10 Girl Products They Should've Invented Sooner

by Julie Reed
Originally Published: 
A close-up of a woman wearing black and white flip-slops with rhinestones and blue denim jeans


2) Tinted moisturizer. BBs, CCs, where were you in 1985 when I had horrible acne and all that existed was peachy pink foundation and Corn Silk powder? Each day I had to choose between a face full of zits or a face that was an entirely different color and texture from the rest of my skin.


3) Camisoles with shelf bras. I can’t live without them now, and they would have been revolutionary during the Years of the Constantly Changing Boobs.


4) C9 sports bras. Cute colors and thin straps so you can wear them under anything. Reasonable control of boobage. We only had those really horrid beige things with 2-in.-wide strips. Most of us just doubled up on regular bras and hoped for the best.

5) Permission to have visible bra straps (see #4 above). We had to use lumpy, uncomfortable, lacy strapless bras with countless hooks in the back because straps were not to be seen. Which is confusing—it’s clear we were wearing bras, so what was wrong with proof of their existence? And wasn’t the ginormous strapless bra’s outline also evidence? I’ll never understand. Viva the VBS!!


6) Hair smoothing stuff. We now have enough slippery anti-freeze silicone-based products to keep our locks sleek until the end of time. I had to live with straight yet frizzy hair, and there wasn’t a thing that could be done about it. Also, flat irons.


7) Self-tanner and bronzers. We had QT tanning lotion, which made you both orange and stinky. Self-tanners now actually make people look slightly tan, rather than Oompa-Loompa-like. They do still smell horrid. But bronzers, man—there are so many and they rock. You look natural and sun-kissed, and don’t scare people away with That Smell.


8) Acne treatments. We Buff-Puffed our faces with Fostex soap, which of course not only made our acne worse but also made us look like we’d been scalded. Which we sort of had been. Salicylic acid, where were you when I needed you most?


9) Flip-flops as actual footwear. I think we could buy “zorries” or “thongs” at the drugstore, but they gave you blisters and were super ugly. The flip-flop as a legitimate shoe is revolutionary. Platform, faux-pony, bejeweled, or plain beachy—they are mainstream and our feet are happy.


10) Yoga pants. Make all the jokes you want about yoga pants being the mom-costume, but hey, they’re better than sweatpants, and there are times when a person has a hard time committing to actual clothing. My teenage options were the aforementioned ill-fitting and intestinally destructive Levi’s or saggy and equally unflattering sweats. My friends, yoga pants have given us the happy medium we have always sought, and even if we don’t do yoga, we are grateful. Namaste.


This article was originally published on