People Share The Odd Trend They Followed As A Kid That Now Makes Them Cringe
Growing up, we all face the struggle of fitting in. It’s tempting to go with what everyone else is doing to enhance our social statuses. It could be a hip new dance found in a viral video online, or a new clothing brand that the cool kids are wearing to class. In the end, you often find yourself embarrassed looking back at what you did just to fit in when you were a teenager.
The following people bring up what trends they followed back in the day. They may be cringe-worthy, but all of these experiences are simply an inevitable part of life. Looking back at those memories helps you grow into a better person, however, family members and old friends might use these moments to poke fun at you on occasion. The only thing these folks can do is simply laugh about it.
#1 Scene Not Heard
I was fully immersed in the emo scene when I was like, 13 years old. I had HUGE back-combed hair with mile-long extensions, aggressive eyeliner, and short shorts with tights. I passionately rejected pop music and would only accept heavy rock and metal. Even though my personality is naturally quite bubbly, I would act like it wasn’t. This made me gain a lot of attention at a very young age as I always acted older than I was. My therapist attributes this to my crippling anxiety now… Scene kids ain’t for life y’all, big cringe.
#2 Hit The Deck
I followed the Tech Deck dude trend when I was in elementary school and even collected a bunch of them. Thankfully, I was never able to get fully invested in it due to financial limitations. Other than that, I seem to have gone out of my way to not get into most trends my peers were into. Notable exceptions are stuff like Pokémon, DBZ, Beyblade, Medabots, etc., much of which I still like today.
#3 She’s Got The L.A. Look
I “scrunched” my hair with L.A. Looks gel to the point where it turned jagged and hard instead of curly. I had a big widow’s peak back then, so it looked absolutely awful. Sadly, I still see people with the crunchy look and I wonder if their cringe will ever set in. It’s just not a good look. At all. Avoid it at all costs!
#4 More Like Pokemon No
I’m still technically a kid, but when I was in the fifth grade, I was OBSESSED with Pokemon Go. I have an addictive personality, so when something catches my eye, I will never let it go. I used to fight people who offended my team (Valor) and got into some really bad situations. I lost almost all of my friends and popularity at that school. I just started middle school, and I am thankful to have new friends who never will know about my horrible obsession.
#5 Dancing Like Garbage
We recorded a “Harlem Shake” video with the whole class in primary school. It was about six years ago I think. I’m 17 now. I was spazzing like crazy with a garbage bag around my body… I wore some shades and a weird flashy black hat. I can still find the video on YouTube probably because my teacher posted it on YouTube.
#6 Fitting In Isn’t Cool
When I think of all the things I did to try to be popular in school, I can’t help but cringe. I attend a high school of 17,000 students and literally, no one cares how many friends you have or don’t have. Everyone just sticks to their own groups anyway. I stopped trying when I became a sophomore, thankfully.
#7 Sword Art On Hold
Sword Art Online. Not hating if you still like the show and its handful of continuations, but the original was just okay… Nothing too ground-breaking as far as anime goes. Now that I’m older, I don’t get why younger me liked it so much. It was super basic as far a plot goes. There is are plenty of other animes that have decent storylines, including the actual sequel series Accel World. I wish they’d continue that one instead.
#8 Who Runs The World?
I used to think femininity was a weakness, so basically, I’d try to dress in boyish clothes, play video games, cut my hair short and wear it in spikes. I’d make myself hate the color pink, just so I could say “I’m not like the other girls.” This useless trend made me lose my childhood best friend—I always called her a “basic white witch” because she liked pink and dresses and makeup.
Looking back at it, I really regret doing that. I mean yeah, I was 13 years old and stupid, but it cost me my bestie. Now I know that it is okay to be feminine. It is not a weakness. I believe the media had a role in making me think being a girl is useless and weak. Thankfully, I’m way over that phase now. I like cute outfits, pastel colors and makeup. I still like video games and still hate pink (I don’t know why), but I have learned that every girl I know is different and has her own quirks.
