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Fads of the 1990s

How many of these mostly-American fads of the 1990s can you remember?
Last updated: September 20, 2018
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Clue
Fad
Style of music exemplified by Nirvana
Grunge
Shirt material worn by those musicians ^
Flannel
Stuffed animal brand that became a speculative investment bubble
Beanie Babies
Handheld digital pet
Tamagotchi
Dance craze from a Los del Río song
Macarena
Sesame Street toy which become impossible to acquire
Tickle Me Elmo
Loose pants popularized by a certain MC
Hammer Pants
Blue-collar work garment worn by the Fresh Prince, but with one strap unhooked
Overalls
Billy Blank's cardio boxing routine
Tae Bo
Picture books where you tried to find a guy
Where's Waldo?
Shirts that changed color depending on the temperature
Hypercolor
This 1930s dance style had a comeback
Swing Dance
This clothing store was huge in the 1990s, and had a commercial featuring these dancers ^
The Gap
Inflatable shoes that supposedly made you jump higher (but didn't)
Reebok Pump
Computer program that people used to pirate music in 1999
Napster
Powerful water gun toy
Super Soaker
Doctors and drug dealers had these
Beepers
Web site that featured a dancing rodent and catchy music
Hampster Dance
Roller skates, but modernized
Rollerblades
Strengthen your legs by squeezing them together with this device
advertised by Suzanne Somers
Thighmaster
+3
level 62
Oct 15, 2012
Should allow Nanopet as well as tomagotchi, and on beepers pagers as well.
+1
level 44
Dec 13, 2012
There were several variants of that phenom. I tried "digimon", "pokemon", "digipets", finally gave up on that one.
+4
level 51
Sep 10, 2014
Digimon and Pokemon are cartoons and I know Pokemon has cards; they weren't virtual pets.
+2
level 53
Apr 4, 2017
"Digipets" were one form of virtual pet, but Pokemon and Digimon are in no way connected to that fad, other than the fact that they all originated in Japan.
+1
level 65
Jan 7, 2019
I thought digimon had a tamagotchi style thing that you could also connect together to fight. but maybe that was something else
+1
level 55
Apr 23, 2015
Were Neopets a thing? 'Cause that's what I remember them being called. But perhaps my memory is off? I never had them myself, but it seemed every one else had them.
+2
level 72
Jan 6, 2019
Neopets were digital pets on a website, but I wouldn't say they were quite the same thing.
+1
level 65
Oct 17, 2012
I'm baffled that more people don't remember Hypercolor! Anyone care to propose a probable explanation?
+2
level 59
Oct 17, 2012
I remember Hypercolor, but I couldn't remember that's what they were called.
+1
level 36
Oct 17, 2012
I remember it as global hypercolor, spelt it with and without the u but didn't try it without the global.
+1
level 75
Oct 15, 2013
I'm trying to forget about hypercolor. It was working until this quiz...
+2
level 70
Apr 21, 2014
Having lived through the 90s, split between the US and UK, I an say I have never heard of hypercolor.
+1
level 42
Sep 10, 2014
Aw yeah, I had a Hypercolor shirt! Those things were pretty cool, although mostly what happened was that it changed color on your shoulders and the parts where it was resting, and stayed that way, and you couldn't really make the cool handprints they showed in the ad(vert)s. But still. The one I had was kind of mauve, and pink when it got warm.
+1
level 44
Oct 7, 2015
I remember the shirts. I had one. Couldn't remember the name of the company. I kept trying "hydrocolor"... even though I realize there is no water.
+2
level 70
Aug 11, 2017
This is literally the first I've heard about "hypercolor" shirts. Sounds like I didn't miss much.
+1
level 75
Jan 6, 2019
I never heard of it either, and I had teenagers in the '90s.
+1
level 53
Feb 26, 2018
Were hypercolor shirts in the US or in Europe? American here - never heard of them. If they were here, maybe they were a regional thing?
+2
level 73
Jun 4, 2018
US. They were quickly taken off the market because the colors changed more drastically on the hottest places on your torso. So your pits were a different color and, more embarrassingly, for busty girls, the underboob area changed colors. Not a great look.
+1
level 61
Jan 7, 2019
I remember the same thing. During the first week of 6th grade, some of the kids with wealthier parents had the new hypercolor shirts. Only took them a week or so to realize that a shirt that highlights when and where you are overheated in the September California sun is a bad idea...
+1
level 75
Apr 7, 2018
If you still have one they don't change colors anymore.
+1
level 75
May 24, 2018
It was unimportant? Never heard of it.
