There are so many reasons to love the 90s! It feels like 1999 was just five years ago. Kids today have no idea what they missed. Growing up in the 90s was such a fun time. Here are 90 reasons to love the 90s.
1. Troll Dolls
Collect them all! You could get a rainbow collection of cute little plastic troll dolls who had different jeweled belly buttons. Red, orange, yellow hair and so on with a belly button to match. Just one of the many reasons to love the 90s.
2. Beanie Babies
These were a huge deal. Little stuffed animals full of beans were being sold, depending on which one, for sometimes upwards of $800. When Princess Diana of Wales was tragically killed in Paris, France in August of 1997, a purple Beanie Baby teddy bear was made in her honour.
3. Princess Diana
Princess Diana was alive until 1997. The beautiful princess changed the face of the super elite and royalty by going out into some of the world’s most dangerous areas and donating her money and time to people in extreme need, such as HIV victims and AIDS orphans. Princess Diana also set the western world standard for hairstyles and clothing for women.
4. The Economy
The economy in the United States was strong. Sections of inner cities that had been war zones in the 1980s, like Harlem, were starting to prosper and become safer. People in the suburbs and rural communities enjoyed affordable land tax and houses were not expensive, and full-time jobs were abundant.
5. People Interacted More Offline
The world wide web was out there, but it was very basic. See Space Jam’s website. They haven’t updated it since 1996. Computer games were there, but screen technology did not overwhelm people’s lives like today. Online shopping did not exist. Screen addiction was practically non-existent. Kids and adults interacted more face to face whether it was shopping, talking on your neighbor’s porch, inner-city kids playing kick the can with neighborhood kids, or suburban kids being sent off to tennis camp for two weeks.
6. People Had Better Face to Face Interaction
Mobile phones were only around for business people until around 1999. When you went on a date you didn’t have to worry about your date being occupied with his phone. People had better face to face interactions overall, not perfect, but better.
7. The Musicians Still Had Talent and Didn’t All Sound the Same
Of course, some of the singers and bands formed in the 90s are still around today, and there are good singers and musicians today, but today cannot compare to the 90s. Even the singers still singing today had better music in the 90s. Why? They had to sing with their own voices. There weren’t machines to change their voices to make them sing better. A lot of musicians also could play at least one other instrument and many could compose their own music. While some can do that today, many today simply don’t have the talent that was there in the 90s. The best thing is that each singer’s voice sounded different, unlike today regardless of the genre of music. Australia had also come out with some great bands in the 90s including Savage Garden and S Club 7. Gwen Stefani got her start in Ace of Base, Will Smith taught us how to Get Jiggy With It, and Garth Brooks and Shania Twain were creating some of the most memorable music for country fans.
Friends was the show of the 90s! I had the pleasure of running into the entire cast at my old summer village in 2000 when they were staying in a hotel. They are some of the nicest people you could ever meet. Matthew Perry, Lisa Kudrow, Jennifer Aniston and more starred in the show. Every episode taught a lesson and was absolutely hilarious. A well written, well-acted series that still is raking in billions. No comedy sitcom about a group of adult friends before or after can compare.
9. The Fresh Prince of Bel Air
Will Smith plays himself. A story of a teenage boy from the hood of Philly who takes a cab and moves to the rich neighborhood of Bel Air, California. That must have been an outrageous cab fare! Loosely based on Will Smith’s own life (he did come from a bad area and had his son Trey when he was young, in 1992) and made it as a superstar. The Fresh Prince of Bel Air always had a moral and taught us to step up and step in and raise our nieces, nephews, much younger cousins etc. when their own parents couldn’t or wouldn’t. It also had great humor.
10. Women in Music
Women started to come up and be noticed in country music, rock, and rap. While some started in the 1980s, they started to have huge sold out concerts and be treated the same as their male counterparts including Smashing Pumpkins, TLC, Shania Twain, Martina McBride, JoDee Messina, and Reba McEntire to name a few.