#9 Anime Is Life
So, like every little artist, I used to attempt to draw anime. The style alone makes me cringe. But what really gets me it that I would always think the fictional character was my husband, I was obsessed and would even draw kissing scenes. I look back at it now and want to burn it to the ground. If I could erase that phase of my life, I would.
#10 You Look Like A Girl From Abercrombie & Fitch
I don’t know if this was a national trend or just my high school, but in the late ’90s, Abercrombie & Fitch clothing briefly became the must-have attire if you were, in any way, shape, or form, cool. I got sucked in by the hype. I basically traded out a third of my entire wardrobe and burned through more than six months of allowance for a bunch of over-priced clothing I didn’t even really like. What’s even worse was that it was a fashion trend for like, a year. No one wore Abercrombie & Fitch after that, yet I was stuck with a closet full of only A&F merchandise.
#11 All That Glitter Is Not Gold
I used a Bath & Body Works roll-on glitter religiously (Cucumber Melon, obviously). I used so much of it that instead of having a little sparkle under my eyes, my skin was tinted green and caked with glitter. The first time I realized just how overboard I was going with it was when I posed for a flash photo and my eyes were non-existent in the photo.
#12 Just Do It
I used to sag my pants because a kid told me I didn’t have to wear them so high up. I was afraid of being bullied after that, thinking that my clothes HAD to be Polo Ralph Lauren, Abercrombie & Fitch, Aeropostale, American Eagle, or Hollister. Also, my obsession with Jordan shoes. I often dreamt of the day I’d be able to buy hundreds of them.
I was so obsessed with trying to dress a certain way to appear trendy. Now I couldn’t care less about that stuff. I rock clothing from Wal Mart and H&M. It’s all fun when your parents are spending their money but as I got older, I realized I didn’t have money to be wasting on useless stuff like a bunch of Jordan shoes.
#13 Harry Potter And The Sorceror’s Cringe
Not really a trend, but I was in elementary school when the Harry Potter books were still coming out. I went to school, many times, dressed as Harry Potter, despite the fact that it was not anywhere near Halloween. I guess my mom just didn’t care. I even put a lightning bolt tattoo on my forehead—my mom got at the store for me one day. I still cringe about it to this day. At least I wasn’t alone. I had a friend who did it with me.
#14 Talkin’ ‘Bout My Generation
For a good year, I would mock anyone with modern tastes, wishing I was born in a cooler decade while thinking I was a genius among men who was smarter than everyone around. However, I was rather shy and a loner, so not many people even knew my sentiments. Looking back at it, I just want to smack some sense into my younger self.
#15 Five Nights At Bieber’s
As an 11-year-old, I thought it’d be a great idea to make “Five Nights at Freddy’s” mod with Justin Bieber in it. I created the mod and uploaded it to Game Jolt. Next thing I know, a bunch of YouTubers made a video on it. I was happy as an 11-year-old, but looking back now, it’s the cringiest thing I ever made. I could see the awkwardness on the YouTuber’s faces. They seemed disappointed in the lack of content, but sadly that’s all I could do with TexMod.
#16 This Haircut Bangs
I swear this was a trend, but I can’t find any evidence of it online: a shaved head with bangs. It wasn’t even anything interesting, I just started combing them forward. I grew up in a small town in the Florida panhandle and didn’t travel much as a kid, so I can’t say how far-reaching the trend was, but in my town, around 1993 and 1994, it was huge. I was not crazy about it, but I got the hairdo myself when my older brother was getting married and asked me to style my hair that way.
#17 Party In The U.S.A.
I loved being a college student—attending house parties, playing drinking games, going on spring break vacation, having ridiculous posters of hot girls, etc. Once you get older, you realize its lame, and it becomes too hard to go back to that mentality. But when you’re living it, it truly is fun times, as long as you aren’t treating others poorly in the process.
#18 Spread Your Wings And Fly, Butterfly
There’s a photo somewhere of me wearing Gauchos, a sparkly Limited Too shirt with puppies on it, an orange beret, and platforms. I know I later wore the same outfit with pink Crocs and one of those “The Dog” keychains McDonald’s gave out. Eight-year-old me was THE BOMB in elementary school. Twenty-four-year-old me now looks at herself and freaking cringes.
