A Brief Overview of the 1980s Period and Its Brands


In terms of culture and fashion, the 1980s saw significant developments. Big hair, shoulder pads, and fluorescent hues were all the rage throughout this decade. In the 1980s, popular brands included Members Only, Swatch, and Benetton.

Many of these brands, nevertheless, are no longer in use. For instance, Members Only declared bankruptcy in 1991. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, Swatch had trouble, but things have since improved. While this is happening, Benetton has transitioned away from fashion and is now more well-known for its social projects.

What transpired to these brands, then? What does their downfall reveal about the 1980s, then?

The 80s fashion cycle claimed a casualty in Members Only. Since its inception in 1975, the company has been famous for its signature jackets that feature the member’s only emblem on the breast. Yet by the early 1990s, the brand’s aesthetic had aged, and it had failed to adapt to shifting fashion trends.

The quartz dilemma, however, could have been more beneficial to Swatch. Cheaper, mass-produced quartz timepieces from Asia started to overtake the market around this time, undercutting Swiss watchmakers like Swatch. It was a close call, but the company could survive by redefining itself as a fashion brand.

On the other hand, Benetton is a name that is still recognized today. It is no longer as popular in the fashion industry as it once was. Instead, the business is now concentrating on social media efforts like its well-known “Unhate” campaign.

What can we infer from the failure of these brands, then?

First, trends come and go. What is in vogue today could not be in tomorrow. Because of this, brands must follow current trends.

Second, the 1980s saw a lot of significant change. Around this period, the world began seeing a significant impact from emerging technologies and international rivalry. Companies like Swatch that could adapt to this transformation were able to endure. Some people, like Members Only, weren’t that fortunate.

The Causes of the Disappearance of 80s-Era Brands

The 1980s saw a lot of change. Rising consumerism led to the emergence of new brands to satisfy consumer demand. Yet, not all of these companies lasted the decade. In actuality, a large number of them vanished into thin air.

The loss of 80s-era brands can be attributed to a variety of factors. Just a few of them are as follows:

1. New brand development

As was already noted, the 1980s saw a lot of change, and new brands were continuously emerging. As a result, older brands found it extremely difficult to stay up, and many of them just vanished.

2. The alteration in customer behavior

The 1980s saw a change in consumer behavior. Consumers were willing to spend more money on high-quality goods and became more brand-conscious. Many older brands found competing difficult due to this shift in consumer behavior.

3. The evolution of the economy

The economy underwent significant upheaval during the 1980s. The early 1980s recession severely impacted many brands, and many never fully recovered.

4. The technological 

 The technological landscape saw a significant shift in the 1980s. Several brands struggled to keep up with this, and many eventually vanished.

5. The evolution of the market

Market conditions underwent significant upheaval in the 1980s. Older brands found it highly challenging to thrive due to the numerous new brands entering the market.

These are only a handful of the causes for the decline of 80s-era brands. These brands frequently needed help to keep up with the changes occurring. They thus vanished into thin air.

Food and Beverage Brands from the 1980s that No Longer Exist

Many well-known food and drink brands in the 1980s are no longer in existence.

Three of those companies and what transpired to them are listed below:

1. Pepsi Crystal

This clear cola was first made available in 1992. However, it was only sold before being phased out. Because people needed to comprehend what Crystal Pepsi was supposed to be complete, it missed on. Was the intended beverage a diet soda? A typical soda? Since no one was aware of it, it simply vanished.

2. Coca-Cola

In 1985, Coca-Cola debuted the infamous “New Coke,” which failed spectacularly. Consumers didn’t enjoy the new flavor. Therefore Coke was swiftly brought back to its original form. During a short period, New Coke was eliminated.

3. Oreo O’s

This cereal with an Oreo flavor was released in 1997 and ceased production in 2007. It was briefly reinstated in 2017. However, this time it will be returned.

80s Fashion and Beauty Brands That Have Vanished

80s Fashion and Beauty Brands That Have Vanished

Several fashion and cosmetics brands were well-liked by customers in the 1980s. Several of these brands, though, have since vanished from the marketplace.

