If you follow Joanna Coles, Hearst Magazines’ chief content officer, on Instagram (and if not, you probably should) you might have noticed the blazer. The bold, patterned, very recognizable, green blazer.
Coles has posted images of herself wearing it again and again —at SXSW, hosting the Hearst 100 luncheon, and more. Last month, she shared a throwback shot of her green-blazered self at The Girlboss Rally. “The most over-worn blazer in history but celebrating my similarity to a leprechaun this St. Patrick’s Day,” read her humorous and very on-point caption.
That’s right. Coles, the former editor-in-chief of Cosmopolitan who is often photographed for her inimitable style, has consistently repeated a recognizable piece—leaving a trail of evidence on social media—and she’s owning it.
Her followers seem to approve of both the blazer and the idea of style repeats in general. One commenter, @blueirisny, wrote, “A great blazer should be worn… and worn… and worn.” User @rosarinifashion commented, “I like to think of it as sustainable fashion…good for the planet and good for your wallet.”
When it comes to high-powered women in the fashion industry proudly embracing repeats, Coles is increasingly in good company. Take former Teen Vogue editor-in-chief Elaine Welteroth, who wears one pair of white boots so often that one of her recent Instagram captions reads, “Shoes…I mean, do I even need to tag at this point?”
Back in October, wearing a different pair of boots, Welteroth even joked that she was “cheating on” her go-to pair, highlighting that wearing something again and again is a sign of love and appreciation for a worthy item, not something to feel guilty about.
Then there’s actress Tiffany Haddish, who recently drew the media’s attention when she wore the same Alexander McQueen dress to three big events, including the Academy Awards.
When Haddish appeared on Saturday Night Live in the dress, she said in her monologue: “I don’t give a dang about no taboo…I spent a lot of money on this dress. I should be able to wear what I want, when I want, however many times I want––as long as I’ve Febreezed it.”
Haddish recently told Glamour that multiple people, including other celebrities, have reached out to her since the Oscars to praise her outfit repetition.
“I know this girl that goes to a private school—she’s not rich, she’s going on a scholarship—and kids make fun of her if she’s wearing the same jacket after three days,” she said. This girl contacted Haddish after her McQueen dress made headlines, and Haddish explained, “She said it made her feel so good to see that I was wearing the same dress, when people make fun of her. She’s like: ‘I’m Tiffany Haddish today!'”
Thrive Global founder and CEO Arianna Huffington launched Thrive Style to close what she calls the “style gap.” Huffington explained that Thrive Style “is about redefining conventions so that women can feel confident, professional and great in something other than five-inch heels and a new outfit for every occasion.”
Huffington, who captions many of her personal Instagram photos with the hashtags #repeats and #stylerepeats, acknowledges that social media has put increased pressure on women to constantly wear new outfits —a pressure that simply doesn’t exist for men. “Since social media isn’t going away, what we should do is harness its power to turn that pressure around and instead pay tribute to repeats,” She wrote. “Don’t hide them, flaunt them — own them. And then do it again!”
Coles, a powerful woman to whom so many people look for fashion inspiration, is doing just that.