"Flossing" Is the Shockingly Sexy Summer Trend That Has Nothing to Do With Teeth

This season, it's all about those strappy, skin-baring designs.

Flossing Fashion Trend
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Remember when you were a kid, and "flossing" meant an act of dental hygiene? My, how times have changed. Back in 2017, "flossing" became the official name of Backpack Kid's viral dance move. Now, it's a full-fledged fashion trend for summer 2022 that involves string designs and a whole lot of skin.

MiKADO personal styling advisor Jordan Stolch tells InStyle that "flossing" as a fashion statement is a play on strappy details.

"Crisscross, cording, and wrap-around embellishments help make baring some skin in the summer feel more elevated and intentional, rather than just simply exposed," Stolch explains. It's sexy. It's cute. But it's most certainly not "new."

Flossing Fashion Trend
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Like most fashion trends, flossing is a recycled concept. It dates back to the early aughts, or "noughties" as the era is so affectionately called when stars like Beyonce, J Lo, Christina Aguilera, and Brittany Spears pioneered the stringy aesthetic. "It's these celebrities who popularized the criss-cross back cami top, low-rise jeans and exposed thong look that we really need to give this trend its credit," Stolch notes.

Flossing Fashion Trend
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But while back then the trend was a kind of formula performers followed when they wanted to really nail the shock factor, according to Stolch, flossing circa 2022 can be done in a way that's less racy, and more subtly sexy with a high-fashion twist. Flossing is also no longer exclusive to the back. Modern-day flossing can be done around the pants and necklines, in the midriff area, and down the sleeves. Even footwear is getting the flossing treatment.

Flossing Fashion Trend
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Julia Fox, for example, was spotted on the streets of New York baring hips, torso, back, and cleavage in a matching charcoal set. Flossing was also everywhere at the Elle USA Women in Music event in June, where Normani, Madison Beer, and Heidi Klum all showed up in ultra-strappy outfits. Later, Klum embraced the trend again, this time posing with Snoop Dog in a stringy leather tank and skirt set.

Flossing Fashion Trend
Getty Images
Flossing Fashion Trend
Getty Images

Megan Fox is clearly a fan of this look as well. She was photographed wearing a flossy mini dress at the premiere of MGK's new Hulu documentary, Life in Pink (though, admittedly, the outfit's spaghetti strap detail was a bit confusing).

Flossing
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So, how does one pull off the flossing trend successfully off outside of Hollywood? The key, Stolch says, is balance.

"Offset sexy exposure with subtle coverage," Stolch explains over email. "Think criss-cross plunging neckline on a gorgeous long-sleeve cocktail dress. Or a corded wrap-around crop top under a structured blazer and wide-leg pants. It's the hint of skin that makes this look super sexy, yet still sophisticated."

Flossing Fashion Trend
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You'll also want to invest in the proper undergarments as well. Stolch cites nipple covers, adhesive backless bras, and seamless thongs as must-haves. "And if the fashion moment calls for it, you may just have to lean into going without."

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