how to have a brat summer

Atlantic Records Charli XCX/YouTube

This year, it’s all about having a ‘Brat’ Summer—this is how it’s done

Move aside, hot girls and Barbie girls. It’s a Brat summer.


Angela Andaloro

Pop Culture

It’s officially the summer of the brat. If you think this year’s hottest trend is inspired by the Brat Pack renaissance, think again. We have Charli XCX to thank, as her new album Brat has inspired Gen Z to get ready to party through the hottest months of the year.

The album has been a resounding hit so far. The dance-tastic tunes that make up the album have earned the British pop singer tons of praise. While some listeners are already considering it the soundtrack of their summer, the pop stans are officially celebrating the rise of a brat summer.

What does it mean to be a brat?

Brat girls are taking to social media to define what it means to be a brat. In many ways, being a brat is a departure from the “clean girl aesthetic.” That look has dominated for a while and has only recently started waning.

Brat girls aren’t interested in being popular or winning over the crowd with their “I could care less attitude.” Their efforts are more set to kicking back and having a good time — whether it’s dancing until the wee hours of the morning or embracing your inner hot mess.

Many have also pointed out that the timing of the album — the summer after Barbie dominated mainstream everything — brings to mind the differences between Barbies and Bratz. Brat summer puts aside Barbie pink for lime green and goes all in on grit.

The word “brat” has, for so long, had negative connotations. It conjures up images of toddler tantrums or sugared-up tweens storming Sephora. Brat girls are here to reclaim the term and embrace the fact that everyone has their darker, sassier side.

How do you have a brat summer?

Having a brat summer is all about mastering the balance of carefree living with being assured and in control of your destiny. No one can explain it better than Charli XCX herself, who broke down the essentials for a brat summer in a recent interview:

She defined it for The News Movement, saying, “It can go that way, like luxury. But it can also be so trashy. Just like a pack of cigs and a Bic lighter and like a strappy white top with no bra.”

One of the biggest components of a brat summer is the “IDGAF” attitude. You’ve got to be armed and ready not to care what others think of your brat summer while being so wrapped up in it that you hardly notice anyway. It’s throwing away the rulebook in favor of fun and as much recklessness as you can handle.


Brat summer Examples

Having a brat summer is everywhere online, and no matter which platform you’re on, there’s sure to be a discussion about it. Like on Reddit:

Redditors discuss the ins and outs of a brat summer, in a post that reads 'In: Iced Coffee, Jorts, Brat, Troye Sivan, Alex Consani, drugs, gay people, raves, fruity drinks, the color green, white tank tops, baby tees, the brat font, talking shit Out: Taylor swift, homophobia, hot cofee, not listening to brat, sobriety, staying in'
In Body Image
In Body Image

On the app formerly known as Twitter:

And on TikTok:


especially if it’s root beer

♬ 360 – Charli xcx

No matter where you are, here’s hoping your summer is absolutely Brat.

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