top of page

Party Like It’s 1999

Let’s talk about this dress. It’s pretty nice, huh? It was $12, it’s a French label, and it’s comfy. Putting all of that aside, you know the first thing I thought when I saw this peaking out from a rack at Talize?


Not five seconds after I uttered those words, I had to stop myself:

“…Did I just think that? Butterflies? Really? Is it 1999? Is She’s All That still in theatres?”

After I regained my composure and paid the cashier, my mind went back to the butterflies. I spent the last ten years fairly confident I’d never get excited about butterflies again. That scene was played right out in 1999, and I made the most of it. I had butterfly shoes, butterfly shorts, and way too many butterfly hair clips. Butterflies were IT (I still know all the words to Crazy Town’s Butterfly. My dad can recite whole Coleridge poems and I can recite Hey sugar momma, come and dance with me / The smartest thing you ever did was take a chance with me. Terrible song.)

Anyhoo, the butterfly comeback got me thinking: what else from 1999 is on it’s way back? What’s already here? What never left?  While I welcome the return of the butterfly from its millennial cocoon, there a few trends that should probably stay buried with my Soul Decision CDs. If you are uninterested in platforms and sticky lip gloss, hop off this bus right now, because it’s headed straight down Memory Lane, accompanied by a wicked soundtrack of All Saints and Robbie Williams.

First up:

Body Glitter. Or face glitter. Or hair glitter. Or glitter of any kind actually. I vividly remember slathering my eye lids with gooey, sparkly gunk. Every time I blinked the dried goop would pull on my taught skin. Not a pleasant feeling. Plus I’d have to spend extra time removing sparkle crusties from my eye lashes at bedtime, followed by the intense burn of my Oxy Acne Wash.

Is it coming back? I don’t think so. I really hope not. Kesha’s doing her darndest to make it happen. But I think we’ve become immune to her powers. Although I just thrifted earring on account of their overall…sparkliness! Uh-oh. Curse you Kesha! You wily sphinx!

Inflatable furniture: I remember thinking getting an inflatable chair would be the BEST THING EVER. The problem was they were intensely uncomfortable, and a real pain to keep inflated. I had to force myself to sit in it, as I read Ella Enchanted and blasted my sister’s Sixpence None the Richer CD (most late-90s memory ever).

Is it coming back? I’m going to say no. I think that one has run its course. Unless you have a pool.

Centre parted bangs. Okay, this one is a little more subtle. Let me paint the scene: You’re just about ready go over to your friends house, where you will do nothing but read embarrassing moment stories in Seventeen magazine. You put your hair in a quick pony tail. You throw on your Sketchers. You’re almost ready to go. But wait! Your hair! It’s not quite done. You need to make sure you loosen your centre-parted bangs, and let them hang down the sides of your face, separate from your pony. NOW you look awesome. Let’s go to Bootlegger. Still not visualizing it? Who better to illustrate the dominance of this style than my two favourite ladies from 10 Things I Hate About You?

Is it coming back? Meh, I’m not too worried either way. 1999 hairdos weren’t nearly as offensive as stuff from the 80s, so we’ll see where it goes.

Celebrities with three word names: Jennifer Love Hewitt. Freddie Prinze Jr. Joseph Gordon Levitt. Rachael Leigh Cook. Sarah Michelle Gellar. You weren’t anybody unless your name was at least five syllables and had two spaces in between.

Is it coming back? Three words: Carly Rae Jepsen.

There are just a few more things worth mentioning before we close the book on 1999 again. And I’m talking about dudes. Turns out we were pretty on the money when it came to the hunks. I don’t need to ask if they are coming back, because they never left! Someone over at Buzzfeed scanned in some amazing pics from 1999 teen magazines. To all my fellow ’99 teenagers, high-five for good taste! Our crushes have aged like fine wine! Also, they call Joseph Gordon Levitt “Joey”. Cute.

Oh…with a few exceptions:


Still though, even Fred Durst’s stupid hat and Kid Rock’s unwashed hair can’t sully the legacy of 1999. It was a simpler time, when everything tasted like vanilla icing and Claire’s was a plastic paradise; a time without bald Britney or American Idol. And you know what? If butterflies mean a little more of ’99 sneaking back in style, I’ll welcome it with open arms, covered in temporary tattoos and WWJD bracelets.

If you’re still hankering for more ’99 trends, some blessed soul uploaded an entire 1999 Delia’s catalog. It’s bursting with camouflage, cargo pants, jelly sandals, Hawaiian shorts and so much more. Recommended musical accompaniment: This song. Unlike Crazytown, I still think it’s amazing. You’re welcome.


Recent Posts

See All


bottom of page