Brown Is The New Black: How To Style 2021’s Hottest Shade

There's a reason celebs are so obsessed with brown right now.
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Brown seems to be the new black these days, as chocolate tones and earthy hues flood our timelines.

Pinterest boards are packed with monochrome brown outfits, brown pants are all over TikTok and even celebs are getting in on the trend.

WATCH: Australian Fashion Week First Nations fashion shows

Kendall Jenner recently rocked a brown check ensemble that we’re obsessed with and a light brown bikini complete with brown cowboy boots.

Kylie Jenner was spotted in a little brown number to match her Louis Vuitton collection, while Lizzo took it to the next level in a brown-on-brown ensemble in Las Vegas.

Seriously, people can’t get enough of the colour brown right now!

But why is it suddenly so popular and how can you incorporate 2021’s hottest shade without looking like a chocolate paddle pop?

Don’t stress – we’ve got the answers.

Celebs like Lizzo and the Jenners have been obsessed with brown lately. (Credit: Instagram)

Why is brown so hot right now?

Recently we’ve seen a shift towards more earthy tones in fashion – though bright colours and pops of pink are still popular in some style circles.

According to designer Carter Altman, brown is super on-trend right now because it’s the ultimate shade for earthy and nature vibes.

“Brown is a very utilitarian colour. It’s economical. It’s more historically minded and easier to achieve by hand-dyeing techniques,” Altman told Vox.

“It’s opposed to the traditional sex appeal that comes from bright colours or blacks as the grounding centre of the wardrobe.”

We’re obsessed with Kylie’s little brown dress. (Credit: Instagram)

It helps that brown hasn’t been a major player in fashion for a few years, meaning its sudden comeback feels fresh and new.

That adds to its appeal because it hasn’t been overdone like some colours – remember when we were all obsessed with neon green a few years ago?

The other great thing about brown is that it’s super versatile, meaning you can pair it with just about any other shade or go for an all-brown monochromatic look.

Honestly, what can’t the colour brown do?

Megan Thee Stallion shows us how it’s done in this all-brown ensemble. (Credit: Instagram)

Five ways to seamlessly incorporate brown to your wardrobe

1: Invest in a brown style staple

If you want to dip your toes in the brown trend without diving in headfirst, invest in an on-trend style staple like brown pants or a chic brown leather jacket. Pick something in a similar style to wardrobe staples you already love so you know you’ll feel confident. For example if you’ve been loving flared pants lately, try picking up a pair in a chic mocha shade.

Try to avoid styles that may not stand the test of time, or things that will only go with one or two pieces you already own. Opting for something you can mix and match into heaps of outfits means you get extra bang for your buck and don’t end up feeling like you wasted your money on a piece you never get to wear.

Shop the Dazie Fashion First PU Blazer from The Iconic and the Wilburn Seamed Trousers in Tan on sale for $70 from Tobi.

(Credit: The Iconic/Tobi)

2: Brown boots were made for walking

Boots are hot, but brown boots are even hotter right now. Leather styles that hit just below the knee and feature a cheeky heel are the latest ‘It’ boot, so invest in a brown pair that will elevate any look. Our biggest tip is to pick a colour that’s dark enough to hide any scuffs or wear and tear.

Light brown or camel coloured boots may look super cute when you first put them on, but if you’re anything like us they’ll be covered in scuffs within a month! Invest in some high-quality boot polish of the same shade if you do buy a lighter pair or just want to look after your brown boots.

Shop the ASOS Design Claudia knee high boots for $80 from ASOS or the Alias Mae Cam boots for $289.95 from The Iconic.

brown boots
(Credit: ASOS/The Iconic)

3: It’s all about accessorising

Don’t forget that your clothes are only half of the equation when it comes to styling. If you’re tight on cash or not ready to invest in an all-brown capsule wardrobe, you can add the colour to your look in plenty of smaller ways. Adding chic brown accessories like claw clips, purses, jewellery and even press-on nails is a great way to incorporate the shade.

Brown lipstick a la the ‘90s has been trendy for a while, so invest in a shade that’s a little darker than your skin tone for a natural look, or a rich chocolate lipstick for something bold. Smokey brown eyeshadow and even brown eyeliner is also on-trend in the beauty world, as is brown mascara for those of us who love the no-makeup makeup look.

Shop the Faux Leather Croc Shoulder Bag for $29.99 or the Rectangle Claw Clip
for $8.99 from Glassons.

(Credit: Glassons)

4: Go monochrome

For the daring among us, opting for a monochromatic brown look is one of the best ways to embrace the brown trend. The two biggest tips for styling a monochromatic look without feeling like a brown Crayola is to mix shades and textures.

That means choosing pieces that are all in the same colour family (brown, in this case) but have varying shades and tones. For example, if your leather miniskirt is a rich chocolate brown, opt for a camel-coloured top and a mid-tone brown for your blazer.

As for texture, it’s all about mixing things up so your outfit doesn’t look flat. Think leather, knits, fluffy teddy jackets, distressed denim – the list goes on, just make sure to mix them up.

Look one: Shop the Aere Organic Cotton Blend Knit Dress for $150 and the Brie Leon The Camille bag for $189.95 from The Iconic.

Look two: Shop the Recycled Seamless Halter Tank for $19.99 and the Two-Tone Super High Rise Straight Jean on sale for $29.99 from Glassons.

(Credit: Instagram)

5: Don’t be scared!

There’s no right or wrong way to play around with fashion. Sure, some outfits are trendier than others and some people (looking at you Kylie and Kendall) can afford all the most luxe styles. But at the end of the day, trying a new trend is all about wearing what you feel awesome in.

If that means an all-brown Juicy Couture tracksuit, go for it! If it means adding one brown skirt to your wardrobe, that’s awesome too! Fashion is all about what you make of it, so get out there and play around with the new brown trend.

Shop the Subtitled Tay Twist Mini Dress for $89.95 from General Pants.

brown dress
(Credit: General Pants)

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