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Is the Balaclava the Surprise Trend Of The Season?

Would you wear one?
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Is the balaclava, the snood-like fashion accessory that you would more often find on the slopes or being used in combat, turning out to be the surprise trend of the season?

From Givenchy’s knitted devil horns balaclava to the late Virgil Abloh’s checkerboard style, the balaclava has made an unapologetic presence on the runway recently.

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You may also remember seeing the balaclava feature heavily at the Miu Miu’s show at Paris Fashion week last March.

Since then, the balaclava can be found in recent collections of most all major fashion designers including Stella McCartney, Balmain and Moschino, before trickling down to the high street to stores such as Zara, H&M and Other Stories.

The balaclava historically got its name from the Ukrainian town of Balaclava, where in 1854, British and Irish troops were sent to fight during the Crimean war.

The soldiers arrived in their summer uniforms to freezing conditions. When the British women learned of the lack of supplies, they knitted full-face hats to keep their men warm and so the balaclava was born.

At the time of writing this article, there are 140.2 million videos attached to the hashtag #balaclava on TikTok and 266,000 hashtags on Instagram of people wearing the accessory.

So why exactly is the balaclava trending now? According to the global search platform Lyst, the balaclava’s rise in popularity is due to Kim Kardashian’s headline-grabbing Balenciaga Met Gala outfit, which comprised a full-face covering, after which searches for balaclavas soared.

Another theory is that it’s due to Gen Z’s two favourite hobbies – TikTok and knitting, with countless video’s on the platform detailing how to knit the perfect balaclava.         

Whatever the reason, this trend has come at a very fitting time. Since the start of the pandemic, we’ve become far more comfortable with face coverings – so whether you go for the full balaclava or it’s slightly more wearable cousin the knitted hood, it’s both on trend and practical in our mask mandated world.

Here’s our edit of the best balaclavas on the high street.

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Shop the best balaclavas

BLUE KNITTED BALACLAVA River Island

Blue knitted balaclava, £18, River Island – buy now

STELLA MCCARTNEY Intarsia wool balaclava

Intarsia wool balaclava, £295, Stella McCartney – buy now

Harmony Hood, £18, Weekday

Harmony Hood, £18, Weekday – buy now

Fitted Cashmere Hood, £59, ARKET

Fitted Cashmere Hood, £59, ARKET – buy now

COLLUSION Unisex spacedye balaclava, £12.99, ASOS

COLLUSION Unisex spacedye balaclava, £12.99, ASOS – buy now

Crochet virgin wool hat, £420, Miu Miu at MyTheresa

Crochet virgin wool hat, £420, Miu Miu at MyTheresa – buy now

Topshop Knitted Balaclava in Beige, £18, ASOS

Topshop Knitted Balaclava in Beige, £18, ASOS – buy now

Knitted balaclava hat, £17.99, Mango

Knitted balaclava hat, £17.99, Mango – buy now

Wool Blend Knitted Hood
 & other stories

Wool Blend Knitted Hood, £40, & Other Stories – buy now

Recycled polyester balaclava in lilac, £18, Monki

Recycled polyester balaclava in lilac, £18, Monki – buy now

Pauline Balaclava, £225, Shrimps

Pauline Balaclava, £225, Shrimps – buy now