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Top 10 Dumbest Fads of the 1990s

Updated on May 30, 2015

Why pick on the 90's?

Ok, so the 90's were a pretty great decade for anyone who had a chance to be young during that time. That said, there were more than a handful of really stupid fads during the decade. There were so many stupid fads the Macarena dance didn't even make the list. Let's take a look back at 10 of the dumbest fads of the 90's:

10. Beanie Babies

You bought these things for $5 at your local crafts store, and then you waited until TY, the company that makes them, declares yours "retired", which really just means they weren't selling many of your animal and it's discontinued. Retired Beanie Babies once sold for thousands of dollars.

9. Slap bracelets

They looked like a standard ruler covered in really loud designs, but when you slapped them on your wrist they turned into a bracelet. Schools banned them because kids were slapping them against each others faces. They should have banned them because they're so hideous.

8. Tamagotchis

For some reason these really became popular in about 1997. They were just a pretend pet that you fed and played really stupid games with (guess left or guess right) and it grew and then it died and you started over. Tamagotchis and Nanopets were sold out everywhere for a short time.

7. Tickle Me Elmo

Who could forget Tickle Me Elmo? Crazed parents were paying thousands of dollars for this red furry monster that laughed and then had seizures, even if their kids weren't asking for one. After Christmas the prices plummeted, so if you happened to be one of those parents who celebrates Orthodox Christmas in January you probably were able to pick one up for about $20.

6. Clogs

This fad really annoys me because in a way it's still around. Clogs are just glorified slippers, but some reason everyone had to have a pair in the late-90's, and for some reason it became acceptable for those people to wear their slippers in a serious work environment.

5. Co-Ed Naked T-Shirts

Uggh, what an annoying fashion statement. These t-shirts really just told everyone that you were lower class. This was the must-have piece of clothing for anyone living in a trailer park in the 90's.

4. Reebok Pump Sneakers

Ok, here's the deal. There's a little round "pump" on the tongue of these shoes. We're told that if you pump the little semi-sphere it'll inflate the tongue and make our shoes fit tighter and increase performance. Here's reality: nobody got these things to work, but no one wanted to admit it. They even started selling these little CO2 cartridges because they knew the original Pumps didn't work. Even if you could get it to work, who wants a shoe with an inflated pocket of air ABOVE their foot?

3. Volkswagen Commercials

These were so popular in the 1990's. Everyone was singing "Da da da" under their breath at all times. And it worked too, because Volkswagen became the most sought after car for young buyers. With the exception of the uber-cool "Pink Moon" commercial, none of these ads should have made us want to buy a VW.

2. Pogs

These are what your parents used to call "milk caps", because you'd find them under the lid of fresh milk jars. Someone got the bright idea to put designs on them and invent a game where you stack them up and then use a metal disc to knock them over. There was gambling involved, which kids always love, and tons of accessories like official POG boards and specialized slammers. This game was insanely popular for about 3 months in the mid-90's.

1. Zubaz pants

Zubaz might go down as one of the worst crimes in fashion history. A cross between sweat pants and parachute pants but with an even louder and more annoying design, these were everywhere in the early-90's. If you went to the gym, they were absolutely required. This fad was made worse by the fact that every pro athlete wore these on their off days, so all the kids wanted them too. And lucky for them, they made Zubaz in every pro team color. I still have trouble looking at these pants without cringing.


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  • profile image

    lovetruelife 6 years ago

    Nice hub! fun to read! & funnyy. im new to hub though, & idid something with fads of highschool, check it out? :)

  • HerbalMarvel profile image

    HerbalMarvel 6 years ago from London

    Great idea for a hub. Brought back some good (and some really not good) memories. Good stuff!

  • LakeShow T profile image

    LakeShow T 7 years ago

    Hilarious! When I saw the title to this article, the first two things I thought of were Zubaz and Pogs. How ironic is it that you have them at #1 and #2. I enjoyed the trip down memory lane. Cool article!

  • akirchner profile image

    Audrey Kirchner 7 years ago from Central Oregon

    Wow - I was here and I don't even remember some of these - maybe I'm really, really senile! Cute idea.