It’s safe to say that today’s urban streetwear trend would be nothing without Aaliyah. Nicknamed the Princess of R&B, Aaliyah’s penchant for baggy, low slung pants, ab-revealing tops and bandanas helped solidify her effortlessly cool image. The singer/actress was no rookie at glamour either, donning beautiful gowns and favoring all black when it came to red carpet events. No matter what she was wearing, Aaliyah always paired her clothes with sleek hair and sideswept peek-a-boo bangs. There’s no doubt if she was still with us today, her sound and attitude would have been muse to many top designers.
The King of Pop is one of the greatest American entertainers in pop culture history, and his image is just as memorable as his long list of chart-topping hits. Jackson knew how heavily spectacle factored into a good performance, and donned bejeweled military jackets and all leather ensembles as effortlessly as a basic white tee. Jackson never shied away from androgyny, incorporating women’s Balmain and Givenchy jackets and skintight pants with sturdy leather loafers and pitch-black aviator sunglasses. And who could forget that red leather “Thriller” jacket? As a result, Jackson created a highly specific look that has become a cultural phenomenon, and remains to this day a citation of inspiration by countless other performers.
Huston was born into a family of actors, and received an Oscar herself in 1985 acting alongside her longtime on-and-off again boyfriend Jack Nicholson. Huston spent her teen years putting her Amazonian height and severe features to work as a model, and wore dainty gowns and strong-shouldered suits with equal ease. Huston is a fan of statement accessories, and accentuates her bone structure with her straight dark hair and bangs.
Of course, what post about American style icons would be complete without a shout out to our current First Lady? Michelle Obama’s clothing has gained attention from the start of her appearances in the public eye. Her pairing of classic separates, along with her tendency to wear pieces from J. Crew and H&M have made her a relatable source of inspiration to women all around the world. In addition, her bold choices in designers like Jason Wu and Alexander McQueen for important events have made her a fashion favorite in the industry.
Who do you think qualifies to be labeled the next American style icon? Let me know below!