The ’90s Beauty Products We Want to Make a Comeback

Alle Connell

There’s no denying that the ’90s are back in a big way. From the resurgence of the supermodel to the ubiquity of plaid flannel, everything that was old is new again. Though we’re still side-eyeing the return of high waisted Mom jeans, when it comes to ’90s beauty products, we couldn’t be happier. Who doesn’t love nostalgia, right? Especially when it smells like your favorite Lip Smacker.

As our favorite brands roll out retro-inspired packaging and ad campaigns, we say why not take it a step further and bring back our teenage selves’ favorite products? These are the ’90s beauty products that we most want to make a comeback…how many were you obsessed with?


Bonne Bell Cosmic Lip Smackers.
It’s impossible to overstate the impact these shimmery, highly scented lip glosses had on our high school experience. Not only did they tint our lips the perfect subtle shade of pink (or pale blue, which we were weirdly into at 14), they also smelled like candy and SPARKLED. We aren’t saying we’d wear these to the office or anything, but if Bonne Bell brought these back, we’d definitely rock them overtop our matte lipsticks on the weekends.

Revlon Street Wear Makeup.
Back in the 90s, it was hard to find drugstore makeup that wasn’t totally beige and boring. Enter Revlon Street Wear, the ultimate fix for the budding beauty junkie. Finally, there was fun, cool makeup that we could actually afford—and if metallic beetle-green eyeliner wasn’t your thing, you could also find basics in amazing packaging (we still remember the lipsticks in clear lucite bullets). If we could only bring back one standout product, it would be the double-ended eyeliners that we still say were better than most pencils on the market today.

maybelline wet shine nail polish

Photos: Revlon

Maybelline Wet Shine Nail Polish.
This was the ultimate drug store nail polish back in the day. The smooth, clump-free formula, slim brush and insane shine made it possible for us to perfect our DIY manicure game, and turned us into the nail polish fiends we are today. Hands up if you remember frantically collecting the special edition shades in the Wet Shine line…there’s a rose-gold shimmer with subtle glitter from 1998 that we’re still dreaming about.

Butterfly clips.
Okay, so maybe we don’t want to bring these back in all their multicoloured, glittery glory…but admit it, if these came in a streamlined shape and chic toitoishell finish, wouldn’t you be tempted to buy one or two? We know we would!

poppy king

Photo: Lipstick Queen

Poppy lipsticks.
Poppy King, who rose to prominence in the early 90s, was one of our first beauty icons. A young woman from Australia who launched her own beauty label, Poppy’s line of intensely-pigmented lip colors turned lipstick from something exclusively worn by our mothers’ generation and made it FOR US. We still remember a matte brick-red shade that made our teenage hearts beat faster—and even though the original company is long gone, the spirit lives on in Poppy’s current (and excellent) brand, Lipstick Queen.

Bonne Bell Bottled Emotion perfumes.
If you tell us that you didn’t have at least one of these as a teenager, we will call you a liar. Even though the perfumes themselves were definitely on the fruity-teenybopper side, the concept of this line was game-changing. We weren’t just inspired to collect all of these simple scents in bright bottles, we were also encouraged to layer them and create our own custom fragrances. Behind every perfume nerd is an adolescence spent figuring out the perfect ratio of Crazy to Lucky…not that we know from experience or anything.

Max Factor Eye Designer Shadow Liners.
These were the original product multi-taskers—these slim, double-ended pencils could be used as eyeliner and blended out as eyeshadow. With a deeper shade to be used around the lashlines and a coordinating lighter shade for blending, these were blendable, pigmented and perfect in every way. Though you can still buy these in certain shady places online, we don’t recommend it—these were discontinued in the early aughts, making even unopened pencils beyond expired.

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