The early noughties were a weird time in our culture. There are so many things that we thought were chic, or cool, that we would absolutely never think today. We look at pictures of celebrities and ourselves alike and wonder what we were all thinking. It's like society was trying to punk us in 2006, and succeeded.
While in other decades, there are redeeming qualities, and things that make comebacks. There are a lot of things on this list I hope never makes a comeback as long as I live. But on the flip side, if some of these come back into style, I will probably go along with it - for nostalgia's sake (or at least that’s what I’ll tell myself).
2006 was only ten years ago, so how is it that the world we live in, today seems like it is in a different solar system from back then. So much has changed, from technology, fashion, celebrities, even the Internet and how we use it. It’s important to look back on these things so that we can never repeat our mistakes as a culture. Here are 15 things that will bring you right back to 2006, and remind you that it’s a good thing that it is no longer 2006 at the same time.
16 Amanda Bynes
Growing up in the 90s and the early 00s, it was hard to watch something without Amanda Bynes in it. She started on Nickelodeon’s All That, then eventually her own sketch comedy show, The Amanda Show. By 2006, she had transitioned from kids’ TV shows to movies and even a sitcom on the WB.
2006 was a great year for Bynes. This was the year she starred in what might be her best movie - She’s the Man. That year she was voted one of Teen People’s Hottest 25 under 25.
This was years before she would throw a bong out of her apartment in New York. So much time before she would write out weird tweets and send them out for the world to see. Back in 2006, she was still America’s sweetheart. And I would be lying if I said I wasn’t hoping for a comeback in the next couple of years.
I don’t hate hats. I think a baseball cap while running is a beautiful thing. Some sun hats look lovely. Hell, I would love to be able to pull off one of those cute hipster felt hats. But I hate fedoras. It’s like headwear that was designed so you can pick out jerks.
2006 was the year of the fedora. Why was this in such high regards in our society? Everyone from music moguls to models to athletes had these bad boys on their heads that year. And I am still trying to figure out why. With a couple of exceptions, this fashion trend has mostly stayed in 2006, and for that, I will be forever grateful.
14 Kevin Federline
I wouldn’t necessarily call him an IT boy of 2006, but he was largely in the spotlight back then. And let us not forget, that this is one year before Britney’s massive breakdown, where she shaved her head and bashed in a car window with an umbrella. This is the year their youngest son was born, and the year that Britney filed for a divorce. Oh, and it was the year he released his awful album, Play With Fire. I don’t suggest you listen to it.
Since 2006, K-Fed has been pretty much out of the spotlight entirely. He’s been on Celebrity Fit Club and had a small role in an obscure movie. He got married again, and had more babies, making his total six children with three different women. To be completely honest, I’m kind of glad K-Fed’s fame stayed in 2006.
This is easily one of the weirdest fashion accessories we had back in 2006. To have a grill was the ultimate sign of wealth back then - you have so much money that you have both gold and diamonds in your mouth. Looking back now, it just seems sort of ridiculous. Why would you wear that thing in your mouth? If you glance, it looks like a mouth full of braces - which absolutely isn’t cool.
Thanks to Nelly, we all wanted Grillz, even suburban white kids. It was very common in my high school to take a metallic gum wrapper and wrap it around your teeth. Yeah, it was normal. It got to the point where even Brooke Hogan had a pair, and then I think shortly after, the fad died.
12 Lindsay Lohan
From her beginnings in The Parent Trap to one the greatest movies of our time, Mean Girls, to the downright bad movies she made after that like Just My Luck - Lindsay Lohan used to be everywhere in the early 2000’s. We loved her in Disney movies, and we laughed with her as Cady Herring. And then, Lohan fell off the wagon - hard.
But back in 2006, there is a small window of time before she really took a turn for the worst. This is before her DUIs, or her rehab visits. There were rumors in 2006 that she was attending AA meetings but in the large scheme of things that’s not all that much in comparison to being arrested for possession of cocaine.
I think for most people who grew up watching Lohan on their favorite movies hopes that she will get her act together soon and that maybe she will transform into who she was in the early 00s.
11 Watching Movies on an iPod
Just for a minute, let us remember how we used to listen to music. Before everyone had a smartphone, we used to use an entirely separate device that held all our music. And it was totally revolutionary at the time. I don’t have to bring my CD player and all my CDs with me when I go on a long road trip? What a time to be alive.
In 2006 Apple made it possible to watch movies on your iPod as well. Just think of those little screens on the iPods from 2006, and we would strain our eyes just trying to watch She’s The Man while on a road trip with our parents. But at the time, this was huge. This is also before we had access to millions of videos within a couple of clicks on our phones. This was a different time in our world, almost unrecognizable today.
10 Pop Punk
Pop Punk was everywhere in 2006, and at 14 I was far from mad about it. This was one of the peak years for this music. Boys and girls alike were wearing more eyeliner. Everyone was wearing black. And we were all being irrationally angsty, listening to My Chemical Romance, Blink 182, Fall Out Boy, and Taking Back Sunday, to name a few.
And while I was never into this for the fashion, I still listen to these bands regularly. Most kids from 2006 who considered themselves as emo, have since grown out of that stage in their lives. Even those bands don’t wear eyeliner and paint their nails black anymore. But when it comes to the music, I will never grow out of my emo phase, even if it isn’t in the mainstream anymore.
