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Digital Subscriptions > Learn Hot English > 211 > the 1980s

the 1980s

How do you sum up a decade? Especially one as exciting as the 1980s? Step into the Hot English time machine and let’s go back to the 1980s.

The Look


Eighties fashion was bright, loud and very colourful. Here’s a selection of some 80s fashion essentials.

Fingerless gloves: the name says it all – they were gloves without fingers. They were often made of wool, and both men and women wore them.

Swatch watches: this Swiss brand of watches appeared in the early 80s, and by the middle of the decade they were all the rage. They came in neon colours and the trend was to wear more than one at a time.

Shoulder pads: women first wore shoulder pads in the 40s. But by the 1980s, they were back. Clothing experts say that women wore them to look more “masculine” in the male dominatedcorporate world of the time.

Leg warmers: originally worn by dancers, leg warmers became popular after the success of the films Fame (1980) and Flashdance (1983). Women often wore them over jeans, and, as usual, they were very colourful.

Skinny ties: and the skinnier the better! They were closely linked to another 1980s fashion hit: the piano keyboard tie.

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About Learn Hot English

Great news! The latest issue of Hot English (07) is out now! Learn over 1,000 useful words and expressions and improve your listening skills with Learn Hot English! This month we’re looking at 8 really useful phrasal verbs for talking about health and sickness. Plus, 10 words for talking about health and safety, 8 useful expressions for talking about swimming, idioms, phrasal verbs... plus: • Jokes – jokes in English. • Functional language – how to interrupt someone. • Accents – New Zealand English. • Psychology – doodles. • Language – phrasal verb particles. • Quiz time – general knowledge. • Politics – Margaret Thatcher. • History – the 1980s. • Celebrities – Meryl Streep. • Language – alliteration. • Technology & music – music videos. • Slang – Dictionary of Slang • Socialising – making small talk. • Body language – hand gestures part II. AND LOTS, LOTS MORE! By reading and listening to all this great content, you'll improve your English reading and listening skills and learn up to 1,000 useful words or expressions. Plus, you'll get a better job and pass English-language exams more easily. Guaranteed!