BY Fast Company 4 MINUTE READ

It’s a common way to start a TikTok: “Get dressed with me.” But when Myra Magdalen says it, you know you’re in for an acid trip of an outfit.

The 25-year-old fashion influencer starts innocently enough, donning a dress with an aquatic print. But things take a turn for the eccentric as she velcros a fake aquarium across her chest and adorns it with plastic marine plants. And, per Magdalen’s signature over-the-top style, this look wouldn’t be complete without her positively humongous stuffed catfish purse.

“I did look it up, and there are saltwater catfish, so I feel like it works with this outfit,” Magdalen reassures her viewers. “So, anyway, that’s the look,” she says, pulling the camera to the crown of her head and ending the video. It garners almost 800,000 views.

Magdalen is far from the only maven of maximalist fashion on TikTok (shoutouts to @tinyjewishgirl, @sativadiva1997, @saracampz and all of the platform’s unconventional style icons). What sets her apart is the incorporation of found objects most people would never think of as clothing: a miniature piano, a broken laptop, or a collection of plastic goose heads, to name a few of her greatest hits. Her unique take on fashion has earned Magdalen nearly 500,000 TikTok followers.

Like plenty of TikTok users, Magdalen first created her account in the early days of the pandemic. But it took nearly a year before her videos started getting upwards of 100,000 views. Her first truly viral video, she recalls, used a popular audio track to showcase the now iconic bathroom where she shoots almost all of her videos: Its walls are covered floor to ceiling with retro computer keyboards.

“After I posted it, I put my phone down to finish getting ready for bed,” she tells Fast Company. “When I checked it maybe seven minutes later, it already had a million views.” Since then, viewers have been hooked on her weird and wonderful imagination.

Often, the process of Magdalen styling an outfit is just as intriguing as the final product. Take one of her latest outfits, which centered on a massive safety pin Magdalen wore around her hips. Where does one find a piece like that? At the yard sale of a woman with a “Hobby Lobby aesthetic,” Magdalen explains.

“When I got it, it was kind of that gray and white farmhouse type of texture,” she says. “I spray painted it silver so it looked more like a real safety pin.”

Magdalen then selected the perfect pieces from her collection to fit the safety pin theme: a custom tank top with a safety pin cutout (“I had that tank top already and it had a stain on it, so I was like, ‘Perfect. I’ll just cut out the stain.’”), a knit gray skirt, arm warmers, a pair of headphones, and—naturally—more safety pins than you could count attached to every article of clothing and even throughout her hair.

It all came together to create a bizarre but fabulous outfit that the internet met with equal parts confusion and praise, netting more than 3 million views on TikTok.


Though Magdalen is best known for her fashion, her aforementioned maximalist taste in interior design came first. All of her living spaces, not just her computer-clad bathroom, somewhat resemble her outfits: chaotic, out-there, over-the-top. “Having a ton of stuff everywhere, that’s sort of my bread and butter,” she says. “Maximalist decor is where I started from, and then it sort of bled into fashion.”

One of the most frequent comments on Magdalen’s videos (besides “Where are you wearing this?” and “Is this satire?”) is, “Where do you keep all this stuff?” The answer, it turns out, is “nowhere.”

“It’s just out in my room,” she says. “I’m yanking stuff off my wall. There’s no organization. There’s no storage. It’s just there.”

Magdalen insists this disorganized state is a help, not a hindrance, to her creative process. “I mean, the idea of putting everything away where I can’t see it—I think it’d be a lot harder to think of things,” she says.

Success on social media has also drawn attention to her fashion brand, Magdalen Clothing, a small-scale shop where Magdalen translates her one-of-a-kind, largely impractical style into pieces her fans can buy. She started the brand in 2018 before ever having a TikTok account, but it wasn’t until she went viral for her outfits years later that the products garnered recognition.

“It felt like overnight, from one order would have my heart racing for a week to getting orders every day,” Magdalen says.

Now, there are literally millions of eyes on Magdalen’s outfits, waiting to see what she’ll style next. But the attention is “less of a pressure and more of a relief,” Magdalen insists, because it gives her the creative outlet she’s always craved. “I would have the weird ideas regardless,” she says. “Now I have an excuse to really do them.”