Goth Fashion: How to Find Your Signature Aesthetic

It’s no secret that fashion has a dark side, and that dark side’s name is goth. Goth is an explosion of individuality, arising as a subculture from dark yet romantic scenes from literature, style, music and architecture. It’s been immeasurably influencing the world’s culture, music, movies and fashion trends. 

If you’re a girl tired of blending in with the normies, wanting to embrace your inner romantic or rebel and finally let it show on the surface, this goth fashion guide can help you with that. It can also benefit you if you’ve been dressing goth for a while but are struggling to find your unique dark vibe.

About the Goth Aesthetic

girl with black and purple hair in black dress in a park

Goth is all about the dark and mysterious and this love for both is inspired by the Medieval, Edwardian and Victorian styles, gothic romanticism and literature so, not surprisingly, goth clothes for women today have elements of these styles. The preference for the dark, mysterious, and complex is part of their tradition. 

Unlike hippies and punks, the goth movement is apolitical and has never expressed itself in activist warnings. Instead, individualism, tolerance for diversity, and creativity drive the goth movement. In some situations, it leans towards intellectualism and opposition to social conservatism, but not all goths share these beliefs. Liberalism and anarchy are viewed as matters of personal conscience. Although the word goth originated in the 1960s, it was in the 1980s when goth fashion first saw the light.

What Does a Goth Girl Wear?

While the world has often seen goths as a minority, goth fashion has evolved considerably through the years, with more and more people welcoming the style. With plaid, spiked colours, intricate lace details and chains now more prominent than ever, captivating goth clothes for women are at the forefront of the catwalk. Here’s a breakdown of the most mesmerising goth styles and how to style within them so you can find yours and rock your next outfit.

Traditional Goth

If you love wearing dark colours, have an obsession over everything spooky and morbid, and love mesh and 80s gothic rock music, then you’re a trad goth girl. Traditional goths are more likely to be inspired by music, particularly bands from the 1980s, such as The Cure, Bauhaus, Sisters of Mercy, Siouxsie and the Banshees. If you look at fashion in general, you’ll see that it usually focuses on fishnets, leather jackets (or vegan faux leather), mesh outerwear and overlays, backcombed long hair, classic Victorian pale skin, dark eye makeup, and big boots (of course).

For an everyday retro look, consider wearing an oversized black tee with a picture of your favourite band tucked in a mini pleated black skirt with yellow “RIP” embroidery around the waistband that pays homage to the eternal cycle of life and death. Don’t forget your fishnets and tall boots. For a special occasion, a night out, a date or frolicking around with a sword: consider a show-stopping dress with an intricate lace design and ethereal flow to turn heads, exuding sophistication and sensuality.

Romantic Goth

If you love gothic clothes for women with ruffles and lace, enjoy drama, wish you were Mina from Dracula and live as though you’re mourning, you’re undoubtedly a romantic goth. Victorian era, Victorian mourning clothes in particular, are the main inspiration for the romantic goth style. Big dresses, elegant hairstyles and fancy details like ruffles and lace are the specific additions to the usual black makeup, primarily based on literature. 

You may see more lace than leather in a romantic goth and it’s not just about black; red is a significant colour that adds life to the fashion industry. It is also seen as a more creative style. Consider including goth clothes for women made of luxe fabrics like lace and velvet for a romantic outfit: fitted corsets, ruffled and layered skirts, lace-bordered petticoats, elegant hats, parasols or purses and beautifully-embellished details, such as puffed sleeves and quilting.

Pastel Goth

If you’re soft as a kitten but have a dark soul, give gothic Lolita vibes and are willing to spend more than eight hours a month having your hair dyed in pastel colours, you might be a pastel goth girl. Emerging in the 2010s, the pastel goth combines goth and the pastel hues of the kawaii aesthetic, influenced by Korean and Japanese street styles

It encourages a feminine mix of black and bows, lace and pastel colours like pink, mint and lilac. To dress the pastel goth look, consider a euphoric patchwork jacket and pant combo in bright colours, screaming from the rooftops. Or a mind-bending mesmerising dress featuring melting purple smiley dresses, making every psychedelic dream come true.

Cyber Goth

If you love black but also bright neon colours, technology but also the Victorian era, music with darker themes but only techno or dance music, you’re 100% a cyber goth. Cyber goths frequently wear dreadlocks with loose black pants, chains, and neon hues. As indicated in this goth guide, you may expect to notice steampunk elements here as well, with a strong emphasis on brightness and stark contrasts with blacks.


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