Aesthetics Wiki

Warning: This page may content sensitive subject matter as the Skinheads have been linked to white nationalism, neo-Nazism, white power, and acts of terrorism. It should be important to note, however, that the Skinheads weren't always a white supremacist aesthetic and we hope this page actively promotes the idea that the Skinhead aesthetic isn't inherently racist and only got infected by racists later on.

Skinheads are members of a subculture originated among working-class youths in London, England, in the 1960s and soon spread to other parts of the United Kingdom, with a second working class skinhead movement emerging worldwide in the 1980s.

"Skinheads" started as an fashion/subculture heavily influenced by the Jamaican Rudeboys and Ska music, as well as British Mods, African-American soul and R&B, and early Rock and Roll.

The early skinheads were not necessarily part of any political movement, but as the 1970s progressed, the skinheads became more politically active and acts of racially motivated skinhead violence began to occur in the United Kingdom and did become divided along far-right and far-left lines. As a result of this change within the skinheads, far-right groups such as the National Front and the British Movement saw a rise in the number of white power skinheads among their ranks, while the far-left started forming groups like Red Action (formed in 1981), Anti-Fascist Action (formed in 1985), and the globally-known Skinheads Against Racial Prejudice (formed in 1987). By the late 1970s, the mass media, and subsequently the general public, had largely come to view the skinhead subculture as one that promotes racism and Neo-Nazism. The white power and neo-Nazi skinhead subculture eventually spread to North America and other areas of the world. In the modern era, the white power skinhead culture became part of what has come to be known as "The Alt-Right".


Skinheads wear long-sleeve or short-sleeve button-down shirts or polo shirts by brands such as Ben Sherman, Fred Perry, Brutus, Warrior or Jaytex; Lonsdale or Everlast shirts or sweatshirts; Grandfather shirts; V-neck sweaters; sleeveless sweaters (known in the UK as a tank top); cardigan sweaters or T-shirts (plain or with text or designs related to the skinhead subculture). They may wear fitted blazers, Harrington jackets, bomber jackets, denim jackets (usually blue, sometimes splattered with bleach), donkey jackets, Crombie-style overcoats, sheepskin ¾-length coats, short macs, monkey jackets or parkas. Traditional skinheads sometimes wear suits, often of two-tone tonic fabric (shiny mohair-like material that changes colour in different light and angles), or in a Prince of Wales or houndstooth check pattern.


The Skinheads, initially, were listening to traditionally black music such as ska, reggae, R&B, soul and rocksteady, but then eventually created 2 Tone, a genre of music that mixed Punk with ska, reggae, rocksteady, and pop music of the time. At this time, they were also beginning to listen to Oi! music; a subgenre of punk music that focused more on the plight of the working class and mixed in football chants, pub rock, and British glam rock with the Punk formula. Eventually, the white supremacists took the Oi! formula and they turned it into RAC (Rock Against Communism), which featured lyrics that glorified white power and white supremacy (which, in turn, led the Oi! sound being labeled as racist). In the 1990s and 2000s, when hardcore punk started becoming more popular, RAC started adopting a more hardcore punk sound into its music, which just goes to show that far-right types are completely incapable of creating anything on their own and have to try and co-opt what is already popular, putting their own hateful spin on it, and trying to promote it alongside the already-popular art in hopes that people won't notice just how low-effort the Nazi variant is because the art means nothing to these people; it's just a vessel to deliver their message and the message is the only thing that matters to them (see: Fashwave).

One such record label that specialized in this sound, Texas-based Resistance Records, put out two video games in the span of 2 years with plans to release more (although those plans never came to fruition). The first game, entitled Ethnic Cleansing, was released in 2002 and is generally considered to be one of the worst video games ever made, and that's not even getting into the content of the game itself (which allowed you to choose between either a Klansman or a Neo-Nazi Skinhead and your goal was to eliminate all of the ethnic minorities on a level). The game was a buggy mess on launch, and looked incredibly ugly (even by 2002 standards in gaming) and got slammed not only for the poor gameplay and ugly graphics, but also the racially insensitive content. Resistance Records would try again in 2003 with the game, White Law, which had you playing as an Irish-American ex-cop that got let go from the force for his political views, who goes around murdering other police officers, child pornographers, and journalists before killing the police chief to win the game; and appears to have been inspired by the noteworthy Neo-Nazi book The Turner Diaries, which inspired the Oklahoma City Bombing committed by Timothy McVeigh and Terry Nichols. Gameplay wise, White Law played exactly like Ethnic Cleansing, but it was from a 3rd person perspective instead of a 1st perspective but was equally graphically ugly. Fortunately, their threats of making more games never came through (probably because they realized making a decent game that people would want to play actually takes work and effort and they'd be damned if they were going to put forth any effort in making a half-way playable game) and Resistance Records appears to have been defunct since 2017, with the website being completely offline since early 2019.