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A Tomboy’s Guide to Eco Stylishness

tomboy to eco stylish
Written by Jennifer Nini

Each person has a particular style.

Some love minimalist design and wear monochromatic everything.

Some women are disciples of bohemian fashion complete with wavy hair, colourful prints and excessive layers of arm bangles.

Some enjoy sexing up their fashion with a smear of red lipstick, fake lashes and figure-hugging outfits.

As for me? My style has undergone many transformations and I've tried every style there is. It may not be obvious today, but growing up I was a classic 'tomboy.'

A daddy's girl, I still have a soft spot for contact sports (I played football/soccer as a mid-fielder), prefer to discuss business and politics than gossip and to this very day, one of my favourite movies is 'Stand By Me' (camping with my mates and telling stories, yes please!).

Whilst I've experimented with many different looks, my favourite is the one I'm currently in right now. I call this period 'eco stylishness.'

Even tomboys love fashion

I wasn't always a glam greenie.

Eco Warrior Princess: Jennifer Nini wearing top from Synergy Organic Clothing

Looking through photo evidence of my fashion history, my penchant for anything boyish is easy to identify.

First there's the class photo in Prep wearing your typical school dress. What's not so typical is while the other girls in the front row with me are showing off frilly socks and patent leather shoes, I'm wearing my Adidas velcro sneakers. Classic.

Later in typical 90s fashion and influenced by my rap idols Salt 'n' Pepa, TLC and 2Pac, I wore baggy pants, huge jumpers and I kept my hair length short in a concave style. Although I had boy crushes, I was too busy perfecting my wit, writing short stories and memorising rap lyrics.

Towards late high school inspired by Kelly Slater (I loved him) I started flicking through surf girl mags and purchased lots of Rip Curl and Quicksilver apparel. I remember trying to persuade my mum to let me own more than one bikini even though back then I rarely saw the beach. I failed.

Then in my early twenties - sick of the time wasted styling my hair and rebelling against the typical idea of 'female beauty' - I cropped all my hair and went androgynous. I started wearing lots of black, white and grey and my tops were all round neck or v-neck. My mum especially freaked out because I went really boy short - as in one step up from a shaved head. I thought I looked good (and still do).

Then I became an eco fashionista

Tomboy to Eco Stylish

Of course I love being a woman (most of the time) and while I don't refer to myself as a tomboy (much), you can still see the boyish leanings in my personality (unapologetically confrontational at times) as well as in my outfit ensembles.

This recent style shoot is a perfect example. I'm wearing a 12 year old pair of Wranglers that I've had for so long they've turned into a cool pair of distressed jeans, Synergy Organic Clothing Valley Tank, Asics sneakers nearing a decade old and my favourite pair of Oroton sunglasses. Plus look at that I-despise-modelling face! No doubt I'm still a tomboy at heart...

Eco Warrior Princess: Ethical Fashion Blogger

I want to know how your style has evolved. Do you dress differently to how you used to and if so, is there a reason for this? Share your story by leaving a comment below.

Disclosure: Eco Warrior Princess is a brand ambassador for Synergy Organic Clothing and the top was gifted as part of this relationship. Eco Warrior Princess only support brands and businesses that meet our high ethical standards. For more information, click here.

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About the author

Jennifer Nini

Jennifer Nini is a writer, activist and the founding editor of Eco Warrior Princess. In 2010, after studying Fashion Business, she began this blog to explore her interests in fashion, politics, social justice and sustainability. Jennifer is also the founder of The Social Copywriter, a digital agency harnessing the power of copywriting and content marketing to help mindful businesses reach more people. When she's not perfecting a sentence or coaching business clients, you will find her at her permaculture farm reconnecting with nature.

10 Comments

  • I love your style, you look amazing darling!
    I started at school a bit all over the place and didny really have a look. But once at collage doing Art and Photography my ‘hippy’ hit the floor running. I had a shaved head and wore baggy patchwork pants and jewellery absolutly everywhere! I also dabbled is the rocker look with PVC pants and leather jackets, but I stuck with the boho. I went through a surfer stage too when I was learning to surf and working in a surf shop. But now I’m back to where I feel most myself and that is boho/hippy.

    • You are too lovely Katie!! I remembered as soon as I read it, that you had a shaved head! How fantastic! I’d love to see pics because I’ve always wanted to go shaved and decided that if I ever have a baby, that’s exactly what I’m doing! I forgot about rock! I’ve also dabbled in that myself; mostly rock tees, black chocker type necklaces, army boots. I definitely think boho suits you and I’m glad you’ve embraced it – it definitely fits in with your natural, down-to-earth vibe 🙂

  • It was fun to read about how you’ve embraced the Tomboy style and personality. I definitely think more women could benefit from speaking up for themselves and discussing less gossip and more ideas and business-related conversations.

    As for myself, I’ve always tended to be a little more on the feminine, sophisticated side, but I always had an inner punk in me. I always loved Rock ‘N Roll and wanted to look like Gwen Stefani and dye my hair a new color every month. Sadly the hair dye hasn’t worked out, but I still have an affinity for bright colors, motorcycle jackets, and dresses that have a unique edgy flair to them. 🙂

    • Glad you’re on the same page. If you ever want to bounce off business or political campaigns let me know 🙂

      Also I can see your penchant for the feminine when I look at your pics. You’re often in colourful print dresses and wearing your token smile too 🙂 Glad you don’t dye your hair much, it looks lovely natural. What’s the most shocking colour you’ve ever had in there? I went light brown with some dark blondish streaks lol! Moved on from that because it was costing a fortune and my hair was not in great shape at the end of it lol!

  • I think I have final come to accept I like bright colours, clashing patterns and my jeans. Like other commenters and yourself I have dabbled with many different looks over the years. Throughout University I had brightly coloured streaks in my hair and dressed in rock gear – although I still love my biker and army boots.
    I have to say I would still find it difficult to sum up my style in a phrase, it has taken me a while but I am at least finally approaching a wardrobe that is sustainable and definitely my style – whatever the heck it is 🙂
    Really enjoy your blog and I would wholeheartedly agree with the sentiment that I love a political chat more than gossip any day.

    • I still have my army boots too haha! Nowadays the kinds of boots I wear are more often gumboots. I’ll have to check your blog out to get an idea of your style. Do you do many outfit posts? Also are you on social media? I’m sure we’ve crossed paths before. Glad to be connected anyway 🙂

      • I follow your blog and your Instagram, I think I have commented before and I have definitely commented on your Instagram. I love hearing about your off-grid lifestyle and your posts are really interesting, I found you via ethical fashion bloggers that Ceri set up.
        On my blog I want to do more ethical outfit posts but I have yet to figure out a good way of taking them, plus I do find posing really difficult – always feel like a eejit 🙂

        • Hahaha Steph you are not alone in that respect – I actually wrote a post called ‘The Worst Ethical Fashion Photoshoot Ever’ that goes into a little about how I feel about that aspect of fashion blogging. Where abouts are you based? I love that the ethical fashion crew is growing. When I first came on the scene, there weren’t many of us around and I think Ceri was actually my source of inspiration at the time! She still is 🙂

  • I definitely went through a tomboy stage when I was younger. I would say my style has evolved to be a bit more feminine, but I still love mixing in days of “tomboy” comfort. There is something so fuss-free and easy about it! I would never be able to tell those jeans are that old! I love them 🙂

    • What I love about fashion is that it tells a story. Parts evolves as we evolve and parts remain as those parts of us remain. Those are also my favourite pair jeans because they’re perfectly distressed 🙂

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