When Did Hoodies Become Popular?

When Did Hoodies Become Popular?

Hoodies have become an iconic clothing item in modern fashion, but have you ever wondered when they first gained popularity? Surprisingly, the origins of the hoodie can be traced back to the 1930s, when it was introduced as a practical garment for workers in cold environments. Over the years, though, it has evolved into a cultural symbol, worn by people from all walks of life.

The popularity of hoodies skyrocketed in the 1970s and 1980s, thanks to their adoption by musicians and athletes. This casual and comfortable piece of clothing quickly became associated with rebellious youth culture, often seen as a symbol of individuality and urban coolness. Today, hoodies are more popular than ever, with various styles and designs that cater to different fashion tastes, making them a versatile fashion staple for people of all ages.



When Did Hoodies Become Popular?

The Evolution of Hoodies: From Workwear to Fashion Staple

Hoodies have become a ubiquitous wardrobe staple in today's fashion landscape, adorning the bodies of individuals from all walks of life. The popularity of hoodies can be traced back to their humble beginnings as workwear for laborers in the 1930s. Throughout the years, hoodies have undergone significant transformations, evolving from practical garments to fashionable pieces that dominate streetwear culture. In this article, we will delve into the history and timeline of when hoodies became popular, the factors that contributed to their rise, and how they have established themselves as a timeless fashion statement.

The 1970s: Hoodies Enter the Mainstream

In the 1970s, hoodies started gaining popularity beyond their initial function as workwear. The rise of the sports industry played a significant role in bringing hooded sweatshirts to the forefront of mainstream fashion. Athletes, especially those in cold-weather sports like football and skiing, began wearing hoodies to keep warm during training and competitions. This exposure to a wider audience sparked interest and drove demand for hoodies.

One iconic moment that helped solidify the hoodies' place in popular culture was when Sylvester Stallone wore a grey hoodie in the 1976 film "Rocky." The movie's immense success catapulted Stallone and the hoodie he donned into the spotlight, making it an instant fashion sensation. The combination of athletes sporting hoodies and their appearance in movies and other forms of media paved the way for their gradual acceptance into everyday fashion.

During this era, the hoodie also became associated with urban communities, particularly in the United States. Its adoption as streetwear was closely tied to the emergence of hip-hop culture in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Rappers and graffiti artists embraced the hoodie as a symbol of rebellion and nonconformity, further propelling its trendiness among young people.

The 1970s marked a pivotal period when hoodies transitioned from utilitarian workwear to a fashion statement beloved by athletes, actors, and countercultural movements.

The 1990s and Early 2000s: Hoodies in Pop Culture

In the 1990s, hoodies experienced another surge in popularity, driven by their strong presence in pop culture. Music played a significant role in cementing the hoodie as a fashion icon during this time. Artists from various genres, including grunge, rap, and alternative rock, embraced hoodies as part of their signature style, creating a powerful association between the garment and rebellion.

One of the most notable examples of the hoodie's influence in the 1990s was through the emergence of the skateboarding scene. Skateboarders adopted hoodies as a practical and comfortable outer layer during their sessions. This subculture's unique fashion sense, heavily rooted in streetwear, helped propel hoodies to new heights of popularity.

The hoodie also appeared prominently in films such as "Menace II Society" and "Boys n the Hood," which explored societal issues faced by marginalized communities. These movies showcased characters wearing hoodies, emphasizing their connection to urban culture and serving as a symbol of identity and resilience.

Furthermore, the rise of prominent streetwear brands in the 1990s and early 2000s contributed significantly to the hoodies' popularity. Labels like Stussy, Supreme, and A Bathing Ape incorporated hoodies into their collections, solidifying their status as fashion must-haves.

The Modern Era: Hoodies as Fashion Staples

From the 2010s onwards, hoodies have firmly established themselves as fashion staples for people of all ages and backgrounds. The fusion of athleisure and streetwear trends propelled the hoodie into the realm of high fashion, making it a common sight on runways and in luxury designer collections.

Notable collaborations between top fashion brands and streetwear labels, such as Adidas and Supreme or Off-White and Nike, have further elevated the hoodie's status as a coveted item. Hoodies with bold graphics, unique prints, and limited-edition releases have become highly sought-after pieces, often commanding high prices in the resale market.

Additionally, the rise of social media and celebrity endorsements has contributed to the hoodie's enduring popularity. Influencers, musicians, and athletes regularly showcase hoodies in their outfits, setting trends and inspiring their followers to embrace this versatile garment.

Today, hoodies are available in a myriad of styles, fabrics, and designs. They have transcended their humble origins to become a symbol of comfort, style, and self-expression. Whether worn for athletic pursuits, casual outings, or as part of a high-fashion ensemble, hoodies have undoubtedly cemented their place in contemporary fashion culture.

The Influence of Hoodies in Pop Culture and Activism

Apart from their role as fashion statements, hoodies have also found themselves at the center of cultural and social movements. The hoodie's association with various subcultures has made it a canvas for creative expression and a symbol of resistance.

The Hoodie as a Symbol of Identity

For many marginalized communities, the hoodie has become a means of reclaiming identity and challenging stereotypes. In the wake of tragic incidents involving racial profiling and violence, hoodies have been embraced as a symbol of solidarity and protest.

The tragic death of Trayvon Martin in 2012 sparked national and international outrage. Trayvon was wearing a hoodie when he was fatally shot, leading to the birth of the "Million Hoodie Movement." The movement sought to challenge racial profiling and promote awareness of the dangerous biases associated with hooded attire.

Since then, hoodies have continued to serve as symbols of resistance, encouraging dialogue and advocacy against discrimination and social injustice.

