Hip(ster), Hip(ster), Hooray

Over the past few years, a cultural phenomena has swept 20-somethings all over the world: the hipster.  There’s clearly something that is resonating with our generation by striving to dress like our parents circa 1972, not conforming with our American Pie human counterparts, and having as little body fat as possible.  Although hipsters can get a lot of flack, they are at least promoting individualism, independent thought, culture, and the shitty/cheap beer industry (PBR , anyone?).  Looking at the rampant pitfalls of modern society – pervasive obesity, materialism, eating disorders, etc. – it seems that hipsters at least have made a cultural utopia wherein people can exist in a very free realm of living.

Recently, I just relocated to the amazing city of San Francisco from Seattle. They are known to have an affinity for each other, SF being the bigger, more sophisticated brother between the two.  In cities such as these, hipster culture is infused throughout just about everywhere, touting a seamless partnership with each city’s soul, if you will.  Experiencing these relatively close cities, in geography and personality, in a very intimate manner lead me to wonder just how different or similar hipster cultures are.

On the surface, Seattle and San Francisco hipsters may seem the same with their slender, skinny-fat limbs, Mac products and outrageous beards, but it is blatant that there are some differences to be found.  One, SF hipsters are amazingly aggressive in their ability to not shower.  For days, or maybe even months. Greasy hair, tangles and knots are more than prevalent.  Seattle hipsters seem to value cleanliness more than their SF cousins, thankfully for the Emerald City.  Which brings me to my next point:  the other difference I have found to be most apparent is the jobs arenas within which they work. Seattle hipsters, for the most part, seem to be working professionals who have an affinity for the hipster culture; SF, on the other (dirtier) hand, seems to mostly hold hipsters who are baristas/bartenders/hair dressers/artists/day drinkers all at once.  An expensive city it is, and to make up for that the SF hipsters must work 45 jobs in order to afford their Mac laptops, bar tabs, and expensive rent.

One thing appears starkly true in my mind: even though the degree of cleanliness and profession (or unprofession) of choice, hipsters north and south retain a consistent mentality, sense of elitism, and aggressive hold on the American Apparel market.  Annoying at times they may be, but give me a hipster over a bro any day of the week – at least they have something to say.

Elizabeth Walker | Blogger Extraordinaire | Twitter | Indie Shuffle | Facebook


One Comment to “Hip(ster), Hip(ster), Hooray”

  1. Thankfully, the Sydney hipster is more similar to the Seattle hipster described… but what’s weird is that most hipsters (myself included deep down inside) wish to be more like the SF breed. Which raises the question, who is more hip? Great article 🙂

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