+1
level 72
Jan 6, 2019
It seems like a neat concept but I don't remember it at all. It is one of only two answers I missed.
+2
level 46
Jan 7, 2019
I was penalised for spelling colour correctly...
+1
level 24
Oct 17, 2012
I remember the hamster dance being sung by Hampdon the Hamster
+1
level 15
Oct 17, 2012
It would be really cool to have a shirt that changes color. It could be hard to match though. :)
+1
level 65
Oct 17, 2012
*reading on Wikipedia about Beanie Babies and Tickle Me Elmo* Why did these things become such fads? That's so sad.
+2
level 55
Mar 17, 2013
Because they're toys? Kids like toys if I remember how kids work.
+1
level 73
Aug 8, 2013
The fad when I was a kid were Cabbage Patch dolls. Have you seen these ugly buggers? No respectable kid now a days would dream of having one, yet people were literally getting trampled for them. Kids + Greed + Parents trying to buy affection = Crazy toy fads. Ridiculous.
+2
level 75
Feb 20, 2015
I didn't trample anyone to buy a Cabbage Patch Kid for my daughters, I waited until the craziness had died down, found them stocked on the shelves, and bought them as birthday gifts. The girls played with them until they outgrew them, and now they have passed them on to their own daughters who love them as much as their mothers did. What's wrong with that? Not many toys today are so well-made as to survive two generations of play.
+2
level 64
Sep 6, 2013
It's not the kids. the adults feed the fad--they decide that their kids have to have it.
+1
level 75
Feb 20, 2015
Elmo was a toy, but Beanie Babies became a collectible due to the company's regularly retiring designs and producing only limited numbers of each design. Some of the early retired toys were sold for large profits and then people were in a frenzy to collect every one the company made. Someone gave each of our kids one, but they were never into them. They preferred Pound Puppies.
+1
level 75
Apr 7, 2018
Beanie babies tapped into people's impulse to collect, and also FoMO.

Tickle-Me-Elmo was just the popular toy one Christmas season that everyone wanted and as often happened with those things, American parents decide that they've somehow let their child down if they don't get them the big popular toy of the season, which led to people fighting over them. I worked at Toys R Us in the stock room that year. I should have stolen a box, I had my hands on one once coming off the truck, I probably could have made $10,000 on eBay.
+1
level 58
Oct 17, 2012
It's actually called "Hampster Dance." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hampster_Dance Therefore, I think "Hampster Dance" should be allowed.
+1
level ∞
Jan 20, 2015
Fixed
+1
level 62
Apr 4, 2017
That's weird, because the animal is actually spelled HAMSTER. Or is it a special kind of Hamster?
+1
level 66
Apr 7, 2018
I'm pretty sure it was just that the person who made the original web page didn't know the actual spelling, and it stuck.
+2
level 29
Oct 17, 2012
haha I remember when swing music came back in style for like, 2 minutes back in 1998. good times.
+1
level 32
Oct 18, 2012
"Mambo No. 5 !!!"
+2
level 44
Sep 10, 2014
I never associated that with the swing craze, but I can see how the resurgence in swing (Cherry Poppin Daddies, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, Squirrel Nut Zippers, Brian Setzer Orchestra) led to a resurgence in mambo, salsa and other traditional dance music. I think of swing as being rather non-Latin but I suppose it all bleeds together at a point.
+1
level 44
Dec 13, 2012
I missed the Hampster Dance era - so I had to go check it out. Thanks alot! Now it's stuck in my head!!!
+1
level 13
Dec 13, 2013
good quiz
+1
level 64
Dec 31, 2013
First of all, it's '90s not 90's. Secondly, the Atkins Diet was a 2000s fad, not a '90s one. From the Wikipedia page, "The Atkins Nutritional Approach gained widespread popularity in 2003 and 2004."
+2
level 75
May 15, 2014
It first came out in the 1970s if I remember correctly. It has risen and fallen in popularity many times since then, but is still going strong so I wouldn't exactly call it a fad.
+1
level ∞
May 24, 2018
Agreed. I removed Atkins.
+2
level 60
Jan 2, 2014
I had no idea what Hypercolor was, now I want one.
+1
level 42
Sep 10, 2014
You can buy them on ebay.
+2
level 53
Apr 1, 2015
But you really shouldn't, unless you like to broadcast your armpit sweat in technicolor.
+2
level 44
Sep 10, 2014
In the 90s I was 14-24, and I've never even heard of Hamster Dance, Hypercolor or Tamagotchi. I guess I was into other things.
