Top 10 Popular Vintage Clothing Items Everyone Must Consider

Vintage fashion has rapidly become one of the most trending fashion inspirations in this age. Not only for sustainability but also the variety of outfits someone can express their true self with. We want to give you a guide for vintage clothing and look at the top ten vintage clothing items that have become trending. It is not only important to express yourself but also to feel comfortable with the clothes you’re wearing. So, if one or a few of these items do not fit your look, you don’t have to consider them; it is just a guide for inspiration. 

1. Vintage Jeans/Pants

One of the fundamental vintage clothing items for your outfit is a pair of jeans or pants. It makes quite a difference for the overall picture. First, you should know whether you feel comfortable wearing wide-leg pants or skinny jeans. If you still don’t know what kind of pants/jeans you would like to wear, I have some ideas for demonstrating.


Cargo pants were always popular for the vintage street style look. Over these types of jeans, you can basically wear everything: T-Shirts, Hoodies, Sweatshirts, Flannel Shirts… the options are open!

Next to the cargo pants, Levi’s jeans are also one of the popular vintage items in this decade and already in the 60s American cowboys wore them – isn’t that cool?

If you want to get an original vintage pair of Levi’s jeans, consider paying attention to the label since you can identify true vintage clothing by the tags. 

Chino pants are probably the best option for a comfortable classic look with a vintage flair. The most popular brand for chino pants is Dickies. It became relevant during World War II since they originally began to produce military uniforms.

The good thing about these different pants is that they’re unisex, and anyone can rock them!

You can find them in any kind of vintage clothing shop, original ones and even redesigned. 

2. Top Vintage T-Shirts

There is a difference between normal second-hand T-Shirts and top vintage ones. 

Top vintage T-Shirts are original T-Shirts that are at least one decade old. You may ask what the difference between older T-Shirts and new ones is just by the look. You can differentiate the quality by the imprint of the T-Shirts. The imprints of the T-Shirts used to be stitched, or even when they were printed, the print quality was also way better. You can see the difference by the lasting time of the imprint. A T-Shirt that is about 20 years old has a more stable imprint than a modern T-Shirt you would buy nowadays. The difference can also be seen by image. 


Here is an example of a top vintage product and a modern one. You can already tell which product has a thicker fabric in the picture. The Hershey T-Shirt is at least seven years older than the modern T-Shirt, but as you can see, the imprint is more precise. 

3. Vintage Jackets

Vintage jackets are a must for colder days. They tend to be the eye-catcher in the wintertime since it covers your outfit underneath. There are various jackets you can wear to your liking, so here are only a few of them listed. 


If you are more of a sporty person, nylon and racing jackets are a good fit for you! But if you’re more into the 80’s looks, a cool denim Coat gives it just its suited vibes. Vintage jackets tend to be more pricey, but as you can tell by the looks and quality, they’re quite older and therefore very rare.



Leather jackets got their popularity, especially in the 90s, so if you identify your style with the ’90s the most, leather jackets are must-haves! The 90s is also deeply connected with college jackets, and they never go out of style; they are just a very cool item to make your outfit an eye-catcher. 

Coats, especially trench coats, give your outfit a classic and clean look. For instance, if you’re wearing jeans and a turtleneck, there’s no better piece than a cool vintage coat. If you’re not into shoulder pads, I would rather try on vintage coats in-store because they might have huge shoulder pads!

4. Short-Sleeved Shirts  

Short-sleeved shirts are also a big must-have for vintage lovers! They are not only fun, but they give you a cool vibe. Any kind of short sleeve shirt is very important in the men’s vintage clothing history; you can find party and Hawaii shirts in different eras – if it’s the 60s, 70s or 80s. They were worn anytime and even till now. The best thing about these shirts is that you can wear them with quite anything, and they’re super comfortable. 


You can differentiate short-sleeved shirts into three big categories. 

Party Shirts have fun patterns, while Hawaii shirts have typical Hawaiian patterns like leaves, surfing boards, and flowers. 

Classic short sleeve shirts are characterized by their simplicity – they have only one little feature, for instance, stripes. 

5. Sweatshirts & Hoodies

Everyone has at least a few Sweatshirts & Hoodies in their wardrobe: why? 

Because it is one of the most essential vintage clothing items nowadays, like T-Shirts, you can differentiate between vintage and modern products – but it’s best to find the one which suits your style the most.

Here are Sweatshirts & Hoodies for demonstration:



6. Vintage Dresses 

One of the most important items for the women’s vintage clothing wardrobe is vintage dresses!

I personally love wearing dresses, whether they’re modern or vintage. Vintage dresses usually have more fabric and volume than modern ones, but there’s a small category where vintage clothing meets the modern look, so you don’t seem too customey. Due to movies or pictures from our ancestors, we already know which kinds of dresses come from which decade, and these types of dresses can be found anywhere in vintage shops. Before buying dresses, consider thinking about which one fits your looks best. 


Vintage modern dresses are vintage dresses with a modern look. They can be worn nowadays without seeing immediately that it’s a vintage dress like the 70s dress next to it. 

7. Blouses 

Women have worn blouses anytime through the years and decades. It is and was a big must-have for every woman. Either for a normal day in life, events, or work. We all know every type of blouse in and out, and the vintage era inspires even modern blouses. Flowers, stripes, dots, cotton, linen, silk – every pattern and fabric is considered and available on the market since it is like a nice dress, an essential item in the wardrobe. 



8. Dungarees

Dungarees are considered a bonus category from my side since it doesn’t fit everyone’s style, which is okay! I have never worn dungarees, but I get amazed whenever I see someone wearing them. 

People started wearing dungarees in the 17th century, but they became fashionable in the 50s. Nowadays, we think that the 90s were a significant era for dungarees, which is true. It is an iconic fashion item that became very popular at that time. You can wear them whatever season you want. In Summer, you can wear short dungarees, and in winter, long ones with a pullover or turtleneck underneath. 


9. Cardigans

Cardigan is also a clothing category worn anytime and doesn’t belong to any specific decade. They are still very fundamental and give your outfit a character with its classic look. The most important thing to consider when you’re wearing cardigans is the fabric. Usually, we wear them to keep us warm, so pay attention to the fabric. Cotton, cashmere, and wool are the best option for the task to keep you warm. The best way to wear a cardigan with patterns or bright colors is a classic clean look underneath; otherwise, it is way too much for the eye.   

10.  Accessories

Now, hear me out. Accessories are at least as important as the outfit itself. 

Big earrings were essential for the iconic 70s outfit, like bandanas for the ’90s and early 2000s. One of the most inspired people was Tupac since you can associate bandanas with him. 
Bags and shoes also play a significant role in the outfit. It is a mistake to leave them out of sight while trying to find ideas for vintage outfits. Big boots are a great way to improve your 70s look, while chucks sneakers are considered a must-have in the 90s. Last but not least, sunglasses in summer don’t only give your outfit the finished look, but you also give off confidence. 
Choose your favorite items, wear your neat shoes, put on your glasses, and you’re ready to go!





Meet The Author

Dan Shewan

Originally from the U.K., Dan Shewan is a journalist and web content specialist who now lives and writes in New England. Dan’s work has appeared in a wide range of publications in print and online, including The Guardian, The Daily Beast, Pacific Standard magazine, The Independent, McSweeney’s Internet Tendency, and many other outlets.

See other posts by Dan Shewan