Anatomy of a Hipster

Posted: May 27, 2013 in Indie, Music Culture
Tags: , ,

There’s been an increasing amount of talk about hipsters over the last few years. A flurry of chatter about their likes and dislikes and the hipster “look.” So what exactly makes a hipster a hipster?

Hipsters listen to independent music because it’s new, it’s different, it’s everything that isn’t mainstream. They love learning about bands before everyone else so they can rub it in and make you feel inferior if you don’t know the band, declaring it’s because you “wouldn’t understand.” When it comes to Top 40, hipsters perpetually roll their eyes, shake their heads in dissatisfaction and criticize to their heart’s content, often using scoffs as a sound effect. Their obsession with everything old school leads them to purchase record players (even portable ones) and buy everything on vinyl.

Hipsters wear skinny/tapered jeans, sport Converse sneakers , and rock anything vintage. But not the legit Value Village kind. They instead go to stores that sell much more expensive first-hand clothing made to appear vintage. Contrary to popular belief, hipsters have money and can afford nice things – they aren’t in fact starving artists fighting for a cause, they just give that impression because their look is tailored that way. They also generally thrive in anything creative and have a penchant for any and all Mac products.

Hipsters like to accessorize. Scarves/handkerchiefs are casually (ie deliberately) thrown on, or hanging out of their back pockets – similar to how Bloods and Crips identify themselves. They wear thick-rimmed big-framed glasses – those with 20/20 vision opt for the non-prescription model. They wear toques during every season and no hipster look would be complete without a t-shirt: ironic, graphic, obscure-band-related, or 80s-movie-related. It’s their subtle way of drawing attention to themselves: even though they take pride in not caring what other people think, they want everyone to know they’re a hipster.

Hipsters are very aware, ignorance being their biggest enemy. They tend to be vegetarians/vegans, eat organic foods some of which they grow themselves. Most of them ride bikes or skateboards. Their hairstyles range from shaggy and mop-like, to messy and long. They want to show that they don’t care about their appearance, except they spend an awful lot of time making it look that way. They don’t subscribe to any religion in particular – often making their atheism or agnosticism perfectly clear – but are very spiritual and probably do yoga and (try to) meditate. Lastly, they are in love with their brutal wit and sarcasm, most comments accompanied by a smirk and an internal self-high five for their flawlessly crafted one-liner.

(Note: Possessing one or more of these traits doesn’t mean you’re a hipster, but in order to be considered a hipster, you have to possess the majority of them.)

Hipsters like to think they’re cool, trendsetting, independent thinkers who thrive on their individuality. They strongly believe they’re ten steps ahead of everyone in everything, and enjoy reveling in that fact. Problem is, hipsters are actually condescending, pretentious people who illogically follow impractical trends because “it’s a hipster thing”: they don’t even know why they do what they do! It’s high time they recognize their identity crisis or they’re going to end up defeating the purpose of their existence. Like this guy.

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