Tag Archives: hipster ideals

Faux-Hippie Beard or Nostalgically Ironic Stache? Exploring the Meaning Behind Hipster Facial Hair

Hipster Ironic Mustache

This hipster is clearly trying to display irony with his mustache here. Knowing full-well that carefully grooming and curling the ends of your mustache is not something that is traditionally ‘stylish’ or ‘popular’ in mainstream society, the hipster embraces the idea that the mustache itself is a joke. In reality, he likes the mustache and cultivates it in order to fit in with his friends and gain popularity through attention at parties, but when humiliated for it, the hipster’s safety mechanism is the claim that he too agrees with its ridiculousness, and meticulously cares for it every day simply for the purpose of making fun of it.

Back-to-Basics Hipster

This ‘rural’ hipster lives in a densely populated metropolis. His beard says “I support local farming, small-scale dairies, and fair-trade organic produce.” Paired with the plaid, he knows that his beard will cause others to assume that he is environmentally conscious and has experience with ranching. They will think he’s simply visiting from out of town to deliver some free-range eggs to a co-op, but after he’s captured you with his farm-boy chuckle and his dreams of community living, he’ll take you up to the 8th floor where he lives in a one bathroom apartment with a mini-fridge full of PBRs and a roommate who attends community college.

Pierced and Stached

“I minored in philosophy.” “Pakistan’s not even IN the Middle East.” “Have you even heard of Che Guevara?” “It was handmade in Austria.” “Are you going to be at that protest at the civic center tomorrow?” “Macs are expensive for a reason.” All of these are phrases that are very likely to be uttered from under the cultured mustache of this hipster. He’ll do anything to convince you that he’s intelectual, worldly, and edgy, but let him get in a few hundred eye-rolls first. He’ll go on and on about the places he’s been if you let him, but don’t try and ask for his opinions on society and the Zeitgeist of today unless you want to be stuck in a coffee shop with him for several hours. (Don’t worry though, they have soy milk).

Young Hipster

This hipster’s facial hair says “I’m too young to grow facial hair, but I’m going to drink and smoke and wear a scarf. I don’t care about my lungs or liver, but my neck better not be cold in June.” As soon as he turns 18, he’ll probably switch to American Spirit cigarettes and Pabst. He’ll also convince everyone that he needs prescription glasses. Oh, the hardships a young boy must endure on the path to becoming a hipster.

Magnum PI

This is Tom Selleck.

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Hipster Retroism and Its Inner Irony (Part 1)

This is such a gorgeously hipster video, I can’t even believe it.  I’m in hypsterics.  But let’s take a closer look at what makes this video so distinctly hipster.  Observe the bright neon colors under a faded vintage filter.  Look at all the retro overtones, including oversized glasses, high-waisted bottoms, a 50’s era automobile, and a polaroid camera.

Hipsters love 20th century media technology.  Records, polaroids, VCRs, tapes, film, typewriters, box TV sets, early telephones, anything oversized and inconvenient that will remind them of a time before they were even born.  I suppose a hipster’s memory can date back to when they were single-celled organisms, because they seem to feel nostalgia for things not even their parents were alive to remember.

Why do we hipsters do this?  Why do the styles of the last three generations have such a powerful appeal to the current hipster era?  There could be many reasons.  For example, this type of clothing and accessories can easily and cheaply be found at thrift stores.  But I think this 1900’s aesthetic goes deeper than a frugal fashion statement.  Sam Stilson has observed this tendency in the youth of the 21st century and provided some interesting insight about it in his article.

Sam, describing the style as “ironically safe”, says, “Another major drawing point to recycling old styles is that if you can’t actually pull off the look, you can always rest safely behind an ‘ironically cool’ stance.  The passage of time allows everything to be looked at objectively, including fashion.  Therefore, if you know you look stupid in a derby hat, but wear it anyway, through irony or perhaps reverse psychology, some people will think you’re cool.  Or so we’re led to believe.  It’s all pretty ridiculous, but that’s what it has come to in some pockets of modern society.  So bringing back ridiculous clothing and grooming styles (think anything from the 80s) is relatively safe if you’re doing it with a subtle wink in your eye and hanging around like-minded, ironically cool people [–also known as hipsters].”

Sam has nailed it.  This is the main reason we have embraced this style, and unsurprisingly, it revolves around irony.  However, I’ve observed an even deeper, subconcious reason that also shows us an even more powerful, underlying irony that I will explore in my next blog.


