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20 Images That Only 80’s Kids Can Truly Appreciate

You’ve recently been online shopping for a Members Only jacket that you’re willing to pay top dollar for. You have a pair of acid wash jeans in the back of your closet. There are existing pictures of teenage you with a mullet. You have a box of VHS tapes you can’t seem to let go of. If you nodded along to any of these statements, you must have grown up during 1980s.

As a kid from the 80s, you’re acutely aware that there are so many things that existed back then that simply don’t exist today. For a stroll down the 80’s nostalgia lane, here are a few photos that only a kid from that era can truly appreciate…

Photo: manyofmany.com/BEN POBJIE

The Epic Mullet

The mullet has traveled all over the world, and even made a few American comebacks, but it definitely hit the height of its American fame in the 1980s. If you’re an 80s kid, you might even have rocked one – whether you’ll admit it now or not. They were so popular that your friends, parents, and teachers would have been just as likely to be rocking the epic mullet.

Photo: stuff.co.nz/James Brickwood

The Yoga Pants Of The 80s

Oh, leotards. With their many colors and prints, and little forgiveness for body shape, who didn’t wear them in the 80s – Jane Fonda, Olivia Newton John, the Gorgeous Ladies of Wrestling? The accessorizing possibilities were endless. With the popularity of aerobics rapidly rising at that time, 80s’ leotards were like today’s yoga pants.

Photo: depop.com/mariairenee

The 80s Owned Acid Washing

The 80s is a time period known for jumpsuits, shoulder pads, and neon-themed outfits, but nobody can deny that acid wash jeans were owned by the 80s. They were mass-produced, but they were expensive, so people started acid washing their own clothes. Anything could (and would) be acid washed, as long as it was made of denim. Pants, shorts, jackets, skirts, and purses were all included in the acid wash fest of the 80s.

Photo: vistelacalle.com/RED

“Choose Life” T-Shirt For Every Occasion

If you grew up in the 80s, you had to be living under a rock to not know George Micheal’s band Wham. You might have even had a “Choose Life” t-shirt, and it might have been your favorite t-shirt of all time that you wore anywhere and everywhere.

Photo: oldpoliticals.com/ASI 58140

“Just Say No”

The war on drugs was at full throttle in the 80s, and Nancy Reagan’s “Just Say No” campaign was no exception. As the First Lady of the United States, she had quite the platform to stand on. Her efforts were not soon forgotten, especially by the kids of the 80s.

Photo: dailymail.co.uk/Leon Watson

Pager Code: 07734

Today kids have smartphones full of games and apps. You’re cool if you have the latest iPhone. In the 80s, all the cool kids had pagers. Your parents could get a hold of you, but more importantly your friends could send coded messages to your pager that would send you running to the nearest pay phone to get in touch with them.

Photo: wapa.pe/ABC

The “Height” Of Fashion

The sky-high, teased bangs of Madonna and DJ Tanner from Full House, were the literal height of fashion in the 80s. The more hairspray the better. You probably wouldn’t be a stranger to using an entire can of Aqua Net if you were a child of the 80s.

Photo: hamleys.com/Mattel

The Cabbage You Had To Have

Black Friday could have been invented because of the Cabbage Patch Kids. From the stringy hair to the pudgy cheeks, every 80s kid had to have one. It would be easier to patch a hole in your bank account, than the hole in your child’s heart if you didn’t manage to get them that doll. Parents would risk their lives running to every store imaginable, and braving the hoards, to satisfy their children’s Cabbage Patch Kids obsessions.

Photo: nypost.com/United Artists/Everett Collection

Chucky Nightmares

If you grew up in the 80s, you probably had a few nightmares about a little doll with red hair, blue overalls, and a knife almost as big as he was. That doll may have been little, but he packed a punch in the scare category. Chucky was so popular, the movies never really stopped being made.

Photo: blog.uk-waterbed.co.uk/ High & Dry Waterbeds

Sloshing Around On Your Waterbed

It might sound pretty lame now, but the waterbed was one of the coolest inventions of the 80s. No matter the cost, or the flood risk, you were definitely in the cool kids group if you had a waterbed.

Photo: melmagazine.com/Andrew Fiouzi

Members Only

Much of your coolness as a teenager has kind of always been measured by your jacket, and the cool jacket of the 1980s was the Members Only jacket. It was polyester. It paired well with a mullet. If you were a kid of the 80s, you had to have that jacket.

Photo: thespool.net/FOX

The Box Of Boom

Today you can put your music in your pocket or your ears, but in the 80s it belonged on your shoulder in the form of a boom-box. It’s a shock everyone didn’t lose their hearing, but no matter. Your music was with you all the time, perched right on your shoulder.

Photo: vintageboardgames.blogspot.com/@BoardGameAddict

Girl Talk And Mall Madness

Mall. Madness. Epic. The only thing better than going to the mall with your friends, was playing a game about going to the mall with your friends.

Photo: nationalgeographic.com/MICHELE MCDONALD, VIRGINIAN-PILOT/AP

The COVID-19 Of The 80s

Today, there is COVID-19. In the 2000s, there was September 11th. In the 80s, there was the Challenger Explosion. You probably remember exactly where you were when you heard about it. The disaster hit the headlines for months, and the anniversary was remembered for years after.

Photo: houstoniamag.com/Alice Levitt

Nothing Was Cooler Than Ecto-Cooler

What would you want more than a horrible-looking, slimy, sugar-filled drink in your lunch box? Nothing, if you were a kid of the 80s, and the drink was an Ecto-Cooler.

Photo: 80sfashion.org/Admin

Hold Onto Your Pants…With A Fanny Pack

One of the greatest clothing combinations of the 80s was the baggy pants and fanny pack combo. Today you might be able to get away with one or the other, but if you tried to wear them together you might get a few looks.

Photo: ebay.com/dqdeal2018

Slap Bracelets Galore

The most abusive toy of the 80s was the slap bracelet. They came in wacky colors and prints, and they annoyed your parents and teachers. It didn’t matter that they left horrible marks on your arms, because they were awesome, and you had to have them.

Photo: madonnaunderground.com/Larry Williams

Madonna Look-Alikes

Madonna was the trendsetter of the 80s. She had the style. She had the makeup. She had the moves. She was the 80s, and thousands of girls desperately tried to look exactly like her.

Photo: retrogamechampion.com/Computer Magazine Clipping

Computers For The Rich And Lucky

Almost everyone has a computer these days. It’s almost as common as having a cell phone. Back in the 80s, few people had computes. If you had one, you were a little rich, and a lot lucky.

Photo: wiktionary.org/Toby Hudson

What’s A VHS?

If you want to watch a movie today, you just turn on Netflix, scroll through a list of a thousand choices, and click a button. In the 80s, if you wanted to watch a movie, you’d have to run over to the video store, make your pick, and then pop a VHS tape in your VCR. The only thing worse than having to shut it down to rewind it was getting the tape stuck in the VCR, and having to pry it out.