With all that's going on right now, it's hard not to harp back to simpler times in our childhood. Back when the Spice Girls reigned supreme and low-rise bootcut jeans were an acceptable outfit choice. The only thing '90s kids were worried about was begging their parents for a Nintendo 64. Ah, good times. But that wasn't all we were obsessed with. In fact, there are plenty of
things that every British kid will remember from the '90s, and I've listed a few of my favourites below. Be prepared for a wave of nostalgia...
Considering the '90s doesn't feel
that long ago to those of us who lived through them, it's pretty difficult to get your head around the fact that '90s kids are now well and truly "adults" approaching or in their 30s. And sure, TikTok seems fun, but kids today will never fully understand the joy of making Word Art in Microsoft 95. Without social media, all '90s school kids had were a couple of hula-hoops, some chalk, and an imagination. Bliss.
So let's look back at the best TV shows, games, fashion trends, and more that every British kid will remember from the '90s.
Was this a fever dream? Nope. Turns out, this was a very real part of our childhood. Mr Blobby — a large, pink, yellow-spotted, alien-thing — was a regular fixture of Noel Edmond's kid's gameshow
House Party, and actually went on to have a pretty successful music career. Alien Slime Egg
On British school playgrounds everywhere, kids started carrying around squishy, sticky alien babies in an egg filled with slime. For a long time, '90s kids believed the gooey alien could magically duplicate if you put them in the fridge, or repeatedly threw them at the wall. It took a long time, and plenty of experiments, to find they did absolutely nothing. They were just gross.
British children's television really had a thing for making inanimate objects magical.
Bernard's Watch saw a kid with an old timepiece with the ability to stop time. This was epic television. Bernard, played by David Peachey, was a wholesome kid who used his ability to manipulate time and space in order to help people instead of, well, robbing a bank like most of us would do. Looking back, it was a great lesson in power and responsibility. Live & Kicking Steve Back/ANL/Shutterstock
Saturday morning television reached its peak during the '90s and BBC's
Live & Kicking was definitely top tier entertainment. Throughout the years, it was presented by all the TV greats including Philip Schofield, Andi Peters, Sarah Greene, Zoe Ball and Jamie Theakston. The glorious three-hour live show would see phone-ins, cookery segments, musical acts, and games. The show's popularity led to ITV rival SMTV, meaning Saturday's were firmly spent flicking between two channels. Bejewelled Headbands & Butterfly Clips
Nothing made me more envious than those velvet headbands emblazoned with a person's name in gemstones. Unfortunately, with a name like L'Oréal, I couldn't partake in the trend. However, I spent much of my childhood with a head full of multi-coloured butterfly hair clips. My scalp looked like a butterfly sanctuary but I thought I was the epitome of style and sophistication.
There were a lot of styles from the '90s that just don't make sense to us today but pedal pushers were particularly unusual – especially when they came with a matching skirt. The height of cool during a primary school "own clothes day."
Ce La Vie
Bewitched — the three Irish queens in double-denim — made most '90s kids' childhood with their hit song
C'est La Vie. The earworm dominated radio stations with its folksy tale of young love. All these years later, I'm still wondering about the boy "sittin' in a tree"... Tragedy (And Learning All The Dance Moves)
Were you even a British '90s kid if you don't know the full dance routine to
Tragedy? Let's Get Ready To Rumble
Before Ant and Dec were, well... Ant and Dec, they were PJ and Duncan, two teenage boys who got in trouble a lot. After leaving hit show
Byker Grove, they subsequently launched their short-lived rap career (yikes) before becoming the presenting duo everyone knows today. Complete with very '90s dance movies, Let's Get Ready To Rumble was an instant hit, coining the phrase: "Watch us wreck the mic... syke!" The Queen's Nose
The Queen's Nose, every British kid during the '90s believed rubbing the Queen's head side of a 50p could grant you wishes (c'mon, you know tried). In the series, Harmony would rub her coin and find herself in various wild adventures — so yes, like Aladdin, but distinctly more British. Round The Twist Theme Tune
Sing it with me: "Have you ever, ever felt like this, have strange things happen, have you going round the twist?" I can barely remember the plot to the Australian children's TV import
Round The Twist but the theme song is burned in my brain forever. Anything Spice Girls including the platforms
For most '90s kids, loving and obsessing over the Spice Girls is a given. You'd plaster posters on your wall, you wore the t-shirts, you had those ugly platform shoes, you watched
Spiceworld on repeat and pledged allegiance to just one of the five singers. If, for example, you were "Baby Spice" then you'd have to base your entire personality on said Spice Girl, including the pigtails. Padlocked Diaries
Anyone else religiously keep a diary during their childhood? I fancied myself to be an excellent diarist growing up — a la
Moesha. And I felt my secrets were so scandalous I kept them under lock and key – literally. These were later digitised with a password protected "Dear Diary" device. Just recently, I busted into my old diaries (covered in glitter and pink feathers) to find absolutely nothing exciting happened in 1996. Blockbuster London News Pictures/Shutterstock
Before the days of on-demand streaming, Blockbuster would house all your favourite VHS and DVDs to rent to watch at home. It was paradise. A trip to Blockbuster became my Friday night ritual with my Dad, who, after spending hours waiting for me to decided on which Disney movie I wanted to watch AGAIN, would spend an extortionate amount on 3 movies and Haagen Daaz ice cream. Rest in peace, Blockbuster.
McDonald's Birthday Parties Nicholas Bailey/Shutterstock
On my 8th birthday, my parents took me and six of my friends to McDonald's for their supreme, deluxe birthday experience – which included me helping serve customers at the drive-thru. Honestly. And I wasn't the only one! This was during peak Ronald McDonald days, where the red-headed clown didn't seem as terrifying as he looks to me now.
5ive picture alliance/picture alliance/Getty Images
While U.S. kids had Backstreet Boys, the UK and Ireland produced a stellar line-up of boybands during the '90s. Take That, Boyzone, Westlife, A1, 911, East 17 — I was pretty obsessed with all of them. Yet, personally, 5ive were my top tier boyband crushes — no arguments. Between the hairstyles with too much gel, baggy jeans, and questionable eyebrow ring, I was hooked. And boy, could they dance.
The moment he emerged out of the Caribbean sea with a glistening chiselled body for his
Mysterious Girl video , Peter Andre became a national '90s treasure. I was probably too young to appreciate Andre's appeal as a kid but that song got a lot of airtime in primary school talent shows.