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Alt-J is probably the perfect hipster band.  If you asked any given hipster who Alt-J was, they probably wouldn’t know.  They’re pretty underground, y’know.  Their music can be described as indie/alternative/art rock.  WHOA, did you hear that?  I think someone is screaming hipster.

Here’s a picture of the band members:

Joe Newman, Gwil Sainsbury, Thom Green, Gus Unger-Hamilton


HOLY MOTHER OF PBR, that’s a whole lotta hipster jammed into one photo.  Seriously.  Guy on the far left.  That’s some sexy thrift store sweater goin’ on there.  And would you look at the vintage-ness of those glasses on the third guy.  I might just implode.

But it gets better.  Let’s take a look at the namesake of the band.  The name “Alt-J” was chosen because when you type Alt-J on a Mac*, a small triangle appears like this: ∆

Could you possibly get any more hipster?  Probably not.  Alt-J is playing in Oakland next month (a common place of congregation for hipsters), so go get some tickets, if only to meet fellow hipsters.  I have nothing more to say.

*Macs are the ultimate wonder tools of greatness used by hipsters, especially in conjunction with local coffee shops.

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Although being a hipster is the absolute greatest thing you could ever aspire to be, I understand that it isn’t for everyone.

A blasphemously anti-hipster campaign has brought the public’s attention to a new medication called Unpretentiousil. I do not recommend getting a prescription for this unless you are totally and completely confident about abandoning hipsterism, and becoming a blind sheep in the world of the mainstream media.

Nevertheless, watch the video, and ask your (holistic) doctor if Unpretentiousil is right for you.

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Hipster Dos and Don’ts

Well-Rounded Hipster

The fashionably challenged fellow in the photo above is a sad, sad example of what not to do if you want to be a hipster.  Everything he is and represents reeks of a midtown frado1 with no culture or style.  This is why the woman ignores him, and rightly so.  The hipster, on the other hand, has the perfect touch of charisma in his stride, a classic plaid-and-skinny-jeans outfit, and a well-groomed beard.  The 40’s chick would defs go for him; his postmodernism is blowing her away.  See?  She doesn’t even care about her book anymore.  It wasn’t very worldly anyway.  Now she can take the cigarette he’s offered her (American Spirit of course), and they can have a wonderful chat about the woes of society and NPR’s latest segment on the food industry.

You definitely want to be like this hipster.  There are many things to remember if you wanna get all the tassels2, and not be some uncultured square.  For one, physique is important.  You don’t want to look like that overly-muscular poser who wastes his life at the gym.  Better to look like you’re too busy with volunteering for PETA and attending Occupy rallies to work out.  Physical modesty is a trait greatly appreciated by hipster babes.  If you have naturally toned muscles and can’t do anything about it, be sure to cover them with a shapeless christmas sweater, and save displaying your super yoked bod only for very special occasions.

Another extremely important thing to remember is to retain irony in everything you do.  The hipster above is wearing shoes on a sunny day at the beach.  Very good, hipster.  Props to you.

Holy mother of mustaches look at all these glasses.


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For All Your Hipster Clothing Needs

If you want to embrace the hipster spirit this season, and don some true hipster garb, then I have got the perfect website for you…  Urban Outfitters.

Not only does it have a minuscule selection of pretentious, faux-intellectual, overpriced clothing, there’s also prime examples of hipsters throughout the website, and a half-ass tacky web design that is meant to come across as quirky and original!  There’s no better place to order your oversized argyle sweater.

Clothing is a crucial piece of the hipster persona, but it can be difficult for some to know where to get their outfits.  Seeing as most hipsters come from wealthy families, they might feel uncomfortable walking into a thrift store to get their crappy vintage jackets.  To the dismay of the wealthier hipsters, things from a thrift store have been used before by other people.  What a ghastly idea.  So, the problem is figuring out how to find something that looks authentically worn out and grunge, but spending a lot of money on it for a fake, never-actually-been-worn at all version.  (After all, what’s more ironic than purposefully ripping holes in brand new jeans?).  Urban Outfitters is the perfect solution.  Quality hobo rags at a price that won’t embarrass you.  Best of all you can order them on your Macbook Air, from the warmth of your (roommate’s) home!

May I suggest the pre-dirtied-and-grass-stained nylon skinny jeans?

Pre Dirtied Skinny Jeans

Or how about the gross-colored tie-dye sweater that was purposefully made to look like it’s inside out

Inside Out Hipster Sweater

And how can you go wrong with this intentionally ugly sweater with a massive v-neck?