11. Matt Damon
Matt Damon was young and oh so hot. He’s still hot, but he was so young and enticing back then. Matt Damon is also extremely smart and attended Harvard.
12. Leonardo DiCaprio
Pretty much a self-taught actor, Leonardo DiCaprio came into his prime in the 90s. He was capable of playing any role and deserved the Oscar long before 2016. The handsome environmentalist was every girl’s fantasy dream. We all wanted to be Claire Danes in Romeo and Juliet. If only we had taken acting lessons growing up. If you want to see how cheesy Leo fans were over him, watch Looking for Leo.
13. Saved by the Bell
"It’s alright 'cuz we’re saved by the bell!" You know the tune. This early 90s show made high school look super cool. We couldn’t wait to get to high school because it had to be exactly like this show, right? After, we’d hang out at the diner with our cool friends. Okay, okay it started in 1989 but it was pretty much a 90s show. We all know how Mario Lopez turned out, wink, wink. His wife is a very lucky lady.
Organic? Gluten-free? Are you speaking English? Alright so most of us in the 90s weren’t exactly health conscious. The stuff we ate as kids parents wouldn’t feed their kids these days. Dunkaroos were such a good junk food. Shortbread cookies shaped like kangaroos. You took the kangaroo cookie and pretended it hopped into the chocolate or vanilla with sprinkles frosting.
15. We Could Slam the Receiver
Did your best friend lie to you and say they are sick and can’t go out tonight, only to have your older brother catch her at the mall? Well, you can’t slam a cell phone, but back in the 90s you had landline phones and boy you could slam a receiver down on someone’s ear when you were pissed off.
16. Our Slang Was Awesome
Aite. Smells like burned toast. Boo ya! Back in the day when it was yesterday. Stacy’s mom has got it going on. Bangin’. Talk to the hand.
17. American Pie
In 1999, this one time at band camp. So naughty, so good.
18. We Had a Thicker Skin and Used Better Common Sense
Now, it’s never okay to make fun of someone because of their sexuality, skin color, disability, lisp, being poor, or whatever the case may be, but back in the 90s we had a thicker skin. We didn’t get offended by every little thing and every little word. We didn’t make mountains out of molehills and invent problems when there were none like nowadays, such as the fact Swedish police can no longer describe the features of a criminal in case it might seem racist, regardless of the fact this is a violent person on the loose and now nobody knows who to look for, or the time Ohio questioned if peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are racist, or that time a hot cocoa company changed it from snowmen to snow people. No, I’m not joking.
19. Austin Powers
Yay baby! Shaggadelic! The groovy horny man that showed us London was a crazy sexual revolution in the 1960s.
This was the biggest blockbuster movie of all time. Titanic, a movie about a ship that sank along with our hearts when Leo was gypped out of an Oscar. Oh, but it was more than that. It was about being proud of who you are (Molly Brown) and standing up for yourself (Rose), of being a free spirit knowing that some people live more in twenty-one years (Jack) than some live in seventy, and of bravery (the rich men who went down with the ship so children could have seats on the rowboats).
21. Single Mother Acceptance
Pregnant women couldn’t be fired from their jobs. Single mothers couldn’t be fired from their jobs.
22. Communism Was Defeated. Well, Almost All of It
While the Berlin Wall came down in 1989, Communism went on for a while in Eastern Europe and central Asian countries into the 1990s. Slowly, over the years during the 90s, communism was abolished. Let us not forget the over twenty million people killed in the USSR under Stalin’s hand, along with those who froze, starved or died due to a lack of medication under USSR’s Communism.
23. Hubble Telescope
In April 1990 the Hubble telescope was put into outer space and the following month it started taking jaw-dropping pictures that revolutionized astronomy.
24. Putting down Our Nuclear Weapons
President Bush and Gorbachev sign a treaty to do away with their own respective nuclear weapons.
