Understanding what goth style clothing is can be difficult, but it can be even harder to find great places to shop for your favorite goth fashions. Gothic clothing can be broken down into dozens of different unique styles depending on which subculture you identify with most. Look for stores that carry your kind of goth clothing to get the most authentic look.
Types of Gothic Clothing and Styles
All types of Goth were born out of classic or traditional gothic subcultures who embraced everything generally viewed as dark, mysterious, and creative. This distinct clothing style features carefully crafted looks that run from head to toe. Since gothic style is about loving what others see as dark, lots of gothic clothing styles include black as the base color.
Traditional or Classic Goth Clothing
Classic goth looks started in the 1980s to go along with punk music from this decade. Traditional goth style includes mostly black, occult images, big hair, piercings, and black makeup. This is the style of goth most readily available in dark chain stores, but the way you do your hair and makeup can keep your look original. To get the look, layer basic pieces of black clothing and add a few pieces of occult jewelry.
Cyber Goth Clothing
As the name implies, cyber goth style is all about the future. These goths love to imagine what the taboo things of the future will be. Futuristic cyber goth style features bright neon colors and goes along with dance rock, trance, and techno music. Typical pieces include goggles, robotic prints, and circuit board style lines. Make your own cyber goth looks by sewing neon cording to simple metallic leggings.
Romantic Goth Clothing
Think romance novel cover meets classic goth and you've got romantic goth style. This style of goth embraces black and a variety of other dark colors. You'll see romantic goths wearing more formal outfits and high fashion pieces that have romantic touches like bows and lace. Gowns, corsets, and frock coats inspired by Victorian clothing are popular with romantic goths. Look for ruffles and puffy sleeves to pair with a corset or tight pants to get this look.
Vampire Goth Clothing
If you're a vampire goth, the idea is to look as much like a real vampire as possible. Fictional vampires from classic literature provides some inspiration as do modern vampires from movies and TV shows. This style is marked by dark, sleek hair and eyeliner, beautiful nail designs, and body art. Pair bright red or really dark lipstick with your look to finish off the vampire goth style.
Hippie Goth Clothing
Goths who subscribe to Pagan belief systems highly correlated with nature, like Wicca, are one example of hippie goths. This style is a kind of mix between regular hippies and traditional goths. Long, flowy dresses in dark colors are a staple of this style as are natural crowns like those featuring crystals or animal horns. Look for clothing styles typically associated with hippies like bellbottoms or maxi dresses that are made in deep, dark colors to get this look.
Vintage Goth Clothing
Vintage goths take vintage clothing and accessory pieces from the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s, in dark colors like black and incorporate them into new goth looks. Pieces with shapes that defined each decade are used to pay homage to that time while still embracing the darkness. Thrift stores and antique shops are hidden treasure troves of vintage goth style. Choose one decade and rock black looks from that era.
Industrial Goth Clothing
Industrial goth style features things that are especially hard and associated with industrial parks like metal. This style includes a monochromatic head-to-toe look accented with spikes, studs, chains, and buckles. Military style clothing and accessories also fit into industrial goth style. Look for ways to add metal in innovative places on your outfit to make your industrial style unique.
Modern Goth Clothing
Modern goth is essentially Western magic traditions and Victorian romanticism combined. It's similar to traditional goth, but features a more simple overall style and modern cuts. Modern goths still wear mostly black and many pieces are made to be unisex. Make this style your own by finding pieces in trendy cuts that black then accessorize with a single piece of traditional goth jewelry.
Where to Shop for Goth Clothing
The modern world celebrates differences, so knowing where to shop for gothic clothing isn't as hard to find as it used to be. From gothic stores to online artisans and vintage shops, any goth can find items to fit their style today.
At RebelsMarket, an online store, you can find everything from clothing and accessories to home decor that's all about attitude. The site finds the best pieces from different brands that embrace subculture styles and sells them all in one store. RebelsMarket sells men's, women's, and kids clothing including plus sizes. From steampunk to cyber goth, this online shop has it all with prices ranging from $15 corsets to $300 dresses.
Heavy Red provides ultra-stylish gothic clothing, including corsets, dresses, gloves, jewelry, and coats for women. The tagline for Heavy Red is "Couture Noir," so you'll find mostly romantic goth, vintage goth, and modern goth styles. Beautiful, fully styled images of each piece give you outfit inspiration while you shop. Original, steel boned corsets cost around $100 each while accessories like specialty hosiery cost $25 to $50 each.
While many goths might consider the chain store too mainstream, Hot Topic has influenced the creation of a more mainstream version of gothic fashion. With their brick-and-mortar stores, going goth is as easy as traveling to the nearest mall for both men and women. Their clothing is a mix of classic gothic and punk styles, sprinkled with a bit of pop culture, for a slightly sanitized version of the goth look. Prices are affordable, with tees costing about $20.
You can search by goth theme on GoodGoth.com. This women's gothic clothing store includes a "Made in the U.S.A." section so even goths can shop local. Other shopping categories include witchy goth, vintage goth, and traditional goth. The online shop carries accessories, gothic shoes, cosmetics, and clothing so you can get your whole look in one place. Apparel items start around $10, while cosmetics and accessories can sell for even less.
Men and women can find everything from cosmetics to clothing in classic goth, modern goth, hippie goth, romantic goth, and cyber goth styles at Dolls Kill. Most items are priced well under $100, making the shop unique and affordable.
Be Goth and Proud
Your gothic style is an outward expression of your personality. Showing off your unique style by mixing store-bought items with handmade items is the ultimate way to show goth pride.