Scenester is a slang term used to describe a person who deliberately attempts to fit into a specific cultural scene based around music, film, art, or another genre. Also referred to as a scene kid, a scenester is known for following the fashion trends, preferences, and attitudes of their peer group in the larger scene as a whole.
Like the punk movement of the 1980s, the scenester movement is also associated with a distinct fashion and overall look. However, unlike the punk counterculture, which used ripped clothing as a sign of political protest against capitalism, scenester fashion is generally considered to be a form of pastiche in comparison, lacking the purposeful statement of punk fashion. The American Apparel brand is a popular choice amongst many scenesters, as well as other 80s style clothing, such as black and white checkered or striped patterns and ironic t-shirts. In recent years, pop art makeup and hair has also become associated with the scenester crowd, mixing and matching bold colors such as electric blue, red, and purple.
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Social networking websites such as MySpace and Facebook have aided scenesters in keeping updated on the scene and meeting other like-minded individuals. Social networking particularly assists the smaller, Indie scenes in promoting the latest music, art, and cultural events typically attended by a scenester.
One faction of the scenester movement is the straight-edge lifestyle, often adopted by a person who enjoys a specific cultural scene, but prefers to refrain from some of the practices which may accompany it such as drugs, alcohol, or promiscuous sex. A straight-edge scenester will sometimes self-identify with a belt or other article of clothing marked with an X or the number 24. The straight-edge movement and self-identification is thought to have originated with underage bands playing in venues that denied them access to alcohol, and consequently marked anyone under the legal drinking age with an X on the back of the hand. Today, there is sometimes tension or exclusion amongst scenesters and straight-edge scenesters, along with “wanna-be” scenesters who may not be familiar with the music or other genre associated with a particular scene, yet often attend its shows and events.