Retrospective: Crystal Pepsi Makes a Comeback and Other Vintage Trends


It’s human nature to want to relive the glorious days of a long gone youth. Perhaps this sense of nostalgia has Pepsi inspired as well – they recently announced that Crystal Pepsi is making a comeback.

The iconic clear soda first appeared in the US and Canada in 1992 and was pulled from the market in 1994 despite a commercial stint during Super Bowl XXVII and $474 million in sales. The new Crystal Pepsi is set to launch in July and August and with it, an ode to Cindy Crawford and her wildly successful 90s Diet Pepsi commercials in the form of an emoji.

This trend of what’s old becoming new again has been steadily gaining, driven by a need to be a part of popular things that came before our time. Television shows like Mad Men are incredibly popular and influence consumer behaviour in everything from how they dress to what they look for when shopping for household items.

Retrospective fashion isn’t limited to jerseys or housewares, however. This Nintendo Gameboy lunch box probably evokes more emotion in the parent packing the lunches than the child carrying the lunch box. The sense of style outweighs the technology – after all, a Gameboy doesn’t stand a chance against the games of today.

This new wave of vintage aesthetics is more than just a trend but a business model for many brands. The folks at Ebbets Field, for example, sell old-fashioned jerseys and hats that are 100% American made and handcrafted out of authentic fabric to give you a full old time feeling. “We don’t follow the latest fads. Instead, we’re fanatics when it comes to historical accuracy, backed by documented research. We weave that local color and heritage into an array of products as timeless as the game itself.”


We’re even seeing this trend in our own backyard, with our very own Hubba users. Think Outside built “Kool Kombi & the Throne” which is a dedication to the time honored beach Adirondack chair and the classic VW Kombi Van. Want to post an announcement? Don’t use Twitter or Facebook – you can get your very own cinema lightbox at My Cinema Lightbox.

Certain throwbacks are obvious (because they’re just better), like straight razors. While other retro trends really add style back to society such as the return of the bowtie. All of this goes to show that no matter how much the world of retail evolves, there will always be a demographic of shoppers looking to get back to the good ol’ days. Hopefully the need to resurrect ancient tendencies skips a few things – 8 track and VHS tapes should definitely stay in the history books.



As the Retail Industry Manager at Hubba, Phil is responsible for uncovering both emerging trends and insights that may impact businesses engaged in commerce. With 20 years of experience under his belt, Phil helps brands and retailers adapt to the the new realities of retail and the next generation of commerce. Phil is a frequent speaker at industry events in Canada and the US, across multiple verticals, and is a featured writer in trade publications such Retail TouchPoints, Pet Product News, BikeBiz, and more.