Yeezy Jeans & "Cool" as a Constantly-Shifting Target
These sorts of back-and-forth trends may seem frustratingly arbitrary, but there’s a tremendous force involved in the shrinking and growing of jeans. It’s called “cool.” It’s an incredibly powerful marketing tool—one that has driven the astronomical profits of companies from Nike to Apple to Kanye West’s Yeezy—and nowhere is its influence as obvious as in our clothes. Cool doesn’t just explain why people will pay $1,000 for the right sweatshirt. It’s also arguably a factor in why the right logo makes us view some people as more suitable for a job, or worthy of receiving money for charity.
What it is, exactly, is a little hard to define, but there are hints in its history, in trends, even in neuroscience. Cool is a target that’s constantly shifting. It’s an attitude, a term of approval, and today, as much as any of these things, it’s a game of superficially rebellious status-chasing, centered on consumerism.
From “The Neuroscience of Cool” by Marc Bain (@marcbain_) for Quartz (@qz); Photo by Beretta/Sims/Rex
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