Types of Hipsters: Part Two

The non-exhaustive review of common hipster types continues with four more for your reading pleasure:

5) The Flower Childgarofalo.jpg
Born of progressive parents or former hippies, these millennials are granola-eating, dreadlocked rich kids who stand in solidarity with the poor and, well everyone except the white bourgeoisie. Aside from those stereotypes, they are actually quite diverse. Some are super socially conscious “no blood for oil!” activists, while others trade politics for pot. Additional concerns range from animal rights to fair trade to various third-world issues. The Flower Child is perhaps best defined by his or her affection for all things natural and organic. They love the outdoors (mountain climbing, biking, ultimate frisbee, etc) and are generally active in earth-saving politics. They enjoy Tofu, oats, and soy, but are not always hardcore vegetarian. Flower Children are generally very mild in temperament and easy to befriend, if you can get past the “take a shower!” stigma.

  • Fashion: Dumpster chic or Third World imports. Cultural patterns and fashions are key here. Low-end thrift stores (Salvation Army, Goodwill, etc) are the go-to, where plain plaid flannel shirts, Dickies and retro graphic tees (Mickey Mouse, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) are great finds.
  • Music: Widely varied, but generally non-electronic and mellow. Folk and old-school country are big, as are bluegrass, jam band, and progressive rap. Joni Mitchell, Ani Difranco, Patty Smith, Bill Mallonee, Phish, A Tribe Called Quest.
  • Movies: Latin American cinema is big, as are the more psychedelic American films. Generally open to comedy more than other hipsters, and not prone to the “all indie, all the time” mindset. Favorite directors: Alejandro González Iñárritu, Fernando Meirelles, Terry Gilliam, David Fincher.
  • Celebs of this kind: Damon Gough (Badly Drawn Boy), Janine Garofalo, Kate Hudson, Ani Difranco.

6) The Detached Ironicadam.jpg
Do you ever watch VH1? You know all those snarky, one-liner-spewing talking heads that make fun of pop culture all the time? Yeah, this is the Detached Ironic. These hipsters are media savvy and tabloid-literate, with a penchant for guilty pleasure entertainment. Typically the “class clown” personality, this hipster has an ever-ready arsenal of witty remarks about everything from O.J. to J-Lo. Extra-curricular interests include watching trashy television with a detached sense of irony (especially things like “The Tyra Banks Show”) and planning parties around cheesy movie marathons or live television events. While popular in large groups and generally mood-lifting people, DIs can be annoyingly distant in close personal relationships due to their pervasive sarcasm and difficulty with serious situations.

  • Fashion: Statement tees are where it’s at—the most original, ironic, and retro the better. Heavy on accessories like sunglasses and trucker hats too. Trendy, self-referential stores like Urban Outfitters, Hot Topic, and Hollister are big with these hipsters.
  • Music: All about the 80s—the more outrageous and cheesy, the better. Hair metal, new wave, drug music… all fun. When not wallowing in anachronistic pop, however, modern nerd-rock or punk are good things. Animotion, Go Gos, Sex Pistols, Michael Jackson, Queen, Weezer, Morrissey.
  • Movies: Comedy all the way: from the brat pack to the frat pack. Little interest in foreign film (except maybe Monty Python) or too-serious cinema, though broadly knowledgeable of movie trivia across all genres. Favorite directors: Christopher Guest, Tim Burton, Alexander Payne, John Hughes.
  • Celebs of this kind: VH1 talking heads, Adam Brody, Tina Fey, Chuck Klosterman, Kathy Griffin.

7) The Yuppiegyllenhall.jpg
This classic term is defined by Webster as “a young, college-educated adult who is employed in a well-paying profession and who lives and works in or near a large city.” In short: a young urban professional. These hipsters are city slickers extraordinaire, toting Apple ibooks in sleek suede book bags as they walk down the steps of their brownstone flat. They are heavily caffeinated, overworked gym rats that let loose only as part of a regimented schedule. For fun they picnic at outdoor concerts, go out to plays, bar hop (one-word bars only!) or attend young society functions or parties. Groceries are exclusively bought at upscale retailers like Whole Foods or Trader Joes, and table wine is served with most every meal. Though not as socially conscious as other hipsters, yuppies do voice opinions loudly and forcefully. They tend toward blue-state ethics with red-state capitalistic verve.

