Looking At The Trends From 21 Years Ago That Still Slap A Thigh Or Two In 2020

1999 trends

It seems like only yesterday my parents had taken me to the beach in Sorrento to celebrate the Y2K new year. I remember that night specifically because some random man poured beer over my head which is quite the ordeal for a seven-year-old.

1999  wasn’t just memorable for my first (and certainly not last) beer dousing, though. Some call it the biggest year for pop culture since TV was invented. I personally haven’t heard anyone say it but it sounds about right.

Take a walk with me as we reminisce about all the 1999 trends that have managed to stick with us all the way in the future (now).


In hindsight, SpongeBob Squarepants was a truly bizarre kid’s show, purely because watching it as an adult is equally, if not more, enjoyable than it was as a kid. It’s beyond bonkers. It’s about a literal sponge who lives in a literal pineapple under the sea. I dunno what went down in the writer’s room but I’m into it.

In 2020, there’s been a resurgence of the show online in the form of thousands, if not millions, of memes, all more glorious than the last.

Britney Spears

Britney Spears was most certainly a trend in 1999. She as a person was a trend, her style was a trend, her tunes were a trend -hell, Britney Spears was such a huge trend, kids were actually excited to wear a school uniform for the first time in existence.

Given I was in primary school I missed out on all of the high school drama that definitely would’ve ensued. I can almost hear some teacher shouting at students to ‘undo the knot on their school shirts this INSTANT’.

I don’t have time, nor energy, to go through the future trends ol’ mate Britney inspired but you best believe they’ve stuck with us through to 2020.

Pokemon Cards

Perhaps my memory is a tad hazy, but I swear Pokemon cards were the cause of at least three incidents involving schoolyard brawls.

A clearer memory that doesn’t relate to student-on-student crime was a school holiday in 1999 when my brother invited his mate over to trade cards.

Well, would you believe, that slimy little spud stole his shiny Charizard. I don’t need to tell you that swiping a shiny Pokemon card of any sort was the ultimate sin – I’m pretty sure my brother campaigned for a life sentencing, actually.

If you’ve still got some Pokemon cards lying around, it might be worth checking which ones you have – just last year, a 1999 Shiny Charizard sold for $52,300.00.


Bless you eBay for being the only place I could buy stuffed South Park toys that didn’t cost hundreds of dollars. I wasn’t allowed to watch the show in 1999 for obvious reasons but I was still obsessed with the characters.

Yes, eBay kicked off in Australia in 1999 and has had a hell of a journey since. I don’t want to bore you with all of the insane purchases I’ve made over the years but I will say that a lie detector and a braille pocket watch were both in the mix. I also do vaguely recall the entire country of New Zealand being put up for sale for one cent at one point which, for obvious reasons, I sincerely regret not purchasing.

Little sidebar: because it’s technically their 21st birthday, eBay is throwing a bday sale exclusive to eBay Plus members. Have a squiz at the sales going down right here.

Those necklaces from the surf shops

This may have been more of a Melbourne situation but there was a good chunk of time in the late-’90s when surf-related necklaces from the local surf shop were massive – naturally, they were seemingly more popular among people who didn’t surf than did.

While they’re not exactly a staple these days, I guarantee the whole ‘shark tooth necklace’ trend will come flying back into our lives any day now.

Only this time, none of it will be real teeth because that’s pretty morbid in hindsight.