This Fall, Let’s Embrace Being “Basic”

Several years ago, the term “basic” popped up, and seemingly overnight, it became lame to enjoy things like pumpkin-spiced lattes and listening to Taylor Swift. This fall, it’s time to change that.

By Ella Carroll-Smith3 min read
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So what is “basic” exactly? defines a basic girl as someone who’s “only interested in things mainstream, popular, and trending” and is “devoid of defining characteristics that might make a person interesting, extraordinary, or just simply worth devoting time or attention to.” Essentially, a basic girl is someone who likes things that are popular among other girls her age.  

What’s wrong with liking things that are popular? I’m not saying that women should be sheep and always follow the crowd, but if you genuinely like something that’s popular (like Taylor Swift or brunch with friends), there is absolutely no reason to feel shame about that, and the people who try to make you feel that shame are the ones who are actually wrong in this situation. 

It’s also not lost on me that the term basic has essentially become synonymous with things that are wholesome. Given the demonization of traditional values in today’s society, that isn’t super surprising. The entire season of fall is often deemed basic, and to me, fall means wholesome activities like going apple picking with family and friends, carving pumpkins, baking, wearing cozy sweaters, etc. 

So what if those things are mainstream and popular? Popular things are popular for a reason, and in the case of fall, it’s popular because it’s an incredibly enjoyable time of year. Part of the reason so many women (including yours truly) love Gilmore Girls is because the entire show radiates the warmth and coziness of the autumn season. 

If things like T.J. Maxx, pumpkin-flavored anything, and Uggs make you happy, then who cares what other people think about them? It’s time to simply reject the negativity surrounding these “basic” things and embrace their awesomeness instead. This fall, I’m not letting anyone shame me about the fact that I like basic things, and you shouldn’t either! Here are some “basic” (a.k.a. awesome) things you should shamelessly enjoy this fall.

Taylor Swift

T-Swift sums up my feelings about the word “basic” perfectly: “Haters gonna hate, hate, hate, hate, hate!” Now, I don’t think Taylor Swift is the greatest musical artist of all time or anything, but there’s no denying that she knows how to write a hit song. We’ve all experienced heartache at one point in our lives, and T-Swift has a knack for knowing just how to put those emotions into words. She’s also very open about her unabashed love of fall and her whole autumn vibe is #goals.

This fall, shake off the haters and welcome those “autumn leaves falling down like pieces into place” by donning a red scarf and belting out “All Too Well” (the 10-minute version, of course) with the windows rolled down while on your way to a coffee date with your gal pals. Which brings us to our next item on the list… 

Pumpkin Spice Lattes

Pumpkin spice lattes are probably the first thing that come to mind when you think of things that are quintessentially “basic,” but the term is often used to criticize anything pumpkin-flavored that’s enjoyed this time of year. Personally, I’m actually not a huge fan of PSLs because I think they’re too sweet. However, I do love pretty much anything else that’s pumpkin-flavored. Pumpkin bread, pumpkin muffins, unsweetened pumpkin coffees, etc. 

Part of the enjoyment of fall lies in the fact that it’s finally cool enough to turn your oven on and start whipping up that first loaf of pumpkin bread. It also ushers in the beginning of the holiday season, during which you know you’ll probably be wearing some…


Yes, even leggings have been demonized by the basic-haters. Why? Probably because they’re awesome! Whether you fall into the “leggings are definitely pants” camp or not, few things are comfier than the perfect-fitting pair of leggings. And what outfit screams fall louder than leggings paired with the perfect oversized sweater or fashionable flannel? If you want to get crazy and really stick it to the basic-haters, then pair your leggings with Uggs (if you still have your pair lying around from the early 2000s) for maximum enjoyment.

Pumpkin Patches

Going to a pumpkin patch isn’t just an activity, it’s an experience. The same thing is true for things like picking apples or hosting a pumpkin-carving party. Going to a pumpkin patch is the perfect opportunity to don your favorite fall outfit, get together with your friends, and truly embrace the best season of the year. Pose with a pumpkin and snap some classic autumnal photos for Instagram (which is also basic, apparently) while you’re at it, too.

Closing Thoughts

Autumn is the best time of year. It’s wholesome, it’s cozy, and it’s delicious. What’s not to love? There’s no reason to feel shame for loving all of the wonderful things associated with this season. So drink your PSL, wear some flannel, go apple picking, and enjoy yourself. If the haters gonna hate, then let them!

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