At the beginning of the COVID 19 pandemic, Swizz Beatz and Timbaland birthed the Verzuz TV battle that has since taken over the music and entertainment industry. In a friendly competition, musical icons go toe to toe against each other to see who had the most chart-topping hits. So far we’ve watched Erykah Badu vs Jill Scott, Babyface vs Teddy Riley, Monica vs Brandy, and more recently Ghostface Killah vs. Raekwon.
If you’re a die-hard R&B fan then get ready because you’re in for a treat. On Saturday, May 8th, legendary groups SWV and Xscape will go hit for hit on the Verzuz stage. The two iconic R&B sensations have produced classic R&B music that put them at the top of the charts throughout the ’90s. If you were nursing a broken heart or dealing with someone else’s man, chances are you’ve sung a few Xscape or SWV songs to help carry you through.
We know both groups had the hits, but who had the best fashion? For me, SWV really embodied the laid back, classic R&B style. They almost always matched, and they never went for anything that was too over the top. Xscape on the other hand took more risks and eventually traded in the oversized 90’s look to show more skin.
This battle will be an exciting one for fans everywhere. In honor of the highly anticipated Verzuz, we’re taking a look at both SWV and Xscape’s fashion evolution over the years.
Verzuz But Make It Fashion: Here’s A Gallery Of SWV and Xscape’s Fashion Evolution was originally published on hellobeautiful.com
1. SWV AT KMEL SUMMER JAM, 1993Source:Getty
Coko, Taj, and Lelee of SWV gave a performance during KMEL Summer Jam at Shoreline Amphitheatre on July 31, 1993 in Mountain View, California.
Fashion in the ’90s was completely different than what it is today. Back then, female musicians dressed more on the baggy side. Oversized clothing with sneakers or combat boots were the vibe. Today most girl groups wear form-fitting attire that allows them to move around the stage.
During SWV’s performance, the ladies wore blue and white oversized vests with matching white pants. Their simple, laid-back style was reminiscent of every around-the-way girl from that time period.
2. XSCAPE AT THE FIRST ANNUAL SOUL TRAIN LADY OF SOUL AWARDS, 1995Source:Getty
Kandi Burress, Tiny, LaTocha Scott, and Tamika Scott of Xscape attended the First Annual Soul Train Lady of Soul Awards on August 6, 1995, at the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium in Santa Monica, California.
The quad showed up in white shirts and matching red jumpsuits. This is such an iconic look because I can absolutely see them wearing this today. As mentioned before, 90’s fashion called for oversized garments that hid the female shape. With the right styling, this ensemble has the potential to be their next performance outfit.
3. SWV IN NYC, 1993Source:Getty
Coko, Lelee, and Taj of SWV attended an event in March 1993 in New York. The three ladies went for an extremely casual look, clad in simple blouses and big smiles.
Perhaps the best part of this photo is the simplicity of their look. All ladies had their hair styled in a basic doobie wrap, and they each wore minimal makeup. Back in the ’90s fashion and glam were so simple. Over time you’ll see how glamorous our generation has become.
4. XSCAPE IN CHICAGO, 1998Source:Getty
Xscape (LaTocha Scott, Tamika Scott-Byas, Tameka ‘Tiny’ Cottle-Harris, and Kandi Burruss) posed for a portrait in April of 1998 in Chicago, Illinois.
Slowly but surely you can see the group dropping their baggy clothing and trading them in for more red carpet-ready attire. Despite their different outfits, they stuck to the matching theme by wearing black and white. It was around this time that groups were transitioning from matching outfits to cohesive ones. This allowed each artist to show off their individual style while being part of a group.
5. SWV AT THE PENNSYLVANIA CARE HEALTH FEST, 2018Source:Getty
SWV performed on stage during Pennsylvania Care Health Fest at The Great Plaza at Penn’s Landing on July 28, 2018, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
The trio gave a powerful performance in matching army fatigue jumpsuits. Another classic look from the group. As you can see, the style has elevated a bit since their days of hitting the stage in doobies and minimal makeup.
6. XSCAPE AT THE BET AWARDS, 2017Source:Getty
Kandi Burruss, Tamika Scott, Tiny Harris, and LaTocha Scott of Xscape arrived at the 2017 BET Awards at Microsoft Theater on June 25, 2017, in Los Angeles, California.
The group showed up looking like a bag of money with Kandi dressed in a black cutout dress, Tamika in a black jumpsuit with a corset bodice, Tiny in a white dress with a plunging neckline, and LaTocha in a black jumpsuit with sheer detailing. Talk about a complete 180! The group learned a thing or two about turning up the sexy and turning down the baggy.
7. SWV AT THE GRAND OPENING OF “SALT-N-PEPA’S I LOVE THE ’90s – THE VEGAS SHOW” RESIDENCY, 2018Source:Getty
Recording artists Leanne Lyons, Tamara Johnson and Cheryl Gamble of SWV attend the grand opening of “Salt-N-Pepa’s I Love The ’90s – The Vegas Show” residency at The Paris Theater at Paris Las Vegas on October 25, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Because the ladies were there to support and not take the stage, they showed off their individual styles. LeLee kept it simple in blue jeans, a white blouse, a black cardigan, and a silk scarf. Coko wore a black and animal print tracksuit, and Taj wore a Salt ‘N Pepa t-shirt and fatigue pants.
8. XSCAPE AT THE ‘VH1 HIO HOP HONORS: THE 90’S GAME CHANGERS’, 2017Source:Getty
Xscape attended VH1’s Hip Hop Honors: The 90s Game Changers at Paramount Studios on September 17, 2017, in Los Angeles, California.
The group stepped on the scene looking like a Black rendition of Charlie’s Angels. Dressed in all white, each lady gave a dose of their personalities in cohesive ensembles.
9. SWV AT VH1’S ANNUAL “DEAR MAMA: A LOVE LETTER TO MOM “, 2019Source:Getty
SWV performed during VH1’s Annual “Dear Mama: A Love Letter To Mom” at The Theatre at Ace Hotel on May 02, 2019, in Los Angeles, California.
The group hit the stage in cohesive red sequins ensembles. This look took me back to their days of oversized garments. Twenty-six years later and the group is still slaying their stage outfits.
10. XSCAPE BLACK MUSIC HONORS, 2019Source:Getty
Tamika Scott, Kandi Burruss, LaTocha Scott, and Tameka “Tiny” Harris of Xscape attended the 2019 Black Music Honors at Cobb Energy Performing Arts Center on September 5, 2019, in Atlanta, Georgia.
Can we get into the effortless slay that this group gave? Each woman showed us exactly why they’re still relevant in both music and fashion.