Bad 90s Fashion Trends We Tried to Forget

If you grew up in the 90s, you probably have a lot of fond memories of combat boots, daisy chokers, and flannel. But let me remind you that there was a lot of bad 90s fashions. Looking back on it now, all I can say is, “What the heck were we thinking?!”

Baja Hoodies

bad 90s fashion
Buzzfeed

Pretty sure that Beverly Hills 90210 was single-handedly responsible for this bad 90s fashion trend. All the cool dudes wore these woven cotton hoodies, which were supposed to be SoCal chic but ended up being more “wannabe beach bum.”

Skinny Brows and Dark Lipstick

bad 90s fashion
Allure

Why, Drew? Why?

Drew Barrymore was pretty much the epitome of bad 90s fashion. She set so many trends–in this photo alone, she’s got crunchy bleached hair, a velvet choker, and the vamp makeup that so many of us tried to copy.

The skinny brows and dark lips look was a throwback to the 1930s, but it made most people just look a little crazy. And those eyebrows, once plucked to such extreme thinness, never really grew back.

Bugle Boy

bad 90s fashion
Buzzfeed

The bright colors, Hammer pants silhouettes, and extreme acid-washing of these styles proves that the 80s did not die a peaceful death. We held on to some of those loud, tacky fashions for a long time.

Super Chunky Shoes

bad 90s fashion
Bustle

Clomp. Clomp. Clomp.

That’s the sound of a cool 90s girl walking down the hall in ridiculously oversized platform shoes. We’d add a platform to ANYTHING back then. Platform boots. Platform sneakers. Platform flip-flops! You had to have strong ankles, because one misstep meant disaster while wearing these shoes.

Overalls

bad 90s fashion
Complex

Were you even alive in the 90s if you didn’t own at least one pair of overalls? You can tell the Fresh Prince is cool because he wears one strap of his ‘alls unbuttoned. Only losers wore both straps fastened. Note the severe acid wash of the denim; it almost glows, doesn’t it?

Butterfly Clips

bad 90s fashion
Cosmopolitan

Despite what this photo shows, more than just blonde girls were allowed to wear butterfly clips. We all had them. You’d take a teeny-tiny section of hair and clamp a plastic butterfly on it, then repeat until you either ran out of hair or clips.

It was probably supposed to look like a magic Disney princess hairstyle, but it mostly just looked bizarre and unflattering.

Bleached Tips

bad 90s fashion
Complex

Just by looking at this photo, you can guess how amazingly crunchy their hair is. Justin’s hair is, somehow, the most understated of the frosted bunch. Lance has almost certainly used some of that temporary hair paint. As for Joey, it looks like he legitimately dyed his tips red before spiking everything up.

Neon Everything

bad 90s fashion
Buzzfeed

Grunge fashion is probably the most enduring trend of the 90s, but let’s not forget that it was a reaction to this kind of nonsense. Neon, windbreakers, parachute pants, and feathered hair–people actually dressed like this, and it’s just as terrible as you can imagine.

Big Goofy Hats

bad 90s fashion
Vice

How quickly we forget! In the 90s, a lot of us wore bucket hats–and that style has, unfortunately, come back with a vengeance. Rhianna is leading the charge in the bucket hat renaissance.

Let’s just hope she doesn’t try to revive the “quirky girl statement hat” that dominated 90s sitcoms. See, you can tell that they’re not like other girls because of the enormous flowered things on their heads. See also: Clarissa Explains It All and Blossom.

JNCO Jeans

bad 90s fashion
mixmag.net

We are finally safe from JNCO jeans! The king of bad 90s fashion finally closed its doors in February 2018. The extra-extra-extra wide-leg jeans were a favorite of ravers, skaters, and wannabes. Why? We’ll never know.