Shirley Manson in 1996 (left) and 2012.
Photo: Getty Images
As a ‘90s kid growing up in Nashville, Tennessee, Shirley Manson was IT. She had flame-red hair, porcelain skin, kohl-rimmed eyes, and an affinity for black. In other words, she was everything I wasn’t and everything I dreamed about becoming, especially while I sat bored in my middle school history class (probably humming “Only Happy When It Rains” underneath my breath). Since Garbage’s beginnings back in 1994, the Scottish singer has proven that you can look amazing and rock out at the same time, and I love her for it. She was the rough-and-tumble cool girl in the band’s early days, pairing black dresses with combat boots and fishnets or using her pink boa as a stage prop at a show in Germany-yes, the same boa that graced their 1995 debut self-titled album. Over the years, Manson has stomped all over the fashion map, wearing everything from punky schoolgirl-inspired outfits to suspenders to pretty much every type of mini dress under the sun. Before Avril Lavigne, Katy Perry, and Lady Gaga, Manson was the ultimate 1990s fashion star, and still is- even after the decade has ended.
The band took a hiatus after their fourth album Bleed Like Me and came back in 2007 to release their greatest hits with Absolute Garbage. But now, seven years since they’ve dropped new material, they’re officially back with Not Your Kind of People (finally!). So go ahead and celebrate the Garbage summer tour, their welcome return, and indulge in some serious ’90s nostalgia by checking out Shirley Manson’s greatest fashion hits here. And stay tuned, because there will be many more to come…