VSCO Girls Are Basically All Of Us As '90s Teens

by Brandis Havener
Originally Published: 
Autri Taheri/Unsplash

If you have a teenage girl, you’ve probably heard it a thousand times, but you can’t figure out the sounds coming out of their mouths …

What. Are. They. Saying???

Then they say it again “… and I oop sksksksk.” Followed by giggling and something about being a … vis-co girl?? What the hell are they even talking about? So you ask. BIG MISTAKE.

You are now met with eye-rolling and sighing and then a loudly whispered “She doesn’t even know what that is?!” to her friend…and more giggling.

If you’re raising a teen or tween girl, welcome. You are completely uncool and unable to understand anything going on in the life of a teenager. Just like our parents never understood “Cool Beans” you will never understand “… and I oop sksksksk

But I am here to try and help. First of all, it’s VSCO (pronounced vis-co) and refers to the VSCO Photo App that has become increasingly popular for creating a filtered aesthetic specific to each user. The user can create their own custom filter to apply to their photos, giving them their very own VSCO style. They can then share their VSCO link on their Instagram bio … and basically filter life. VSCO Girl refers to girls that embody this filtered, aesthetic VSCO vibe.

Aren’t you glad you asked?

According to the Urban Dictionary, a VSCO Girl is the Tumblr girl of today. A girl that wears oversized shirts, Nike shorts, Crocs, Birkenstocks and Vans, wears puka shell necklaces, messy buns, and always has an extra scrunchie on her wrist (hello, wasn’t that most of us in the ’90s?!). They have Fjallraven Kanken backpacks and LOOOOVVVEEE Jeeps. They quench their thirst with their Redbubble sticker-covered Hydroflasks, have their AirPods at the ready and love saving the sea turtles. Oh, they also shame us when we dare to use plastic straws.

If you’re nodding your head as you read this and experiencing a slight ‘90s flashback … you might have a VSCO Girl.

In other words: they are basic teenage girls.

With all these “basic” girls being called VSCO Girls it stands to reason we would also have a bunch of “basic” moms out there as well, right? So let’s call them: VSCO Moms.

If you’re starting to feel a little nervous that you fit into this VSCO Mom thing and you have no idea how to live up to your role, this next part is for you!

Pro tips for being the best damn VSCO Mom you can be:

VSCO Mom Pro-Tip #1:

While a VSCO Girl envisions her first car being a Jeep and driving in the sunshine with the top off and the breeze blowing through her hair, a VSCO Mom doesn’t drive a Jeep. We have too many kids, kids’ friends, sports, and activities that revolve around driving our kids back and forth across town … over and over again. We are too damn concerned with gas mileage and having seats for all these kids to drive a Jeep.

So what do we drive?

A Minivan.

More specifically, the Honda Odyssey EX-L. This particular minivan and trim delivers leather, heated seats, sliding doors, and the piece de resistance: a moonroof. Oh yes, if we’re driving a minivan it had better be a kickass minivan with a moonroof—and a hella good sound system!

(Maybe you just breathed a sigh of relief; you don’t drive a minivan, whew! You drive a SUV… with a THIRD ROW! Amiright? Then yes, you are one of us. Trying to hide with your cool SUV… well, you can’t. I see you over there, because once you have that third-row, all coolness is gone. You’re basically driving a minivan, you just have less cargo room when that third row is up and lower MPGs. You are still in this my friend … so keep reading!)

Rest assured, we don’t see ourselves as minivan (or SUV with a third-row) moms. Deep down, we see ourselves as Jeep moms! We’re just stuck in a minivan shell. We are way too cool for a minivan, and yet…

If you’re driving a minivan (or an SUV with a third-row) but you don’t “look” like a minivan mom … you might be a VSCO Mom.

VSCO Mom Pro-Tip #2:

Let’s talk about the look of a VSCO Mom. Yes, there’s a look. We don’t want to be the mom that’s dumpy and frumpy, we want to look hip and cool! But not like we’re trying to be hip and cool. Sometimes we pull it off…and sometimes we don’t. But you can probably relate to what a VSCO mom looks like—or at least tries to look like.

Photo by Rosalind Chang on Unsplash

– Messy buns that take waaayyy too long and are anything but “effortless.”

– We may possibly—maybe sometimes—wear a scrunchie on our wrist… just maybe…you know, for emergencies.

– Dry shampoo is our best friend. ‘Nuff said.

– Our daughters are teaching us how to apply makeup, and we can’t figure out why a hunk of foam calling itself a beauty blender for $20 bucks does any better than our fingers. Doesn’t it just soak up the makeup instead?

– Ripped jeans—OK, ripped jeans are just cool, no matter your age.

– Fake Birks. Because our kids have the real ones and we can’t justify spending $120 on a pair of sandals for ourselves.

– Oversized t-shirts—to hide our imperfect parts, not because oversized shirts are cool.

