Y2K Jewelry – Your Guide For 2022

What Is Y2K?

Y2K is a fashion trend inspired by fashion from the year 2000 (Y=year, 2K=2000). The trend came back around 2019 and 2020. Back in the 2000s, fashion was formed by celebrities and how they dressed, very similar to how Y2K was set among other things through pop culture celebrities. 

Maybe you can remember some outfits back when you were younger: low-rise jeans, layered skirts and shirts, super cropped tops, neon, cargo pants, big sunglasses, tracksuits, and much more. 

The style was brought back by the Gen Z people, so people who grew up in the 2000s. Although some Y2K looks aren‘t considered the best in fashion history, they definitely give you pure nostalgia. 

Y2K Jewelry 

Jewelry in the Y2K style is very similar to the Y2K outfits: colorful, fun, remarkable. The fashion trend gives you the possibility to not take fashion so seriously. For jewelry, you don‘t have to match the colors you wear with silver or gold jewelry pieces.

In Y2K, plastic and costume jewelry pieces are worn more than in any other style. You can definitely style up your outfit with spicy jewelry pieces and add little details that are fun. 

The Y2K style has become very popular in the last years which is why several different types were built. While some people go all in with jewelry, others are still more minimalistic and careful. Finally, you can choose how much jewelry you want to wear. But it must be said that a lot of the trendy jewelry pieces from Y2K are statement pieces by themselves.

Y2K Motifs

Motifs and symbols play a big role in Y2K fashion. They are found as necklaces or earring pendants, on rings, or as bracelet charms. The motifs can also be printed on clothes and so combined with matching jewelry pieces. 

  • Butterfly
  • Hello Kitty
  • Cross 
  • Star
  • PlayBoy bunny 
  • Heart
  • Skull
  • Fairy
  • Cherry 
  • Flower 

Y2K Necklaces

A purple tattoo choker and a black tattoo choker with a sun pendant as a typical Y2K necklace.
A black choker with a heart in between, a satin black one and a diamond one as typical Y2K necklaces.

Chokers

We‘ve seen the choker trend in the late 90s and it slipped over in the 2000s. Very popular are tattoo chokers in black or other mostly dark colors. However, bigger chokers are also in the Y2K fashion, for example with a star pendant in the choker‘s middle. In Y2K, the chokers can be chunky, colorful, and loud. 

A gold necklace with the word „sexy & single“ between the chain as a typical Y2K necklace.

Font Necklace

Another trend that came right from the 90s is the font necklaces. Often between a chunky, but also thin, chain, a name or word is written in a big font. They are mostly in silver but can also be gold-plated. Some might say this trend belongs more to 90s fashion, but it is still also a part of Y2K. 

A necklace with pink beads and one with white, gold and colorful beaded and pearls as typical Y2K necklaces.

Beaded Necklaces

Beaded Necklaces are made of plastic beads in all kinds of shapes and colors that you can pull on a thread. They have become especially popular in the Y2K looks since 2020 since they are easy to make at home. The beaded necklaces are often mixed together and don‘t have to follow a direct order.

They match very much the Y2K principles since they‘re often colorful and loud. Different kinds of materials are mixed, such as plastic or actual pearls, and pendants can also be added here. There are sometimes also little cubes with a letter so that people can spell names or words. You can see these also on bracelets. 

A gold long necklace with a round pendant as a typical Y2K necklace.

Long Necklaces

Very long necklaces may not belong to everyone‘s Y2K wardrobe, but they were popular in the late 2000s (i.e. before 2010). These necklaces often had a long pendant or a long chain.

A chunky silver chain with a heart pendant as a typical Y2K necklace.

Chunky Chain With Pendant

Necklaces with chunky chains are often worn in Y2K fashion. They are very popular with a big and noticeable pendant. The chunky necklaces often have a pendant with one of the classical motifs.

Since the chain is sometimes very chunky and the pendant is often quite big, the necklaces can be seen as statement pieces. A silver necklace with a star pendant can be worn with little star earrings, for example. 

A necklace with white, gold and colorful beads and pearls as a typical Y2K necklace.

Layered Necklaces

As said before, in Y2K, you can wear a lot of jewelry pieces at once. This gives you the possibility to layer necklaces. Here, as typical for Y2K, you don‘t have to follow a specific order. Layer different necklaces with several pendants or different materials such as a gold necklace with a beaded necklace. But, of course, don‘t exaggerate.

Wear a maximum of three necklaces at once. There are also necklaces seen in the Y2K style that have one main chain but connect several other chains with pearls and pendants altogether. 

Y2K Bracelets

One bangle bracelet and trews bracelets with beads in different materials and colors as typical Y2K bracelets.

Bracelet Styles Mixed

Just like the necklaces, bracelets are worn in Y2K in different styles and all mixed together. If you have several favorite bracelets, you can even wear them together at once! You often see several ring bracelets worn together and mixed. 

A gold bracelet chain with a smiley, a mouth, a mushroom and a heart charm as a typical Y2K bracelet.

Charm Bracelets

Charm bracelets had their peak in the 2000s and 2010s as well. Thanks to Y2K, they are back again. Charm bracelets have one main bracelet chain on which you can add different charms and pendants. 

