We are into the second year of the pandemic and in all this time, we have hardly looked into our wardrobes or checked out the latest fashion trends to add to our collection. Most of us did not need to since we have all been stuck in our homes. Many have just slipped out of one pyjama into another.
Fashion in the pandemic has become understated-yet-elegant with more focus on comfort. At the most, we have experimented with ‘waist-up’ looks for that unavoidable video call. We have even seen celebs attending events in fancy pjaymas.
Some fashionistas, however, chose to challenge the ongoing trend of relaxed dressing by wearing something extravagant that they had to shove into the closet for so many months now. Pandemic revenge dressing is all about melodrama and excess.
A trend that emerged around the first wave itself has been backed by data on people’s ‘revenge shopping’ habits, of course limited to people with adequate disposable income. Global fashion search platform Lyst, for instance, recorded 197 and 176 per cent increase in online searches for high heels and dresses respectively in 2021, according to an Independent article.
Last year, people in China reportedly flooded stores to make up for the lost time during the lockdown, leading to an increase in luxury spending. In April 2021, LVMH reported a 45 per cent increase in revenue for fashion and leather goods in the first quarter, as per a GQ report. Kering, which owns Gucci and Balenciaga, recorded a 25.8 per cent increase.
The artistes made a comeback in statement outfits at the Academy Awards, bringing back glamour onto the screen. And recently at BAFTAs, we saw our very own Priyanka Chopra pulling off a stunning look in a risque outfit.
Is pandemic revenge dressing here to stay? Experts seem to be divided in this regard. While some believe that revenge outfits will be a means of coping with pandemic-induced gloom, others believe the idea is far-fetched. Designer Monisha Jaising told livemint.com in an interview, “The huge loss of lives that India has witnessed has made everyone rethink their priorities and I do not see revenge buying repeating itself post this lockdown.”