There were many trends we dabbled in back in the early 2000s. Velour tracksuits, platform flip flops, asymmetrical skirts, trucker hats: The list can go on and on. But one of the stand-out looks consisted of the early 2000s charm bracelets that almost every teenage girl seemed to own. The chunkier the chain, the better, and the more laden with charms, the more stylish. At an age during which everything had to be personalized (from locker doors to monogrammed purses) it was no surprise we were drawn to these quirky pieces of jewelry.
Plus, they came in a plethora of styles and there was no one right way to wear them. You could choose tiny, delicate charms or big, loud ones the size of baby fists. You could go the Pandora route and opt for beads, or sport one lonely charm on your wrist. Whatever your heart desired, you could get.
I myself remember my first charm bracelet from high school. I was coveting a Tiffany's or Juicy Couture one, but coming from Slavic immigrant parents who believed that two-ply toilet paper was a foolish luxury, those brands just weren't in my cards. Instead, I got a gold link bracelet with hearts, suitcases, and keys on it, and loved it like crazy. So let's take a walk down Nostalgia Lane and see if you owned any of these. Below are nine charm bracelets we loved in the early 2000s.
1. The Tiffany's Charm Bracelet
Also known as The Holy Grail. If you ever wanted a shot eating at the cool table at the cafeteria, this was like the secret password. It was heavy and chunky and decorated with that big plated silver heart... I'm still swooning over the thought of it.
2. Pandora Bracelets
While the commercials were marketed towards middle aged moms who could remember their love for Paris and the moment they became a Soccer Parent, these were pretty dope gifts for tweens and teens, too. I mean, the black-string bracelet was reminiscent of our cheap Claire's jewelry, and we were able to fall into a "collect 'em all" frenzy much like Pokémon cards. Of course these bracelets were going to become a thing.
3. Italian Charm Bracelets
Zoppini Italian Stainless Steel Charm Bracelet, $12, ebay.com
Made out of little squares rather than dangly charms, you could customize your bracelet with everything from soda can logos to smiley faces.
4. Juicy Couture Charm Bracelets
Juicy Couture "DESSERT LOVERS THEME" Charm Bracelet, $190, ebay.com
The gaudiness was queen, and it was crazy fun to pick out the loudest, sparkliest charms to add to our chain-link bracelets. From slices of watermelon to ballet shoes, the actual charms were the size of a silver dollar, making for bold, heavy statements on our wrists.
5. Coin Charms
Rather than having a mix-and-match selection of charms, this version just gave us a wrist-full of ancient coins.
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6. Travel Charms
Sterling Silver Around the World Charm Bracelet, $67, netaya.com
Whether you were a lucky one and got to go on cruise ships with your family during the summer, or were planning on being an avid traveler once you got to college, a popular one was the travel charm bracelet. From the Eiffel Tower to mini planes dangling from your wrist, it made us all wistful to think about life after our childhood bedrooms.
7. Multi Chain Charm Bracelets
If you were sick of the chunky chains that most charm bracelets came in, chances are you switched over to the multi chain look, sporting what looked like 15 different bracelets mashed into one. Just to give your charms a more cluttered and even bolder look.
8. The "Heart" Juicy Couture Bracelet
Juicy Couture Bracelet, $26, sellao.com
If you didn't have the dough to buy each individual charm for your gold link bracelet, you very likely fell back on the iconic Juicy alternative. It sported a giant, milky-pink heart with the logo stamped gold across it, along with an extra dangly chain and pearl. Ballin'.
9. The "Hair Tie" Charms
They resembled hair ties and usually dangled one lonely charm. But raise your hand if you owned 30 of them and wore 'em all together. Thought so.
From fancy to dollar store, chances are you owned a charm bracelet in the early 2000s. And I'd be a liar if I said I don't smile every time I see one of these in a store display today. Oh, nostalgia.
Images: Sellao (1); Amazon (2); ebay (2); Tiffany & Co (1); JTV (1); Netaya (1); Derby Museum Store (1)