9 Juicy Track Suits
Cue throw up noise. I have nothing against velour; it’s soft and lovely. Honestly, I wish velour was used in more articles of clothing. Why can’t I get a velour dress or even a blazer? Honestly, this is a fabric that doesn’t get enough credit. But to have both your pants and top match this perfectly, it makes my stomach churn.
There’s something about an adult wearing this track suit; it makes them look ridiculous like they couldn’t be trusted to pick out an outfit that matches on their own - so they wore one that comes together. And don’t even get me started with the writing on the butt. Get out of here with that garbage.
If this fad comes back, I give up on humanity. This should stay firmly in 2006, where it belongs.
8 Paris Hilton
Paris Hilton was the IT girl in 2006. She was famous for being rich, and partying, and for having a pretty terrible reality show with Nicole Richie. She’s basically the Kim Kardashian of the time. She wasn’t a good actress. She wasn’t a goo singer, even though she definitely released an album. But she was famous, for some reason.
What happened to Paris? To be honest, I hadn’t heard all that much about her since the mid 00’s. As the decade ended, her spotlight began to fizzle. While she is busy, DJing, recording an album with Cash Money Records, and cameos on Real Housewives - her limelight has drastically decreased since her heyday in 2006.
Is it a bad thing she isn’t one of the most prominent people in our society anymore? No. Even our reality stars that are famous for having money are better with their money, and coming up with ways to generate more money. But we will never forget that Paris Hilton used to make Kim Kardashian clean out her closet, and it’s little gems like that that make 2006 a beautiful and weird time.
7 Ugg Boots and Mini Skits
Looking back at this fad makes me cringe. I always thought Uggs were ugly, even back then. Obviously, I had a pair, even though I thought they were hideous. They were light blue boots, and they were probably the ugliest shoes I’ve ever owned.
I was a middle schooler in 2006, so of course I wore jean skirts from time to time. But I think even then I didn’t like them. Now, though, I hate them. If someone told me I had to wear a mini skirt and Ugg Boots or else I would die - I would take death. This might be one of the worst fashion trends to come out of 2006.
6 Creative Emails
Before the world collectively decided that we would all just put our names in our emails, there were unique ones, that really highlighted our personalities. We used a lot of characters and probably were a little more liberal with uppercase letters. Maybe yours highlighted your love for cats like ~kAtLuvrfirstname.lastname@example.org because of course it was an AIM account.
Personally, in 2006 I had BillabongXgirl16@aim.com, because I loved Billabong at the time, and thought it was more creative than the thousands of girls who used roxygirl. Either way, it’s all bad.
Let’s just hope this never comes back into style, and that all of us will just have professional email accounts. Just do some form of your first and last name. And seriously, use a Gmail account - it’s 2016 for god’s sake.
5 Hannah Montana
With how Miley Cyrus has been these past couple of years, it’s hard to remember that she got her start in 2006 as Disney’s Hannah Montana. Back then, she was just a teenager, who was sweet with this cute little southern accent, who just wanted the best of both worlds. What isn’t to like about a girl who lives a double life as both a pop star and a normal teenager?
In the years since Hannah Montana ended, Miley has changed drastically. Dying her hair blonde, then chopping all of it off, riding naked on wrecking balls, smoking pot, and generally acting weird. It got to the point where Disney has taken her name completely off Hannah Montana. She did what most pop stars do when their career starts early - they do something drastic to try and change that squeaky clean persona they created in their youth. And in that regard, Miley certainty succeeded.
4 Low Rise Jeans
Why did we love low rise jeans so much? Was it because we wanted boys to see our thongs? So we could show off our hipbones? The only thing that low rise jeans succeeded in was to give us inevitable muffin tops, and that is a fact.
I don’t need super high waisted, or mom jeans, but I am so glad that the low rise jean trend is over. This is a fad that I truthfully hope stays in 2006. This is one of the worst fashion trend in our country ever, one of the biggest disasters we have ever seen. Let's all take a moment to remember this horrible trend, the unsightly muffin tops, the whale tails, because we can't let something like this repeat itself.
3 Facebook Was Opened To Everyone
This was the first year that Facebook was open to the general public, not just college students. And thus started the bottomless pit that is social media. Before this year, we were using Myspace. Do you remember that? What a dark time in our culture.
Facebook allowed us to message people privately, while also being able to post conversations on one another’s walls. We could post more than just one profile picture now - so we posted every picture. It allowed us to post statuses and let everyone know if we were taking a nap. It was a turbulent time in our society.
Who knew back in 2006 that Facebook would become such an important part of our world today? Businesses are using it to promote products. Celebrities post things so that it feels like we are actually friends with them. Close to everyone in the world has a Facebook account at this point, and it literally has made our world that much smaller.
1 Flip Phones
This might be one of the biggest changes to our world in the past ten years. How did we even function with phones that didn’t connect to the Internet instantly? How did we even eat lunch without sharing a picture of it on Instagram? How did we survive this dark time in our history?
This is the year before the iPhone was first introduced. The closest thing to what we know as a smartphone was the Blackberry. Back in 2006 though, you didn’t need a smartphone to go about your day. There weren’t as many social media platforms. There wasn’t this crippling need to always be connected. We could text our friends in T9, and when we got upset, we could throw our phones without worrying that the screen would crack into a million pieces. It was a simpler time.