Remember When Gwen Stefani Was One of the Coolest Women in Rock?


Welcome to Not a Phase, a video series where Jezebel remembers some of the most delightfully cringe-worthy phases of a celebrity’s life, even though they would probably like us to forget.

The last decade has seen Gwen Stefani shift from pop star and cultural appropriation queen (never forget her Latina era) to television personality, thanks to her tenure on The Voice. Most headlines about Stefani these days are focused on her relationship with country singer and Voice co-judge Blake Shelton above all else, but it’s fun to take a stroll down memory lane and remember the time Stefani was best known as the lead singer of No Doubt.

While Stefani’s style—bikini tops, braces, hair colors ranging from Slurpee-blue to bold fuschia—helped cement Stefani as the coolest girl in rock, she also earned this status by creating one of the most memorable feminist anthems of the ’90s and a discography that is still lauded today. But she spent much of the late ’90s and early 2000s straddling the line between brazen lead singer and emotionally-vulnerable-woman-in-her-late-20s-with-serious-baby-fever. I mean, have you listened to Return of Saturn lately? Don’t get me wrong, it’s fantastic and holds up after 20 years—even better than Tragic Kingdom, in my unpopular opinion—but definitely screams “Dream Wedding!!!” Pinterest board.

The video above takes a look at Stefani’s reign as alt’s cool girl before she taught us how to spell banana.

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