Get ready for ocean tides and yee-haw vibes, all summer long!
With one "fin" in the the coexisting mermaidcore craze, coastal cowgirl can be described as a trend that draws inspiration from both Disney's The Little Mermaid and Toy Story, blending the best style of the sea-shell sporting Ariel and cowgirl-boot wearing Jessie.
Furthermore, coastal cowgirl can be thought of as the country-inspired, youthful counterpart to the coastal grandmother trend that took TikTok by storm during summer 2022. In contrast to the cozy, knitwear-based aesthetic inspired by visiting a relative who lives by the sea, coastal cowgirl has more of a Western-influenced beach vibe.
And while coastal grandma racked up 22 million views on TikTok, coastal cowgirl has garnered 125.3 million views (and growing) when users search the term on the app. According to Trendalytics' social tracking tools, the coastal cowgirl trend is "primarily driven by TikTok."
Meanwhile, coastal cowgirl isn't just a fashion trend, it's evolved into a lifestyle — and Spotify already curated a "Coastal Cowgirl" playlist to prove it! Between Chris Stapleton's "Tennessee Whiskey" and Miley Cyrus' "Malibu," your next summer beach bash is sure to double as a hoedown at the same time.
In addition, the southern chic aesthetic has also inspired home decor, with TikTok users uploading videos that incorporate beach house furniture combined with country house decor. Architectural Digest even published an entire article explaining how the fashion trend translates to interior design.
Scroll on to learn all about the coastal cowgirl trend for a rootin' tootin' summer by the sea!
When did the coastal cowgirl trend start?
It remains unclear as to when the coastal cowgirl trend took off; however, the western-inspired beach aesthetic has been seen on celebrities and the runways for a few years now.
Though it's only recently that it's gotten the "coastal cowgirl" name and the viral boost on TikTok, the style is recognizable throughout past decades of celebrity style, from Stevie Nicks' sweeping dresses and flared sleeves that channeled an early ’70s free-spirited, bohemian vibe and sun-soaked Miley Cyrus' all-white outfits paired with cowgirl hats and boots for a Malibu moment.
Ralph Lauren also has been emulating a version of this vibe since he first sent a cowboy hat down the runway in 1979 — and he did it again in his spring 2023 ready-to-wear runway show in October.
Other designers like Natalie De Banco of Bronx & Banco has included elements of coastal cowgirl in her collections, like her spring/summer 2020 collection that featured tapestry-patterned prints, orange-suede cowgirl boots, fringe and a belts. Same with Nicoletta Spagnoli of Luisa Spagnoli, who paired a white lace dress with turquoise accessories and a cowgirl hat.
What are examples of the coastal cowgirl trend in pop culture?
Pop culture has surely influenced the coastal cowgirl aesthetic, as elements key to nailing the trend have been seen everywhere from events like concerts and festivals to wardrobes featured in Hollywood hits across TV and film.
Coachella Music and Arts Festival, for example, was first held in 1999, drawing in Southern Californian festival-goers who brought their beach aesthetic to the tumbleweeds. Nearly 25 years later, its attendees still wear outfits bringing the two locations together.
But this year, the popularity of western hits like Yellowstone and the Fleetwood Mac-inspired Daisy Jones & the Six, means that interest in this unique style blend is at an all-time high. In fact, searches and social posts for the trend began to spike around March 11 of this year, according to a Trendalytics report — exactly eight days after the Suki Waterhouse and Riley Keough-led show premiered on Amazon Prime Video on March 3 this year.
How to dress in the coastal cowgirl trend?
Round up the hats and wrangle the bikinis because dressing like a coastal cowgirl involves both western wear and beach pieces combined. Catering to the cool breeze of spring and the hottest days of summer, this trend also serves as the perfect transition between seasons.
Most of the coastal cowgirl trend involves light-knit materials and airy fabrics in the form of dresses, sweaters and button down tops. Pair the pieces — typically warm-toned neutrals, creams or summery whites — with denim accompaniments, whether it be a jacket or bottoms like skirts and cutoff shorts.
As for accessories, dust off your cowboy boots and string together your seashell necklaces. Other items to top off your outfit can include big-buckled belts, straw or woven beach bags, bolo ties, puka jewelry and — of course — a cowboy hat.
Which celebrities have dressed in the coastal cowgirl trend?
In addition to the aforementioned Nicks and Cyrus (who have both been dressing coastal cowgirl their entire lives), several celebrities have embraced the trend over the years — like Kendall Jenner, who's been pairing cowgirl boots and hats with bikinis since 2021.
Waterhouse and Camila Morrone have been channeling their Daisy Jones & the Six characters in the months that followed the series premiere in March, respectively rocking a coastal-cool button down and denim at Coachella this year.
Lori Harvey had some fun in the sun when she brought a bit of the west to the islands during her dreamy getaway with boyfriend Damson Idris in Turks and Caicos this past April. The model shared snaps from the beach on Instagram, seen wearing an orange thong bikini and a straw cowboy hat while holding a tropical beverage.
Sydney Sweeney (above) recently rocked the look in May when she hit the town for a night out in California. She wore a monochromatic ensemble, featuring a white eyelet skirt and a low-cut top paired with knee-high cowgirl boots.
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