out in the 80s?

See results

Questions & Answers

    © 2012 Brinafr3sh


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      • profile image

        Wesley Holmes 

        19 months ago

        I want to buy crayons for men. If anyone knows someone that makes them, please let me know.

      • Brinafr3sh profile imageAUTHOR


        5 years ago from West Coast, United States

        Hi Shirley, I agree the Crayon shoes should be sold again. They are cute and casual. I had the black suede Crayon shoes with the transparent blue heel, when I was a child in the 80's. It would be great if they were sold in every color like they were in the 1980s.

      • profile image


        5 years ago

        When will Crayon Shoes come back? I loved them! Someone please bring them back, only with heels from 1in. to 3in.!

      • Brinafr3sh profile imageAUTHOR


        8 years ago from West Coast, United States

        Hi Hubert, people like a little old school history. Glad you this hub, thanks.

      • profile image

        Hubert Williams 

        8 years ago

        A very good hub about what we ude to wear. I have to look into the dirty clothes basket to remember what I wore yesterday. I still enjoyed your story. Thanks. Up and Interesting

      • Brinafr3sh profile imageAUTHOR


        8 years ago from West Coast, United States

        Hi Incomeguru, Yeah some of the shoe styles in the 80s are in now, I agree. I like nearly everything oldschool. Thanks for your comment.


      • incomeguru profile image

        Oyewole Folarin 

        8 years ago from Lagos

        Shoes wore in the 80s are what designers of today redesign to form those trending now. Very interesting hub. Thanks for sharing this old skool stuff.

      • Brinafr3sh profile imageAUTHOR


        8 years ago from West Coast, United States

        Hi ChristinS, Thanks for reading this article, glad you like it as well.

      • ChristinS profile image

        Christin Sander 

        8 years ago from Midwest

        I wore many of these shoes myself. I remember the jellies for sure. I also remember Reebok tennis shoes being a big deal when I was in school too and those flats with the bows on them as well. thanks for the memories lol :) voted up and interesting.


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