Here are four 1980s fashion and cosmetics brands that no longer exist:

1. Jhirmack 

In the 1980s, Jhirmack was a well-liked hair treatment line. The company was well-known for its hair treatments, conditioners, and shampoos. However, Procter & Gamble bought Jhirmack in 1985 and was eventually phased out.

2. Mary Quant 

British fashion designer Mary Quant was well-known in the 1960s and 1970s. Young ladies were fans of her apparel, cosmetics, and accessory lines. The Mary Quant brand, however, was dropped in the 1980s.

3. Charles of the Ritz 

In the 1980s, Charles of the Ritz was a well-known luxury beauty brand. The company sells a variety of fragrances, skincare, and cosmetics goods. Nevertheless, L’Oreal bought Charles of the Ritz in 1987 and eventually ceased to exist.

4. Oscar de la Renta 

In the 1980s, Oscar de la Renta was a well-liked fashion designer. Women of all ages were huge fans of his clothing business. The Oscar de la Renta brand was dropped in the late 1980s.

Technological Brands from the 1980s that Have Vanished

The 1980s are frequently associated with extensive hairstyles, vivid neon hues, and recognizable fashion. But what about the 80s-era technological brands? Technology brand names fad-like fashion trends.

The following five specialized companies went out of business in the 1980s:

1. Commodore

One of the earliest businesses to manufacture personal computers, Commodore was formed in 1954. In 1982, they unveiled the Commodore 64, the best-selling home computer ever. Unfortunately, the business went bankrupt by 1994.

2. Atari

The inventor of arcade gaming, Atari was established in 1972. In 1977, they introduced the Atari 2600, the first home video game machine. However, the 1983 video game crash caused the company to experience difficulties throughout the 1980s. In 1998, Hasbro eventually purchased them.

3. Tandy

Tandy was founded in 1919 as a leather products store. Finally, branching into electronics, they introduced the TRS-80 home computer in 1977. Unfortunately, the business faltered in the 1980s, and Radio Shack eventually acquired it in 2000.

4. Zenith 

Zenith was a well-known electronics business that was established in 1918. The Zenith Z-80, the first home computer, was introduced in 1979. Although the company suffered in the 1980s, LG eventually purchased it in 1995.

5. Sanyo

Sanyo, a well-known Japanese electronics manufacturer, was established in 1947. The Sanyo Discman, the first portable CD player, was introduced in 1984. The business, however, ran into trouble in the late 1990s and was eventually acquired by Panasonic in 2005.

80s Toy and Game Companies That Have Vanished

The toy and game industries saw a significant upheaval in the 1980s. Some cherished vintage brands have since vanished from shop shelves. Here are six such brands and the tales of how they failed.

1. Coleco

Due mainly to the popularity of their Cabbage Patch Kids doll line, Coleco was a significant player in the toy and gaming market during the 1980s. However, the business made several bad financial choices in the late 1980s and early 1990s and declared bankruptcy in 1988. A few years later, it came out of bankruptcy, but by then, its once-famous brands were no longer relevant. In 1989, Coleco stopped operating.

2. Mattel Electronics 

The video gaming arm of Mattel, Mattel Electronics, was best known for the Intellivision game console. Early in the 1980s, the business struggled to compete with rivals like Atari and Nintendo, and in 1984 it was finally sold to a holding company. Afterward, another business revived the Intellivision name, but Mattel Electronics is no longer in business.

3. Milton Bradley 

In the 1980s, Milton Bradley produced board games and puzzles significantly. Hasbro bought the business in 1984. However, the company’s brands enjoyed other success under Hasbro’s management. After a while, Milton Bradley went out of business, and its brands were added to the Hasbro lineup.

4. Parker Brothers 

Another significant board game manufacturer in the 1980s was Parker Brothers. It was purchased by Hasbro in 1991, just like Milton Bradley, and its brands were subsequently dropped.

5. Tiger Electronics

Tiger Electronics produced portable video games, notably the well-known Game & Watch series. Hasbro bought the business in 1998 and went out of business in 2000.

