Prosecco, pumpkin spice lattes and Pinterest. Avocado on toast, abbreviations and Instagram. Bridget Jones, brunch and brow shaping.
These are just a few things I love, but according to society, they’re also signs that I am “basic”.
This is a term that has negative connotations, but I’m speaking out to say I may be basic but I am proud of that.
If you weren’t sure, the definition of “basic” is “only interested in things mainstream, popular, and trending,” according to Urban Dictionary.
But just because you like things other women also like doesn’t mean you’re somehow inferior to the edgier amongst us who probably only wear vintage clothes and go to independent coffee shops (even though I bet all they really want is a pumpkin spice latte because they are like a delicious hug in a mug).
Whilst your parents may not understand the modern meaning of “basic,” the word’s current reincarnation has been around for a few years now.
Back in 2015, as Kate Moss was escorted off a plane for disruptive behaviour, she called the pilot a “basic b****.” And we can be pretty certain that was intended as an insult.
Being basic doesn’t mean you’re not special or interesting - you can still be both those things while liking mainstream things. After all, there’s a reason people like Taylor Swift, Diet Cokes and Zara: they’re all great.
Mocking people for conformity is snobby and just a bit mean. Why can’t we live our best lives, drinking slimline G&Ts out of mason jars, taking boomerang pouting selfies with glitter round our eyes and nostalgically watching Mean Girls for the millionth time alongside scented candles and a packet of Peanut M&Ms?
Some people think being basic means not being classy, which simply isn’t the case. Anyone can accidentally indecently expose themselves falling out of an Uber after one too many drinks, whether you’re edgy or basic.
It is, of course, an adjective solely used to describe women. What would basic behaviour be on a man? Being obsessed with crossfit? Instagramming a “cold one with the boys”? Wearing high socks and trainers? Considering “the gym” a hobby?
The biggest cliché term we have for young men is the “lad” but that certainly isn’t as pejorative as “basic.”
Often, young women will say, “Lol, I’m so basic,” whether IRL on on Insta. We use it jokingly about ourselves because we know it’s not an insult.
I have no shame in the fact that I love Ryan Gosling, Cher Horowitz is my spirit animal and I want to be best friends with Jennifer Lawrence. Like so many others. Because the thing is, I’m also obsessed with deadlifts, Bavarian culture and broccoli (it’s underrated, guys).
We’re all multifaceted individuals, and the term “basic” needn’t reduce you to a cookie-cutter copy of every other millennial woman in Topshop.
Are most of my likes and interests mainstream? Yes. Am I basic? YES! But do I think that’s a good thing? Obvs.
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