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TikTok's Tomato Girl trend was my default summer aesthetic before it was even a thing

Contemplating a Tomato Girl Summer? Here's why TikTok's latest microtrend is totally worth a spin…

Sydney Sweeney wearing a headscarf and sunglasses
Orin Carlin
Orin CarlinContent Writer
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The industry is in agreement: our collective obsession with food-related so-called 'aesthetics' is spiralling out of control. On the one hand, I'm inclined to agree. Doughnuts are for savouring, not slathering.

But there's one particular cuisine-adjacent look that has stolen my heart this summer, and practically every single once since circa 2012.

It feels unexpected at first, to have such a buzzy aesthetic based upon such a divisive fruit. But even if you are one of the many who can't bear it in its raw form (guilty as charged), you can still totally relish in the 'Tomato Girl' trend.

Universally appealing, there is nothing acerbic about this delicious TikTok-adored aesthetic. Its magic lies not within the sharpness of the tomato, but the smoothness of the sauce.

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What is the 'Tomato Girl' trend?

Less of a look and more of a lifestyle, the quintessential Tomato Girl swans around an unidentified Mediterranean location – be it the craggy splendour of the Amalfi Coast or the pretty cobbles of Buñol – looking categorically chic.

 She swishes through thronging markets, arm laden with a mesh bag, raffia tote or wicker basket, heaving with plump tomatoes and a fragrant tuft of basil.

MORE: 10 summer outfit ideas you need to add to cart

READ: Holiday capsule wardrobe: 6 easy outfits to take away with you

Sophia Loren making pizza© Getty
Sophia Loren is the OG Tomato Girl

Essentially, she's serving Sophia Loren in Scandal in Sorrento, Dolce & Gabbana's spaghetti-centric spring 2016 campaign, or fresh bruschetta to start.

The vibe is paramount, but there are a few key fashion identifiers that denote a Tomato Girl's presence.

Orin Carlin wearing a floral print mini dress© Orin Carlin
Floral prints and cinched-in waists serve major Tomato Girl vibes

The look is forgiving and foolproof. Vespa jaunts are accompanied by silk headscarves and cat-eye sunglasses, and languid lunches go hand in hand with scarlet lips and square necklines.  

While the look has skyrocketed this summer - #tomatogirl has amassed an impressive 11.8m views on TikTok - this infinitely chic aesthetic has been embedded in my fashion subconscious since forever. 

Bowl of spaghetti © Orin Carlin
Spaghetti is always on the menu for the quintessential Tomato Girl

As a teenager, my pals were bungling fake tan application and hitting the high street for Love Island-esque neon bikinis pre-holiday, while I was fuelling my gingham swimsuit obsession, lusting after MAC's 'Lady Danger' and trying on some extremely floppy hats for size. 

Orin Carlin wearing a pink floppy hat and eating ice-cream © Orin Carlin
No Tomato Girl Summer is complete without a few scoops of gelato

Still to this day, I swerve Ibiza glam in favour of anything vaguely reminiscent of Sophia Loren's back catalogue.

Puff sleeves, warm-toned jewellery, sunkissed skin, hourglass silhouettes and a splash of Mediterranean zeal form a team that is guaranteed to deliver.

A recent mishap in espadrille wedges ended with me seeking medical attention. Has my love for the classic summer footwear waned? Not in the slightest.  

Better yet, the Tomato Girl look is the self-confessed lazy girl's idea of beauty heaven. All it requires is a wash of bronzer, flushed cheeks and a slick of red on the lips.

Pretty blooms, airy white linen and a shower of parmesan – what could possibly compare? La Dolce Vita indeed. 

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