Gross Things About The '90s That Will Make You Cringe

by Jordana Lipsitz
Kevin Winter/Getty Images Entertainment/Getty Images

Ah, the 1990s — what a magical and nostalgic time for humanity. 'Twas a time full of the greatest cartoons, questionable hairstyles (frosted tips, anyone?), and dial-up internet. Basically the '90s were a simpler time when the Sears air conditioner commercials were catchy, all you had to do to fix a busted video game was blow on the cartridge, and butterfly clips were the height of fashion. But this time was not only simple and full of some of the best pop culture this cold world has ever seen, the '90s were also pretty gross. Like, totally super gnarly, nasty, icky, grody, and all those other '90s era words for disgusting.

From the questionable '90s fashion choices, to the toys that might make you vomit if you really think about them, to the unacceptably disgusting snacks (in hindsight), to cringe-worthy TV shows that had us hiding behind our respective couches, the '90s were full of some intensely icky stuff. If it wasn't one thing, it was another. It's really a wonder that any of us survived the whole ordeal. But survive we did, and we're not that much worse for the wear (probably). At least now we're all well-adjusted adults, and the '90s are just a faint glimmer in our collective eyes (again, I mean probably).


Nickelodeon Slime

We were just OK with children and adults getting this stuff poured on them. What the heck is wrong with this world? Who even really knows what slime is made of?



I know there are some people out there who disagree with me and think Dunkaroos are great, but guys, let's face the facts here. This is a snack that you're just destined to get your grubby fingers all up in, as you dip the weird wafer part into the chocolate. It's best to just avoid the whole ordeal entirely.


Creepy Crawlers

Come children, join the cult of Creepy Crawlers. Nothing to see here.



At first, you pop a gusher in your mouth and you're thinking, "Wow, this is a tasty snack — fruity and delicious." Then comes the bite-down. Nobody asked for that explosion of flavor. Nobody.


'Ren & Stimpy'

The yucky things that happened to animated bodies in Ren & Stimpy had my child-self gagging quite a few times. All that violence and those sexual innuendos were a lot for young minds to handle.


Soul Patches

I think the truly gross thing about soul patches is that they've survived past the '90s. How could we let this happen?


Surge Soda

There is no way anyone should gain that much energy from simply drinking a soda. No way at all. I don't even even want to think of the nasty chemicals that took up most of the components of this sugary citrus drink.


Baby Born

I recall begging my parents for a doll that cries when it's hungry and wets itself — but in my old age, I truly see the error of my ways. Dolls that can do human things are just a little too close to humans, or you know, evil dolls. If you want a doll that cries and wets itself, just pick up a babysitting gig.


Rat Tails

A trend that started in the '80s and continued into the '90s, but should have never even been born.



Floam was all well and good until you accidentally dropped it on the rug, and then suddenly everyone's hair in the entire household, including all the family pets, was stuck to it. I'm actually getting nauseous just thinking about it.


11. 'Cow & Chicken'

The Red Guy, who is essentially just the devil (right?), unleashed his tushie way too many times and I always found it disturbing.



Sure, Gak came in all sorts of fun colors, which was nice. But the ghastly substance also made farting noises which I simply cannot handle.


'Rocko's Modern Life'

I don't mean to unnecessarily hate on Rocko's neighbors, the Bigheads, but I mean, their appearance is unsettling.


McDonald's The McPizza

Adding "fresh, oven-baked" 'za to the McDonald's menu was just wrong.


'Aaahh! Real Scary Monsters'

Krumm was holding his eyeballs in his hands. In his hands. And don't even get me started on his armpit hair.


Frosted Tips

Say what you will, but there's no way this hairstyle doesn't look simply wrong. And dare I say, icky? And also, no offense meant to Justin Timberlake, because hey, we've all made odd choices, and he's straight up killing it these days.



This series only ran for an extremely short time in the '90s. But you can't really expect a series about an off-kilter ghostly con-man to not be gruesome. And as suspected, it was. However, that doesn't mean I have to be happy or not disgusted by it.

Just thinking about the above gives me the heebie-jeebies. The '90s were so nostalgic, yet also pretty gross.