– Necklaces with our kid’s initials or birthstones. We’ve moved up from the puka shell chokers of our youth, and birthstone “mom” rings are soooo 2000s!

– A Coach purse we bought five years ago from the outlet stores. We don’t get a new one because we have spent all our money on the Fjallraven Kanken backpacks for our kids… yeah, try pronouncing that correctly! Ha!

– Converse or Vans. Hell, they were the shoes we wore when we were kids … you know, back when they weren’t cool, they were just what we got. Now we’re spending $60 a pair for uncomfortable, unsupportive shoes. So, nostalgia for the win, because you’re not wearing them for comfort!

– You carry a Hydroflask of water with you everywhere you go, covered in stickers from coffee stands and breweries. Because, well, hydration is important, stickers are cool, and we drink coffee and appreciate a good craft brew!

If you can relate to two or more of the above items … you might be a VSCO Mom.

VSCO Mom Pro-Tip #3:

Essential oils. Yes, we have taken a tiny sliver of ancient Ayurvedic medicine and made it the go-to in the basic-mom arsenal of medicine to cure whatever ails you.

If you’ve got an ailment, there’s an oil for that!

Headache? Peppermint

Cold or Flu? OnGuard™ or Thieves® (depending on your EO Brand of choice, of course!)

Don’t like plain water? Lemon, Lime or Grapefruit

Cut or scrape? Tea Tree oil

Tummy Ache? Peppermint

Can’t Sleep? Lavender

Anxiety? Lavender

Stress? Lavender

Trouble Focusing? Lavender

See a pattern here? Yes, lavender cures everything!

We have diffusers in our living room, kitchen and each of our bedrooms to spread essential oil goodness into every corner of our loving and peaceful home.

We just want to spread peace, serenity, and harmony to our loved ones. And when cold and flu season strikes, we will be boosting immunities—one little drop at a time!

Does it work? I’m not sure, but if it makes you feel better to spread your love of basic-mom-hippie-oils throughout your happy home … you might be a VSCO Mom.

VSCO Mom Pro-Tip #4:

Ahhhh … suburban life at its finest. VSCO moms live in nice suburban neighborhoods. You know, the ones that half the town comes to for Halloween because all the houses decorate, and some even give out full-sized candy!

Photo by Wynand van Poortvliet on Unsplash

These are the neighborhoods that always have a plethora of kids out riding their bikes, people jogging or walking their dogs and a neighborhood Facebook page to post about the rude ass person that let their dog shit in someone’s front yard and didn’t pick it up…

Karen Jackson posted to >>> Summer Park Neighborhood Group:

“Who has cameras on the corner of Wildwood and Cascade Park Dr? If so, we need to see who didn’t pick up after their dog between 4:07-4:43 pm on Friday… grrrrr If you can post a link of the video in the comments so we all know who to publicly shame, that would be great! Thanks!”

Yes. We live in THAT type of neighborhood.

We also have kids that congregate on the corners waiting for the bus.

Dogs that bark incessantly when you walk past their house.

A trampoline in every yard (perfect for sleepovers!)

Nicely manicured lawns (except that one house—yeah, you know the one—unless you don’t, in which case it’s probably you … and then you’re definitely not a VSCO Mom!)

If this sounds like your neighborhood or you’ve ever posted on the neighborhood FB page about dog shit in your yard, you might be a VSCO Mom.

Is this your life? (You’re nodding, I know you’re nodding!) Maybe it is, or maybe you’re wondering who the hell these people are!

Either way, you now know if you’re a VSCO Mom … or if you’re not. And now that you know, please take your newfound title of VSCO Mom and use it to its full potential:

Proudly tell your VSCO Girl—and her friends—that you’re a VSCO Mom!

*Watch them cringe*

Be prepared for your daughter to say “Eww … mom. NEVER, EVER say that again. I will literally die if you say it again!” To which I would reply, in my sweetest voice possible, “Yes honey, we’ll all die … someday.

This will be followed by much eye-rolling and strange groaning sounds of embarrassment and another “Mommmmmm!

And if you really want to live up to your VSCO Mom status and elicit the best reaction ever—just practice saying “…and I oop, sksksksk” a few times in front of your kids (bonus points if their friends are there too!) Your daughter, while dying of embarrassment, will tell you “Mom, you’re soooo cringy … that is literally the grossest thing you can say … and you can’t even say it right!” Again, followed by more eye-rolling.

You’ll swear you’re saying it right … but we all know the truth; you aren’t and you can’t.

Why? Because you’re not a VSCO Girl. You’re just a VSCO Mom.

So now is the time to own it, my friend. We’re all in this together!

… Oh hey, can I borrow that scrunchie?

P.S. No VSCO Girls were harmed in the writing of this article, however, one was “totally ready to die” and may never quite be the same.

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