+2
level 58
Mar 30, 2015
14 was a little old for Tamagotchi. I've also never heard of hypercolor. Hamster dance was popular, but it wasn't a craze on par with some of this other stuff.
+1
level 84
Mar 2, 2015
Atkins' diet was introduced in 2002. Just saying.
+1
level ∞
Mar 3, 2015
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atkins_diet
+1
level 75
Apr 7, 2018
That was the one clue that jumped out at me as something that felt like it was later than the 90s. But I assume QM did his research. Maybe it was introduced in the late 90s and caught on in the 2000s? In the 90s I remember jogging, power walking, Ultra SlimFast (or was that the 80s?), and fat-free frozen yogurt.
+1
level 75
Jan 6, 2019
As I stated previously, Atkins came out in the 1970s. It's had ebbs and flows since then.
+1
level 59
Mar 30, 2015
So few people know the hamster dance! I'm aghast!
+1
level 59
Mar 30, 2015
Also, I thought "picture book where you tried to find a guy" was talking about like, dating...pre-internet, pre-facebook. Duh. Where's Waldo? Totally misunderstood that one.
+1
level 68
Jan 6, 2019
Glad I read the comments before I repeated this one.
+2
level 66
Mar 30, 2015
It's hamster, not hampster
+1
level ∞
Mar 30, 2015
No, it's not.
+1
level 56
Mar 30, 2015
i fotrgot about the hamster dance. but we played that in the 2000's not the 90's...
+1
level 43
Mar 30, 2015
I'm upset by the lack of references to: the video game console war between Nintendo and Sega and then Nintendo 64 and Sony Playstation. To no reference at all to Michael Jordan, maybe the most famous human on the planet during the Bulls' 1990s dynasty. To no mention of Titanic (the movie was a phenomenon at the time, as was Celine Dion's awful song), Seinfeld, or Friends. To Bill Clinton and Monica Lewnsky. And many, many more. I was born in the mid-1980s, which means I grew up in the 90s and I remembered everything on this list but hypercolor and the Hamster thing. And I saved these for last just because they made me laugh, but what about pogs?
+1
level 66
Jan 9, 2019
Not sure what kind of "fad" would be connected to Clinton and Lewinsky....
+1
level 43
Mar 30, 2015
And the correct spelling of the ANIMAL is hamster, but I'm guessing what is referred to here - which I have never heard of before - is indeed spelled with a P. And a few things I left out: crystal pepsi, America Online, Stater jackets, and the color teal. In the early to mid 1990s used the color due to the fad, from the Charlotte Hornets of the NBA, the Florida Marlins and Seattle Mariners (who existed before the '90s but adopted teal in that decade) of MLB, the San Jose Sharks in the NHL, and the Carolina Panthers and Jacksonville Jaguars in the NFL. And why the NFL decided to introduce two southern teams who were both named after large jungle cats and both wore teal is a mystery to me. I know people who still confuse them (though I must admit, I am not one of those people).
+1
level 43
Mar 30, 2015
That was Starter Jackets, not Stater.
+1
level 58
Mar 30, 2015
I don't really think grunge was a fad. It was a sustained era of music that is still well-respected. Yes, it is decidedly '90s, but it wasn't an incomprehensible success based solely on hype in the way that almost everything else on this list is. People still discover and get into Nirvana and Pearl Jam every day. How many people do you think are still buying Tamagotchis and Hypercolors?
+2
level 75
Mar 30, 2015
My daughter grew up in the '90s and had several Giga Pets; I never once heard the name Tamagotchi. From Wikipedia: "In the U.S., Giga Pets were reported to be more readily available than Tamagotchis and at price of approximately $10 USD, roughly $5 less than the suggest retail price for their Japanese counterpart." (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Giga_Pet) Please accept Giga Pet as an alternative answer.
+2
level 75
Mar 31, 2015
They were just the knock-off brand.
+1
level 64
Apr 2, 2015
many teen shops are endorsing flannel and the modernised grunge look now its like the 90's all over again!
+1
level 75
Apr 11, 2015
They just have to wait until enough time passes so the kids will be fooled into thinking that they're being original.
+1
level 49
Nov 6, 2017
I know I'm responding two years later but my tween daughter is wearing flannels,boots, ripped jeans and chokers. She looks just like I did in high school lol. Of course she thinks she's original lol. So the grunge look is definetly back!
+2
level 75
Apr 7, 2018
I remember when my generation tried to bring back bell-bottoms but it didn't really take.
