Brilliant '80s Trends Totally Worth Reviving -- Or Are They?


In the past 30 years, many accepted practices have changed. What people considered normal and safe back then -- transporting your newborn in the front-seat, having a latchkey kid at age 6, and letting them explore the woods with no parental guidance -- is pretty much grounds for arrest these days. But, in that simpler time they call the '80s, there were some great ideas that I'm thinkin' we should totally revive -- the way Disney Channel stars have brought back overly-sequined attire, off-the-shoulder shirts, and leopard print day-glow leggings!

Thanks, Shake It Up, I can barely look at my daughter without retinal strain!

Let's be clear: some of these suggestions could possibly get you arrested (by Joan Rivers and the fashion police), but I think they're worth bringing back, or are they? You decide ...

  1. Leg Warmers: I like totally like loooved leg warmers. Frankly, what self respecting, Jennifer Beals wannabe, Gen Xer didn't? Maybe you wore them with your Reebok or Avia velcro hightops, maybe you wore them with super tight Farlow jeans and an over-sized Forenza or Outback Red V-neck sweater (v down the back). Either way, they were like undeniably hot (literally). Of course, those of us with cankles, like, like myself, hold a special place for this trend.
  2. The Tail: I mean, what says "you're rad" better than approximately 10 strands of hair braided (or just left frizzy) streaming down a guy’s neck and back? Yum. The tail was almost as sexy as the left ear-only earring or Obsession for Men.
  3. The Banana Clip: Ahhh, another brilliant way to poof up your Aussie Scrunched perm! After spraying those bangs into a helmet, we tried for the same look in the back, because you can never get too much of a good thing, or can you?
  4. Jellies: Who didn't take part in this totally toxic and tubular trend? As if feet aren't attractive enough, it was deemed awesome to show them through your shoes. Sure, your tootsies stuck to the sides with permanent perspiration, but it was worth it. Seriously, what color matches every outfit? Clear, no duy!
  5. EGs: I'm not gonna lie, I still have a rainbow array of these scrunched beauties waiting for their return. The ultimate statement: Matching your Champion sweatshirt to your socks. "Brilliant, we were" (say that like Yoda, for the full effect). Did anyone else wear two pairs when one started to droop, or was that just my own genius at work? I mean, how else could one’s socks hold up the thick tapered cuff of their two-toned Gasoline jeans?
  6. Shoulder Pads: Nothing shows off great curves like a triangle-shaped upper body, everyone knows that! For extra toning, one could simply perform that Drive the Bus workout move, a la Jane Fonda, and a few minutes on that belt machine that shook the weight right off your mid-section -- and you were set!

I could go on for hours, but as I'm writing, I'm realizing these may be the worst trends to come out of the '80s and their revival could ruin society as we know it. Except the leg warmers -- long live those cankle covering leg warmers! Sorry, Joan.

What do you think was the worst fad to come out of the '80s?


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nonmember avatar Amy

You forgot acid washed jeans tha were tight and high waisted or baggy and tight at the ankle. Or the ever popular puka she'll necklace and the tippy handbook.

nonmember avatar Heather gupton

I am looking forward to pegging my pants again! Or wearing two pairs of socks on each foot while folding your pants inside the socks with white Keds. I think they should bring back the stirrup pant. Remember those!!!!

MamaJael MamaJael

Um, I think you meant to say 'Jennifer BEALS'. Spell check is your friend.

And yes, I think some 80's fashions should make a comeback-- not feeling the return of shoulder pads, though. Those were hideous!

nonmember avatar WeezaFish

I think you've managed to encapsulate most of what was bad AND weirdly, good about 80's fashion! Loved leg warmers, I remember owning several pairs and teaming them with my suede 'Pixie Boots', remember them? And my grey and pink striped off the shoulder, Fame and Flashdance inspired BATWING TOP! Lift your arms, and the cuffs of your sleeve join with the bottom hem of your top. Coooool.

rhps2000 rhps2000

Kaepas white leather tennies, the ones with two shoelaces one on top of the other. Loved that two bow look! And when they got dingy, use white shoe polish and a black Sharpie over the K insignia. Went so well with dark denim Jordache jeans and untucked, pastel-colored button down Polo shirt and feathered hair. This was early 80's. :)

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