How to look like an Arts student

There are two bus stops on my way to class that pass by the Liberal Arts university. At this stop there is always a sizable line of young students waiting to file into the bus, and so I always get a good few minutes to check out what each of them are wearing. In the event that someone out there desperately wants to pass as an Arts student, I have prepared a handy guide to the costume:

Illustration of a "typical" Arts student, with parts of their clothing and appearance labelled: Dark roots, stage makeup, ratty canvas tote, hoodie, non-white iPod, leggings only, Ugg boots.

The easiest way to spot a young arts student is to look for their characteristic combination of a high-effort beauty regimen and low-effort outfits. My current theory is that they spend so much time applying makeup and fixing their hair in the morning that they are chronically late for their first class and end up running out the door wearing the same things they slept in.

The main point of confusion I have is that they all appear to be wearing stage makeup. I was under the impression that in an Arts program, you spent a lot of time writing essays and over-analysing classic literature, rather than actively performing on a stage every single day of the school year. I suppose I could be wrong; my only experience with Arts courses have been a couple sociology and history courses, which I understand to be child's play considering the largest essay we wrote was three pages long, and they didn't involve any stage acting.

I am convinced that they are actually wearing stage makeup because I refuse to believe that every single one of them is so colour-blind as to not notice that their foundation is two shades too dark, and my faith in humanity relies on the fact that everyone realizes that raccoon eyes aren't a good day-time look. I mean, if I can see the clumps in their mascara from half a bus away, they have to be doing it on purpose, right?

I will give 'em this: their eyebrows are so perfectly arched and penciled that I get a little bit of a envy-boner.

The second key is, of course, the no-pants thing. I spend a lot of time wandering the Internet looking at fashion, and I always notice what other people are wearing. I have yet to see a person wearing leggings as pants who doesn't look like they got dressed so quickly in the morning that they forgot their bottoms. I think it's really cute when people wear leggings under a tunic-length top; it takes something that would be obscenely short on its own and makes it far more versatile. I can totally understand people not wanting to wear jeans every day, and leggings let you wear bits of your wardrobe that you couldn't wear with tights, shorts or a skirt. But, leggings look stupid when worn as pants. It takes only a couple inches of shirt fabric to go from "Umm, you were in a rush this morning, huh?" to "Day-um, those legs are measured in miles."

Ugg boots. How I hate those things. First of all, they look like a kindergartener's vision of how shoes look. Secondly, while they may be warm, as everyone insists, they are by no means waterproof. 90% of the Ugg boots I see are all salt-stained, clearly damp, manky with street grime, and have patches at the heels where the fabric has worn through because they aren't designed to fit actual feet and seem to have an inherent instability in the heel area. I always feel a little bit sick when I imagine how those fuckers must smell.

I am convinced that this will be the characteristic outfit of the 2010s. Just like how neon colors and huge shoulders characterize the 80s, hoodies, Uggs and leggings-as-pants will be our fashion legacy.

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How to look like an Arts student
  1. LMAO -- You nailed it!

    UGGS - Blonde - (w/a good inch of dark brown roots) and the shellacked makeup. They eye make up, as you point out, effort is put into making straight lines (don't forget the liquid liner with the corners pointed so symmetrically), but no effort to remedy clumps or caking.

    They are often seen walking, wherever the destination, they are late. In such a hurry, they appear not to even have enough time to gather their things.

    With swvarowksy-encrusted nano in hand, the strap to her bag reapeatedly falls off her shoulder, and sometimes she'lll be holding . For reasons unknown they might also be carrying their keys (and it's assorted 'Princess-Fairy' key-chains) in the same hand carrying the nano, whilst struggling to 'get that strap,' up with the other.

    Heres an image:
    ((If the link no longer works simply do type "Pamela Anderson Uggs" .... into Google image search, Pamela Anderson might work alone as well))

    Shes a pioneer in promoting the look, jit's an enduring legacy, I remember first seeing this look as early as 2005. I am quite shocked at how well it has thrived. Lindsay Lohan's still sporting it.

    2010's, good times! Hilarious, I loved this post, thanks! <3

    1. Haha, thanks Nymph. I totally forgot the struggling-with-the-strap thing, but it's so true! Those damn totes just refuse to stay on one's shoulder... I can't bear to have a purse of bag that's anything other than cross-body. It's not worth the constant fight. :P

    2. My apologies, I hadn't intended to suggest you left out the 'shoulder strap,' part about the art students,-- again, you were spot on. It brought to mind the variation of these no-pants-wearing-ugg-blondes' sure to capture the 2010's. It's a def. deviation from the 'art student,' look,-- actually I am not sure to what group it belongs. It's a strange breed alright. Let's hope the art student doesn't follow down their path.


  2. Ha! This reminds me of the girl that was in my art class we used to call her an ompa lumpa coz her make-up was so orange and she nearly always had uggs on or flip flops!
    Btw I'm with you on uggs. Can't stand the things and the cheap fakes are most definitely the worst ones with the collapsed backs they look like they belong to a tramp!

    1. I just can't understand how they'd be fine wearing cheap, falling-apart "boots" like that! But so many people wear them, I guess it's not an issue for most people.

  3. Perish the thought!!

    I'd rather be defined be the sequin era

    1. Hell, at this point I'd gladly take big hair and high-waisted jeans. ;)

  4. Even when I was a student I never wore leggings or ugg boots. However I think I can explain the make up thing, I just see make up as painting and go for it in the same way I would on a canvas.
    ...not on a daily basis obviously but for halloween, and I also did theatre studies so my stage make up was pretty full on, even for stage make up.

  5. Digi: Haha, Halloween is one thing; Raccoon eyes at 10am on a Tuesday is another!


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