W Power 2024

Dark Academia: Meet the gothic preppy aesthetic style

British school uniforms, romantic old books, decorative skulls and worn leather satchels, the latest aesthetic of the moment is known as "Dark Academia"

Published: Nov 1, 2023 11:00:41 AM IST
Updated: Nov 1, 2023 11:47:50 AM IST

Dark Academia: Meet the gothic preppy aesthetic styleThe "Dark Academia" style puts a gothic twist on the preppy student look. Image: Shutterstock

As many around the world celebrate Halloween with various festivities, aesthetic styles inspired by gothic or dark ambiances are storming social media. The latest version to go viral is "Dark Academia," which combines inspiration from horror movies and university libraries. This autumn trend is bringing preppy style back into fashion, but with a dark twist.

British school uniforms, romantic old books, decorative skulls and worn leather satchels... The latest aesthetic of the moment is known as "Dark Academia." This trend draws on the ambiances of horror films and dusty libraries, as well as preppy and gothic styles. On TikTok, this dark subculture is already attracting a huge following, with the hashtag #darkacademiaoutfits racking up no less than 120 million views, while #darkacademia has already passed the 5 billion-view mark! And it's just the beginning!

To understand this sudden craze, a little explanation is in order. Originally seen on the Tumblr social network, the "Dark Academia" aesthetic was coined to evoke a literary genre set in academic circles. But in 2020, the genre started to take on a whole new meaning with TikTok, becoming an outlet for students who found themselves in lockdown conditions due to the pandemic. English school uniforms as well as old 20th-century novels and university library decor have enjoyed a resurgence in popularity with Generation Z. But while school closures may be a thing of the past, Dark Academia style is not. Recent years have seen the popularity of series such as "Wednesday" and "Chilling Adventures of Sabrina," which embrace the characteristics of this dark aesthetic.


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