The 1980’s Women’s Fashion Guide

The 1980s would have been nothing if not for its absurdity and extravagance! The 80s was one of the most vibrant, outrageous and unique eras for fashion. During the 1980s, rules were thrown out of the window; colours clashed, patterns were worn on top of different patterns, and jeans went from spray-on skin tight to massively oversized and baggy. The 1980s fashion was a total showstopper!

Here’s a point by point style manual to give you a solid understanding of the 80s design and to help you set up together the perfect look for your character.


In the 1980s, more ladies were entering the work environment, and a new style of fashion was born. For a great working-lady look, ladies preferred to wear jackets with big shoulder pads in primary colours, teamed with a pencil or pleated skirts and once in awhile trousers. These got to be distinctly known as power suits. Another backer of this prevalent style was the UK’s sweetheart of the time, Princess Diana. Known for her refined, uniquely designed outfits, Diana was a princess whom people in general could relate with, and this incorporated her fashion decisions.



As always, the film industry hugely influenced fashion trends, and the popularity of movies such as Fame prompted a passing trend for dance clothing, causing leg warmers, leotards, and headbands to become an everyday norm in the streets. Another popular dance clothing in the 80s was leggings, which were full-length stretch pants that hugged the body for the ultimate comfort. As the demand for comfortable clothing expanded, tights were accessible in every colour and the most over the top prints which included creature prints and enormous geometric shapes. Full-length tights were worn under leotards, while the lower leg length leggings were worn under micro-mini “rah-rah” skirts.


80s jewellery ran from larger than usual hoop earrings to neon bracelets, everything was special for the 80s. Earrings were large and heavy to wear. Hoop earrings and gold circle earrings were the most mainstream styles of earrings. Then again, styles of necklaces varied from beaded necklace to vast long chains. Necklaces were worn in every colour, length and size in clusters over each other. Bracelets were worn in various shapes and styles. Some liked to wear neon jelly bracelets, some preferred substantial cuff bracelets and some preferred the oversized bangles.

Besides jewellery, there were other unique and iconic accessories exclusive to the 80s. Bum-bags, for instance, a simply shaped pouch strapped around your waist, were a revolutionary design for both men and ladies as it took the bother of fitting all the necessities into bulging pockets. Just like Bum-bags, headbands turned into a “must-have” amid the 80s. Young fans used to purchase headbands with their favourite band logos, for example, Ozzy, Led Zeppelin, and Def Leppard.



Not only did the movies play a significant part in bringing a piece of clothing into style”, but so did well-known vocalists. Madonna’s ‘road urchin’ style, made by the designer a “fashion Maripol, was copied by numerous young ladies all around the world. Rah-rah skirts were worn over colourful leggings, lace fingerless gloves were available in various colours and cuts, and jewellery was layered to make a significant impact. One of Madonna’s signature accessories was wearing multiple rubber bracelets simultaneously.


The Superstar also pioneered the tight jeans craze paired with an oversized baggy jumper or a leather jacket, known as the “Boyfriend Look” today.



Denim jackets rocked the 80s! From adults to children, everybody absolutely adored them. Bleach and denim were never made to mix, however, the 80s were about pushing the limits, a few people also ripped and customised their acid washed denim jackets.



80s makeup trends were loud and had no limits. Bright makeup in a “More is More” style was popular. Orange eyeshadow with electric blue mascara, fluorescent pink lipstick and pink blush paired with teased hair was normal for a daytime look. For night time, ladies used to prefer dramatic eye makeup with a visible triangle shape at the outer corner of the eyes, lips lined and filled with bold colours and then the look completed with thick coloured mascara.


A key rule to recall around 80s beauty styles is “the bigger and bolder, the better”. To get a genuine 80s look, you should certainly NOT look natural and you must exaggerate your appearance as much as you can.


As far as hairstyles are concerned, “the bigger the better” carried on simply like the clothes and cosmetics trends. The huge voluminous hair would have been spotted everywhere! It had turned into a wonder with the release of the 1988 movie “Working Girl”. 80s hair was about texture, curls, volume and without a doubt, loads of hairspray. Bubble perms were especially fashionable, and women jumped at the chance to wear cushioned headbands or enormous bows to improve this hairstyle. Crimping the hair was likewise regular; the incredible texture and expanded volume it gave the hair accomplished some genuine 80s lift and volume. To crimp your hair, you will simply require a comb and some hairspray to set the crimp. Finally, the Princess of Wales, Princess Diana, had an effect with her short hairstyle, which was regularly duplicated by others.


To conclude, we love the 80s! The crazy clothes, voluminous hair, neon makeup, shoulder pads and the baggy trousers – the looks were big, bold and bright. The 80s was all about making a statement and being noticed. In the 80s, fashion was heavily influenced by the Pop artists and popular TV series. Whatever you were into in the 80s, there was a fashion style that suited your personality.

We trust that we gave you a reasonable thought of what to wear for your next Horror of the Hammer Murder Mystery party! Have a tonne of fun!

All clothing items mentioned in this post can be found in the list below:

ASOS Vintage 80’s Oversized Large Padded Shoulders Wool Jacket: £28.30

AMAZON Pink Leg Warmers: $7.00

FLINGERS 1980s Let’s Get Physical Costume: £34.99

AMAZON 80s Fanny Bag: £7.29

AMAZON Neon Pink Hoop Earrings 1980s: £3.49

AMAZON Neon Fancy Dress Clubber Shutter Shades: £1.99

AMAZON 80’s style black lace hair tie: £3.99

AMAZON 80’s Wild Child Costume, Jacket, Top, Rara Skirt, Leggings, fish Net Gloves and Headband: £25.06

ASOS Vintage Leather Bomber Jacket 80’s: £48.99

ASOS 80s Vintage Abstract Jumper: £19.00

AMAZON Punk Rock Multi Layers Chain Leather Bracelet: £3.99

AMAZON Fashion Women Vintage Cross Pendant Long Chain Charm Necklace Girls Gift: $9.19

AMAZON Multicolour Neon Fluorescent 80’s Bead Necklaces: £3.47

SUDDORA Neon Bright Colored Sports Headbands: £2.99

AMAZON Black Fishnet Gloves Mid-Length 80s Fashion: £0.63

AMAZON 80S Black Legwarmers: £3.52

EBAY Elasticated Waist Belt, 80s Disco Diva Belt: £3.99

SEMICHEM Pink Collection Blush: £2.99

XTRAS W7 Electrica Mascara: £2.25

Rimmel London Blue Double Ended Shadow + Liner: £5.99

NorthWest Cosmetics Cover Shoot Neon Eyeshadow Palette: £0.51

Superdrag Models Lipstick Matte Glam Pink: £6.99

Vintage 80s Ralph Lauren denim jacket

Vintage 80s Wrangler Blue Acid Wash Denim Jacket Grunge Punk

ASOS Vintage Leather Fitted Jacket 80’s: £39.99