19 Trends From The ’80s That Should Be Brought Back

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By Jonathan Trent

The ‘80s was a decade of excitement, with new technologies and fashions making it the perfect time to grow up. There were so many cool trends going on that it’s impossible to mention them all, but here are 19 ‘80s trends that we think need to make a comeback!

Saturday Morning Cartoons

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As a child in the ‘80s, having the freedom to watch hours of cartoons on Saturday mornings was about as good as it got. It may just be nostalgia, but the cartoons of the 1980s seemed to be packed with way more action, humor, and compelling stories than today’s offerings. 

Neon Clothes

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Nowadays, clothing is much more reserved, especially compared to the 1980s, an era known for its bright, neon outfits. Plenty of shiny tracksuits, bright vests, and mesh tops were on display, with nobody batting an eyelid over the intense colors and questionable pairings.

Rubik’s Cube

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By 1980, the Rubik’s cube had taken over in the US, with Britannica stating that over 100 million units were sold between 1980 and 1983, along with 50 million imitation versions. If you ever managed to solve one, most would regard it as one of their finest achievements.  

Big Hair

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Much like the clothing choices of the time, people weren’t afraid to make a statement with their hair in the ‘80s, either. The aim was to craft it as large as possible, using enough hairspray to almost stop your breathing and a handful of different utensils to keep it erect.

Cheap Sticker Books

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While Panini still produces an abundance of sticker albums for big sporting events such as the FIFA World Cup, the prices of the sticker packets and the sheer number of duplicates you receive make it hard to justify buying. Let’s go back to the days when you could buy a packet for $0.05!

Rotary Phones

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The charm of dialing a number on a rotary phone has become extinct due to the touch-screen nature of modern mobile devices. Even the traditional buttons used for dialing up numbers on landline phones have all but disappeared from modern society. 

Funny Commercials

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Commercials used to be much more humorous and wacky in the 1980s, with less corporate speak and more cheesy catchphrases. If TV stations are going to pack as many ads into their broadcasts as possible, at least make them fun to watch!

Toy Collections

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Back in the ‘80s, there were hoards of toy ranges that marketed themselves as collectibles, most notably Beanie Babies. Ty’s flagship product captured the minds of many children, although, as the Wall Street Journal suggests, the craze is well and truly over. Who knows, maybe it will return some day for digital products!

8-bit Game Consoles

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Young people today would barely be able to comprehend how people had fun on ‘80s video game consoles with their 8-bit graphics and 2D gameplay. While the video games of today are vast, stunning, and hugely impressive, there’s something charming about early Super Mario and Zelda games.

Roller Skating

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In the 1980s, the roller disco was the number one place to be, with groups of friends congregating together to skate around in circles on a Friday evening. By the 1990s, roller skating had experienced a significant dip in popularity, from which it has, sadly, never recovered.


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Throughout the ‘80s and into the ‘90s, kids’ television was obsessed with ‘slime,’ dunking it over the heads of any poor soul unfortunate enough to lose the game show. This has all but vanished from kid’s TV these days, but it’s about time it made a comeback.

Board Games

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The Gamer goes as far as saying that the 1980s was the golden era for board games, and we couldn’t agree more. Before smartphones, board games were a perfect way to spend spare hours in the day, helping you to socialize with family and friends in the process. Why aren’t they popular anymore?

Photo Frames

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Before people could take 100 photos a minute on a smartphone camera before posting them online for all to see, photos with your family and friends meant a lot more. You’d happily display them in photo frames throughout the house as a constant reminder of your special memories. 

Arcade Games

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There was something joyous about playing 1980s arcade games that cannot be replicated in the narrative-heavy console games of today. It was all about beating your high score in repetitive games that lasted around two minutes in length. They were simple yet heaps of fun.


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In the 1980s, boomboxes blasting tunes were commonplace in urban areas, often bringing members of the community together for impromptu rap battles. Owning and playing the current records out loud on a boombox was a surefire way to boost your social status in the local community. 

Hand Juicers

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Hand juicers may seem primitive these days, but they were pretty innovative back in the ‘80s. You had to put in some elbow grease to get your juice fix for the day, but it made for a far more satisfying glass.

Good Happy Meal Toys

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Getting a Happy Meal from McDonald’s as a kid in the 1980s was exciting, as the toys were worth receiving, unlike the movie promotional plastic offerings of the present day. Unfortunately, McDonald’s commitment to the corporate cause has led to the death of creative toys such as Changeables and McNugget Buddies. 

Vinyl Records

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Finally, vinyl has made a comeback in the last decade or so, but it’s still at risk of extinction due to the rise of music streaming services. The International Federation of the Phonographic Industry suggests that 73% of people now get their music from streaming sites, so the activity of collecting vinyl records is really fizzling out.

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