Bandanas were once just practical items, but now they’ve become symbols of style and identity.
In particular, celebrities have contributed to popularizing this trend, turning what was once a functional accessory into a style statement.
When worn around the leg, for instance, they carry more meaning than just looking good.
So, why do people wear bandanas around their legs?
Let’s find out…
1. Gang Culture
Wearing a bandana around your wrist and leg is considered to be a sign of gang culture in some societies. In the 1980s and 90s, the African American community had two renowned street gangs that used to identify themselves with the color of their bandana: Bloods and Crips.
The Bloods wore red bandanas while the crips wore a blue bandana. These gangs never mixed and every time they met, they would fight each other. People who were being initiated into the gangs wore bandanas around their legs or wrists.
Teens being initiated to these gangs used to love wearing bandanas on their legs while in school. This forced the other kids to stop wearing bandanas to avoid being mistaken for a member of these gangs.
There were also other gangs like La Gran Mafia, whose members wore brown bandanas around the leg, wrist, neck, and head.
2. LBGTQ Symbolism
The LBGTQ community has used a number of ways to communicate with each other while in public with the oldest one being the handkerchief code. But this evolved to some colorful bandanas which you can find them wearing while in public.
Generally, the color of the bandanas may vary with each having its unique meaning. Some prefer to wear them on their wrists, pockets or legs. The LBGT community prefers wearing it above their knees or around their thighs.
I. Bandana on the Left Foot
When a gay man wears a bandana on the left side of his body which can include his foot it means that he is the top. So they can use different colored bandanas to communicate their preferences in a club or in a public function.
For instance, a blue or navy blue bandana means that he is a top while a light blue one means that he wants head. The ones with a BDSM fetish wear a gray bandana for a bondage top and vice versa.
II. Bandana on the Right Foot
When a gay man ties a bandana on his right foot it means that he is the bottom. The color of the bandana will help specify the exact thing he is looking for in the club.
For instance, a Robin’s egg blue bandana can mean that he is looking for anything but 69ing. But on the right foot, it means that he has a fetish for 69.
3. Fashion Statement
The bandana culture had disappeared for over a decade but celebrities and influencers have revived it as a fashion statement.
Some folks wear them around their ankles to complement their entire outfit or their beautiful shoes.
Rockstars have been wearing bandanas on their legs as a fashion statement for decades now and finally, other groups are adopting it.
You can also find students or sports fans wearing their teams’ bandanas around their feet in support of their teams. In this instance, it’s a show of solidarity and support for their team.
Also check: What Does One Pant Leg Rolled Up Mean?
Whether worn for fashion, solidarity, or as a historical nod, the bandana on the leg communicates more than just personal style – it carries narratives of cultural shifts and individual expressions. So, the next time you spot a bandana around someone’s leg, remember, it might just be a fashionable accessory, a silent message, or a nod to tradition.