Aesthetics Wiki

Hip-hop, also called rap music, is a genre of popular music developed in the United States by inner-city African Americans and Latino Americans in the Bronx borough of New York City in the 1970s. It has four key stylistic elements: MCing/rapping, DJing/scratching with turntables, break dancing (something that came about thanks to Brazilian immigrants of the time practicing their native martial art, Capoeira, out in the streets), and graffiti/graff/writing, other elements include sampling beats or bass lines from records (or synthesized beats and sounds), and rhythmic beatboxing.

While hip-hop has evolved considerably away from the streets of the Bronx, it has become perhaps the biggest genre of music in the world, welcoming any and all into its fold if they have the skills to stand out, even with the much-maligned "Mumble Rap" and "Trap" that is currently popular right now, the spirit of DIY that permeates Hip-Hop is alive and well in the new generation.


A lot of Hip-Hop visuals share a lot in common with Urbancore aesthetics, with things like graffiti and urban neighborhoods showing up a lot in Hip-Hop visuals. Among that, there's also nods to vinyl records, DJs, B-Boys/B-Girls, and elements of the original hip-hop, elements of gang culture like guns, drugs, women, alcohol, and death that accompanied the Gangsta rap era of hip-hop, and even the modern era where it seems to be all luxury item labels on everything; be it clothing, jewelry, cars, etc.


Hip hop fashion has changed over the years, with the style now being more of a high-end streetwear look. Due to the 90's Revival, 80's, 90's and early 2000's hip hop looks have been coming back into style (this does not mean that modern hip-hop fashion is out of style, it is just more common). 70's, 80's, 90's and early 2000's hip hop fashion usually consisted of affordable, oversized clothes (for both men and women) because 1) they were always moving and needed to be comfortable all the time and 2) youth in the Bronx didn't have much control over where they lived, so fashion gave them lots of freedom; as we moved into the 2000s women began wearing more dresses and heels. Sneakers were common, but skate shoes and high top Doc Martens have been seen as well.

Successful rappers put lots of emphasis on jewelry and displayed their riches through "iced out' rings, chains, and even on their teeth (grills). In the late 90s and early 2000s hip hop fashion became popular and recognized by high-end brands, it wasn't uncommon to see rappers wearing a brand name article of clothing and a plain pair of pants, or a fashionable pair of sneakers and a run-of-the-mill tracksuit. Hip hop fashion today tends to gravitate towards higher-end brands (e.g Nike) and sportswear-type outfits commonly found on the streetwear scene. A majority of the fashion stays baggy, breathable and fashionable.

Slang Words/Phrases

  • Homie/Home Boy/Homegirl: A close friend. Can also be spelled "homey".
  • Dawg: Close friend and/or homie
  • Whip: Any expensive automobile.
  • Glock: Slang generic terms about guns: n. any handgun (usu. that looks 'gangsta'); v. to shoot someone (often with particular implications).
  • Packin Heat: To have a gun on you at any given time.
  • Rack(s): A rack is (1) thousand cash could be within a rubber band. RACK & STACK are commonly confused in urban slang, but they are the same thing.
  • Book(s): 100 racks equals one (1) book.
  • Bible(s):1,000 racks equals one(1) bible.
  • Turnted up: Doing everything in their power to achieve the greatest amount of pleasure possible for themselves, showing zero restraint or shame.
  • Vibin(g): The general state of enjoying or feeling good about a situation, person, place, or thing. The euphoric buzz you have at that time about something.
  • Whoadie/Woadie: Close friend, usually from the same building complex/neighborhood
  • Snake(s): Someone who lies often/associates with someone only for self-benefit
  • Wig-Split: To shoot someone in the head, or bash someone's head in. Usually used in rap as a threat.
  • Based: To be truthful and be yourself, keep a positive mindset in life. Originated from Lil B "The Based God"
  • Foreign: Foreign car.. usually BMW, Bentley, Rolls-Royce, Ferrari, Range-Rover, Mercedes-Benz, etc.
  • For The Low: Someone who sells products (guns, drugs, etc) for a lower price then otherwise listed by other sellers.
  • Trappin(g) on: Used to describe what an artist is doing/their methods of making money. Ex: "Trappin(g) on my iPhone" "Trappin(g) on Twitter"
  • Trill: Genuine and authentic. Trill in-itself is a combination of "true" and "real".
  • Wack: An action/thing that someone does not like. Ex: "Man that new album was wack"
  • Steez/Steezin(g): Style with eaze. Essentially, effortless fashion.
  • Chiefin(g): Smoking heavily on weed. Ex: "Chiefin on weed"
  • Mary-Jane: Slang for marijuana.


By all means, if you can think of an artist to include on here, feel free to include their name on this list.


Hip-Hop Around The World


Chinese Hip Hop is a subgenre of Hip-Hop music that is in Chinese and blends in various Chinese street culture elements. Some popular Chinese Hip Hop artists include:

  • VAVA
  • TY
  • Jam Hsiao
  • Gai
  • Vinida
  • Lexie Lui
  • Will Pan
  • Higher Brothers


Like Chinese Hip Hop, Japanese Hip Hop is a subgenre of Hip Hop that's in Japanese. Some Japanese Hip Hop artists include:

  • Diggy Mo'