As children growing up in the 1990s, we were spoilt for choice when it came to toys. Some of our favorites were shockingly simple, like sidewalk chalk and hula hoops. Others were high-tech marvels, like Tamagotchis and pagers. And then there were the classics that got a 1990s makeover, like Barbie dolls and Hot Wheels cars.
We may not have realized it at the time, but these toys helped to shape our childhoods in a unique and unforgettable way. Here are just a few of the top toys only 90s kids will remember.
In the 1990s, Beanie Babies were all the rage, and it seems hard to understand why now. But at the time, they were seen as stylish, unique, and highly collectible. Unlike other stuffed animals, which tended to be mass-produced and identikit, each Beanie Baby was slightly different, with its own name and birthday. This made them feel more like individual pets than inanimate objects.
They were also easy to carry around, which made them ideal for taking to school or work. In addition, their small size meant that they didn’t take up too much space in a child’s bedroom. But above all, it was the Beanie Baby craze that made these toys so popular. As everyone wanted to get their hands on the latest design, prices soared, and parents were soon queuing up outside toy stores to try and buy their kids the must-have toy of the moment.
In retrospect, it’s easy to see why Beanie Babies fell out of favor. But at the time, they were the hottest commodity around. Although today, Beanie Babies’ value is no longer quite what it was during the 1990s when they were responsible for a frenzy of excited children begging their parents for one, there are still a few with quite some value to their name today. If you’re in possession of a Princess Diana Beanie Baby, or perhaps a Roger the Pirate Bear Beanie Babie, you’re in for a treat, these bears are worth up to $250 each.
Super Soakers were first introduced in the early 1990s, and they quickly became one of the most popular toys on the market. There are a number of reasons for their popularity. First, they are great for water fights. The Super Soaker can shoot a stream of water much farther than a regular water gun, making them perfect for long-range soaked targets.
Second, they are easy to use. Simply pump the handle to build up pressure and pull the trigger to release a stream of water. This makes them much more user-friendly than traditional squirt guns, which can be difficult to pump and aim.
Finally, Super Soakers are just plain fun. They provide an opportunity to cool off on a hot day and have a blast with friends at the same time. It’s no wonder they continue to be one of the most popular toys nearly 30 years after their debut.
To date, Larami Corporation and Hasbro have sold more than 200 million Super Soakers in more than 175 variations, netting the companies about $1 billion in sales.
POGs became popular in the early 1990s, and for a time, they were all the rage among kids selling 350 million units in 1994 in the United States alone. POGs are small discs made of cardboard or plastic, and each one has a design on the front. Most POGs feature pictures of fruit, but you can also find ones with cartoon characters, animals, and other images.
To play the game, kids stack the POGs up and then take turns trying to knock them over with another disc called a “slammer.” The player who knocks over the most POGs is the winner. But what is it that made POGs so popular? Part of it may have been the fact that they were easy to collect and trade with friends.
But there was also something compelling about the game itself. Maybe it was the sense of satisfaction that came with successfully hitting a POG or the excitement of seeing how many you could knockdown in a row. Whatever the reason, POGs captured the imaginations of kids across the world, and for a time, they were king of the playground.
In the 1990s, a new toy called the Tamagotchi became a sensation around the world. The Tamagotchi was a small, egg-shaped device that could be carried around in a pocket. It had a simple LCD screen that was used to care for a virtual pet. The player had to feed, clean, and play with their pet, or else it would become sick and eventually die.
For many children, the Tamagotchi was their first experience of caring for another living creature. In some cases, it was also their first experience of death. The popularity of the Tamagotchi was due to its simple concept and addictive gameplay. It was a toy that could be enjoyed by both children and adults alike.
A total of 400,000 Tamagotchis were sold in 1996, increasing to 10 million by July 1997 and 13 million by October 1997.
These small dolls, each about the size of a quarter, were stored in colorful cases that doubled as playsets. Polly Pocket was born in 1983 and created by designer Carol Hillner. The toy was originally launched by Bluebird Toys in the UK and Canada before being brought to the US by Mattel in 1989.
There are several reasons for Polly Pocket’s enduring popularity. For one, the toy was very affordable, which made it accessible to a wide range of girls. Additionally, the compact size meant that Polly Pocket could be easily taken on trips or to school, providing hours of fun wherever girls went.
Finally, the wide variety of themed playsets meant that there was something to appeal to every girl’s interests. From magical fairies to rock stars, there was a Polly Pocket playset to suit every taste. It’s no wonder that these small but mighty dolls remain beloved by girls around the world.