25. 27th Amendment is Passed
After 202 years of fighting for it, the 27th Amendment is passed in May 1992, which forbids Congress from giving themselves a raise midterm or a retroactive raise.
26. The Hippy Necklaces
Straw or hemp necklaces with one, two, or three precious stones were all the rage.
27. More Was Expected of You as a Teenager
You were treated more like an adult. In fact, in the 90s you were probably treated more like an adult in high school than how some college-age adults are treated by their parents now.
28. Mario Kart - the Rainy Day Cure
Whether you’re home alone and racing the computer or you have a group of friends over on a day it’s raining cats and dogs, Mario Kart gives you plenty of fun roads and scenes to see as you race. Pick your character and your race track. My favorite was Rainbow Road. What was yours?
The elementary school game that made math fun!
30. The Skateboarding Craze
Tony Hawk was a big deal in the 90s. Teenagers and middle schoolers wanted to copy him. It was all about baggy, black pants and hanging around the library parking lot to learn and show off new moves. Well, until you were yelled at for loitering.
31. Full House
A heartwarming series showing us that not every family is made up of a Mom, Dad, and children and that is okay. Alright, alright so it started in 1987, but it guided us through the early 90s.
32. Whitney Houston
You could see her in concert. This does not need an explanation. I don’t know about you but I get out of breath just lip-synching along with this woman. May she rest in peace.
33. Commercials of the 90s
You actually knew what they were talking about from the beginning!
You didn’t care what the Spanish meant. You just knew when this song came on you were there.
It wasn’t only a magazine. It was a dance move!
36. The Sprinkler Dance Move
Who made it through the 90s without doing this move? Probably no one.
37. That Early 90s Dance Move Where We Walked Backward and Hit Each Other’s Soles
Dancing was so fun back then!
38. The Cha Cha Slide
Watch out wedding guests! Let me show you how a pro does it.
Thank God It’s Friday. After an excruciatingly long week at school, we could look forward to laying on the couch on Friday night and watching our favorite line up of television shows.
40. Saturday Morning Cartoons
TGIF was followed by Saturday morning cartoons.
41. Country Music Sounded like Country Music
Sure it didn’t sound exactly like old school Roy Rogers and Willie Nelson, but it sounded more country than some of the songs out there today.
42. Michael Jackson
You could see The White Glove live!
43. You Were More in Tune with Your Surroundings
There was no screen addiction. Children played in nature more.
44. The Decade of Halloween Movies
Hocus Pocus and Casper! These are just some of them, but the 90s made great Halloween stuff.
45. Hocus Pocus
Taught us what a good big brother will do for his little sister.
Finally, a version with real people. Admit it, you too had that elementary school crush on Casper when he turned into a real boy.
47. Halloween Liberty
Once you were about five years old, you were on your own for Halloween. Your older siblings or the kids next door looked after you.
48. Long Sleeve Dresses
It’s literally ten below outside in Minnesota. You can’t find dresses for the holidays that have long sleeves anymore. Back in the 80s and 90s you could get nice velvet, long sleeve dresses for women, so you didn’t freeze your arms off.
49. Yoga Started to Become Trendy
Yoga became trendy, learning to be bendy and in tune with your unconscious mind.
50. The Vegetarian Movement Gained Popularity
People started listening to those environmental activists. If you’re going to eat meat, buy local, not factory farmed.
51. Reggae Made a Comeback
High school concerts, middle school dances, vacation cruises -
it was like Bob Marley never died.
52. Sedona Grew
Sedona, Arizona grew into a gorgeous town in northern Arizona. A natural healing town. in the 90s people more and more started to look toward the eastern philosophy of healing through mind, body, and spirit.
Candy gushing into your mouth. Every dentist's worst nightmare, every kid’s dream to have her Mom stick these in her school lunch.
54. Our Cereal Was Fun
Mini French toast cereal. Yes, ma’am!
55. Skip It!
After school or on the playground. Skip it is how we got out that boundless energy.
