10s editor
Sophie Grégoire Trudeau on the cover of our March 2017 issue. Photography by Max Abadian.

’10s in FASHION: the Rise of the Social Media Superstar

"The first thing I did was hire a celebrity wrangler. Celebrity culture was taking over and it was all about who you could get on the cover."

It’s hard to define something that completely surrounds you. Like trying to describe the taste of water or the smell of a perfume you’ve been wearing for years, the definition of this past decade in fashion has proven elusive. We’re sure in time for FASHIONs 50th we will be able to grab onto a few trends that define the decade with a TV show and a yet-to-happen major political event the kids will reference at their ’10s-themed parties. But as of right now, it’s difficult to know what will stand the test of time.

Shifting through the archives one trend was obvious: Celebrity culture. Not any specific brand of celebrity culture, just a voracious social appetite for all things fame. Replacing the models were singers, actors and the occasional reality TV star or blogger.

But, then editor-in-chief Leanne Delap saw it happening at the millennia’s beginning. “The first thing I did was hire a celebrity wrangler. Celebrity culture was taking over and it was all about who you could get on the cover,” she notes. “It just became more and more apparent that’s where the battleground had shifted. You’re not going to get anyone picking up your book if it’s not competing at that international level of wattage.”

So, celebrity culture isn’t new. What seems to be new is this conversation on what we should and shouldn’t consider a celebrity in the ’10s. Looking back at our covers from the ’90s and the ’00s, they featured mostly models with a mix of the biggest mainstream superstars creeping in during the mid-aughts. In the ’10s, those models and celebs haven’t disappeared, but we do have a new breed: Those who find notoriety by living their lives on a public platform. We have bloggers, Instagram models and reality TV stars becoming household names.

And that’s not to diminish their accomplishments. It’s a phenomenon we’ve never seen before, but with the aughts being defined by accessibility, we shouldn’t be astonished that we now want that same access to our idols. Even our beloved “mainstream celebrities” are guilty of sharing everything from their breakfast to their skincare regime with us via Instagram.

It’s hard to comment on the ramifications of this oversharing phenomenon while it’s still happening, but it’s certainly uniting us and you can’t argue that’s negative. Yes, we too are tired of the FitTea promotions and the full-faced “woke up like this” selfies, but we can’t be critical of the platforms that are democratizing the fashion and beauty industries and fuelling pop culture.

For 40 years now FAHION has been trying to instil a passion for fashion, beauty and culture in our readers while reminding you of the industry’s transformative power. For now, we’re celebrating the platforms and people who are helping us to bring you the best of the best. Check back with us for our 50th when the stats are in and we can better define and critique the (by then cringe-worthy) trends of the ’10s.

For your celebrity culture addiction: our favourite covers from the ’10s (with some behind the scenes gossip)

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