From the vulva scarf to the UGG heel: These are the worst fashion releases of 2018

Words by Bianca O’Neill

An absolute cracker of a year for terrible fashion releases.

And here I was thinking we couldn’t beat 2017’s thong jean… well, turns out 2018 was an absolute cracker of a year for terrible fashion releases too.

From the vulva scarf to the UGG heel (WHYYYYYYY?), we’re taking a look at some of the worst fashion that has come out of the interwebs this year. If you bought any of these, a) you’re an idiot who has too much money. And b) don’t @ me.


Fendi brought us two stupid things this year: a $1,200 shawl that 100 per cent looks like a vulva and a horrific umbrella hat that is clearly some kind of in-joke in order to weed out people who are so label obsessed, they don’t know how to shop like a regular human anymore.


Gucci responded to being dethroned as the hottest fashion brand of the year by Balenciaga, by trying to be as weird as Balenciaga. Turns out no one can out-weird Demna but by god, Gucci tried.

First, the brand tried to palm off a pair of dirty sneakers for $1,100, then combined a bumbag and a backpack because OH GOD I HAVE NO IDEA. Maybe just stick to severed heads… 


Speaking of the headline-courting couturier, Balenciaga started off the year in the worst way yet… with a $225 scrunchie.

Then Balenciaga followed it up with a $10,000 coat with seven different layers (OK, maybe I actually need this next winter in Melbourne), and then truly jumped the shark with these horrific mules that look like a McDonald’s fries packet.

Maybe you could accessorize them with a $1700 double-shirt that you don’t actually wear? I mean, because it wears you. (Boom tish).


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Contenders for the stupidest shoe

OK, speaking of dumb shoes, there were just so many this year I had to make an ENTIRE CATEGORY for them. In the year of the ugly shoe, these ones went above and beyond…

First up, we have a designer who decided that ‘lettuce slides‘ was the hill they wanted to die on. Thank u, next.

Also in the slide category, we had Nike combining pool slides with bum bags for the drug dealer who likes to work outdoors, and Maison Margiela delivering puffer slides… for when your feet are simultaneously hot and cold?

So, after all this ugly-onslaught, is this DSquared chunky wedge sneaker/sandal hybrid the ugliest shoe ever created? Oh god no, we’re not even close yet – I mean, UGG made high heels this year. 

The ‘ I don’t know WTF they were thinking’ category

Look, I thought this needed to go in its own category… Here are a pair of prosthetic ‘skin heels’. You know, so I could ruin your day with the creepiest photo you’ll see all year.

Not impressed? Don’t worry – I have the perfect summer product for you: a roll of duct tape. Because, apparently, it is now totally appropriate as swimwear.

Contenders for the dumbest denim

So you thought last year’s thong jean was bad? How about these 2.6-metre long extendo jeans? SOMEONE PLEASE DM ME WITH AN EXPLANATION BECAUSE WTAF.

Oh, don’t worry – there were plenty more. Upside-down shorts were the latest in stupid denim trends – that is, until Helmut Lang tried to make inside-out denim happen.

And then, as if to round out the year on a truly glorious note, ASOS released a belt that’s literally just a denim waistband. Ugh.


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@hypebeaststyle: Would you wear these @bronze56k “Extendo Pants”? They retail for $500 USD.

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Clothing lines that 100% didn’t need to happen

Then there were the releases that definitely shouldn’t have even happened. When Fanta launched its very own clothing collection, my first thought wasn’t simply a really long, torturous ‘whyyyyyyyy?’ – but instead, ‘OH GOD, THIS IS WHERE PANTONE GOT THE IDEA FROM’. 

Then came the Ziploc range of accessories – you know, just in case you are begging for a cavity search at your next festival outing.

Happy summer!

Follow Bianca’s similarly horrible fashion journey over at @_thesecondrow, or listen to her podcast at @thefashionpodcast.

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