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The 8 Most Badass Things From the ’90s

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It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the 1990s. This wasn’t a decade for whiners or wimps — it was a decade for badasses only. If you lived an extreme lifestyle in the ’90s, you’d want to show it off, and snowboarding constantly wasn’t enough. If you were almost too edgy to function, here’s what you were into.

No Fear T-Shirts

no fear t-shirts

These graphic t-shirts with super intense slogans let everyone know you meant business on the softball field. If you firmly believed that “second place is the first loser”, you’d throw on a No Fear t-shirt and push that belief in everyone’s faces. No Fear t-shirts were worn by douches in training. The kids who wore them in the ’90s have grown up to become stock brokers and Crossfitters.


surge soda

Surge is a soda so hardcore it was banned in some schools. It was more intense than Mountain Dew, which, up until Surge’s arrival, was the most intense soda out there (according to their extreme snowboarding commercials). If you saw a kid drinking this fully loaded citrus soda, you knew that kid lived an extreme lifestyle (i.e. they were kind of hyper all the time).

The Movie The Craft

the craft the movie

The Craft singlehandedly converted half of all ’90s girls to Wicca, but it was the version of Wicca where you just wear doc martins and did love spells on your crush from a kit that you picked up at Wet Seal. Wait, is that not actually Wicca? Is that just girls thinking they’re “edgy” because they wear a ton of black after they saw people in a movie do it? Whatever it was, it was badass!

Grunge Music

grunge music

In the ’90s, this badass alternative music genre went mainstream. Any and all teenage angst now had an anthem, and that anthem was grunge. Rebellious self-expression had a uniform, and that uniform was flannel. It didn’t matter if you didn’t live in Seattle. It didn’t even matter if you lived in Florida where it’s 90 degrees 362 days out of the year. You wore flannel as a way to let everyone know your badass status.

Parental Advisory Stickers

parental advisory stickers

In 1990, the black and white parental advisory label was introduced to the world. And suddenly, ’90s kids had a new rule to break. Listening to a CD with that sticker on it upped your street cred enormously. Everyone knew that you had a CD with explicit lyrics in your Discman, and that you were either doing something you weren’t supposed to, or you had totally chill parents who didn’t care what you listened to.

“Bitch* by Meredith Brooks

bitch meredith brooks

Being an angsty woman was in vogue in the late ’90s, and “Bitch” by Meredith Brooks was the anthem. Why? Because it gave you the opportunity to yell,”bitch” really loudly when you were singing along — like even more loudly than the rest of the lyrics. And if your parents got mad, you could always use the, “Hey, I’m just singing along to a top 40 song that’s played on the radio” defense (which worked absolutely none of the times).

Beavis and Butthead

beavis and butthead

Beavis and Butthead was a show kids loved to love and parents hated to hate. (Nobody loved to hate it or hated to love it.) At best, the raunchy MTV show influenced kids to say, “This sucks” and “T.P. for my bunghole”. At worst, it influenced a kid to set fire to his mom’s mobile home. Let’s face it. There’s nothing more badass than cartoon-inspired arson! Just kidding. Don’t commit arson. Don’t do it at all.

Scamming Columbia House

columbia house cds

Music club Columbia House had an introductory offer of “eight CDs for a penny” that was, of course, a scam. But in the ’90s, kids loved to scam the scammer. It was almost a rite of passage to get your eight Ace of Base CDs, then cancel on the service before they had a chance to charge you an arm and a leg for the John Tesh CD you didn’t want. Anyways, Columbia House is out of business now! Wonder why?

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