Reviews Furniture & Decor

10 Retro Home Products That Are Roaring Back into Style

Every generation has a tendency to recycle trends and styles from the past. For some its rediscovering favorites of yesteryear, while for others it’s an introduction to something new. Whether it’s a case of nostalgia, improved technology, or a mix bit of both, these 10 items are making a comeback in homes all across the country.

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Gossip Benches

If you remember way back to when telephones weighed a ton and were tethered to the wall, then you may also remember the gossip bench. A furniture hybrid, combining a side table with seating, the sensible yet stylish gossip bench arose naturally from two simple needs. First, average families needed a central location to store what usually would have been the only phone in the home. Second—well, if you’re going to be talking on the phone, wouldn’t you rather sit than stand?

Of course, the original purpose of the gossip bench doesn’t apply in today’s cellular world—but its compact convenience most certainly does. In a small foyer or entry hall, a storage-and-seating two-for-one can be a space-saving god’s send. Available at Wayfair; $155.99.

Related: These 9 Forgotten Home Trends are Suddenly Cool Again

Pressure Cookers

The pressure cooker is anything but new. Dating all the way back to the 17th century, it became a common household appliance in the US during the 1950s. Those earlier models were loved for being able to make dinners super fast—even if it had its quirks and dangers. But as new cooking gadgets came out, it wasn’t worth putting up with the tricky and risky appliance. The Instant Pot has changed all that. An enhanced version of the pressure cooker, the Instant Pot is seven appliances in one and easier to program. Perhaps best of all, it comes with new safety features that alleviate the common dangers from the past. Available from Amazon; $99.95.

Related: 10 Gadgets for Every Lazy Cook’s Kitchen

Video Games

Gaming is a booming industry with a steady stream of new devices and games hitting the shelves. But that doesn’t mean we can’t appreciate the classics at the same time. The Atari Flashback 8 Gold console looks like the original with a few modern enhancements, like wireless controllers and built-in games. Those who grew up on Centipede and Space Invaders can relive the glory days while the next generation has the chance to discover something new. Available from Target; $64.99.


Organizing is having a big moment in today’s culture with shows like Netflix’s Tidying Up. And so when everything needs to have its own place in the home, it’s no wonder that the original Caboodle has returned to store shelves. Designed for makeup needs, thanks to a flip mirror and lift-off tray, the iconic organizer is just as well suited to pack everything from paints to party supplies. Plus, its pastel hard case is easy to wipe clean. Available at Target; $19.99.

Related: The Best Organizers to Buy for Under $5, $15, and $25


It’s hard not to want (or even expect) instant gratification in today’s age, and Polaroid was one of the first companies to deliver. Assuming you haven’t been living under a rock since the ’60s and ’70s, you’re probably familiar with their process: Load film, snap a picture, print on the spot, and watch your photo develop in minutes. Now, the new Polaroid Originals OneStep 2 improves on the original with a high-quality lens, a powerful flash, and a long-lasting rechargeable battery. Available at Target; $119.99.

Witch Hazel

Although the name may sound like an old wives’ remedy, the likes of which was used on the Oregon Trail, witch hazel continues to enjoy popularity today. Used as a toner and cleanser, the natural formula appeals to those with sensitive skin or conscious shoppers who want to avoid harsh skin care products made with parabens, alcohol, or propylene glycol. Available on Amazon; $6.64.


Stereo equipment manufacturers had largely given up on the turntable, and then something unexpected happened: millennials made vinyl records cool again! Now, sure enough, as the once-forgotten format enjoys a second youth, turntables are selling like it’s 1969. If you’re an audiophile, you can spend hundreds or even thousands on the best-made, highest-fidelity sounds around. But for everyone else, there are charming (and surprisingly affordable) options just like this one. From its wood grain case to its built-in AM/FM radio, the Jensen 3-Speed Stereo Turntable positively drips with nostalgia, hitting the pitch-perfect note for vinyl fans, young and old. Available at Target; $39.99.

Paper Straws

Back during the days of sock hops and drive-in movies, everyone slurped down their milkshakes and cokes with paper straws. While those activities haven’t seen a resurgence (yet), the paper straw has. In an effort to cut back on using plastics, many households and restaurants are opting for paper versions once again. They come in a variety of colors and patterns, which also make them a popular choice for those who care about the aesthetics of their drinks. Available from
; $8.99.

Related: 22 Effortless Ways to Make Less Trash

Edison Light Bulb

Although Nikola Tesla wanted to make electricity free for all, it was Thomas Edison who first patented the light bulb that would illuminate so many homes around the country. This modern-day light bulb, available at Target, draws inspiration from both inventors. Fashioned in the Edison style, this solar light is powered by the sun, and is wired for outdoor use on porches, patios, or decks. Available at; $10.69.

Related: Buyer’s Guide: LED Light Bulbs

Pour Over Coffee

Nowadays everyone expects things fast: pop a pod in for a quick cup of coffee or mobile order so the cup of Joe is already waiting. It’s almost surprising that pour over coffee—a method of slowly pouring water over coffee grounds—is making a reappearance in coffee shops and homes. But almost as important as speed is quality, and pour over coffee guarantees a fresh and flavorful cup. The Chemex Glass Coffeemaker is simple to use, so you can get that grade-A experience at home. Available from Amazon; $40.49.

Related: 30 Coffee Bars to Put Pep in Your Home Design