Life Hacks From The ’90s That Just Aren’t Relevant Anymore

Things have changed a lot since the 1990s. We have camera phones on us at all times, the internet fits in our pockets, dial-up is a thing of the past, and video stores have been replaced with online streaming services. The life hacks that made sense to us back then just aren’t relevant anymore.

Keep reading to reminisce about the problems we had three decades ago and to bask in the glow of how far we’ve come.

Keep A Disposable Camera On Hand

camera
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

Keep a disposable camera in your glove compartment at all times. That way, if you get into a car accident, you can take pictures of the damage for insurance purposes.

How To Burn CDs

CD Imgur
Photo Credit: Imgur
Photo Credit: Imgur

When you’re burning your next mix CD, make sure you close all programs to avoid buffer underrun. That way you can get your Alanis Morissette or Smashmouth CD as quickly as possible.

Some Extra Time At Blockbuster

Blockbuster Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

If you rent a video for two days at Blockbuster, you actually have until the morning of the third day to return your movie. Don’t worry about rushing to the store before closing on the second day.

Keep Those Tags In Place

beanie Baby Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

Use a safety pin to secure your Beanie Baby’s tag to its ear. That way you know it won’t decline in value later on. These little toys are going to be worth big money someday.

Extra Space

Cargo Pants Imgur
Photo Credit: Imgur
Photo Credit: Imgur

If your carry-on luggage is full but you want to bring a few more items onto the plane, wear a pair of cargo pants with lots of pockets. There’s room for several water bottles in there. Because you can totally bring liquids on a plane…

Start Downloading Early

download Imgur
Photo Credit: Imgur
Photo Credit: Imgur

If you want to download a song, make sure you start downloading it the night before you want to listen to it. That way it should be at 99% by the time you wake up.

How To Store Important Files

Floppy Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

If you have important or confidential files that you want to store on a floppy disk, make sure you pad those files with 1.45mb so they’re too big to steal.

Free AOL Floppies

AOL Imgur
Photo Credit: Imgur
Photo Credit: Imgur

You can repurpose those free AOL floppies that you find at Comp USA checkout stands. Just put a piece of tape over the lock hole, reformat the disk, and use it for personal files.

When The Game Isn’t Working

game Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

If your game is lagging or if it isn’t working, take out the cartridge and blow on it. When you pop it back into your console it should be in good working order.

How To Impress The Ladies

hair Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

If you’re having trouble getting girls to notice you, go to the hair salon and get ourself some frosted tips. This is the coolest hair style you can possibly get, and the girls will be all over you in no time.

A Frozen Computer

keyboard Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

Is your computer frozen? Are you having trouble starting an application? If so, hold CTRL, ALT, and delete at the same time. That should solve all of your problems.

The Magic Of Mapquest

mapquest Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

If you need to get somewhere in a hurry and you’re not good with regular maps, try using Mapquest. It’s an online service that gives you step by step directions.

How To Confront A Prankster

moe wikimedia
Photo Credit: Wikimedia
Photo Credit: Wikimedia

If you get a prank call from some juvenile delinquent, hit *69 on your phone to call back the person who just called you. Then you can tell those pranksters exactly how you feel.

Clean Your Mouse’s Ball

mouse imgur
Photo Credit: Imgur
Photo Credit: Imgur

If your mouse is feeling a bit laggy, open up the bottom of it, pop out the ball, and clean off any dust that has accumulated inside. It should work perfectly after that.

These Pants Double As Snack Sneakers

pants Imgur
Photo Credit: Imgur
Photo Credit: Imgur

If you don’t want to pay $3 for a pop and a bag of popcorn at the movie theater, wear a pair of cargo pants and stuff your own snacks in the pockets.

Wait For This Screen

Off screen Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

Don’t turn off your computer until you shut it down properly. You will see this screen which will let you know that it’s now safe to hit the power button.

The Silent Ring

Phone girl Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

If you’re waiting for a phone call but you don’t want your parents to hear the phone ring, call your local movie theater and listen to the shows now playing. When you get the call you’re expecting, it will come through as a beep that means there’s a call waiting.

How To Outsmart A Payphone

phone reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

If you have a quick message for somebody that you want to send to them via payphone, but you don’t have a quarter on you, dial 1-800-Collect. When the recording asks you to say your name, just say your message really fast.

Keep Your Radio Under Wraps

radio Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

When you leave your car, make sure your radio is hidden. Keep it under a blanket or a shirt. You don’t want somebody spotting it and then trying to break into your car to steal it.

How To Get All The Pogs To Flip

Pogs Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

If you’re playing for keeps, this hack will let you increase your stack by double. Hold your slammer between two fingers, and then throw It down hard while spinning It.

