Basically unique is possible


Simply Southern, Ivory Ella, Lokai, and Vineyard Vines are all brands that come to mind when thinking about someone who’s classified as “basic,” which, according to Wikipedia is “a slang term in American popular culture used to describe white women who are perceived to predominantly like mainstream products, trends, or music.”

These mainstream trends are often cute, fashionable, and popular for a reason. They are liked by many, which makes them attractive to the eyes of some girls (including me), but there’s a catch. Often, the word “basic” holds a negative connotation and, like many other people in this day in age, I fear the judgement of other people and the idea of conformity. This judgement includes that, when called “basic,” you are also being called an airhead or someone lacking individuality.

As someone who was a student at a private school for my entire life before coming to high school, I was forced to wear uniforms, so the idea of not being able to express individuality through my clothing is a huge deal for me. Due to this “basic” label, I fear wearing cute shirts from Simply Southern or purchasing a Lokai bracelet since I may then be labeled as the stereotype.

I strongly believe that this judgement should no longer be getting in the way of how I decide to live my life. It’s sad that today “the way we measure conformity isn’t in how we speak in political beliefs, but in consumer and social media habits. We declare our individuality via our capacity to consume differently — to mix purchases from Target with those from quirky Etsy shops — and to tweet, use Facebook, or pin in a way that separates us from others,” according to These ways of being an individual make sense, but the beliefs and values each person holds should be what sets themselves apart from the crowd.

When it comes down to it, people shouldn’t be constrained by the judgement of others. Society’s views on being an individual shouldn’t limit what you decide to do with your style, what you listen to, or the brands you buy. If you want to wear Birkenstocks, listen to Taylor Swift, and stop by Starbucks every morning, you should do you and rock it. As Dr. Seuss once said, “Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.”