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Breaking Out of the "Cool Girl" Tumblr Attitude

The word "cool" and I have a complicated relationship. We've had a whole one-sided conversation about it in a blog post from the fall, mostly about its subjectiveness and how I wanted to stop using it as much. Which, in case you were wondering, I have to an extent. However, we're going to talk about it again at a different angle. Today, let's chat about the Tumblr "cool girl" culture from about five to seven years ago.

I determined this time by just looking up when Lana Del Rey hit the scene and when AM by the Arctic Monkeys came out. Obvs, no tea, no shade, I still love both of these artists even if the Arctic Monkeys' album that just came out was a total snoozefest (I had it on and thought I had only listened to one song but it turns out I was more than halfway through the album...yawn). We all remember Tumblr during this time, right? I couldn't have been alone in basking in the snotty pretentious energy of loving indie music and indie men and dismissing anything that wasn't totally obscure or just slightly gritty.

Am I remembering this all wrong? I have distinct memories of me rejecting pop anything in public or in my internet persona (remember dudes, the Jonas Brothers were still together at this time so you know I was stanning the fuck out of them in my own private time) was popular? This is still a thing today where people just shit on pop culture because they find it vapid and sugary and it's just not their thing. Which, you know, is fine. Not everyone likes the same things. But there's a difference between having your own opinion and blatantly shitting on something in front of somehow who enjoys it and shitting on everyone who likes it, right? To that, I just have to throw a middle finger up and tell ya to stop being so pretentious.

The annoying thing is that I was one of those people. At least, to an extent. I struggled as a teenager with a lot of things, but trying to figure out who I was and what I was interested in was a big one, as it is for I'm sure 99% of us. Part of this process included a bit of a hipster and "cool girl" Tumblr phase in which I just decided that the Arctic Monkeys were gods and I should dress like Alexa Chung even if I could never pull off anything that she wore at that time even if I fucking tried. I was a little sadder, a little more broody, definitely a hell of a lot more cynical than I should have been for a teenager. 

The thing is, it just wasn't me

It's hard enough being a teenager without having to worry about the pressures of social media culture pushing down on you and influencing the way you act not only towards yourself, but the people around you. I spent a lot of time on Tumblr, and really still did up until about a few months ago. This "cool girl" attitude still exists on the internet becaue it's "aesethetic" and probably will never disappear, but the amazing thing (or sometimes the downfall) about the internet is that you can, essentially, be whoever you want to be and like whatever you want to like. You just gotta find the right community.

I don't even know when I broke free of this incessant need to be the "cool girl" but my guess is that it didn't happen gradually, shockingly. I feel like one day I just decided that it was stupid trying to put on this facade when in reality, I'm just someone who is a little dorky, loves her pop music, but also appreciates the other indie genres that I would have pretended to be madly in love with for the sake of seeming like I was aloof. All I know is that life is infinitely easier when you aren't pretending to be somebody to save face. Be unabashed, my dudes. It's 2018! 

I try to block out the years when I decided to start actively hating a lot of things for absolutely no reason besides the fact that I wanted to seem "cool" and like I didn't give a shit. The truth is, I give a lot of shits about a lot of things. And I really, really, really hate the mentality that if you don't like something, you have the authority to ridicule everyone on it who doesn't. Have your own opinions, express them kindly, but don't attack someone for liking something that you don't. 

Within reason...My love for Carly Rae Jepsen isn't hurting anyone. Someone else's support for blatant and violent racism? A different story entirely.

Jumpsuit: Minus Us
Shoes: Topshop
Sunglasses: Miu Miu


  1. Oh my gosh, I love this post. I totally remember trying to be “edgier” to fit more of the tumblr vibes when in reality I’m incredibly preppy and girly... there is no saving it. It’s strange to see how certain social media changes the way we think we should act, feel, or even dress.

    Love this jumpsuit on you! The print is so pretty ��

    Xo Logan

    1. Right? Trying to mold to the social media trends is super normal but it's also really funny when you think about it. But also thank you! I fell in love with the print and just knew I had to have it!

  2. Clapping in the club rn. I remember being like 14 on tumblr reblogging girls with total sex hair and eternal frowns and being like OH MY GUHJJ how. But like fug it. Now it’s (on Pinterest ��) of people basking in the sunlight and eating ice cream.

    Hannah Meade

  3. I love this post so much! I think anyone who used Tumblr back in the day felt like this.
    To be honest, I actually stopped using it recently because I was like, my cute dog pics and love life aren't aesthetic enough.
    You wrote this post so eloquently too! I just love love loved it!

    Darrian |

    1. I've tried to unfollow as many accounts that didn't bring me joy or positive inspo (whether it was fashion, beauty, etc) and it's made my experience on it so much better even if I'm really never on that much anyways. :)


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