Silicon Valley’s New Fashion Trend: Tech Execs and Their Style Makeovers

Last Updated: June 12, 2024By

Silicon Valley’s New Fashion Trend: Tech Execs and Their Style Makeovers

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So, there’s a big shift happening in Silicon Valley, and it’s all about fashion. For ages, tech bigwigs signaled their seriousness by dressing super simple. Think about it – Sam Bankman-Fried (who’s now in jail) always looked like he just rolled out of bed. Steve Jobs was known for his black turtlenecks. And Mark Zuckerberg? He’s famous for wearing the same grey T-shirt every day because he thought it saved him time.

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“I’m not a cool person and I’ve never really tried to be cool,” Zuckerberg said back in 2014. “I want to clear my life so that I have to make as few decisions as possible … I feel like I’m not doing my job if I spend any of my energy on things that are silly or frivolous.” Even his haircut reflected this, always short and straightforward.

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But things are changing. These days, it seems like tech leaders are embracing fashion in a big way. Take Jeff Bezos, for instance. He used to look like your typical nerdy e-commerce guy, but now he’s all about the Hollywood supervillain vibe. He’s ditched the boring shirts and khakis for cowboy hats, trendy sunglasses, and muscle tees. Can you imagine buying those on Amazon?

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The Big Makeover

Then there’s Elon Musk. Remember when he had that thinning hairline? Well, now he’s got a full head of hair, thanks to either a miracle or a pricey hair transplant. Musk has also updated his wardrobe. Gone are the unflattering button-ups; now he’s into pilot jackets and rugged looks, kind of like a mid-century rogue. Once a fan of bright, colorful shirts, Musk now avoids flashy colors, even telling SpaceX employees to ditch the safety yellow.

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And Zuckerberg? He’s been taking notes. Recently, when he posted an Instagram video about Meta’s new AI assistant, people couldn’t believe their eyes. His hair was fuller, and he wore a chain necklace. “Went from steal my data, to steal my wife and kids,” one commenter joked. A photoshopped image of Zuck with a beard went viral, and he even teased fans by posting a razor and a thinking face emoji.

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The Zuck Transformation

This wasn’t the first hint of Zuckerberg’s style shift. He’s been seen in a stylish shearling jacket and was caught on camera admiring a $1 million watch at a pre-wedding event for the son of Asia’s richest man. “Watches are cool,” he said. At the same event, he wore a striking Alexander McQueen outfit. A popular menswear influencer even tweeted, “Is Mark Zuckerberg becoming stylish?” along with a collage of Zuck’s recent looks.

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Why the Change?

So, what’s up with this new fashion trend among tech execs? Is it a midlife crisis? Maybe they’ve hired stylists because they’ve run out of things to spend money on. But some people think it’s more strategic. Meta, Zuckerberg’s company, is facing legal issues, including an anti-monopoly lawsuit and allegations of exploiting children for profit. Perhaps it’s better to have everyone talking about Zuckerberg’s new look than his company’s controversies.

Whatever the reason, it’s clear that Silicon Valley’s vibe is shifting. These tech leaders are no longer just about innovation and efficiency; they’re making a statement with their style too. And honestly, it’s kind of fun to watch.


Arwa Mahdawi is a Guardian columnist

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