Fashion Post Pandemic

The last two times where there was a change in fashion and the way we shopped and dressed ourselves was after the first and then second world war. The world’s third major influence on fashion will be the current health pandemic. The following are the things you should expect.

● Fashion influencers will change

The fashion influencers are already being forced to adjust their content in the pandemic. Soon, there will be more real people as fashion influencers, not socialites, celebrities or highly photoshopped and made up self-proclaimed fashion influencers. Online photos often look good as the professionals make them the way they look. With social distancing that’s not possible. Posts related to fashion therefore will be more simple, real and down to earth. The aesthetic curated by the people who have rallied against might change for the better and slowly disappear.

● New shopping patterns will evolve

As malls and stores have been shut, many brands will find themselves with profits and operational costs hitting rock bottom. It will take a while before people will feel comfortable again in shopping in closed places, using common areas like escalators and elevators. Therefore, more brands need to expand their online ranges or will need to go online to make sure their merchandise moves from the warehouse shelves. The live streaming and e-commerce wave will finally need to merge, making both social connections and online shopping interactive, in real-time and experiential. Online fashion content and shopping will henceforth become more immersive, engaging and social.

● Tech and AI will change shopping

Poorly disinterested and trained in-store shopping and stylists assistants will finally be replaced by apps and computers that will help you complete a purchase or put together a look. There are also rumours of many stores going “smart” with voice commands, as well as retails on a larger scale using maps to navigate their displays and floors. This means the shopping experience will have much less personal interactions and human interface.

● Local will rule, not global

Imports have been hit during this pandemic and this may just be a good thing. The more local brands, designers and tailors you buy, use or endorse, the better, because the economy of the country will revive faster. This may in return give a much-need boost to small, medium, homespun, new or even large and established Indian brands. With localisation being the new trend, we are likely to see mass-produced clothes and accessories fewer in numbers. Indian fabrics will be used extensively and sought after in the coming years and months.

● Luxury International brands will collapse

The bubble around the luxury international brands was going to burst anyways, and this pandemic will make sure it does. Expect luxury brands which are not made in India to go slow on new launches, start with scaling down their operations and shutting stores across the globe. Forecasting of drastic reduction in prices, which in turn means that high street brands may just become more affordable to the masses. For starters, spending the money will be more on necessity products than luxury. People will go back on choosing quantity over quality and go back in wearing clothes which will be easy to wash (fuss free), antibacterial fabrics will be the frontline (germ free), durable materials (which last longer) and more low maintenance (practical)

● Fashionable is now recycling

To begin with, don’t expect new collections to be as expensive as they were and to change frequently as they used to be. Production deadlines will be missed, as factories are shutting down. If you are conscious about your dressed style, learn to mix & match and re use. During the next long weekend or the lockdown, make an effort to lay all your accessories and your clothes and see what can be matched together aesthetically. It is absolutely fine for you to repeat your clothes, it’s not just because it reduces your carbon footprint and also in return it makes you spend less. Designs themselves are most likely to become minimalistic and basic. Expect to see more simple clothing with less bling.

● Custom made will beat ready to wear

Both designers and brands will need to adopt faster processes to produce garments & accessories and sell profitably and quickly. Designers who are off the rack, perhaps made to measure for definite body types, will be the strongest trend for the next few years. Brands and designers will need to make sure that they make garments that fit well for almost all sizes and builds, without wasting their own and client’s money and time.

● Fashion professionals are in for a reality check

Big budgets on a show or a single shoot will no longer be possible or feasible, affecting models, photographers, makeup, hair, styling and production personnel. Those who are engaged in freelancing activities are already dealing with cancelled and postponed work, and indefinite hold on upcoming projects. Destination, location and outdoor shoots will be replaced by simple studio shoots, so in turn, fashion spreads might end up looking like catalogue pictures.

● Runway shows and trade fairs will be irrelevant

Almost all the major fashion weeks and trade shows have been postponed or cancelled. In the annual fashion calendar, this translates into a major change. Soon fashion shows will become irrelevant with no or limited sponsors. As we know the runway glam will be dead. The next major fashion show will be in live online events, without front-row regulars, celebrities and industry wannabes. No sign of post and pre-show long fashion weeks or parties. Some fashion weeks will be scaled down to become more industry or trade-specific or will just not happen.

● There will be discounts, sales and special offers

To survive, designers and brands are likely to take hold on aggressive discount policies which, in the medium term at least, could hurt positioning of the luxuries of the brands which did not have a concession model. Accessories and clothes, even the one which is branded, will all become more affordable and accessible.

● Healthcare will beat cosmetics

Major makeup, perfume and grooming brands have already started their manufacturing of hand sanitizers and products for personal care. So new product launches are expected to come with anti-bacterial and sanitising properties. This will include new formulation for talcum powders, deodorants, soaps, makeup, shampoos, face, skincare and body washes. Store shelves and your dresses are more likely to be dominated by personal hygiene products for a while. Products that are organic and natural will be preferred over those which aren’t. The consumer is going to start looking at hygiene and health benefits of the products before buying them.

● The new buzzword will be the wellness

Stronger than ever will be the desire to remain safe. Personal training for fitness is expected to be in a surge. The wellness and feel-good factor from dancing means more people will turn to small or private group dance classes to feel refreshed as well as positive and relax both body and mind. Similarly, alternatives like meditation and yoga and therapies will be more sought after. There will also be a huge demand for therapies and massages in the same way private appointments for even the most basic of the grooming parts such as eyebrows, facials, haircuts, waxing and shaving. Places which are shared by the public like swimming pools, salons and saunas will be in avoidable condition for the medium and short term. The trend forecast Grooming and fashion trends are determined from the data and factors which include economic and social factors, new, overall awareness and the environment. The following predictions has been thrown up by the pandemic.

● A colour palette which is subtle

For day wear expect the return of the pastels. For women’s wear, pink, pale peach, mint green and lemon for the day and for the night jewel tones. Sky blue, white and grey for men, with beige and navy blue for business and formal wear.

● Minimalism

Clothes will be simpler and embroidery will become a luxury. Over prints and patterns, people will shift to solids. With geometric patterns replacing florals altogether, prints will go digital.

● Fitted form and shape

For both womenswear and menswear expect a structured silhouette, with an emphasis on tight wrap-around fit or snug. Zips or buttons on casual, leisurewear and work. For shirts and tops full sleeve over shirt sleeves.

● Back to the basics

Expect to wear less jewellery as accessories will become a luxury and people will go for affordable watches and footwear which is more durable. The outcome will be people wearing one prominent accessory. Festival and bridal wear will go back to be more vintage and classic feel and look.

● Clinical look

Makeup is predicted to become as natural as possible. A colour stained eyeliner and mouth for women. Skin coloured or neutral nail polish with absolutely no nail art on nails. With hair either tied up or put up and away, hairstyles will be neat. Neutral or no hair colour is what we are about to see, instead of an emphasis on skin and hair care. Less dramatic or glamorous the overall look will be.

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