On certain days, you need to channel your bad self. But tough girl style has come a long way since the days of the Pink Ladies or Poison Ivy, so that’s why we’ve racked our brains and pop culture encyclopedias (read: DVDs and the Internet) to compare the styles of today with the ones of yesteryear. And if you’re not sure what that means, we’re about to help you figure it out.
1. Then: Heathers‘ Veronica (Winona Ryder)
Now: Nobody was tougher than Veronica when she went up against the Heathers (but maybe don’t go that far to get even with your enemies), so it’s not a tough girl list without her. Luckily, the super-preppy style of the ˜88 movie is alive and kicking in 2012, with designers like Marc Jacobs bringing back pleated skirts, and countless others re-affirming blazers’ place in the wardrobe staple spectrum. Just resist the urge to go back to high school. (Kidding! All of us are very content leaving high school behind.)
2. Then: Grease’s Pink Ladies
Now: This one’s easy! Considering H&M is embracing Lana Del Rey and her ˜60s girl group vibe, achieving the look of one Betty Rizzo is relatively easy. Pair oxfords or saddle shoes with a pair of black cigarette pants, then opt for a blank tank or t-shirt to wear with a leather bomber. True, the bomber may be hard to find “ and technically the pink ladies wore pink. So if you’re really hoping to feel legitimate, go with a cotton candy pink cardigan “ or take any look out of the DSquared2 show.
3. Then: Drew Barrymore’s Poison Ivy
Now: Breathe a sigh of relief if you’re on a budget “ you need only venture to your local thrift store to get Drew Barrymore’s 1992 look. With her high-waisted cut-off denim shorts and oversize leather jacket (there’s a theme here), you’ll only spend a few bucks “ or a little extra, if you want a quality red lipstick “ to channel the risqué© aesthetic of the movie’s pro/antagonist. Of course, you can also head to American Apparel or Urban Outfitters for a pair of shorts you can pair with opaque tights and Doc Marten’s. And since Poison Ivy’s such a fan of sheer, you could also pick up a chiffon button-up to wear overtop a plain black tank.
4. Then: Cruel Intentions’ Kathryn Merteuil (Sarah Michelle Gellar)
Now: The truth is, Kathryn’s less tough than she is a terrible person, but for those of us who’ve seen the movie, we know the woman can dress. So that being said, Kathryn’s late ˜90s super polished look can be channeled through designers like Donna Karan, who showcased satiny corset-like tops with black slacks. Ralph Lauren-inspired pant suits are another good call “ not only to pay homage to Kathryn, but because it’s a logical item to own.