By Gabby Rente
Within the last month, the internet has exploded with pictures and memes mocking the so-called VSCO girl. While the name “VSCO” derives from a photo-editing app widely compared to Instagram, the teenage girls who use the app seem to have a lot of traits in common.
The newly declared “preppy” style is heavily dependent on brand loyalty and laid-back, beachy vibes.
While the trend has not been traced back to one specific person, the aesthetic derives from 90’s fashion trends and surfer girl culture, including brands such as Brandy Melville.
But the distinct traits of a VSCO girl follow a strict dress code. The wardrobe is best for warmer climates, as it consists of large t-shirts concealing what one hopes are shorts. Adorning their wrists are Pura Vida bracelets and extra hair scrunchies. Gracing their slender necks one will find a puka shell necklace or a variation of sea shell jewelry. For shoes, the trend prefers Birkenstocks, Vans, or Crocs.
For their beauty routine, a VSCO girl will keep it very simple, and may include eyeliner, but the pièce de résistance is a Mario Basdecu facial spray.
To coincide with their beach vibes, a VSCO girl is vaguely environmentalist and likes their beverages in a Hydro Flask or sipped through a metal straw.
What extra belongings a VSCO girl may carry with them are stored in a Fjällräven Kånken backpack, a bag originally designed for Swedish school children back in 1978.
Now, if one were to tally the overall price for these items, a VSCO girl’s budget would estimate to around $230. But the identity of a VSCO girl also comes with a certain jargon; “And I oop, and I oop,” and “Sksksk.”
The “And I oop” comes from a popular Youtube video featuring drag queen Jasmine Masters, who says the iconic line after mildly injuring herself during a rant.
The “sksksk” is more of a mystery, but many believe it to be a phrase meant to copy the soft laughing sound VSCO girls make.
When one utters the word “VSCO,” they are either met with overall glee or sheer hatred.
Because of its rising notoriety, many internet users, especially users of the popular short-form video app Tik Tok, haven taken up arms against VSCO girls. A Tik Tok user by the username @koobydoobydoobydoo became an internet sensation nearly overnight by a video they satirizing the trend, receiving over nearly 22.6 million views.
While I like the photogenic appeal of the VSCO girl lifestyle, I can understand how people find it utterly skin-crawling. I would not be able to take anyone seriously if they started saying “Sksksk” unironically, and there are always people out there who will use the trend to seek attention.
What I find most irksome about the fad is when people who fall under this category are oblivious to their privilege and flaunt it. A lack of mindfulness will always be a pet peeve of mine.
At the same time, it’s unfair how people taunt and mock a girl with a scrunchie on her wrist because she’s simply trying to fit in.
It was not too long ago when teenagers were swapping Silly Bandz in between classes back in 2010, and I know this because I was one of them. My peers and I were not that different from today’s group of teenagers.
In fact, this isn’t the first time women and girls have been made fun of for liking certain products or following a trend. I would also like to remind my peers that fall is coming, and with that so do pumpkin spice flavored/scented products. No matter how often we mock a girl for liking something, there will always be another fad to replace it.
With that, I encourage every woman to stay true to who you are and feel no shame when using the products you like.
To all the self-proclaimed VSCO girls and basic chicks out there, I raise my pumpkin spice latte-filled Hydro Flask to you.