Grnadpa V-Neck Sweater

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Hipster FAQ and QWA

Frequently asked questions and quick, witty answers  regarding hipsterism.


Where do hipsters live?



Is there an age limit for hipsters?

Nope, as long as you’re able to ride a bicycle.


What sorts of music do hipsters listen to?

I would tell you, but you’ve probably never heard of any of it.


What sorts of movies do hipsters watch?

Indie films made by their friends.


What is a hipster’s favorite color?



Are hipsters generally left wing or right wing?

Don’t trust the mainstream media, maaan.  They’re out to get you, maaan.


What is a hipster’s worst fear?

Being understood.


How long have hipsters existed?

As long as PBR has existed.


Do hipsters ever use sarcasm?



Is hipsterism contagious?

Let’s hope so.


How long does it take to become a hipster?

How long does it take you to put on skinny jeans that are two sizes too small?


What does the hipster style look like?

Hipsterism is not a style, it’s a state of mind.


Why do hipsters wear non-prescription eyeglasses?

We wear them ironically.


Are you sure you’re using ‘irony’ correctly?

You’re an idiot.


How many followers does this blog have?

Shut up.

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Jargon, Buzzwords, and Mumbo-Jumbo

“Efforts [to put] the term “hipster” into a socioeconomic framework rooted in the petty bourgeois tendencies of a youth generation unsure of their future social status. The cultural trend is indicative of a social structure with heightened economic anxiety and lessened class mobility.” –Wikipedia

The quote above is found on the Wikipedia article on hipsters. It is a prime example of the sort of language that you, as a hipster will need to use on a daily basis. Does it actually mean anything? Maybe, maybe not. What’s important is that it makes you sound cultured, intellectual, and worldly. The classic hipster icon that is paired with this type of speech, is of course, wide-framed vintage non-prescription glasses (lenses optional).  The combination of the glasses and the obnoxiously large words is enough to make any person of lower intelligence than you practically bow down in awe over your learned vocabulary.  When you say things like “I disagree with society’s administrative hierarchy in today’s cultural zeitgeist as a contribution to the inaccurate characterizations of our nation’s rationality and overall tolerance”, you obviously know what you’re talking about.  If you are actually trying express your opinion on an intellectual topic and know a lot about it, then still be sure to express it in as pretentious a manner as possible.  If someone seems to be out-smarting you on a topic, and using bigger, more obscure words, your end of the conversation may begin to seem hopelessly uncultured.  Don’t panic, you have a few options.  You can (a) retort mockingly about their pompous and arrogant use of words, (b) call them a hipster and strut away, or (c) you can always just give them a nice long hipster sigh.

It can sometimes be difficult to arrange sentences with big words in such a way that makes you sound like a brilliant philosopher.  Here’s a few commonly-used hipster buzzwords and phrases to pepper your sentences with:

  • Ironic
  • Culture
  • Social structure
  • Synergy
  • Zeitgeist
  • System
  • Contrived
  • According to the teachings of… [obscure philosopher]
  • You can’t just trust the… [majority, government, corporations, etc.]
  • I find that rather… [demeaning word]
  • At least I’m not… [witty, intelligent insult]
  • You wouldn’t understand… [*sigh* or *roll eyes*]

This type of speech is often derogatorily labeled “pretentious hipster bullshit”.

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Triangles: The Inevitable Symbol of Hipster Ideals

As you become more and more immersed in the beautiful and pulchritudinous world of hipsterism, you may find yourself noticing certain recurring patterns or themes within the subculture.  They may seem peculiar or insignificant, but some of them are representational of the very core of hipster ideals.  Triangles are an often-sighted shape in hipster photos, fashion, and individual expression, that embody the true meaning of being hipster.  Let’s explore what this might look like, and I’ll bring up some ideas of why perhaps the triangle has become such an important hipster icon.

Hipster photography and photo-manipulation is a common place to find triangles. Especially the deep and meaningful finger-triangle.

I quite agree.

This hipster is showing true devotion to his purpose as a hipster, by getting a triangle tattoo, the meaning of which is MUCH too deep and abstract for you to ever understand.

A lovely hipster sweater with beautiful triangles. As this obscure hipster once famously said about the sweater, “It has triangles, and triangles are the meaning of life”.

The triangle is the perfect hipster instrument to take up. It makes you seem cultured and unique, and attracts bountiful amounts of hipster babes.

Evidence shows that there may have been very early forms of hipsters living in northern African deserts.

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