+1
level 75
Jan 6, 2019
I wore bell bottoms in the '60s and one of my daughters made fun of the look when she saw some old photos. I told her they would come back again some time and she would wear them. She signed a paper stating that she would never wear bell bottoms as long as she lived, and told me to keep it in my desk drawer. The paper is still there, and to my knowledge she has never worn them. I suspect her children will, though.
+1
level 65
Jan 7, 2019
I remember when I was growing up in the 90s and all the fads from the 60s and 70s were becoming popular again. I guess it's time for the 90s to come back
+1
level 72
Nov 23, 2015
Are SUVs really a 90's fad? I don't think they've ever really gone out of style, except maybe briefly in 2008 when the price of gas spiked. Unless it's "crossovers" that have lived on rather than true SUVs? (Also note the lack of an apostrophe in SUVs, since it's not possessive. One of my biggest grammar peeves.)
+2
level ∞
May 24, 2018
I removed that entry. If anything, SUVs are more popular now.
+1
level 75
Jan 7, 2019
But they were huge and trendy in the 90s and they did go out of fashion for a while.
+1
level 45
Jul 8, 2016
Wow, how had I missed out on the hypercolor clothing craze? Sounds like something I would've been all over back then. I remember some gimmicky things (other than mood rings) at the time that used that color changing effect, but not clothing.
+1
level 28
Oct 22, 2016
Air Jordans were the air pump shoe. Never heard of any other kind.
+1
level 66
Jan 9, 2019
Nope, Air Jordans did have an encased air bubble, but it was the Reebok Pump that actually allowed the wearer to inflate the sides and tongue to mold around their foot.
+1
level 70
Aug 11, 2017
Tickle-Me-Elmo. Shrewd adjustment to the lesser-known and ill-advised original Tickle-Me-Stalin doll.
+1
level 28
Apr 8, 2018
Dude I tried so hard to spell tamagotchi. I could have sworn I put the right one. Maybe accept a few close spellings...
+1
level 80
May 24, 2018
Inliners or inlines should work too? Rollerblades is just one brand. Or it should say you need a brand. (Inliner skates might work, didn't think of trying that.) Also I am pretty sure I tried harem pants and got it, are those similar to hammer pants AT ALL?
+2
level 75
Jan 6, 2019
Inline skates worked for me.
+1
level 67
May 24, 2018
Hampster dance? What the bleep? Just googled it, I do remember the music but i didn't know it had a name or was that famous. It really is awful. Lol
+4
level 72
May 25, 2018
Please accept dungarees for overalls!
+2
level 71
Jun 11, 2018
They are different - overalls have sleeves, dungarees don't. But I think that the Fresh Prince had dungarees and not overalls, otherwise there wouldn't have been a strap to leave undone
+2
level 75
Jan 6, 2019
According to Wikipedia overalls and dungarees are the same thing. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Overall. In my area the ones with sleeves are called coveralls. Maybe it's different in other countries?
+2
level 68
Jan 6, 2019
I add my vote for accepting dungarees.
+2
level 69
Jan 7, 2019
Yup, I'd like to add my support to this lobby, too.
+1
level 76
May 25, 2018
I loved the 90s.
+1
level 45
Dec 14, 2018
With the stuffed animals I thought wth?!? That became a hype... how?? I was thinking of taxidermy, they are stuffed (and otherwise expected the word pluche or toy). With the pictures to find a guy, I thought it had to be something to find dates. Like in some places (if I have to believe some movies ;) ) they had video (real video on videotapes) messages you d make to find a date. So why not a picture. With the doctors and drugdealers first things I thought of was syringe, then all types of drugs.. but didnt bother trying them all out. The question might be a bit more specefic. Like a new communicationdevice. And I cant be the only one that tried Nike air..
+1
level 46
Jan 6, 2019
Remember all these others, but don't remember the hypercolor thing. Guess I was either too old or not paying attention.
+1
level 58
Jan 6, 2019
Racking my brain for some others...there was "The Train" dance (from the Quad City DJ's song), pogs, Magic: the Gathering, Hanson, Total Request Live (and the Backstreet Boys/NSYNC rivalry along with it), Pauly Shore, blond highlights on men, "the Rachel," nu metal, and getting knobbed in the Oval Office.
+1
level 50
Jan 9, 2019
Magic: the Gathering is still going strong -- ask my nerd husband!
+1
level 45
Jan 6, 2019
I don't know how I got 12/20, considering I was born in 2005. I kind of expected to score lower.
+1
level 60
Jan 9, 2019
The beeper clue is a bit vague. I was trying to rack my brain to figure out what doctors and drug dealers have in common. I knew doctors had beepers, but I didn't know about drug dealers. Maybe a hint about it having to do with communication?