#19 Nothing Wrong With Extra Socks
I saved and bought almost every pair of Nike Elite socks. Almost every pair. This was the height of my middle school days and I loved basketball. I now have a drawer full of them and my girlfriend and I make fun of myself for it. I only wear them during the winter or when I work out because they are still good socks. But man… I wish my parents would have just smacked some sense into me.
#20 Forever Begins Now
I was obsessed with Twilight. Like, crazy obsessed. I was reading it right before they announced the movie and then everyone started reading it. I was that “weird” kid in grade school who people would scoot away from and laugh at for the way I held a pencil. Then, I became the go-to Twilight expert, and classmates started asking to borrow my books, bothering me with questions, and inviting me to all sort of events, including a Twilight trivia event. I did go to the trivia and we won; I knew every question. Looking back, it is so embarrassing, but oh well. I don’t regret reading the books, but I do regret going to the movies.
#21 Not For Fandom
I was such a nerd in high school. I liked Steven Universe, pastels, Dodie and a bunch of fandom stuff. I would spend my allowance buying cat ears, terrible graphic tees, beanies, tapestries, and flannels. When I think about all that stuff, I just want to burn it all. Those items represent some of the cringiest years of my teenage life.
#22 What Do You Mean It’s Cold?
Wearing as little winter clothes as possible in winter. I would insist to go to school with only an unzipped, cropped leather jacket and refused to wear anything other than my skater shoes. Of course, I’d have no gloves, hat or scarf. I now wear my winter coat starting in October and wear a hat, mittens and a huge scarf. Also, sometimes a hoodie under my coat if it’s too cold. And big winter boots with wool socks. I thought about buying thigh-highs to wear under my pants as well. I’m not sure why I thought it was cool to be cold.
#23 Zoot Suit Riot
Zoot suits. What the heck was I thinking?! Of course, back then I thought anybody who DIDN’T wear a zoot suit was a total square. That wide-legged, tight-cuffed, high-waisted trousers, long coat with oversized lapels and padded shoulders ensemble was where it was at, daddy-o! So much the better if you could get your mitts on a fedora and some pointy shoes! Of course, my chums and I had to be cautious about where we wandered when wearing our zoot suits. The harbor district was a particular no-no. Sailors didn’t like fellows in zoot suits (probably because we got all the ladies!) and would beat us to a pulp anytime we showed up. Once the war started, though, that kind of thing didn’t happen so much. I guess the sailors had other priorities, plus I traded in my zoot suit for army fatigues anyway.
#24 Nu Metal For Life
When I was in eighth grade, I used to wear those huge, flared out JNCO jeans. They had flaming dice or flaming skulls or flaming snakes on the huge oversized back pockets. They completely covered up my puffy Osirus D3’s which I still attempted to show off by putting my feet up on desks like the cool kid I was. And to complete the ensemble, I had baggy, ripped nu-metal band shirts, all gotten from shows, mind you. I was no poser.
#25 The Rainbow Connection
Rainbow everything. I had the Mork from Ork rainbow suspenders. A rainbow sweater. A rainbow T-shirt. I even made an earring holder out of one of my dad’s old racing number plates and painted it rainbow colors. And I put my rainbow earrings in it. Oh yeah, can’t forget about the fleece rainbow blanket on my bed that I babysat to earn the money for. I’m a woman, but still. Cringe.
#26 Like A Ninja
My friend once reminded me I had an album titled “Parkour” on my Facebook. If I was looking for a reason to shut my Facebook down, and I found it that day in a form of an old photo gallery of me and some friends hanging off second-story balconies and jumping park benches. Ah, the good times. Cringe-worthy, yes, but nevertheless good.
#27 Giddy Up Now
I got really into country music and going to rodeos when I was around 20 years old. I lived in a rural town and it was pretty common. I bought some Justin boots and Wranglers. At some point, I abandoned it all completely and never turned back. Looking back, I still see the appeal, but it’s tinged with depression and hopelessness because of where I was in my life at the time. I avoid country music completely.
