If you're thinking paint splattered clothing is merely the designated uniform of an artist hard at work, it's time to reconsider. Like most craft-like designs — tie-dye, beading, patches, etc. — this decorative detail can actually be quite elevated and versatile, especially if we're talking about the new and improved version that's been rising in popularity for the past few months.
While splatter paint fashion was arguably a staple of the '80s, and similar styles have come in and out of rotation since then, the current variety of splotches, squiggles, and sponging on the market right now argues that this look is back in full force. That's not too much of a surprise, though: Splatter paint also appeared in a few Fall 2021 presentations, including Dolce & Gabbana, where the trend was mixed with metallics and made to look futuristic, and Moschino, where even the makeup models wore matched the strokes of paint seen on suits and dresses.
Of course, we'll fully admit that incorporating splatter paint styles into an everyday wardrobe can be intimidating. It does have that history of being a tad cheesy and juvenile (as if we're getting dressed to head to summer camp), and though the trend has definitely evolved, it still has a very much 'in your face' feel.
Thankfully, celebrities are already on board and have been showing us numerous ways to pull it off, thus convincing us that splatter paint is well on its way to becoming the new tie-dye — as in, something that will be everywhere in a matter of months.
Back in March, our queen Rihanna not only proved that the jean skirt was on the brink of a comeback, but paint splatter was now cool, too. At first glance, that little bit of white looks almost like faded denim, proving there is a sleek, subtle way to sport this trend.
Speaking of subtle, we were so preoccupied with Victoria Beckham's throwback flares that we almost didn't notice the light distressing happening here, which also included a few tiny white paint spots.
Jeans aren't the only item getting paint splattered all over them, though. While filming the Sex and The City reboot, Nicole Ari Parker was seen wearing a pair of colorful, splattered, Giuseppe Zanotti shoes, convincing us this playful trend will be sticking around well beyond the series premiere.
If you're not into the whole paint splatter thing, there are a few alternatives that are similar enough but not as extreme. For instance, Bella Hadid was seen wearing spray painted pants at Cannes, which gave her groovy ensemble a bit of an extra kick.
The painted look is easy enough to DIY — both on purpose and accidentally (remember when Katie Holmes unintentionally sold us on this trend a few short years ago?). However, if you're worried about your outfit looking more pre-school art project than street style star, we've rounded up a few pre-splattered pieces for you to shop, ahead.
Philosophy Di Lorenzo Serafini Paint-Splatter Detail Jeans
Shop now: $300 (Originally $750);
Gallery Dept x Lanvin Painted Asymmetric Cotton Shirt
Shop now: $800;
Converse Chuck 70 Archive Paint Splatter Print Sneaker
Shop now: $90;
Sub_Urban Riot Splatter Paint Willow Sweatshirt
Shop now: $72;
Summersalt The Do-It-All High Rise Biker Shorts
Shop now: $55;
Lane Bryant Signature Fit Boyfriend Capri Jean Light Wash Paint Splatter
Shop now: $29 (Originally $47); lanebryant.com
Michael Lauren Roman Boyfriend Tee
Shop now: $88;
Rue21 Blue Splatter Paint Crew Socks
Shop now: $6;
Tanya Taylor Simone Top
Shop now: $175;
Giuseppe Zanotti Frankie Paint-Splatter Sneakers
Shop now: $850;
Pilcro The Wanderer Utility Pants
Shop now: $148;
Missguided Ecru Co Ord Paint Splatter Oversized Denim Shirt
Shop now: $26 (Originally $66);
Reformation Liesel Linen Dress
Shop now: $248;
Pinko Paint-Splatter Print T-shirt Dress
Shop now: $440;