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Reign of the scumbro: the meaning of Justin Bieber’s ugly style

Wednesday - 05/09/2018 16:44
The hottest trend in men’s fashion involves looking badly dressed in oversized trousers, obscure graphic T-shirts and ridiculous shoes and hats
Wannabe-scumbro Justin Bieber. Photograph: James Devaney/GC Images
Wannabe-scumbro Justin Bieber. Photograph: James Devaney/GC Images

Am I just getting old or are young male celebrities dressing really badly these days? Charlotte, by email

It is a fact that people’s eyes don’t work properly until they are 25, which is why when they see Justin Bieber wearing ripped bleached jeans, cowboy boots and a ludicrous fur jacket with even more ludicrous fur hood, they don’t make boring tut-tut noises, but immediately Google “Bieber fur jacket asos!!!!” Life is definitely more fun when you’re young.

Thus, noticing the ludicrousness of celebrities’ outfits is a worrying moment in one’s adult life. What next, you ask fearfully, clutching your Blue Harbour button-down shirt – will I start commenting on the absurd price of takeaway coffee? The bewildering youth of policemen?

But I am happy to reassure you, Charlotte, that your age has nothing to do with your observation: yes, male celebrities are dressing really badly and, yes, it is deliberate. Welcome, ladies and gentlemen, to the hottest male fashion trend of 2018: “scumbros”.

“Scumbro? What is a scumbro?” you ask, weeping into your Gap khakis. I shall explain. Scumbros wear oversized, overpriced skatewear by labels such as Palace and Supreme, obscure graphic T-shirts, ridiculous shoes and even more ridiculous hats. They also wear wildly expensive labels, such as Gucci, Versace and Prada, but deliberately make them look terrible. Shia LaBeouf is a scumbro, while the Justins Bieber and Theroux are wannabe scumbros. When someone wrote on Twitter, correctly: “Diplo starting to look like a dude that sells you bad weed on the Venice boardwalk,” Diplo was so chuffed he posted it on Instagram and wrote underneath: “Goals achieved.” Total scumbro move.

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 Key: Scumbro

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