#28 Wub Wub Wub
When I was 13 years old, I hopped on the bandwagon of trying to make my own dubstep songs. Headphone users might wanna turn down for that one a bit. I also made some pretty okay dubstep mixes—the best part of them was the intro to the video I made, but the songs really were just more of the same typical dubstep stuff you’d expect. Around the same time, I tried to make “Let’s Play” videos, which were… yikes. None of my videos were monetized, it was all just for fun.
#29 Silly Is Correct
Silly Bandz. Around 2012, those things were the bomb. Kids were wearing Silly Bandz necklaces, bracelets, keychains, etc. I went to a private school where no one was allowed to wear any jewelry outside of the dress code, so kids were selling them under the radar. The fifth graders were like black market dealers selling Silly Bandz to each other and younger kids. We’d wear them under our sweaters or on our backpacks to show our statuses. The more Silly Bandz, the better. I still have my keychain of about 60 in my bedroom.
#30 Flipping Styles Overnight
I was a British chav as a preteen, then I did a U-turn at 14 and became scene as heck. My chav get-up consisted of a slicked-back, side ponytail (which accentuated my huge forehead), bright white and pink trainers, and some sort of pink hoodie. To complete the look, I also had huge gold earrings, multiple rings on each hand, and two chains around my neck. Oh! And I used to shave my eyebrows so that they were a thin straight slit.
Conversely, My scene get-up consisted of dark purple backcombed hair (with a full fringe that started virtually at the back of my head), black nails, a studded belt, black skinny jeans with rainbow skeleton hands on the buttcheeks, and then some sort of cringy tight T-shirt that would have fit my five-year-old cousin. My favorite T-shirt had multiple neon cartoon dinosaurs on it. Another one had two cartoon penguins kissing. Just thinking about this makes me cringe (though I still am nostalgic about my scene days).
#31 I Mustache You A Question
The mustache trend… For some reason, I was obsessed with it. I got gifts that would be mustache patterned. I used to have like mustache-themed Hello Kitty stuff. One time, my mom and I went to the 99 cent store and I found some mustache-patterned duct tape. Did I need duct tape?? Nope, but did I think it was cool? Yep.
I only used it in a minimal amount, so when one of my older brothers used the whole thing to fix something one day, I got so upset. I found a backpack the other day that I had mustache patterned and, don’t get me wrong, the backpack is pretty gnarly and fits my huge laptop, but my cringe was triggered thinking about the past. Yikes.
#32 Clack Your Hands
The dumbest trend of my high school years was Clackers. Plastic balls molded onto sturdy string about 12″ long. Imagine something about the heft of a billiards ball, but smaller. You’d hold the string in the middle and swing them up and make them clack against each other. If you were really daring and coordinated, you’d swing them hard enough to make them clack at the top and bottom of the arc, while walking around all nonchalant.
The racket was tremendous, as were the bruises on our hands and wrists from misfires. They came in all sorts of colors like giant marbles and we’d buy different color ones. The clear ones had the advantage of letting you see cracks or that the string was coming loose. New ones have the string go right through with a knot and a little ring to hold onto, but back then, we had none of those improvements. The noise, distraction, and injury were bad enough, but the thing that led schools to ban them was that as you were clacking away, the plastic balls could split and shrapnel would fly everywhere.
#33 My Little Brony
I was a brony during my sophomore year of high school. I have no idea why, and I don’t understand myself well enough to know why I was like that. I don’t even know or remember what was so captivating about it. I cringe when I think back about it. I’m really curious if someone’s done a psychological study on bronies. Why? Because I’d really like to know why that freaking happened.
#34 Break Those Chains
Chain wallets. It got to the point where I found a six-foot-long dog chain and added it to my collection that was attached to my Metallica wallet at one point. I thought it made me look hardcore and tough so I wore it everywhere. That lasted about a week. My wallet became too heavy to lug around despite the fact that it was already empty and it just wasn’t worth it.