Hoodies in Music and Activism

Music has played a significant role in using hoodies as tools for messaging and activism. Artists like Kendrick Lamar, Beyoncé, and Childish Gambino have performed wearing hoodies, using their platform to shed light on important social issues.

In 2016, Beyoncé's groundbreaking visual album, "Lemonade," featured a powerful segment where she and her dancers wore hoodies as a tribute to Trayvon Martin and other victims of police brutality. This display further underscored the hoodie's significance as a symbol of resistance and unity.

Furthermore, musicians and activists have also utilized hoodies as a way to raise awareness and funds for various causes. Hoodies featuring slogans, images, or logos associated with important social movements have become impactful tools for sparking conversations and facilitating change.

The Future of Hoodies

As fashion continues to evolve, one thing remains certain: the hoodie's influence shows no signs of waning. Its versatile nature and ability to adapt to current trends ensure its ongoing relevance in future fashion movements.

The hoodie's journey - from functional workwear to cultural icon - serves as a testament to its lasting impact. Its ability to transcend social, economic, and cultural boundaries is a testament to its universal appeal.


When Did Hoodies Become Popular?

The Rise of Hoodies

The hoodie has become an iconic piece of clothing, often associated with youth culture and comfort. However, its popularity didn't happen overnight.

Although the exact origin of hoodies is unclear, they gained significant popularity in the 1970s when they were worn by athletes and sports enthusiasts. The hoodie's practicality and casual style quickly caught on, making it a staple in streetwear fashion.

During the 1990s, hoodies became even more popular, especially within hip-hop and urban communities. Artists like Tupac Shakur and Eminem were frequently seen rocking hoodies in their music videos and performances, further contributing to its rise in popularity.

In recent years, hoodies have continued to dominate the fashion scene. Their versatility and comfort have made them a favorite choice among people of all ages. From high-end designer brands to fast-fashion retailers, hoodies are ubiquitous in stores and online platforms.

Hoodies have also become a symbol of protest and political expression. Activists throughout history have donned hoodies to rally against social injustices, drawing attention to the garment's transformative power beyond fashion.


Key Takeaways

  • Hoodies became popular in the 1970s as athletes started wearing them for warmth and comfort.
  • The popularity of hoodies grew in the 1990s with the rise of hip-hop culture and streetwear fashion.
  • Hoodies are versatile and can be dressed up or down for different occasions.
  • They have become a staple in casual wear and are worn by people of all ages and genders.
  • The hoodie trend continues to evolve with new designs and collaborations with fashion brands.

Frequently Asked Questions

Hoodies have become a popular clothing item in recent years, known for their comfort and versatility. If you're curious about the history of hoodies and when they gained popularity, we've got you covered. Here are 5 frequently asked questions related to the rise of hoodies:

1. When did hoodies first become popular?

Hoodies first gained popularity in the 1970s as athletes and fans started wearing them for warmth and comfort. They were particularly popular among athletes and students, becoming synonymous with casual wear and representing a sense of rebellion and independence.

In the 1990s, hoodies became even more popular as they were embraced by hip-hop culture and streetwear fashion. They became a symbol of urban style and youth culture, with many celebrities and musicians donning hoodies in their music videos and performances.

2. How did hoodies become associated with streetwear?

The association between hoodies and streetwear can be traced back to the 1990s when brands like Champion, Nike, and Adidas started releasing hooded sweatshirts with their logos prominently displayed. Hip-hop artists like Tupac Shakur and Nas popularized the trend by wearing oversized hoodies with baggy jeans and sneakers, showcasing a relaxed and urban style.

Streetwear brands like Supreme and Bathing Ape further elevated the popularity of hoodies by creating limited-edition designs that became highly sought-after. Today, hoodies are considered a staple in streetwear fashion, often featuring unique graphics, embroidery, and bold branding.

3. How have hoodies evolved over time?

Hoodies have undergone various transformations since their inception. In the beginning, they were simple garments designed for warmth, often made from heavyweight fleece or cotton. As fashion trends evolved, hoodies started featuring different fabric blends and stylish details like zippers, pockets, and drawstrings.

Today, you can find a wide range of hoodies in different styles and materials, including pullover hoodies, zip-up hoodies, and even sleeveless hoodies. Hoodies have also become more gender-inclusive, with styles available for men, women, and non-binary individuals.

4. Why are hoodies so popular among young people?

Hoodies have become particularly popular among young people due to their comfort, versatility, and association with youth culture. They provide a relaxed and casual style that can be easily dressed up or down, making them suitable for various occasions.

In addition to their fashion appeal, hoodies also offer a sense of anonymity and protection, allowing individuals to express their personal style while maintaining a level of privacy. They are also practical for colder months, providing warmth and insulation.

5. Are hoodies still popular today?

Absolutely! Hoodies continue to be a popular clothing choice in today's fashion landscape. They are worn by people of all ages and can be found in various styles, colors, and designs. Hoodies have become a staple in both casual and streetwear fashion, with fashion brands regularly releasing new collections featuring innovative hoodie designs.

The comfort and versatility of hoodies, along with their associations with sportswear, streetwear, and youth culture, ensure their enduring popularity for years to come.



In conclusion, hoodies became popular in the 1970s and 1980s when they were worn by athletes and musicians, making them a symbol of coolness and street style. They gained even more popularity in the 1990s and 2000s, with the rise of hip-hop and urban fashion.

The comfort, versatility, and casual yet trendy look of hoodies have made them a staple in many wardrobes worldwide. Today, hoodies continue to be popular among people of all ages and have become a fashion statement that reflects individuality and personal style.


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