How to Not Be a Basic Bitch During Fall

Put down the pumpkin spice latte.

The school year has officially begun! For us college kids, that means once again relying on that sweet bean juice to power through class and the ever so fashionable outfit combination of sweatpants and your oldest t-shirt. However, as the trees start to turn and the weather begins to chill, a new type of student starts to emerge. She is commonly known as “The Basic Bitch,” but could have other names depending on the university. The second a tree drops a leaf, it is her time to shine. Armed with her pumpkin spice latte (or PSL, duh) and swathed in leggings and her UGGs, she storms her way onto campus, flipping her hair onto the back of her puffy vest and long-sleeve t-shirt.

Girls, trust me, I know. It is way too easy to fall into the basic trap. UGGs are totally comfortable and pumpkin spice lattes are delicious, but this is your reputation on the line here. Do you really want to be known as that girl on campus, the Basic Bitch? As a college female myself, I have been tempted many times to succumb to the lifestyle of the Basic Bitch. Though not a fan of pumpkin spice lattes, I have fallen victim to the UGG and black legging combination a number of times and I felt myself exuding basic-ness. But fear not! I am here to help guide you, so read along to arm yourself against Basic Bitch Season.

1. Cut Down on the Pumpkin Spice Lattes

PSLs are an integral component of the Basic Bitch. This Starbuck’s seasonal drink is one of the most anticipated concoctions every year, with hordes of young women lining up just for a taste of the fall beverage. With the ever-growing popularity, you would think that it’s the only drink on the menu, but that is totally not the case.

The PSL was created in 2003 and officially introduced in Starbucks stores in 2015 (Image via Today)

Just last year, the coffee supergiant unveiled a new fall drink, the Chile Mocha. Its espresso and steamed milk combined with cocoa and cinnamon and topped with whipped cream and a generous sprinkling of Chile Mocha powder (a combination of cayenne and ancho chile pepper, cinnamon, paprika, sugar and sea salt) knock the basic PSL out of the park. But, if you must indulge in a pumpkin spice latte, keep it to yourself. We all know how great and delicious they are, so bragging to your sorority sister about how the barista made yours “like, sooooo perfect” is both extra and unnecessary.

2. Find a New Fall Uniform

Take a look at your fall closet and tell me what you see. Is it an overabundance of puffy vests or jackets, black PINK leggings and tan UGG boots? If so, you need to check your basic levels. Countless memes have been formed poking fun at clumps of college girls rocking the same elemental outfit, so rise above. This warning also applies to the riding boot, jeans and flannel shirt combination. Do you really want to show up to class wearing the same outfit as that girl that totally stole your unassigned assigned seat? Probs not!

To combat this basic costume, venture out into new fashion territory. Straying away from mass-production companies like Forever 21, Charlotte Russe and Urban Outfitters in favor of smaller boutiques or thrift stores is a great way to start. Mixing unique pieces with even the most basic of clothing will allow your true personality to shine through and make you feel your absolute best.

3. Cool It with the Apple Orchards

Apple picking is something that is consistently splashed across Instagram feeds during the fall season. Combine this activity with the above established riding boot-jean-flannel uniform, and you have a recipe for a Basic Bitch. I’m not knocking apple picking, as it is an extremely fun activity, but endlessly posting about it is redundant and boring. Fall is one of the most beautiful times of the year, filled with endless Instagram opportunities from hayrides to college football games.

Apples are cool, but have you tried baking them into homemade pies? (Image via Gal Meets Glam)

Like I said before, apple picking is a great time and so much fun with friends. However, there are even more fun activities to be had after collecting all of that fruit. I’m going to go out on a limb and say you probably love the Food Network, and you probably love baking or at least attempting to bake. Organizing a “Great British Bake-Off” style party with all your girlfriends post-apple picking is a great way to bond and gorge on everything you just harvested! Then, post all your hard work on Instagram and show off the amazing recipes you came up with.

4. Stay Away from Unoriginal Halloween Costumes

Halloween is my absolute favorite holiday, and it always has been, so count a strike against me on the basic scale. However, I always pride myself on coming up with an out of the box, totally original costume. As much as I wanted to fall into the Harley Quinn crowd last year, I instead dressed up as Andy Samberg from the Saturday Night Live “Dick in a Box” music video. Every year, it’s extremely easy to spot all the basic girls as they seem to all be in the same costume. Based on whatever movie or trend is popular at the time, it is a safe bet that at least ten girls at any Halloween party will be in the same costume.

A quick search on Pinterest can help with a creative costume idea block, but some of the best costumes come from personal interests or things from childhood. Gathering a group of friends to recreate the “Rugrats” cast or Blossom, Bubbles and Buttercup from “The PowerPuff Girls” are two great examples of easy, original costumes that will stand out in a crowd.

Okay, so listen. I’m assuming after reading this, if you are even still reading, some of you are totally pissed. Who the hell am I to say how you should dress, what you should drink or what you should post on Instagram? That, my friends, is exactly what I’m getting at. Being a “basic bitch” is not a bad thing, and you should not change yourself just because Chad from Delta Apple Chai called you out for wearing UGGs. College is a time for self-expression and doing pretty much whatever you want, so do it. Go out there and drink your PSLs, rock your leggings and puffy vest and above all, be as basic as you damn well please.

Keegan Fornoff, Southeast Missouri State University

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Keegan Fornoff

Southeast Missouri State University

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