Words Lost to the 80s - And What to Say Instead

With this week's launch of American Girl’s 90s doll touted as “historical” in their marketing campaigns, I started feeling all too nostalgic about the era in which I (and maybe you) grew up.


Wait a hot minute - didn't the 90s happen yesterday? I mean, what does that make me if I’m born in the 80s? A colossal, archaic lizard? Obsolete?


Anyway, it had me thinking about the 90s and all the beautiful words that went with it. Take a trip with me…

As if! 





(I still say this on the regular) 

(I know a few surfer dudes who still say this on the regular)





Total Betty 

I double dare ya 

I triple dare ya 

You’re dead meat
(if you had an older sibling)

Capri pants 

Full House 



Wigging out 

Run Forrest, Run


Cool man



The Rachel 




Don’t even 



How do you feel? Nostalgic, right? 


Swept back to the moment when your date ditched you outside the abandoned beach house and your best friends (still your best friends) patted your back and said, “Whatever, he’s a hella scrub anyways. He’s, like, not even classy. He’s a total bong smoker.”


Narrator: That never happened. Assistant Narrator: Yes it did. 

Fast forward to 2023 and I have a ‘hella’ good list for you if you’re ready to update your vocab.


So, which words should you be using in 2023? Well, that depends on your brand voice. 

But as a guide, here are some excellent substitutes. 


Classy: Elegant, Timeless, Sophisticated, Everlasting, Dreamy, Boujee, Transcending trends


Tight: Thick, Bound, Close, Loving, Connected


Hip: Wokey Cokey, Conscious, Informed, Socially or Environmentally Aware, Receptive 


Hot: GOAT, Baking, Erotic, Sexy, Lush, Spicy 


Flavour:  It’s giving, Vibes, Feels, Aura, Essence, Infusion 


Scrub: Defeated, Underdog, Disadvantaged


Dope:   Drip, On trend, Fresh, In demand, Latest, Voguing, Refreshing  


Hella: Don’t use 'very' or 'extremely'. If you have to use ‘very’ find a better adjective, instead. 


Cool: Fire, Yeet, Calm, Serene, Composed


Stoked: Shook, Fired up, Electrified, Animated, Ecstatic, Elated, Thrilled


Don’t even: I’m salty, I need space, I need to process 


Obsessed: Fan girl, Stan, Rent-free, Captivated, Infatuated


Low-down: Facts, The Tea, Comms, Story, Word, Data, Leak 

Ok, that’s enough of a time warp. 


I’d love to hear your favourite 90s story if you feel like DMing me. 


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