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Issue 17 Out Now

Wardrobe Analysis of Netflix's "You"

Updated: Mar 4


In recent years, Netflix’s “You” has become one of the most popular psychological thrillers, captivating audiences with its gripping storyline and complex characters. While the show has been praised for its intense plot twists and suspenseful narrative, the wardrobe choices of the characters also play a significant role in shaping their identities and enhancing the overall viewing experience. Delve into a comprehensive wardrobe analysis of Netflix’s “You,” exploring how the costumes contribute to character development and storytelling.

Joe Goldberg: The Charming Stalker

Vanity Fair

Joe Goldberg, portrayed by Penn Badgley, is the central character of “You.” He is a charming and intelligent bookstore manager who becomes infatuated with the object of his desire, often crossing boundaries in his pursuit of love. Joe’s wardrobe reflects his seemingly normal and approachable persona, often in casual yet stylish ensembles. He frequently wears well-fitted jeans paired with simple t-shirts or button-down shirts. This choice of clothing allows Joe to blend into his surroundings, making it easier for him to observe and manipulate others without drawing attention to himself.

His wardrobe often incorporates earthy tones such as browns, grays, and greens to emphasize Joe's unassuming nature further. These colors create a sense of familiarity and comfort, making it easier for Joe to gain the trust of those around him. Additionally, Joe’s choice of accessories, such as a messenger bag or a beanie, adds a touch of practicality to his outfits, aligning with his bookish personality.

The Hollywood Reporter

However, it is worth noting that Joe’s wardrobe undergoes subtle changes as the show progresses. As his obsession with his love interest intensifies, his clothing choices become more tailored and refined. This evolution in his style signifies his desire to impress and control as he becomes increasingly entangled in a dangerous web of lies and manipulation.

Love Quinn: The Enigmatic Femme Fatale


Love Quinn, portrayed by Victoria Pedretti, is a pivotal character in “You” who captures Joe’s attention with her free-spirited nature and warm personality. Love’s wardrobe reflects her multifaceted personality, blending bohemian chic elements with a contemporary twist. She often opts for flowy dresses in soft pastel colors, evoking a sense of innocence and vulnerability. These delicate garments symbolize Love’s desire for connection and intimacy, contrasting her complex and secretive nature.

Love’s wardrobe also showcases her individuality and unique sense of style. She effortlessly combines vintage pieces with modern accessories, creating a timeless and contemporary look. Layering is a key element in Love’s outfits, as she often pairs dresses with cozy cardigans or oversized jackets, adding depth and dimension to her overall appearance. This layering technique mirrors Love’s complex personality, hinting at the hidden layers of her character that are gradually revealed throughout the show.


To further enhance Love’s enigmatic aura, her wardrobe incorporates elements of nostalgia and nostalgia. She is often seen wearing jewelry with sentimental value, such as heirloom rings or lockets, which add an air of mystery to her character. Love’s attention to detail and ability to effortlessly combine different styles make her wardrobe integral to her character development.

Forty Quinn: The Eccentric Creative


Forty Quinn, portrayed by James Scully, is Love’s twin brother and a talented screenwriter known for his eccentric personality. Forty’s wardrobe reflects his free-spirited and unconventional approach to life, incorporating bold patterns, vibrant colors, and unique silhouettes. He often wears eclectic outfits that defy traditional fashion norms, boldly expressing his individuality and artistic sensibilities.

Forty’s wardrobe choices often feature oversized and baggy garments, allowing him to express his carefree and nonchalant attitude toward societal expectations. He embraces a mix of high-end designer pieces and vintage finds, creating a look that is both avant-garde and nostalgic. This blend of styles mirrors Forty’s creative mindset, as he constantly seeks inspiration from various sources and eras.


In addition to his distinctive clothing, Forty’s accessories play a significant role in shaping his character. He often dons quirky hats, statement jewelry, and unique eyewear, adding an extra layer of eccentricity to his ensembles. These accessories showcase Forty’s attention to detail and serve as visual cues to his creative and unconventional personality.

Delilah Alves: The Resilient Investigative Journalist

Oprah Daily

Delilah Alves, portrayed by Carmela Zumbado, is an investigative journalist entangled in Joe’s dangerous world. Delilah’s wardrobe reflects her no-nonsense attitude and determination to uncover the truth. She often wears functional yet stylish outfits that allow her to move freely and assert her authority.

Delilah’s wardrobe consists of practical pieces such as fitted blazers, tailored trousers, and comfortable yet fashionable footwear. Her clothing choices prioritize functionality without compromising style, reflecting her ability to navigate the gritty world of journalism easily. Delilah’s color palette leans towards neutral tones, conveying a sense of professionalism and sophistication.

The Irish Sun

Her wardrobe incorporates utilitarian elements such as cargo pockets, sturdy boots, and durable fabrics to emphasize Delilah's resilience and resourcefulness further. These features add a touch of practicality to her outfits and serve as visual reminders of her determination to uncover the truth, even in the face of danger.

Season 3: Joe and Love’s Dark Partnership


The third season of “You” delves deeper into Joe and Love’s toxic relationship. Their wardrobe choices in this season reflect their partnership's dark and twisted nature. Joe’s attire remains consistent with his previous seasons, reflecting his unchanging obsession and control.

Love’s wardrobe, on the other hand, undergoes a subtle transformation. While still maintaining her quirky and unique style, her clothing choices become darker and more subdued. She often wears black and deep red tones, mirroring the sinister undertones of her character. Love’s fashion evolution reflects her descent into darkness and increasing willingness to engage in morally questionable actions.

Season 3: New Characters, New Wardrobes


In season 3, “You” introduces a new set of characters with distinct wardrobe choices. Marianne, an aspiring writer, embodies a bohemian and artistic style. Her wardrobe consists of flowy dresses, oversized sweaters, and vintage-inspired accessories. Marianne’s fashion choices reflect her dreamy and romantic nature and her desire for authenticity and self-expression.

Elite Daily

Another new character, Theo, exudes a laid-back and effortlessly cool vibe. His wardrobe is characterized by casual streetwear, including graphic t-shirts, hoodies, and sneakers. Theo’s fashion choices align with his easygoing personality and desire to rebel against societal norms.


As the seasons progress and new characters are introduced, their fashion choices further enhance the storytelling and provide insights into their individual journeys. So, the next time you watch “You,” pay close attention to the characters' clothing choices, as they hold a wealth of information about their innermost desires and motivations.

The wardrobe choices of the characters in Netflix’s “You” play a vital role in shaping their identities and enhancing the overall viewing experience. From Joe’s unassuming and approachable style to Love’s enigmatic and bohemian chic ensembles, each character’s wardrobe reflects their personality, motivations, and journey throughout the show. By paying attention to the subtle details of their clothing choices, viewers gain deeper insights into the complexities of these characters, making “You” a truly immersive and captivating series.

When you find yourself engrossed in the thrilling world of “You,” take a moment to appreciate the thoughtfully curated wardrobes that contribute to the richness of the storytelling. After all, fashion isn’t just about looking good; it’s about telling a story without saying a word.


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