A black silicone bracelets with words on it as a typical Y2K bracelet.

Silicone Bracelets

Typical for the Y2K fashion, bracelets are also worn made of silicone, and not just the usual metals. Often, they’re very colorful and with words or sentences written on them. The sentences are often supposed to be funny or cool and give off a specific vibe. The bracelets are mostly quite small, so many bracelets can be worn at once. 

Several silly Bandz rubber bands as typical Y2K bracelets.
Unicorn Silly Bandz Unicorn Macros July 09, 20102 by Steven Depolo, CC BY 2.0

Silly Bandz

Maybe you remember these from your own childhood. At least, I do. Silly Bandz are bracelets made of silicone rubber and are, when laying down on the ground, in the shape of animals or objects. They are mostly very colorful as well and people usually wear several ones at once.

Silly Bandz can also be seen critically since they were very popular in the 2010s. But, since Y2K is a trend and just a fashion niche, Silly Bandz can definitely be seen as a small part of it. 

Y2K Earrings

Big silver and smaller gold hoops as typical Y2K earrings.

Hoops

Hoops are essential for every Y2K wardrobe. They can be simple in silver and big or colorful and thick. Hoops can either match the outfit easily in simple or stand out and spice it up. If you have several ear piercings then you can also wear several small gold hoops. This looks a bit more modern than chunky pink hoops if you are looking for that.

Three butterfly dainty earrings in green, pink and white as typical Y2K earrings.

Earrings With Motives

As said before, some motives and objects are often in detail or big in many jewelry pieces. They are often in earrings. Great examples are dainty butterfly earrings, earrings with a cross pendant, longer earrings with rings and stars, and many more. In Y2K, the earrings can also stand out from the outfit through different materials, like white pearls, or bright colors. 

Y2K Piercings And Rings

A silver tongue piercing as a typical Y2K piercing.

Tongue Piercings

Piercings in the tongue have become a small part of the Y2K fashion. This doesn’t mean you have to get pierced immediately because you want to follow a trend. But, tongue piercings were quite popular in the early 2000s.

A white bigger navel piercing as a typical Y2K piercing.

Navel Piercings

This trend is no wonder, considering how many people wore super-cropped tops with low-rise jeans. Here as well, navel piercings aren‘t necessary for a Y2K look but can give your outfit a bit more authenticity. In case you are thinking about getting one anyways, of course.

A big butterfly shaped ring as a typical Y2K ring.

Rings

I probably don’t tell you anything new now: Y2K rings are often chunky and colorful. However, they can also include popular motifs and so be small with a small heart or skull in the front. While the big and colorful ones are in plastic, smaller rings with a front motive can be in silver or gold. 

Other Trends In Y2K 

As you may have noticed now, the Y2K fashion is there to stick out and to have fun with fashion. Do not take everything so seriously all the time. 

That‘s why Y2K mode, and so also the jewelry pieces, are very colorful. Don’t shy away from that. Neon colors have also their comeback in Y2K. 

Next to piercings and long necklaces, celebrities back in the 2000s made body or hip chains quite popular. Sometimes those body chains can be seen as well in Y2K but are not always daily life appropriate. An alternative is longer chains on the pants, often seen on baggy jeans or cargo pants. 

When looking at Y2K jewelry, we can’t forget the hair clips, although they are technically not jewelry pieces. But, you see colorful butterfly clips, which were also popular in 90s fashion, or bigger hair clips in some hairstyles.

Three butterfly clips in pink, blue and purple as a typical Y2K trend.

Where To Buy Y2K Jewelry 

The best way to get Y2K jewelry is to get it vintage. That means, ask your parents, siblings, or family members who grew up in the 2000s if they have some old jewelry boxes. That’s the good thing about fashion. Trends always come back again and you can wear your old pieces again. 

If you don’t find what you’re looking for, thrift or vintage stores, also online, are good places to go and to find authentic 2000s pieces. Online, you can also always look at eBay, Etsy or Depop, or other local selling platforms, to find good second-hand Y2K jewelry pieces. 

Another way is to make your jewelry yourself. At least some pieces. Beaded jewelry can be DIY. Online or in many craft stores, you find ribbons and a lot of different kinds of beads and pendants, and clasps. The small jewelry business where young people create their own jewelry at home has never been more successful. You don’t have to start a business right away, but, if you want, you can try to make your beaded necklaces and bracelets yourself. 

For those of you who want to buy brand-new jewelry pieces, I‘ve got some brands for you now. Eliou has some beautiful Y2K jewelry pieces. At BonBon Whims, you can create your own charms for your charm bracelets, among other things. Monki and Pieces are some more affordable jewelry brands that have a big range of Y2K jewelry pieces. 

Conclusion – Y2K Jewelry 

The 2000s are back and Y2K has become in the last two years very popular again. The jewelry pieces are all about being loud, extra, colorful, weird, and fun.

Tattoo chokers, chaotic beaded necklaces and bracelets, chunky hoops, butterfly and cross earrings, stars everywhere, silicone bracelets, naval piercings, and chunky chains that say „Juicy“ in the middle, are just some of the Y2K jewelry must-haves.