Skip Nav

Kidcore Outfits, Aesthetic, & Clothes

Everything You Need to Know About Kidcore, TikTok's Most Joyful Aesthetic

Kidcore Outfits, Aesthetic, & Clothes

As POPSUGAR editors, we independently select and write about stuff we love and think you'll like too. If you buy a product we have recommended, we may receive affiliate commission, which in turn supports our work.

Revolving around all things playful and whimsical, the kidcore aesthetic is possibly the most joyful fashion and lifestyle trend yet. Taking inspiration from kids' pop culture, the '90s, and Y2K fashion, the trend favours an exuberant, fun-loving, and comfortable attitude. The fashion incorporates cartoon-inspired colours and riffs on costumes from iconic children's shows such as "The Magic School Bus," "Looney Tunes," and "Sesame Street."

The term (which is often used interchangeably with babycore), is credited to media artist Matt Star, who launched an apparel line inspired by baby clothes. The artist told Refinery29 about the early days of launching his brand, explaining how his mother planted the seed. While cleaning out his childhood home, she showed him his old Gymboree clothes that she was planning to toss out, and it sparked some reflection. "[Those clothes were] so much better than the clothes I'm wearing now," he said. "I wish they still made stuff like this."

Kidcore eventually increased in popularity, enjoying a boost from social media platforms like TikTok and Instagram in early 2020. In a year when many of us stayed home in order to help curb the coronavirus spread, it makes sense that an aesthetic rooted in colour, nostalgia, and joy would gain momentum. To dress for the aesthetic, you must first embrace primary colours: bright shades of red, blue, yellow, and green, ideally. A rainbow knit cardigan would be considered a staple, as would the combination of wide-leg jeans and a cartoon T-shirt.

Ahead, learn more about the meaning of kidcore and then shop items to pull it off.

What does the kidcore aesthetic mean?

As the name suggests, kidcore promotes eye-catching prints and a rainbow of colours inspired by children's toys. These include neon green and hot pink (associated with the Barbiecore aesthetic), two of summer's biggest colour trends. The goal is to interpret the fashion for kids in the '90s and early 2000s by bringing on whimsical patterns, cheeky colour combinations, and cartoon-inspired separates for an effortlessly cool outfit.

How to wear the kidcore aesthetic

Finishing with kitschy accessories is key — contemporary accessory labels Jumz Accessories and Susan Alexandra make Y2K-oriented beaded bags that are perfectly on-theme. Similarly, Roxanne Assoulin's charm bracelets exude the same spirit. As for clothing, fashion designer Christopher John Rogers, with his mastery of colours and prints, is a purveyor of the style. The same goes for multi-retailer platform Lisa Says Gah, which curates a range of playful and mood-boosting items from emerging indie fashion brands.

Scroll on for more pieces you'll need.

Latest Fashion