Get The Rave Look

pants Reddit
Photo Credit: MindWraith / DeviantArt
Photo Credit: MindWraith / DeviantArt

Impress your friends with your super-cool reflective rave style by taping some colored tin foil to your baggiest pants. When it’s dark and a light shines on those strips, the results are super cool.

Invest In One Of These

rewinder Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

This is a VCR rewinder machine. Get one of these and you’ll save yourself a lot of time, and you know what they say, time is money. Always be kind and rewind!

How To Hack Simon

Simon Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

When you’re playing Simon, give each color a number in your mind. It’s much easier to remember a sequence of numbers than it is to remember a sequence of colors.

How To Cheat In The Sims

simcity Imgur
Photo Credit: Imgur
Photo Credit: Imgur

If you want some extra money (without having to work for it) in The Sims, press CTRL+Shift+C and enter “Motherlode” for an extra 50,000 Simoleans. Now you can buy all the furniture you want.

Change The Speed Of Your Computer

turbo Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

If your computer is running too quickly or to slowly, just flick the turbo button on the machine on and off until your problem is resolved. It shouldn’t take more than a few flicks.

How To Fix A Slinky

Slinky Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

Twist the slinky in the direction opposite to the knot, and then twist it in the direction of the knot. Your slinky should be good as new in no time.

How To Hide Your Diary

Sliding doors Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

If you don’t want people to read your diary, just hide it inside an empty Sliding Doors VHS case. Literally nobody is going to look in there. Your secrets are safe with Gwyneth.

How To Get A New Tamagotchi

tamogatchi Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

If your Tamagotchi sprouts wings and flies up to Tamagotchi heaven, never fear. Just hold the A and C buttons at the same time to get a new egg to hatch.

A Makeshift Magic Eye Poster

tv reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

If you can’t afford a real Magic Eye poster, you can make one yourself. Just take a picture of the static on your TV, put it up on your wall, and tell people it’s a tiger.

Change Channels Quickly

tv screen Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

If you’re watching something you shouldn’t be watching on one of the higher channels late at night, make sure you have something innocent as your “last channel” so you can switch back in a hurry.

Make Your Own Crayola Body Spray

crayola scented crayons
Photo Credit: Pinterest
Photo Credit: Pinterest

If you can’t afford to buy the newest scent of body spray but you still want to smell good, take some scented crayons and rub them all over your body.

Never Walk With Your Walkman

discman life hack
Photo Credit: Flickr / Jessie Wang
Photo Credit: Flickr / Jessie Wang

If your discman is constantly skipping, the solution to your problem is to stop moving while using it. Lay still and move around as little as possible so you can fully appreciate your album.

Use The Extra Space On VHS Tapes

vhs end screen tape
Photo Credit: YouTube / RandomArchives
Photo Credit: YouTube / RandomArchives

There always seems to be a lot of extra room at the end of a tape after your movie finishes, so use the rest of the tape to record a short TV show or commercial you love.

Delay A Phone Call With Your Dial-Up

america online dialing internet
Photo Credit: YouTube / RetroHead92
Photo Credit: YouTube / RetroHead92

Your teacher told you that they would be making a call home to your parents because of your behavior in class, but you can stop anyone from getting a phone call by racing home and going online, so the teacher will get a busy signal all night.

Three-Way Calling Can Be Used For Trickery

90210 girls on three way call
Photo Credit: Pinterest
Photo Credit: Pinterest

If your best friend wants to spend the night at her boyfriend’s house and needs to cover it up, use three way calling to conference her in with you and her home number, while she talks to her mom from wherever she actually is.

Hit The TV For The Best Picture

90s tv small in kitchen
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

The best way to get clear reception on your television is to hit it, obviously. If your remote, stereo, or game console isn’t working either, give it a smack and that should do the trick.

How To Never Get Caught Watching Television

child watching tv with teddy
Photo Credit: Pinterest
Photo Credit: Pinterest

Use that “last channel” button to your advantage when you don’t want your parents to know you were using the TV. Before you turn it off, flash to the last channel that your parents left it on, so that’s what comes up when they turn it on next.

Stop Your Siblings From Tattling By Taking The Phone Off The Hook

rotary phone with receiver off the hook
Photo Credit: Pinterest
Photo Credit: Pinterest

For all the times where you’re babysitting your younger siblings and they go into the kitchen to call your parents to tattle, run to another room and take the phone off the hook. They won’t be able to dial out, and you won’t get in trouble.

Avoid Late Fees By Never Going Back

blockbuster video hack
Photo Credit: Reddit
Photo Credit: Reddit

Instead of having to pay late fees at the movie rental place, you could avoid them by simply never going back to that location and going to a different store instead.

Stock Pile For The End Of The World

vintage grocery store aisle
Photo Credit: Pinterest
Photo Credit: Pinterest

Whenever you see a good deal on non-perishable foods, make sure to stock up. Y2K is coming and you’re going to need all the rations that you can get your hands on.