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The history of the elastic headband: from status symbol to viral accessory

The power of fashion and the internet, and their eternal synergy, have channeled the revival of this accessory within the silent luxury movement, also influenced by the preppy aesthetic and the Y2K loopholes. Let’s take a look back at the history of the classic black headband.

The history of the elastic headband: from status symbol to viral accessory

This minimalist accessory has thus emerged from the depths of the fashion archive to become a cult object that has ended up being elevated by personalities such as Bella Hadid, Alexa Demie or Kaia Gerber. A material elevation that Schiaparelli also reflected in its FW23 collection, suspended in an aristocratic imaginary full of wealth and ostentation, in which the models wore black elastic headbands.

The black headband has thus become the headband of our era, positioning itself in the zeitgeist of the system, for its simplicity and functionality that is perfectly synchronized with the return of minimalism and yuppie culture. So much so that TikTok has registered almost 780 million views within the tag “style headband”.


The origins of the headband could be traced back to the 1950s, when the accessory began to gain popularity, coinciding with the popularity of a more “effortless” and adolescent fashion. But it was not until the 1980s that it became a status symbol associated with the upper echelons and/or the culture of elite gyms, the rise of fitness and aerobics. A key era in which, at the same time, the “yuppie” culture (young urban professional) flourished, and that enveloping iconography that is now being recovered by the new generations.

All of this influence and these key phases of the accessory reached an aesthetic climax during the 1990s and early 2000s, as times when the black elastic headband seemed to be part of a global uniform of preppy ’90s looks that evoked that minimalist, sleek look with a penchant for sporty aesthetics. Now, this look is revived to connect with the latent movement of quiet luxury and the comeback of yuppie culture, and its fascination with status and money as concepts that are once again infiltrating the mores of modern society.

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