I was born in the 90’s and had the privilege of growing up in the early 2000’s.
The 2000’s, I later learned, (in a children’s ad course in University), was the peak of children’s toy advertising. In these key years of my development, children’s toy-makers began developing captivating commercials – that would target kids when they got home from school. This was successful at the time because children were watching tv at length and unsupervised (Note: because now more mothers were also working / parents would come home late from work / then they would be busy making dinner or whatnot = put children in front of tv to be entertained).
Ps. Before the brain has developed fully, children are unable to separate tv show/ from commercial advertising, in their minds. Therefore, children don’t even realize when they are being marketed to! You can read more about these studies here.
It’s then no surprise how many [really silly and pointless] toys I begged and begged for after seeing how “fun” and “amazing” they seemed on tv.
So, in honour of some serious throwback nostalgia, here are just a fraction of the toys I wanted “so so so so so so so so so bad”.
Ps. Sorry Mom and Dad (for all the bugging).
Every Spice Girls barbie.
This doll that you could put faces on by pressing different stamps on them.
This Barbie Pool House was everything.
A classic: Easy Bake Oven
Talkback Dear Diary… our own personal “pager”.
This bear that you could colour on/then wash clean (& start again a million times over).
Sky Dancers… they would twirl up into the air and “fly” down. I wanted one so badly because I wanted to see if the fairies could really fly.
Throwing it way back… Trolls!
Fashion Plates… fashion stencil drawing guides. You could change the tops, pants and hair inserts – to mix up the outfits.
This little fisher vanity set.
Magic Scent crayons. I can still smell them…
Baby Be Gone doll… when you stuck the spoon in her mouth, the “food” on the spoon would disappear. Her bottle would also appear to have drained empty when tilted into her mouth… it was magic.
A Skip It. If you had one of these, you were the envy of everyone on the play ground.
This and other variations of the little fisher play houses (small and life size).
A Pink Barbie Power Wheels car.
A Barbie hairdressing head. You could do her make-up and her hair… a little girls dream.
A Fashion Faces make-up design palette. Future cosmetologists first trained here.
Lil Miss Magic Hair… with just a brush, you could put different colours and patters into her hair.
A sparkly baton. It doesn’t seem like much but these were all the rage at one point.
The game Perfection!
Creepy or cute? Furby’s.
This life changing Barbie phone.
Then… the Barbie cellphone!
FurReal friends were HUGE. They would purr, make animal sounds and move! This was a big Christmas present for kids wishing for a real pet but whose parents weren’t on board.
Yes, girls wanted Gameboys too.
These lime green and pink velcro ball tossers were so much fun.
Mall Madness. The ultimate talking shopping spree game.
Whatever these are!
Everything polly pocket!
Slime. So fun and no one knows why. Also… you could make it “fart”.
These fluid-filled, sparkle, toy, tubes. I dont even know. But I wanted 10.
These robot dogs. Best 7th Birthday present.
Getting older… Bratz jumped on the scene with their big lips and tight jeans.
The original Bop-It!
Mighty Beanz... I was so fascinated by these.
I still have mine. This was the most incredible art kit at the time.
Lite Brite pushed us to be creative… then you’d have to turn off all the lights to see your cool artwork glow!
Nothing quite compares to the Beanie Baby fad. I had about 48.
Pogs. No one knows what they do.
Slap bracelets... are exactly what they sound like.
My first “super cool” roller blades. Thanks Fisher Price.
Hit clips…. you could only listen to a small clip of a hit song at a time.
These Sticker earrings….for every day of the week.
This mermaid Barbie’s tail would change colour when under water!
Keep these bad boys away from dirt… sticky hands?