The '90s Cult Brands We Almost Forgot About (& Why They Ruled)

Photo: Courtesy of Todd Oldham.
The nostalgia junkie in me has been enjoying the '90s resurgence that's taken the fashion world by storm these last few seasons. Though I can’t help but think we have more to thank for the omnipresent '90s swagger — and the throngs of young women dressed in the era’s uniform of crop tops, combat boots, and mom jeans — than the obvious brands and designers that have become synonymous with the era.

To be fair, I’ll never stop lusting after the minimalist-yet-slightly-offbeat designs Calvin Klein and DKNY adhered to back then, and I’d probably die from happiness if I came across just about anything from Marc Jacobs’ collection for Perry Ellis in 1992. But, there are a few other names — some great, and some (by today’s standards) probably not so great — that still  deserve a nod of recognition.

Some of the styles ahead transition seamlessly into components of a modern-day wardrobe, while others are better left in the great void we call Tumblr. Still, each of them garnered a dedicated and cultish following in their heyday, and their unique perspectives continue to influence fashion today. Let's take a look back and remember the beloved '90s, which, more than any other period in fashion history, truly struck the perfect balance between the good, the bad, and the ugly.