56. Blow up Furniture
Take a deep breath! The cheapest furniture you’ll ever buy. Who didn’t have bean bags and blow up chairs in their university dorms in the 90s?
57. Heads down, Thumbs up
Pick me! Pick me!
58. Discovery Zone
Can’t I have another birthday party here, Dad? No, you’re 12.
59. Your Movies Never Got Broken
Babysitting a one-year-old? He could toss that VHS tape of Hocus Pocus around all day. It’s still good.
This fun game decided who you would marry, how many kids you’d have and where you’d live, what you’d drive to work, and then some. Mansion, Apartment, Shack, House, Outhouse.
61. Gym Class Butt Scooters
You’d sit on these in gym class and have your friends push you as you went flying into the wall. Super fun!
62. School Toughened You up Mentally
We didn’t make excuses for bad behavior. Shape up or ship out.
63. School Toughened You up Physically
Army Reserves? Try having to get from one side of building A after orchestra class all the way over to the other side of building B for chemistry class with a full backpack of notebooks, binders, and textbooks in five minutes. Early twenty-first century students know this - no pain, no gain.
64. Color Changing Flashlights
Thank you, Fisher Price for making early childhood fun, or thanks Dad for the many great toys you made for me and millions of kids around the world.
65. Mr. Feeny
If you were homeschooled, Mr. Feeny was your spiritual principal.
66. Bill Nye the Science Guy
Bill! Bill! Bill! This show showed more about science to kids than modern science shows show today to adults. It also gave low-income inner city kids a chance to learn and be on TV.
67. Beware, You’re in for a Scare
R.L. Stein created a book craze with his Goosebumps books followed by a cheesy TV series filmed in Toronto. I begged to be on the show but was over the age limit by one year. Who doesn’t have a collection of Goosebump books? Phantom of the Auditorium, Night of the Living Dummy, One Day at Horrorland, The Headless Ghost, and Vampire Breath just to name a few.
68. Pig Latin
Our first foreign language created in America’s school cafeterias.
69. Kid Pix!
70. Scholastic Book Fairs
71. Water Ring Toss
We could spend hours pressing a little button determined to get little colorful rings in water onto a pole. Good luck getting kids to want to play that today, unless they go to Waldorf school.
72. The Rainbow Pen
Unfortunately, trying to hold down all the colors at once didn’t work.
73. Mr. Sketch
See my artwork. Smell my artwork.
Flip them, trade them, collect them. Do whatever. Just make sure Mom doesn’t vacuum them up.
75. Sit and Spin
I was five when I learned about how dizziness could be fun. How old were you?
76. Polly Pocket
Because using your imagination and staying away from electronics at times is healthy.
77. Mad Libs
Have these really gone out of style?
78. Nickelodeon Slime
Darnit, why do I have to live in Michigan? You wished you lived in Los Angeles and could be slimed on TV.
79. National Geographic Really Wild Animals
If you haven’t seen this series, watch it on Youtube!
80. The Pager
Every guy in medical school thought he was cool. “Stacy, I have half an hour free next month on the twelfth. I’ll call you on my pager.”
81. Supermarket Sweep
Grandma screamed at the TV, and you loved it.
82. We Could Doodle on Our Book Covers
The art of folding the brown paper bag was followed by doodling on the cover and looking for naughty doodlings in the back of your health textbook. Early 21st century students remember this too. You also wanted to see who had your book before you.
Cool people buy them, Lucy.
84. Passing Notes
Don’t make eye contact.
85. Koosh Balls
You could find these everywhere. You probably could find these on Skid Row.
Did you mean Mogwai? Sure looked like it. Avoid bright lights, don’t get them wet, and whatever you do, don’t find him after midnight. Pretty sure this was a spinoff from the 1984 classic.
87. Microsoft Saves the Day
1997 Microsoft saves Apple from the brink of extinction.
88. Jurassic Park
Dinosaurs came to life!
89. The 90s Guy Haircut
Part in the middle and long on the sides. See young Leonardo DiCaprio.