In the decade after the colour explosion of the 80s and before the chic ‘posh spice’ vibes of the early ‘00s, the 90s had a bit of a fashion identity crisis. No matter how old you were in the 90s you’ll remember these shameful trends, what were we all thinking?
Tie-dye has had its comeback, if done well it can look cool and fashionable. In the 90s it was not done well. Tie-dye in the 90s was a mixture of neon colours, peace signs and ‘profound’ slogans. Usually paired with sweatbands and hair that was scrunched with hardening gel that smelled pleasantly of fruits.
#2 wallet chains and skater jeans
Skater jeans and wallet chains were the perfect couple that could never be, much like Ross and Rachel. We waddled around in our super flared, super sized jeans pretending to be just one of the boys and telling ourselves we could actually use a skate-board with those stupid jeans swinging in the breeze. At least we’d never lose our wallets.
#3 Crazy clashing prints
Yep, the 90s was the decade of mixing one ugly patterned shirt with another ugly patterned pair of leggings. Ordinarily the shirt could be forgiven if paired with something understated and chic, but the 90s wasn’t about that. The 90s was a decade of self expression, nobody would know how cool you were if you didn’t declare it with loud patterns and super bright colours.
#4 Rubber bracelets
In the 90s we didn’t spend money on accessories, we spent money on Tamagotchis and the latest Britney Spears perfume, so with the extra pocket change we had, we had to be wise. Accessories had to be cheap but super chic, that’s where rubber bracelets come in. We had rubber bracelets in every colour adorning our wrists, from black and red to Barbie pink (to match your pink jelly sandals!) The more industrious amongst us discovered you could chew on these bracelets to stave off hunger that crept on you during class.
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#5 Gold rope chains
What better way to channel the coolest Hip Hop artists of our generation than to invest in an imitation gold rope chain? Half the price, twice the heaviness, these things were impossibly heavy and would hang down our tiny necks, possibly causing us to stoop a little when we walked later in life! If you teamed a gold chain with a bandanna you were really onto a winner, even if your chain was slowly going greener over time.
These days it’s hard to convince us that a cap can be a fashionable choice of hat. In the 90s we didn’t need convincing, we knew that wearing a cap was the ultimate sign of cool. Probably something to do with our parents wanting us to avoid sun burning our scalps, we had caps with slogans, crazy prints, imitation designer logos and (of course) peace signs.
#7 Anything with best friends on it
In the 90s there was a market for literally anything that could be separated into two parts and contained the words ‘best friends’, we were a fickle bunch and constantly needed to buy new best friends bracelets as our tastes in people changed. One week we were declaring our undying friendship for one person, the next another, so companies had to ensure there was a constant stream of best friends merchandise in the market, otherwise how would we know who our friendship was promised to?
#8 Plaid miniskirts
Thanks to Clueless, plaid miniskirts were so in. Occasionally paired with a pastel t-shirt with something whimsical like a monkey or a Looney Tunes character on, but more often paired with knee high socks and scratchy jumpers. We all wanted to look like cool school girls, but the reality was, we didn’t. We looked weird.
#9 Leg warmers
Never mind if your legs weren’t actually cold, leg warmers were worn over tights and bare legs and had to be in a variety of neon colours, if they were glittery you were a fashion icon and probably destined to become famous. Paired with platform trainers for an ultimate chic look, we knew we looked awesome even if they itched our legs a little. This trend continued until the ‘00s when we swapped neon for grey and platform trainers for UGG boots.
#10 ‘Scooby’ bracelets
Hands up if you remember this one? Much like the loom band craze of a few months ago, Scooby bracelets took the ‘90s by storm. All you needed was bags of multicoloured rubber string and a mastery of the technique. If you couldn’t make them yourself you’d settle for accepting them as gifts from one of your many best friends. How proud you would be pairing one of these artfully created bracelets with a temporary tattoo of a butterfly and a couple of similar coloured rubber bracelets. You were the very definition of style.
Remember the days of sitting amongst your legions of beanie babies underneath posters of vaguely feminine looking men and congratulating yourself on how stylish you were? I miss those simple days! Do you remember any other cringeworthy 90s trends we embraced with open arms? Let us know in the comments below and give us something to have a giggle about.