If you’re anything like me, or a good number of Glamour staffers and readers (yeah, you know who you are), you’re OBSESSED with Pretty Little Liars and Phoebe’s weekly recaps. Possibly in secret. But it’s OK—the high-school-set show is ageless—like a good trench coat and classic black pumps—so own it!
If anything, you can say you’re watching it for the outfits. Fans of the crazy addictive mystery series are well aware that the fashion, courtesy of costume designer Mandi Line, is pretty much a fifth, well, sixth character on the show. I’m saying “sixth” since Alison DeLaurentis (played by Sasha Pieterse) returned from the grave, like literally, and is fully enrolled back at Rosewood High. (Ugh, Ali. Is anyone else glad that the four original Liars are ready to cut her off? Although, I have a feeling they’ll get pulled back in.) But back to this Glamour Style Icon business.
While Troian Bellisario (preppy Spencer), Ashley Benson (style-obsessed Hanna—my favorite and I have to say this Ali dissension is really upping her wardrobe game), Lucy Hale (hipster Aria), and Shay Mitchell (sporty Emily) play their sartorial roles perfectly on the show, the ladies rock some stellar off-screen personal style too. And surprise: Ashley is actually kind of a slouchy tee, skinny jeans, and beanie type in real life, while Shay loves girly dresses. To be honest, following the girls’ IRL style on Instagram might just be as addictive as the show. So in honor of the upcoming summer, or “fatal finale” on August 26 (hands off of Caleb!), may we present the cast of Pretty Little Liars with the Glamour Style Icon(s) of the Week award.
Doesn’t 2010—the year PLL debuted—seem so long ago? Especially since these girls have been in their junior or senior year of high school for practically an eternity now. That year, the cast graced a book signing to promote the premiere of the series, and, wow, they look so wide-eyed and fresh-faced. Probably because they hadn’t yet suffered through five seasons of torment from the nefarious “A—”or multiple A’s. And, yes, even back then, Spencer, er, Troian was a fan of the over-the-knee socks.
Obviously, PLL would become a massive hit among teens of all ages (cough, cough) and pretty much sweep the Teen Choice Awards every year going forward. In 2013, a four Liars, plus Keegan Allen (Toby), Ian Harding (Ezra, er, Mr. Fitz), and Janel Parrish (the duplicitous Mona) showed their solidarity at the show—winning seven surfboards total. Ashley paired a Bec & Bridge cami top with a sequined overlay Armani skirt, Sasha looked posh in Naeem Khan, Troian opted for an elegant Elisabetta Franchi cocktail dress, and Shay looks super chic in a Jenni Kayne black-and-white jumpsuit. You’re welcome for a Spoby and half-Ezria sighting, by the way.
The fab five participated in a panel at the esteemed PaleyFest this year while dressing with and against their on-screen type. Ashley wore a pretty Hanna-esque Alberta Ferretti LWD with Biondi Castana ankle-tie heels (seriously, have you seen the heels Hanna used to wear to homeroom?), Shay swapped out her Emily tomboy gear and sneakers for a flirty pink Ann Taylor minidress and Manolo Blahnik heels, Lucy opted for a Tibi matched set in subtle pastels (as opposed to Aria’s craaaazy mixed prints), Troian went mod in a Charlotte Ronson frock (Spencer sometimes does retro), and Sasha could have worn her Marni top and skirt and Casadei pumps right onto the PLL set.
In March, the cast also celebrated the midseason finale in style—making quite possibly their best collective red carpet appearance yet. Lucy looked chic in a snakeskin print Stella McCartney dress from the resort 2014 collection, Sasha opted for an edgy-elegant (and very non-Ali) pleated LBD by Anne Fontaine with white Casadei pumps, Ashley killed it in a Max Mara tuxedo jacket, a Paule Ka top, Alexander Wang trousers, and a floppy Saint Laurent bow tie, Shay (wow, Em) was smoking in a YeoJin Bae lace dress with Manolo Blahnik heels, and Spencer, I mean, Troian, rocked a forest green trench coat with skinny black pants and cutout booties. If TV doesn’t work out, these girls could totally start a girl group.
Speaking of music… Ashley, Shay, and Troian hit Coachella together earlier this year looking their music festival best. Lace, check! Crop tops, check! Swimwear worn as clothes, check!
Shay and Ashley are also real life BFFs, as you can see via their Instagram antics. The two, along with PLL creator/mastermind Marlene King and Tyler Blackburn (Caleb, swoon) attended a wedding together a couple months ago wearing their takes on summery florals. For Ashley, a lace-trimmed crop top with a navy-and-white midi-pencil-skirt, and for Shay, an ethereal wrap-front maxidress. And a bonus real-life Haleb moment for y’all too. Squeeeee! Hey, don’t judge—Caleb is like 27 in real life.
See, they all get along. Lucy posted this shot with the crew rocking their distinct summer looks: Lucy in a perforated matched set, Ashley in a vintage-y blocked frock, Troian in a girly off-the-shoulder fit-and-flare, and Shay in a figure-flattering LWD.