6. Tonka

In the 1980s, Tonka was a well-known manufacturer of toy trucks and other vehicles. As a result of the company’s 1991 acquisition by Hasbro, the Hasbro brand portfolio eventually included the company’s brands.

Automotive Companies from the 1980s Have Vanished.

Big hair, enormous shoulder pads, and significant innovations in the automotive industry characterized the 1980s. During this decade, several well-known companies vanished from the market due to a suffering economy, shifting customer preferences, and new competition from overseas producers.

Here are seven automobile brands from the 1980s that no longer exist:

1. AMC

Nash and Hudson, two less well-known American automakers, merged to form American Motors Corporation (AMC) in 1954. Despite AMC’s struggles in the 1960s and 1970s, it survived because of several tactical alliances, notably a joint venture with Renault in the late 1970s. AMC was, however, in serious financial problems by the early 1980s, and Chrysler acquired the business in 1987. The last AMC-branded vehicle, the Eagle, was discontinued in 1998, and the AMC brand was quickly phased out.

2. DeLorean 

John DeLorean, a former executive at General Motors, created the DeLorean Motor Corporation in 1975. The DeLorean DMC-12, a sports automobile with a stainless steel body and a vital role in the 1985 movie Back to the Future, was the only item produced by the firm. Despite having a cult following, the DeLorean Motor Company struggled with money difficulties and filed for bankruptcy in 1982. Although the DeLorean brand was revived in 2007, the business still needs to build another car.

3. Mercury 

Ford Motor Corporation created Mercury as a branch in 1938. Since Mercury automobiles were often more expensive and more lavishly equipped than Ford’s rivals, the brand was developed to appeal to a more affluent clientele than Ford. However, Mercury struggled with a lack of identity by the late 1970s, and its sales started to fall. Ford declared that the Mercury brand would be discontinued in 2010. Grand Marquis, the final automobile bearing the Mercury nameplate, was dropped in 2011.

4. Oldsmobile 

Oldsmobile is among the first American motor brands established in 1897. The 88 and the 98, the brand’s leading models, were among the Sports and Fitness Brands that Disappeared from the 80s during the 1950s and 1960s when they had exceptional popularity.

Sports and Fitness Companies

Sports and Fitness Companies

Big shoulder pads, huge hair, and enormous advances in sports and fitness all characterized the 1980s. Several 80s brands are still in business today, but others have vanished into obscurity.

Here are eight sports and fitness companies from the 1980s that no longer exist:

1. Spalding

Spalding was once a significant force in the athletic goods sector, but business has been tricky lately. Spalding was well-known for its basketballs and other equipment in the 1980s, but other companies have supplanted it. Although Spalding is still operating today, it is a mere shell of what it once was.

2. Dunlop

In the 1980s, Dunlop was a significant producer of tennis gear; however, Babolat has since acquired the business. Even though Dunlop is still operating, the company no longer makes tennis equipment. The firm concentrates on athletic products like golf equipment instead.

3. Puma

Puma historically held a significant position in the athletic footwear market, but business has been tricky lately. Running shoes and other sports footwear were Puma’s specialty in the 1980s, but other companies have since eclipsed Puma in popularity. Although Puma still operates today, it is a pale imitation of what it once was.

4. Adidas 

Adidas historically held a significant position in the athletic footwear market, but business has been tricky lately. Adidas was well-known for its running shoes and other sports footwear in the 1980s, and different manufacturers have since supplanted the corporation. Even though Adidas is still operating today, it is a mere shell of what it once was.

5. Reebok 

Reebok formerly held a significant position in the athletic footwear market, but business has been tricky lately. Running shoes and other sports footwear were Reebok’s specialty in the 1980s, but other companies have since supplanted Reebok. Although Reebok still operates today, it is a pale imitation of what it once was.

Influence of 80s Companies on Contemporary Culture

In the 1980s, Nine was a well-liked children’s apparel brand. The company was well-known for its eye-catching advertisements and fashionable, bright clothing. Two brothers drawn to the colorful and carefree 1980s fashion founded Nine. The company soon won the hearts of both parents and children. But Nine failed in the early 1990s because of a dispute between the brothers. Today, folks who grew up in the 1980s have warm memories of the Nine brand.

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