#35 It’s All The Rave
I was a raver. I had all the JNCO jeans, including the kangaroos which were so big you could fit a full two-liter bottle in the back pocket. I used to carry a big retro-style alarm clock (with the bells on top on a chain) in my pocket like a goofy pocket watch. It doesn’t make me cringe at all. I knew it was silly at the time but I had a lot of fun with it. You’ve got a whole long life ahead of you of wearing dumb boring stuff so that you fit in at the office. What’s the rush? If you can’t try on some different styles and identities when you’re young, when can you?
#36 Spin Me Round
Fidget spinners. They generally helped kids with stress but because they became so popular and were distracting other kids. Eventually, my school banned them. So many other kids who just wanted to be cool overused them, but they did nothing in school. All of their grades suffered as a result. They were throwing away their futures over fidget spinners.
#37 The Sun Is Gonna Surely Shine
For a year or two, I was obsessed with the “Blossom” flower hats. I’d wear them with any flowery dress that had an empire waist, in the most horrible color combinations… Like, a black dress with lime green, purple and orange flowers all over it. I always topped my outfit off with a black hat that had the huge, hideous fake flowers (that matched the dress) pinned to the bottom brim. I cringe just thinking about it. Oh dear, that trend better never return.
#38 Time To Get Catty
During elementary school, there was this HUGE Warrior Cats craze and everyone used to pretend to be cats on the playground. Sometimes, girls would get really into it and start fights between clans. It was really weird but at the time, but I wanted to fit in, so for a solid three months I was Shadowclaw.
#39 Throw Up The Horns
I was a total metalhead. I still dig a few of the bands from back then (Lamb of God being one) but man, I’ve realized that metalheads enjoy metal at the expense of every other genre of music to the point that they feel like heavy metal can define them. They’re all just incredibly one-dimensional and at some point, you just have to break free.
#40 Hiding Those Lucious Locks
I wore a freaking fedora for over a year. People had no clue what my hair looked like because I never took that sucker off. When I took it off one day in English class to scratch my head, my teacher stopped mid-sentence and said, “I’ve never seen your hair before. You have such gorgeous curly hair and you choose to cover it with that hat?” Honestly, that was a turning point. Literally, I took off that fedora for the last time.
#41 She’s Anti-Everything Today
The edgy anti-trend made me feel so special. I didn’t have many friends; I was sort of an emo scene kid. My hair had those weird half bangs that stuck to my face and I wore “edgy” graphic T-shirts and bootcut jeans since skinny jeans were too preppy. One day, we had a “costume day” and I thought it would be cool to dress like how the “popular” girls did. I curled my hair, put on nice makeup, wore a skirt, cute little shoes, and a nice blouse (or it might have been an Aero shirt, it’s been a while). I got so many compliments. I was too embarrassed to tell everyone I was participating in spirit week and pretended I forgot. From that moment on, I realized I was trying too hard. There was nothing wrong with being similar to other people—trying to be 100% unique just to stand out is exhausting, especially when it’s forced.
#42 In Those Jeans
Skinny jeans. I was a skater in middle school, and even though I didn’t rock the super tight jeans, they were still ugly. I am proud of the fact that I never wore Abercrombie or American Eagle though… So lame. Those brands literally scream, “My mommy still dresses me.” Even Pac Sun and Zumies kind of makes me cringe. They’re all just so niche.
#43 Crafting Some Cringy Videos
When I was 11 or 12 years old, Minecraft became really popular. So I started recording Minecraft with my pre-voice-break voice and a really old laptop because I thought I could become some famous streamer, like everybody else. I still have some old videos on my hard drive and they are so cringy that I’m afraid of watching them.
#44 Gotta Catch ‘Em All
Collecting Pokemon cards. Man, I would spend like $100 a week on cardboard. I would work so hard for that $100, then throw it down the drain. I probably could’ve saved that stuff and bought a car at 18.
#45 Filling Up Their Arms
I had a TON of those edgy emo band bracelets that I wore every day. Both of my arms were covered as far up as I could go before they were too tight to fit any higher. I thought I looked so cool, but now I feel physical pain when I look at old pictures of myself wearing them