A Goth's Guide To Summer

Summer Goth

The Cure, duh.
Photo: Getty Images

Yo. Fellow goth kids. Pause that Bauhaus album you've had on repeat since you "found yourself" sophomore year in high school and listen up for a sec. Summer is coming, aka our least favorite time of year (well, right after spring because, ugh, pastels and sunshine), and we need to prepare. Since it also happens to be World Goth Day and 90-degree temperatures are just around the corner, we can't waste any more time getting our summer goth look on lock. Let's do this.

STEP 1: FIGURE OUT IF YOU ARE GOTH

Wearing all black and listening to Joy Division doesn't automatically gain you entrance into the goth world. (It probably just means you live in Brooklyn.) So first, let's find out if you're the real deal.

Check off all that apply to you:

  • Oftentimes, you feel nothing.

  • You would hate everything if you weren't so apathetic.

  • Smiling physically hurts.

  • You feel dead inside.

  • You know the difference between a pentagram and a pentacle.

  • You own at least three chokers and/or an ankh necklace.

  • You don't switch your makeup from "day" to "night" because around you, it's always dark.

  • If you believed in higher powers, Robert Smith would be your god.

  • You've already picked out your coffin, and you know what? It's rad.

If you relate to four or more of these things, congrats! You're goth. If not, you can leave now, bye.

STEP 2: SWEATING SUCKS, SO DON'T

Goths love layering, but all that dark fabric can be the ultimate sweatfest. Stick to breathable material like cotton, silk, or lace, and if you plan on wearing that all-black maxi poolside, don't go for something body-con. Opt for a loose-fitting frock with high slits or a low neck to get the ventilation going, and, sorry, but you'll have to pack away that corset until October. #boobsweat

STEP 3: HIDE FROM THE SUN

It has taken years of hiding in your friend's basement to keep that skin looking ghoulishly on-point, so don't throw it all away in the heat of the moment. (Yeah, that's a pun. You can smile. It's OK.) If you're on a beach, opt for something discreet like a floppy hat and load up on the SPF—nobody wants your cross-covered parasol blocking their view of the sunset.

STEP 4: DON'T GIVE INTO BASICS

Normies aka regular folk aka basics love to make comments like, "Aren't you hot?" or "Why don't you wear shorts?" or "Why are wearing all black in the middle of summer?". Instead of telling them the truth ("My clothing reflects the bleakness of my soul"), just ignore it and know you're less hot in your flow-y dress than they are in their ill-fitting jorts and Reeboks.

STEP 5: KEEP THE MAKEUP LIGHT

The only thing worse than sweating is sweating with globs of makeup on, so keep it simple! Ditch the pale foundation for the time being and opt for a tinted moisturizer or light powder. Also, if you're going to wear your signature heavy liner, make sure that shiz is waterproof in case your neighbors "accidentally" spray you with their new Super Soakers. (Ugh. Children.)

STEP 6: LIPSTICK IS IT

If you really want to make your summer goth look super easy, just throw on oversized shades, a swipe of lipstick, and call it a day. You can switch between black, dark purple, and dark green to keep it fresh, and if you're feeling really lively, opt for one with a '90s metallic sheen.

STEP 7: ACCESSORIES ARE KEY

Killer (heh) accessories are the only way you'll be able to stand out among the basics in the dead of summer, so layer up those chains, stack on those silver cuffs, and throw on a choker or two. And remember: Goths don't do flip-flops.

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