It’s hard to believe that it’s been two decades since the Spice Girls released their now-iconic hit, “Wannabe.” When Ginger, Posh, Baby, Sporty, and Scary arrived on the scene in the mid-’90s, the music industry (and listeners) would never be the same.
To their fans, the Spice Girls were more than just a girl group. They combined sequins, glitter, and platform heels with messages of girl power, the importance of female friendships, and sex positivity—themes that were ahead of their time in mainstream music.
Between the outrageous fashion and buzz-worthy moments, these five women embodied a major embrace of feminism—albeit a super-commercial and mainstream iteration of it—in entertainment, paving the way for women in music in the present.
As we celebrate 20 years of spicing up our lives with “Wannabe,” here’s a look back at the Spice Girls, then and now.