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Goodbye Clean Girl, Hello Mob Wife

A sneak peek into the trend that’s taken the internet by storm.

Mob Wife Aesthetic
Shutterstock/ Kiselev Andrey Valerevich

The clean girl aesthetic has been a trend that has dominated social media ever since 2021, but for 2024, everyone is talking about the “mob wife” aesthetic.

The mob wife aesthetic is dominating the internet primarily because of the recent rejection of the “clean girl” and “quiet luxury” aesthetic that’s been around for a while. It’s also popular because the fearlessness and powerful attitude that actual mob wives have is something that women want to emulate. They get what they want when they want it, with no exceptions. This transition blatantly shows that women don’t want the pressure to be neat and overall “clean” anymore. Instead, they want the boldness and unapologetic presence of a mob wife.

The whole craze for the mob wife aesthetic is very recent. The beginning of the trend dates back to 2023 but has gained the most momentum since the beginning of January 2024. However, the aesthetic itself has been around for a while. Posts about dressing like a mob wife can be traced as far back as 2020. According to CNN, the trend has already surpassed 160 million views on TikTok as of the beginning of February.

This article will show you everything you need to know. How to do it, how popular it actually is, and the controversy that surround it. Then you can decide whether you yourself are going to have what influencers are calling “a mob wife winter”.

What is the mob wife aesthetic?

This trend centers around all things dark and dramatic, loud and proud. It involves wearing all black, preferably black leather, with giant black sunglasses and, most importantly, a giant fur coat. Fur coats and leopard print have been a major trend that was already circling the internet for 2024. To learn more about that, check out “Is Fur Back In? Winter’s Returning Outerwear Trend.”

Mob wife makeup is dark. Either a dark smokey eye or a dark red lipstick. The whole point of the look is to give off a sense of attitude. The eye look also involves lots of glitter because a mob wife is expensive and must look as such. Bonus points if the glitter is gold. In terms of blush, a subtle amount of blush while still making sure that your cheekbones are sharp enough to cut perfects the look.

Mob Wife Aesthetic
Shutterstock/ Kiselev Andrey Valerevich

As far as hair goes, the bigger the better. The trend’s hair is similar to the 70s blow-out style, except it demands even bigger curls. In 2024, we are going back to the giant hair curlers and hairspray to the hills. There are two types of haircuts under the “mob wife” aesthetic. It’s either chunky layers that give off the most volume and dimension or a classic bob in a blowout style with the hairs facing inward to frame the face.

A mob wife knows how to catch the eye of anyone, and wearing a lot of gold jewelry makes a statement while expressing their powerful aura. For this trend, we will be transitioning from the “clean girl” French tips to the long, sharp claws of a mob wife. Everything is meant to show off the lavish gifts that your husband gave you.

“Well, guess what bitch, I am the mob. I feel like this challenge was meant for me,” says Mikayla Nogueira, a makeup influencer with 15.4 million followers on TikTok alone. The mob wife trend has made so much traction that it has made national news. The topic has shown up on platforms such as the Today Show, CNN, and FOX News.

There is also no shortage of celebrities embracing this trend. Many celebrities are following this trend, such as Hailey Bieber, Khloé Kardashian, Kendall Jenner, Miley Cyrus, etc. Khloé Kardashian said in an Instagram post, “It’s giving mob wife vibes…. Faux mob wife, of course.” At this year’s Grammy Award show, Miley Cyrus’s iconic big hair and sheer gold dress fit the latest mob wife aesthetic. Other celebrities, in some way or another, either pull off the faux fur look or an overall all-black punk aesthetic that’s also under the mob wife look.

Mob Wife Aesthetic
Shutterstock/ Guryanov Andrey

Carmela Soprano is a name that’s been circulating alongside the mob wife trend. She is a fictional mob wife to Mafia boss Tony Soprano in the HBO TV show, The Sopranos. It also just so happens that the 25th anniversary of the show occurred this year on January 10th.

Other popular figures for the trend include Griselda Blanco, a real-life Colombian drug lord. Netflix even has an upcoming series, Griselda, starring Sofia Vergara about Blanco. Other inspirations include Connie Corleone from The Godfather, Karen Hill from Goodfellas, and Michelle Pfeiffer, who plays a mob wife in the films Scarface and Married to the Mob.

Backlash against the “mob wife”

Even though there are mob wives everywhere, it’s the Italian mob wives that inspire the trend. This is important because the mob wife aesthetic has been accused of cultural appropriation. Critics say that it embodies an aesthetic that resembles immigrant Italian Americans. People also say that before the trend, big hair and extra gold jewelry were considered “tacky” and “too over the top.” Critics don’t claim that the style itself is problematic, only that it is a fashion aesthetic that already exists. Now, primarily white American women are renaming the trend for themselves.

That being said, Italian Americans have also embraced the trend. In fact, the supposed originator of the trend, Kayla Trivieri, is Italian and actively encourages women to dress in the mob wife aesthetic. In a TikTok video, she proclaims that “Clean girl is out, mob wife era is in.” Real mob wife creators also support the trend by explaining how they dress as actual mob wives. Even still, there are also real mob wives who don’t support the trend, saying that their mob wife looks to emulate the pain and suffering that they’ve been through as the wife of an actual gang member.

Woman wearing the mob wife aesthetic
Shutterstock/ Dmitry Tsvetkov

On the contrary, other critics say that the mob wife trend promotes violence and gangs because these wives associate with the mafia. However, promoters of the trend disagree with this criticism. For them, the mob wife trend doesn’t promote the violent men in the mafia. It promotes the strength and fearlessness that the mob wife embodies, not the violence of their husbands.

What do you think? Is it acceptable to dress like a mob wife for fun, or is it insensitive? To read more on this topic, check out the PopSugar article “How the Viral “Mob Wife” Aesthetic Appropriates Immigrant Culture.”

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