17-year-old YouTuber and viral teen sensation Emma Chamberlain seemingly sprung out of nowhere last year, but now she’s absolutely everywhere. Yes, on Twitter. Of course, on Instagram. But also, your closet. And if not yours, then probably your friend’s. Even if they don’t fully realize it.
On the YouTube scene, Chamberlain got famous for her self-deprecating humor and eclectic video editing in her vlogs. She’s branded as a “relatable teen” whose messy take on life and L.A. has enchanted her nearly 7 million subscribers. And once you dig a little deeper into what she’s all about, it’s no surprise her sense of style has quietly replicated itself in Athens, Ohio.
Chamberlain started her channel by uploading lookbook, DIY, try on haul, and lifestyle videos, so she’s always been at least somewhat fashion-minded. She also debuted a controversial clothing line (there was a preorder option, but the images of the items were blurred, without explanation) that was arguably overpriced, but what she sold definitely reflects the trends she has perpetuated offline.
The High Key capsule collection includes scrunchies ($6.50), velvet tank tops ($28), a yellow denim jacket ($56) and a teddy fur jacket ($64). Chamberlain definitely didn’t go out of her way to create something splashy with her clothing line, but a few of the items in it mirror her popular Instagram aesthetic (she has 6.2 million followers).
For starters, there’s the most (IMO) eponymous look – the teddy fur jacket, nicknamed the “poopy” jacket by fans. It also sold out in under two hours from the High Key line. Most college students would probably cringe at the toilet humor, but you can spot plenty of them walking down Court Street in a teddy fur jacket.
Chamberlain may not have invented the jacket, but she certainly popularized it in a way no other digital influencer or celebrity has (seriously, I did a Google search for “teddy fur jacket celebrity” and I couldn’t find anyone else wearing the same kind of jacket I’ve seen replicated around campus). Urban Outfitters, a retail giant with an 18 to 28-year-old target demographic, sells a bunch of versions.
Also, Chamberlain is rarely seen not wearing a scrunchie, a trend she definitely didn’t invent, but also helped perpetuate through a massive social media presence. A quickly growing YouTuber with almost 2 million subscribers, Joana Ceddia, essentially achieved overnight success after DIY-ing the High Key scrunchie. If another YouTuber can go viral just by mentioning one of your accessories, it’s safe to say that accessory is a pretty weighty part of your public persona.
Besides just clothes she’s shilled, Chamberlain also has a few signature looks that mirror the Gen Z, hipster style that’s starting to show up in the undergraduate scene. One of the Dolan twins (I can’t tell them apart, I’m really sorry) said it best in the sister squad dress-up video: Doc Martens, plaid pants that are high-waisted, and a crop top.
Chamberlain also wears a specific shade of mustard-y orange beanie I’ve seen replicated all over the place. And those tiny sunglasses, but I can’t really give her a lot of credit there, because that’s way more Kylie Jenner’s doing.
The ideal Emma Chamberlain target audience may fall a little younger than our college-aged peers, but there’s no denying the teenager’s sense of style has been infectious for those in their twenties.