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Yee-haw: fashion is having a rodeo renaissance. Suddenly, glamorous Western wear is everywhere. The trend has been trotting along for a while now, but it took off on a full gallop in summer 2021.
Dua Lipa kicked things off in June with her "Love Again" video featuring pony hair outerwear, pieces from the Levi's x Miu Miu collab, light up lassos, and a phalanx of line-dancing backup dancers wearing rodeo clown makeup.
Then it was BTS who saddled up with their life-affirming "Permission to Dance" music video in July. The septet from Seoul have always been swoon-worthy fashion icons but, wow, Cowboy Bangtan just hits differently. j-hope in chaps! SUGA in leather suspenders! Jin in a bolo tie (with a dangerous amount of bare chest showing)! RM and V in wide-brimmed cowboy hats! Jungkook in Johnny Cash-approved, all-black fringe! BTS's Western-wear aesthetic made them look good (and probably launched a million cowboy fanfics), but it also mirrored the buoyant and optimistic dance track itself.
More recently, it's Queen Bey's turn to light up the arena with her latest Ivy Park line for Adidas. The 58-piece rodeo-themed collection (sizes XS to 4X) drops on Thursday 8/19 and includes denim corsets, cow-print, opera-length gloves, fringed face masks, and the iconic three-stripe Adidas tracksuit rendered in pure double-denim delight.
Maybe going through a cowboy phase is the mark of a certified pop star. Madonna had one with "Don't Tell Me" in 2009. Lady Gaga devoted a whole album to the broken-hearted cowgirl aesthetic in 2016 while wearing a $680 pink cowboy hat everywhere. Of course in 2019 Lil Nas X bragged about his cowboy hat from Gucci and Wranglers on his booty in "Old Town Road," while Lizzo twerked through her "Tempo" video with a red cowboy hat and sequined bikini that same year.
Or maybe this recent rodeo-wear trend is inspired by something else.
Perhaps this trending explosion of bedazzled denim and swaying fringe is the fashion pendulum swinging the opposite way after a year and a half of lounging almost exclusively in comfort-cozy clothes. This hard left into a dazzling cowboy aesthetic is a return to having fun dressing up. It's loud, it's optimistic, and it's about as far from elastic waist sweatpants as you can get, sartorially speaking.
Ready to saddle up? Read on for 11 pieces of rodeo wear you'll want to wear right now — giddy up!