The Eighties were a wild time of big hair and inappropriate norms. Here, we’ll take a look back at 19 things that may have seemed socially acceptable ‘back in the day’ but not today.
Back in the ’80s, it was common to see people smoking cigarettes indoors, even in restaurants and bars. Today, most countries have strict regulations prohibiting smoking in public spaces due to the health risks associated with secondhand smoke.
Disciplining Other People’s Children
In the ’80s, it was more socially acceptable for adults to discipline other people’s children if they were misbehaving. Today, intervening in someone else’s parenting is generally considered inappropriate, and discipline is left to the child’s parents or guardians.
Overly Tanned Skin
Back in the day, sporting a deep tan was considered attractive and fashionable. Today, we know the dangers that come with prolonged sun exposure, and the risks of skin cancer have made excessive tanning a major no-no.
Unfortunately, casual sexism used to be socially acceptable, with offensive jokes and comments often going unchecked. Nowadays, society is more conscious of gender equality, and such behavior is increasingly called out and condemned.
Recycling was not a widespread practice until the early 2000s. Now, as environmental issues take center stage, it’s expected that individuals and businesses do their part to reduce waste and recycle.
In the past, cultural appropriation was often overlooked, with fashion and music borrowing elements from various cultures without much thought. Today, people are more sensitive to the importance of respecting and acknowledging different cultures.
Calling People “Gay” as an Insult
In the ’80s, it was more common to hear people use the term “gay” as a derogatory insult. Society has progressed since then, and using someone’s sexuality as an insult is now considered offensive and inappropriate.
Flashy Sports Cars
Owning a flashy sports car was once a symbol of success and status. Today, electric vehicles and fuel-efficient cars are becoming more popular choices.
Telling Racist Jokes
Racist jokes and stereotypes used to be more commonly accepted. As society has become more educated on the harmful impacts of racism, such jokes are no longer considered okay.
Fur coats and accessories were once seen as a symbol of luxury. Today, animal rights activists and ethical consumers have shifted the conversation and have made wearing fur less socially acceptable.
In the ’80s, brightly colored, skintight aerobics outfits were all the rage. Today, workout gear is primarily focused on comfort and practicality, with less emphasis on bright, neon fashion statements.
The infamous mullet hairstyle was a popular choice back in the Eighties. While it has made a slight comeback as a tongue-in-cheek look, the mullet is generally considered outdated and unappealing today.
While there was once a time for bold and vibrant fashion choices, neon clothing is no longer quite as popular. Nowadays, such bright colors are less common in everyday attire, and neon is typically reserved for themed parties or special occasions.
Power dressing with shoulder pads used to be extremely popular. The exaggerated silhouettes are now seen as outdated and impractical, with modern fashion leaning towards more minimalist designs.
A popular fashion trend in the 1980s, leg warmers were seen as a fun way to accessorize an outfit. In today’s fashion landscape, they are generally viewed as relics of the past.
Carrying a boombox around used to be a common way to share music with friends. These days, smartphones and portable Bluetooth speakers have made lugging a large boombox both impractical and socially unacceptable.
The Electric Eighties were known for bold, colorful makeup looks, with heavy application being the norm. In recent years, the beauty industry has seen a shift towards more natural, minimalist makeup trends.
In the days before email and instant messaging, writing letters by hand was a common form of communication. Nowadays, handwritten letters are a rarity, and sending one could be seen as old-fashioned or even an invasion of privacy, depending on the content.
The Eighties were all about big, voluminous hair, with people teasing their locks to create gravity-defying styles. These days, more natural hairstyles are favored, and overusing hairspray is generally considered a faux pas.
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