Things you only know if you were a teenager in the 90s

PJ and Duncan

There’s a particular brand of wisdom that comes with having been a teenager in the 1990s. If you’re an eighties baby, pass this knowledge onto your children. They won’t thank you for it now but they need to know.

Product. A lot of it. Always

Rachel in Friends

When it comes to hair, you need to go hard or go home. A perm or a ‘Rachel’ are the way to go but both need to be encased in a thorough drenching of Elnett. For chaps, curtains are permissible instead and product is not required.

Saturday night is for going out

Dawsons Creek

Young folk should NOT go out on a Friday night (because Friends, TFI Friday and the like). Obviously, you go out on Saturday instead (because Gladiators, Noel’s House Party and Casualty). It was practically an invitation from the schedulers to have an alco-pop hangover on Sundays with which to accompany Dawson’s Creek. And also: what is Red Button, please?

Disaster is always just a second away


Pushpops – definite choking hazard. Chewing one’s hair – death by ball of own mane filling stomach. Paintball – do you want to end up blind like poor PJ? (Genius Byker Grove reference – ed.) Kites – bound to result in some sort of pylon incident, according to the terrifying public information ads… And on the subject of those ads: playing anywhere near a railway line – results in only your shoes being returned by a policeman to your mother. Take care, kids.

Clean eating is a load of Ratners

Clean eating

We were brought up on a strict diet of Tizer, Pop Tarts, Wotsits and Findus Crispy Pancakes. And we turned out fine… Now eat your Turkey Twizzlers. They’re probably good for you.

Trolls are no new fad


The children of today didn't invent Trolls. We did! OK, we didn’t. The 70s did. And before that the 50s. But our naked trolls in American Tan with day-glo hair, they were the best Trolls.

Creepy toys were the best

Creepy doll

Next time we tell you we aren’t buying you a toy because it is horrible. Just say ‘Cabbage Patch Dolls’ to us. Or ‘Garbage Pail Kids’. The only good toys are toys that basically look like Chucky. And if your parents didn’t buy you a Mr Frosty machine, they deserve to have those things littering up their lounge.

Sunday night means Lovejoy

Ian McShane

The stomach-through-floor sound of the Lovejoy theme tune is synonymous with having not done one’s homework. (Even the sight of Ian McShane in Game of Thrones makes us panic about French verbs.)

It's safest to just say no

Shaking her head gif

It is possible to get pregnant just by looking at a boy for too long. Remove any clothes and you’ll be up the duff within moments. And you won’t know until you give birth. See Sonia from EastEnders and the many other Sensible Young Things who had the arc of their lives changed by a brief moment of tenderness. Also, you will give birth with your tights on. Like Daphne from Neighbours.

Bands were dead ‘ard

Noel Gallagher

Any band or musician worth their salt has to engage in some sort of pantomime ‘combat’ with another artist at some point. Blur v Oasis; Take That v East17, and once that fight was decided… Robbie v Gary, obviously. Never have a number of less likely chaps been so keen to ‘take it outside’.

You must use your vote

polling station

Most politicians are not to be trusted and they never were. When they aren’t sexing up a dossier, they’re definitely NOT having sexual relations with that woman. Definitely not.

The downfalls of fashion

Sweaty man

We know (from bitter experience) that an item of clothing should only ever do one job: keep you warm. Reversible jumpers – that is just an excuse to do less laundry. Global Hypercolour T-shirts – just a… a… way to see how much a person is sweating? Too far, clothes. Too far.

The 90s had the best slang. Fact.


If kids today think they have the last word in catchy phrases that adults don’t understand, they are like as wrong as a totally wrong thing. They might think we’re carbon-dated but here’s the sitch down in Dictionaryville. That whole new words thing? We were Johnsoning the heck outta that back when Buffy was a lass. Have we vagued that up enough for you much? Good. Then we are five by five.