  • Fashion: Lots of catalog and online shopping; no time for scouring store shelves. Dependable upscale department stores are the favorites of yuppies. Generally lots of black attire, suits, and fashionable sunglasses. Even the gym clothes are designer. Overall very attentive to fashion “rules” and perfecting the right look for the right occasion.
  • Music: Very middle-of-the-road alternative. Nothing too risqué or indie, but certainly not straight-up pop. Music isn’t hugely important to them, but yuppies do fill their ipods with good stuff. Favorites include mellow brit-pop, sanitized hip hop, and eclectic rock. Coldplay, Belle & Sebastian, Camera Obscura, Doves, Kanye West, John Legend, The Arcade Fire.
  • Movies: Tends to veer toward character movies and Oscar bait. Puts large stock in awards and critics’ opinions (Academy Awards parties are annual events). Also enjoys stage-to-screen adaptations of films by reputable theater directors. Favorite directors: Sam Mendes, Paul Greengrass, Martin Scorsese, Neil Labute, Woody Allen.
  • Celebs of this kind: Jennifer Aniston, Brad Pitt, Reese Witherspoon, Patrick Wilson, Sarah Jessica Parker, Jake and Maggie Gyllenhaal.

8) The Artistepete.jpg
The geographical origins of hipster—Montmarte, Greenwich Village, Haight-Ashbury—have one thing in common: they were all enclaves of artists, among other things. Thus, the artist could be considered the original hipster. In modern times, the Artiste is the hipster who lives and works in the bohemian art world. Whether painters, sculptors, musicians, poets, filmmakers, or whatever…these guys have talent and are committed to aesthetic triumph. They love art and have a deep appreciation for it, and transcend most (but not all) trends and marketing whims. The Artiste thrives in urban settings, but can be found anywhere. They usually live with other artists and rarely venture outside of the aesthetically-minded bubble.

  • Fashion: Boho-peasant chic or rocker trash. Lots of jewelry and accessories, lots of color. Natural fabrics and fibers. Sometimes splashes of androgyny (guys in heels or skirts, girls in wife-beaters, worker shirts or ties) become evident. Over all, very unique and innovative.
  • Music: Weird, eccentric, uber-artsy or underground. Foreign music, ambient, and genre fusion is good…basically anything forward-thinking. Obscure 60s music is also big for them. Left Banke, Velvet Underground, Bjork, Sigur Ros, Ravi Shankar, Danielson, Mum, Nick Cave.
  • Movies: Typically very high-brow—to the point that even the average art house is too commercial. French New Wave, Italian neo-realism, and New York art cinema are favorite subgenres. Fairly well-versed in cinematic history and theory, with an eye for exceptional cinematography and art direction. Favorite directors: Federico Fellini, Vincent Gallo, Terrence Malick, Gus Van Sant, Andrei Tarkovsky, Wong Kar-Wai, Miranda July.
  • Celebs of this kind: Chloë Sevigny, Sufjan Stevens, Joseph Arthur, Michael Pitt, Pete Doherty, select contestants on Project Runway.


To be continued… Next time: “The Ex-pat,” “The Activist,” “The Health Nut,” and “The Emo-Goth.”

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14 responses to “Types of Hipsters: Part Two

  1. I’ve enjoyed your posts about “hipsters”.

    While not being entirely related, I wonder if you have read this essay comparing Facebook and MySpace in terms of class.
    http://www.danah.org/papers/essays/ClassDivisions.html
    Read her response as well. I found the article via A Very Short List.

  2. Pingback: How to spot a Hipster « Club Fritch

  3. I personally love retro anything including retro fashion. Thanks for the post.

  4. Pingback: Types of Hipsters: Part One « The Search

  5. What is the name for the type of hipster, always male, who has tattoos from neck to toes/fingers, wears nerdy 60’s style military issue type black framed glasses, sports facial hair/head hair akin to 60’s hippies and 70’s disco cokeheads, and gets most if not all clothes from Goodwill/Salvation Army/thrift stores?

  6. Oh and they normally wear ONLY white t-shirts…

  7. great blog! ive been struggling with “hipsterdom” since I am one at heart, but am going to be a lawyer in a private sector. from your choices it would seem my income would make me a yuppie hipster, even though yuppie is not what i would call myself, i am glad that hipsters aren’t necessarily class preclusive.

  8. @Matt
    lol..i sadly fit a couple of those descriptions; i always wear white tees and i am heavily tattooed..but i also fit with the artsy hipster as well (just the jewelry). So i assume its whatever other hipster description they fit into the most..i don’t know..this labeling stuff confuses me.

  9. A brilliant part two of a really good article! But I repeat, there is a big stereotype about all hipsters being douches so I recommend that people investigate a little before they make their opinion about a certain culture. Cheers!:)

  10. Pingback: » Why don’t people understand hipsters, triangles and this “hipster stores” blog. Hipster Stores

  11. Pingback: Best of the Blog’s First Five Years | The Search

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