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90s Fashion is Back: The Rachel Green Effect

Read all about Jennifer Aniston’s iconic fashion and how to look like her yourself!

Credit: Shutterstock / Tinseltown

Rachel Green’s 90s fashion is all the rage amongst Gen Z, and now it’s your turn to follow in her footsteps.

Portrayed by Jennifer Aniston, the beloved character of Rachel has captivated audiences since the debut of the hit series Friends in 1994. Rachel is known in particular for her striking beauty and keen fashion sense.

Throughout the show, Rachel rocks a ‘business casual’ look which is equal parts professional and flattering. Her signature style consists of plaid patterns, pleated skirts, slip dresses, blazers, turtlenecks, and overalls.

A classic Rachel dress pattern. Credit: Youtube / Ms.Mojo

Her most iconic looks continue to dominate the popular imagination. Instagram accounts track them, Bustle posts rank them, and celebrities copy them. She’s the subject of numerous articles and has even inspired her own hairstyle. The Rachel Green aesthetic is now a cultural fixture.

Furthermore, with the rapid rise of social media, young fashion gurus are taking to newer platforms as a means of replicating Rachel’s looks.

Apps such as TikTok, Depop, and Pinterest have fostered the exchange of fashion tips, tricks, and trends, with users making posts specifically designed to “recreate” certain Rachel ensembles.

Boasting a jaw-dropping 28.8 million views on TikTok, the prevalence of #rachelgreenoutfits speaks for itself. In viral “Rachel” videos, users assemble an outfit piece-by-piece in an attempt to capture the “vibe” of her character.

Users may share where they purchased each article of clothing as they layer the outfit to completion. The videos also feature side-by-side images comparing the original and the recreated looks.

This trend first gained traction in 2022. One user, jadehoney62, posted a series of Rachel-inspired fits, which garnered over 200k likes. Numerous TikTokers have posted similar videos since 90s fashion developed its own unique audience on the app.

jadehoney62’s post is accompanied by the Friends theme song, Rachel-related hashtags, and comparison photos of Rachel herself.

Video highlights include a business chic blouse and skirt combo, an oversized Knicks sweatshirt, and a pair of overalls. These items align closely with the color palette and overall fit of Rachel’s clothes.

The video was a hit, with user @kour.f_ commenting, “[Rachel’s] style is everything,” and @siennahanlon_ adding, “She is iconic.”

Depop Fashion Dive

Another popular platform is the e-commerce site Depop. Its search engine allows users to enter buzzwords such as “Rachel Green inspo” or “90s fashion.” These phrases filter users’ search results in order to fit their desired aesthetic.

With the click of a button, hundreds of results pour in, all geared toward reproducing the “Rachel Green” effect. Meanwhile, sellers include similar phrases in their product descriptions, even adding comparative photos of the product and screenshots of Rachel’s outfits.

90s sweatshirt worn Rachel Green on Friends
Rock Rachel Green’s Knicks sweatshirt, which is sold on Depop. Credit: Depop / twelve0four

In the description of the Knicks sweatshirt pictured above, seller twelve0four notes that the hand-crafted product was “inspired from Rachel Green’s outfit in Friends.” This is evidently a key selling point.

Looking at the Depop search results, skirts, mom jeans, and patterns abound in true Rachel fashion, conveying the wide reach of her character’s influence.

Pinterest Products

The image-sharing service Pinterest offers similar opportunities for aspiring 90s fashionistas. Searching “Rachel Green outfits” yields pages of results, and users can cultivate their own “Inspiration Boards” centered on that aesthetic. They may also browse collages and links that encourage them to “shop the look,” giving specific site and product recommendations.

One site that pops up is the online destination Shoplook.

Boasting 340k followers and 10 million monthly views, Shoplook helps users match the components of a particular look to purchasable products. A Rachel Green-inspired closet quickly becomes attainable, with reasonable pieces at a consumer’s fingertips.

The 90s Are Here to Stay

90s fashion is evolving into a cross-medium phenomenon. It spans platforms and decades alike to stimulate new generations of influencers.

When interviewed by Bustle in October 2023, renowned Friends costume designer Debra McGuire shared that, “29 years later…[she] still get[s] people asking [her] about…[Rachel’s clothing].” She credits this feat to Aniston for “ha[ving] magic…and power.”

Additionally, in a past interview with Vogue, Aniston herself commented on the cyclicality of her Friends fashion, celebrating the “comeback” of her “red square-toed loafers.”

A quintessential piece of 90s fashion, these red loafers are back on the rise!
These burgundy leather loafers are the perfect shoe to rock your Rachel Green look. Credit: Nordstrom

Aniston concluded: “See, it’s coming back – I knew it…I loved the ‘90s.”

And so does Gen Z! Rachel Green’s fashion statements have created vast ripple effects, sparking a resurgence of 90s culture amongst avid young fans.

Interestingly, many of these older fashion trends seem to be sustained mainly through popular social media networks. This marks a powerful new intersection between cultural nostalgia and technological advancement.

Gen Z is keeping the past alive through modern innovation, which has expanded the fanbases of 90s shows such as Friends.

Go shop your favorite Rachel Green looks – it’s easier than ever!

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English major at Dartmouth College. Also a member of the track and field and cross country teams.

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