The Brief: A softgirl or soft girl is someone whose style matches a social media aesthetic that includes pastel colors, maximalist accessories, and shimmery makeup.
Similar to VSCO girls and eGirls in style and concept, a soft girl or softgirl can typically be recognized by her style which combines hyperfeminine elements, child-like imagery, and vintage-style clothing into an overall “soft” aesthetic. Soft girls also mirror the softboys of TikTok’s Soft SZN trend as they present a form of “softness” that manifests in how they present themselves ad may extend more broadly to how they navigate the world.
Elements of these styles and social media aesthetics may include hair clips, flowers, butterflies, angels, drawn on freckles, winged eyeliner, lip gloss, highlighter, mom jeans, crop tops, Buffalo shoes, oversized hoodies, Instagram and Snapchat filters, and other specific items.
Unlike eGirls, softgirls lean towards warmer colors and items that are “cutsey” rather than goth or punk-inspired. Unlike VSCO girls, their style is broader, typically more maximalist, and less brand-specific.
This international style leans into traditionally feminine forms of expression, embracing aspects of girlhood that have long been labeled as weaknesses such as sensitivity and putting time into one’s appearance. The softgirl aesthetic doesn’t shy away from things that may be written off as girly and childish such as Hello Kitty, The Powerpuff Girls, stuffed animals, heavy makeup, and the color pink.
On TikTok, videos associated with the hashtag #SoftGirl have been viewed over 347 million times and over 363,000 Instagram posts have been labeled with the hashtag.
@addyurdaddyI heard it was soft girl season 🥺🌼 (I almost hit my head on the fan) ##foryoupage ##foryou♬ Are You Tired of Me Yet – Jose Leyva & Cavetown
@krgxoxoPOV: you forgot your makeup so the soft girl helps you out in class!🌸✨💗🧚🏼♀️ ##softgirl ##foryou ##MusicalMindReader♬ original sound – krgxoxo