“Hypebeast” Culture Through Graded’s Eyes

In a world where things are constantly going in and out of style, there is one trend that particularly stands out: “hypebeast” culture. It is a term with various definitions. Some people view “hypebeasts” as those “who buy things with the sole purpose of impressing others,” while others see it as a way to make money or some kind of social statement. Taking into account the word’s various meanings, my goal in this article is to try to understand what a hypebeast is and why people become a part of this growing lifestyle.


For those of you still confused about  the term “hypebeast,” it essentially refers to someone who will go to great lengths (such as spending hours in line) to obtain an article of clothing from specific “hype brands” who focus mostly on streetwear like Supreme, Bathing Ape, Yeezy, OriginalFake, and others. This “hype” style mostly focuses on the brand names and logos instead of appearances. Also, since many “hyped up” brands advertise their products as limited and exclusive – selling them for above market value – “hypebeasts” can then purchase these products to resell them for a large profit.


The Talon set out to interview Graded students who either consider themselves or are considered as hypebeasts. Through the rest of this article, you will most likely be able to comprehend the controversy around the hypebeast culture through the viewpoint of members of our community.


For this article, I chose to interview two Graded seniors, Chiara, and Mathaus who have varying viewpoints on the matter at hand.


The Talon: What is a “hypebeast?”

Chiara: In my opinion, a hypebeast is someone who follows the hype, the current trends. That term originated from a digital media and e-commerce company based in Hong Kong. It provides daily information on the current sneakers and clothes releases.

Mathaus: A hypebeast is a person who always follows a trend solely due to its popularity. It is mostly associated with young teenagers.


The Talon: How long have you been a part of this growing group?

Chiara: I don’t think I’m a part of that group, even though I am constantly called a “hypebeast.” But if I did consider myself one, I would say two years, once it started being an actual thing.


Note: It is interesting to see how some people are often labeled with the term “hypebeast”, but don’t necessarily see themselves that way.


Mathaus: I have been a part of this group for about two or three years.


The Talon: What makes spending hours in line to buy a pair of clothing or accessory worth it?

Chiara: I have always loved fashion. I plan on studying fashion in college. In my opinion, clothes represent who you are as a person, and they are my favorite way of expressing myself. I love standing out and having limited edition things. Plus, there’s no better feeling than wearing something new for the first time. The smell of fresh leather and the look of extra clean and smooth clothes gives me goosebumps.

Mathaus: For some, the acquisition of a rare piece of clothing or shoe is justified by flexing on others who weren’t able to “cop.” I enjoy being on top of the latest trends.


Note: It is common to stereotype hypebeasts as people who only buy products to say they have it or to profit from them. However, we can now see that is not always the case – mostly, they are buying these products because of something greater, and in some cases that may be because it is a field they are interested in.


The Talon: What is the longest you have ever stood in line?

Chiara: I’ve only waited in line 2 or 3 times. The longest I’ve waited was 10 hours. I took a chair and watched Netflix for what felt like days. But it was worth it.


The Talon: What made you want to become involved in this “culture”?

Chiara: Honestly, I’m against all that hype. I think I have the right to speak about it this way because I’ve been into fashion since I was seven. I’m against the fact that people believe that the more expensive, the better. That breaks my heart. We must wear clothes for ourselves and to express ourselves. We should not try to get the most expensive sneaker ever so we can be seen as something that we’re actually not. I don’t consider myself a hypebeast because I don’t do it for the hype, but for myself.

Mathaus: The sneaker culture opens a margin for hypebeasts and entrepreneurs to make a profit on the products they purchase for retail.


Note: It is clear that those involved in this “culture” have different points of view on the matter, some speaking from the point of view that being a hypebeast allows them to make revenue, and others being labeled as a hypebeast because it is something that they are passionate about.


The Talon: What is the most hype thing you own?

Chiara: I don’t know, but probably my high-end purses.

Mathaus: Adidas NMD HU Pharrell Human Race Yellow.

(Sneaker Spaza.) 

The Talon: Are there any negative consequences to being a hypebeast? If so, what are they?

Chiara: Since everything is so overpriced, people start buying things they don’t even like just to be able to say “I have it and I paid x

Mathaus: I’d say that when you purchase an expensive piece of clothing, you instantly regret it. Being up to date with the latest trends requires a good administration of money. And being able to administrate your money and possible profits is essential when emerging into the sneaker market.


The Talon: What makes a brand hype?

Chiara: I think what makes a brand hype are high demands but low supply. The most exclusive, the better. The more expensive, the better. It’s an actual business, and people can make good money from it.

Mathaus: If Kanye uses it.


The Talon: If someone wanted to get associated with hypebeasts, how would you recommend they start?

Chiara: Do it if you make sure you won’t change your style because you want to fit in. I love seeing how creative people can get and I also have to admit that I love playing with the “hyped” things I buy. In my opinion, the coolest things are for men, so it’s a challenge for me to mix different things and come up with really cool street outfits that I feel can truly represent me!

Mathaus: There are innumerable sneaker communities/groups on Facebook, WhatsApp, and Reddit where you can discuss new sneaker releases and get involved.


Upon reading this article, I hope you received additional information that expands your knowledge of a topic you may not have been familiar with beforehand. If the hypebeast culture is something you are interested in, I recommend you take some of the advice here to assist you in becoming a member.