Just a bunch of cringe-worthy things all 90s kids did at sleepovers.

Ahh, who doesn’t miss rallying your school pals together on a Friday night, filling a shopping trolley with treats to get stuck in your braces and rolling out sleeping bags on the floor of the loungeroom?

You’d pack your cutest flannelette pyjamas, make sure you’d sprayed your ugg boots with Impulse, and off you’d go.

The plan was simple: eat as much sugar and junk as possible, try to act mature in front of the cool older siblings and get a total of zero hours of sleep.

Sleepovers were the best, weren’t they?

We mean, when you actually went to them and weren’t just lying about it to your parents so you could sneak out to a party instead.

Because we’re…old, now, let us revel in the simpler times with 10 of the very best sleepover traditions every 90s kid will remember.

(And while we’re at it, how downright insane would it be if any of us did this sort of stuff now?)

Prank calls on the home phone


Looking back, you can’t help but feel a little guilty at how territorial you were over the home phone on a sleepover.

You hope your parents and siblings had had the foresight to send any emails using the dial-up internet pre-sleepover, because the landline would be strictly occupied for the entirety of the night.

This was for very important prank calling, of course.

Usually involving your crush, whose home number you’d scored from the class contact list.

The bravest of the group would take charge – but even she would be keeping her fingers crossed THE MUM wouldn’t answer.

Because if there’s one thing that terrifies a sleepover crew, it’s a mum. 

If she did (and look, the odds of it happening were highly weighted against you, really) – howls of laughter would ensue, and you’d all SWEAR never to tell ANYONE at school who was involved.

Kids of today have no idea what horrors were involved when prank calling from ~the home phone~.

Going to the video store in your PJs


THIS was why bringing your premium PJs was imperative at a sleepover.

You never know who you could bump into at Blockbuster on a Friday night.

(If your crush was there and the prank calls had started early, you’d all squeal with laughter).

We don’t know why wearing pyjamas to the video store was a thing. But it was. Even if it was still light outside.


You’d usually grab a bundle of horror movies and Bring it On even though you’d already seen it approximately 64 times.

RIP video stores. We probably miss you more than you miss us and our giggly, pyjama-clad nonsense.

Myspace photoshoots


If you can look me in the eye and tell me you never used a sleepover to gather MySpace content, you, my friend, are a liar.

Sometimes you’d put on fingerless gloves, sometimes you’d find yourself a prop that matched your MySpace aesthetic (an apple, a tennis racquet, those loveheart sunglasses everyone had) and sometimes (read: every time), you’d get a little overzealous with the eyeliner.

You’d have to make sure your background was on-point (at my house it was always my older sister’s band poster-clad bedroom) and off you’d go – peace and pout, baby.

Afterwards, as one of my colleagues recalled, you’d plug your cybershot in and sift through photos from Nan’s 90th to get your potential DP photos.

It was a long game. But boy it was worth it.

That spicy sleepover content was sure to generate three or four comments from boys with epic side-fringes.


Weird witchy stuff


We were ALL obsessed with the dark-magic-craze of the 90s – Charmed, The Craft, Buffy, Practical Magic, Hocus Pocus.

These films and TV shows made us want to buy incense from the dusty shop in the weird part of town and wear mood rings and chokers with little moons on them.

(You know, all the stuff the tween kids wear now but have no idea where the trend came from).

They also exposed us to some…pretty cooked, satanic-inspired rituals that we thought looked fun but were definitely not fit for pre-teen sleepovers.

Hands up if you made someone lie down as you tried to make them levitate with two fingers, reciting; “light as a feather, stiff as a board”?

I suppose now is the time to confess it was me who pushed the cup on the Ouija board.

I’ve been holding on to that one for a very long time.

Making up films and dance routines


Who didn’t love devising a choreographed routine to Britney Spears’ Lucky to perform to the bored, slightly wine-drunk parents at a sleepover? Or pretending you were the Spice Girls and belting out a truly horrendous rendition of Wannabe?


Or maybe it was improvising a deleted scene from Charlie’s Angels, where you’d all fight over who got to be Cameron Diaz.

Sometimes, it was a synchronised swimming routine where the pièce de résistance was two people spitting out a stream of water in unison while someone else did a flip from the edge of the pool.

Whatever it was, it’d often involve a So Fresh CD, diving into the dress-up box, smearing on your older sister’s red lippy, and someone doing the worm.



“Let’s nudge him again”.

“No, let’s sign in and out so he can see our names pop up”.

Spending the night on MSN was definitely a sleepover ritual – a ritual which would start, of course, with adding “ft. insert name of friend here” to your status.

Maybe with a few love hearts and rainbows at the end.

These MSN sessions were, shall we say, fruitful.

They were gossip goldmines in tween world.

They were also when you’d find out if your crush really liked you back.

There was an art to it, of course.

You’d subtly mash the keyboard a few times until he responded to your gibberish, to which you’d say: “OMG. I’m sooooooo sorry, my friend did that.

“…Anyway, sup?”

Worked every time.

Reading girly mags


Remember scoring a particularly juicy Dolly or Girlfriend that had a ~sexy~ sealed section?

You’d all gather round and listen to the letter to Dolly Doctor about a girl who had a crush on her cousin and be utterly enthralled.

Then, you’d read the “How Embarrassment” page aloud to each other and laugh at the period stories that you definitely weren’t old enough to relate to, before flipping to the quiz page to find out what kind of summer holiday you are.

Sometimes, you’d opt for a little sophistication with Cosmopolitan or Cleo, where you’d read about the “best outfits to transition from the office to the bar” and pretend it was totally relevant to you, even though you were 13.

Take note: as popular culture would have you believe, we…never had pillow fights at the sleepovers.

Do you have any other memorable sleepover rituals? Let us know in the comments.