In the age of social media, nostalgia is everywhere and instantaneous, allowing us to relive moments we've maybe only just put behind us. So it's no wonder that throwback Instagram accounts like @PopCultureDiedIn2009, @RememberThisHappened and @BabeMania have gained popularity.
28-year-old Krickie Pisaturo, who launched @BabeMania in 2013 as an archive of '90s and early 2000s style icons like Britney Spears, Mariah Carey, and Leonardo DiCaprio, describes the account as a "feeling that reminds people of a time before blogs and Instagram." But it's also thanks to the internet and social media that she's gained a following of over 14,000 for her posts, many of which are just as relevant today. Take Cam'ron's iconic head-to-toe pink fur moment, for example, which now serves as the perfect Millennial Pink outfit inspiration_._
There's currently an noticable hunger for '90s and early-aughts style on and off the runway: Juicy Couture collaborating with Vetements, Kendall Jenner copying Paris Hilton's nightlife looks, and Kylie Jenner flaunting Von Dutch trucker hats. History always repeats itself when it comes to fashion trends, but no one anticipated such a rapid recycling. "It really felt like I time-traveled back to Y2K," said Pisaturo of her experience at fashion week last season.
Since everyone now wants a piece of '90s and 2000s nostalgia, Pisaturo—who is also the store manager at Soho's American Two Shot—decided to launch Babe Mania as her own online destination. Starting today, you can get your hands on vintage Britney Spears t-shirts and Juicy Couture bags on her new website, which is meant to resemble the automated Clueless closet.
But what of babes in 2017? Pisaturo offers a master class in modern babe mania.
When did you start Babe Mania? What was its first iteration, (Instagram or store or both?) and most importantly, what inspired you?
I started @Babemania in 2013 as an inspiration Instagram for my eyes only. I had been collecting tons of images on my desktop that either made me laugh or reminded me of something from my childhood and gave me that nostalgic feeling. Putting everything on Instagram was the perfect way to take these photos with me—literally, in my pocket—and be able to look at them and feel inspired wherever I went.
What exactly does “babe mania” mean?
“Babe mania” started as a code word that my roommate and I would use whenever we saw a cute boy. Now, it’s so much more than that. It describes a very specific look from the '90s slash early 2000s. It's a feeling that reminds people of a time before blogs and Instagram when music and fashion really went hand in hand; when the music video was everything; when everyone would tune into TRL after school to see Destiny’s Child debut their new video in incredible matching outfits.
Growing up, who were the first “babes” you were obsessed with?
I mean…obviously Britney Spears because there’s no other pop star like her. But also Derek Jeter. He was dating Mariah Carey at the time and I hated it. I always love a good pop star/athlete dating combo and this one was an important one.
Who are some of the best male babes in history?
This list goes on forever! So many '90s babes. But some of the most babelicious ones are Uncle Jesse, The Fresh Prince, Justin Timberlake, Jared Leto, Tupac, Leonardo DiCaprio, and just boybands in general.
Most prized possessions in your closet:
Very hard to answer this, but I recently scored this amazing ombre beige-to-pink Versace puffer coat.
Your personal style icons:
'90s Gwen Stefani, Aaliyah, and current Rihanna.
Pieces you’ve sold that were really hard to let go:
Every single thing! No but really, I had an amazing Dennis Rodman shirt that was very hard to sell, but the girl who bought it was super excited and cool so that made me feel better.
Have you had any memorable interactions with customers who are also mega-fans?
Yes, one time a friend of mine had no idea @Babemania was me.
Favorite trends from the ‘90s:
Anything Tommy Hilfiger or Cross Colours, baggy and oversized.
Favorite trends from the early 2000s:
The pink Motorola Razr Flip Phone, Lip Glass from Mac, and J’adore Dior shirts.
Trends that you don’t think should ever come back:
Why do you think these trends are suddenly back again (so soon!) on the runways?
I think that people really enjoy feeling nostalgic about something. There are so many new cool things popping up all the time, that it’s nice to have a trend that feels familiar and makes you think, “Omg I used to wear those!”
From your viewpoint, how do you see these trends resurfacing in popular culture?
Nostalgia as a trend is everywhere. Certain brands and big stores are definitely playing off that idea and by teaming up with influencers, it makes the trend “cool” again. For example, A$AP Rocky for Guess and Lil Yachty for Nautica. Just look at Juicy Couture—it’s an entire section of Urban Outfitters now. Last fashion week, I went to an Ed Hardy presentation and Sisqo and Trina performed. It really felt like I time-traveled back to Y2K.
Who are some new babes in 2017? Do they still exist?
They do exist, and they’re mostly girls. Personally, I feel like guys lately aren’t fulfilling the babe legacy like they used to. I love Princess Nokia, Jaden and Willow Smith, Rihanna, Zoe Kravitz, Tinashe, A$AP Rocky, Jorja Smith, and Mabel. They all have this confident, cool vibe about themselves that re-defines the word “babe”. Yes, they’re obviously babes, but they’re also inspiring artists and musicians with effortless style and personality that goes way beyond just being hot.
Top three most iconic babe looks of all time:
Gwen Stefani in the fuzzy blue bikini top at the 1998 MTV VMAs.
Cam’ron in all pink.
Britney Spears on her first cover of Rolling Stone (April 1999).
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