Once upon a time
There were five hardworking aspiring singers slash dancers who joined -originally under the guidance of a musical producer, later by themselves- to create the biggest girl band ever: The Spice Girls.
Girl you´ll be a woman soon
Mel B, Emma, Victoria, Geri and Mel C were just in their twenties when they had their first song on the top of the charts… in case you don't remember it was something called "Wannabe".
Five become one
The lyrics were catchy, the music contagious and the song simply exploded around the globe. But what the media and the fans loved even more were the four personalities that formed the group.
More than the sum its parts
As in every manufactured pop part worth making, The Spice Girls were a clever combination of different personalities, so that every follower could quickly identify with one and become a fan.
It took a while after the Spice Girls split for Ginger to become Geri Halliwell again: the sexy yet empowering and outspoken singer was inevitably attached to the band, as well as to their "Girl Power" motto.
The Union Jack
Which word if not iconic would be most appropriate for Geri´s characteristic onesie with the flag? This most memorable 1997 BRIT Awards look would have made an automatic success on Instagram.
Posh Spice is, actually, one of the most active Instagram users between the former members of the band and we imagine she just would adore to share looks like the one above, her image from the video for "Say you´ll be there", back in 1996.
This amazing pic of young Victoria in black and white could just blend with any of the Bella- Gigi- Cara´s on social media right now. The singer soon found her way into what she loved more: fashion. She is now a full time A class clothes designer…which of course can be found on her Instagram account.
Besides her great voice, the fitness clothing and active personality easily found Mel C her space in the group. Taking a look at her late 90s image, Sporty is the one whose clothes we could still borrow today.
The sweet Emma Bunton came to fill that space for "the good one" that there is in every one of this band mixes, yet it was pretty much close to her actual self, as revealed in many behind the scenes and interviews.
Melanie Brown, whose fierce appearance gave her that nickname struggled with her personal life through the years, and seems to be finding her way going back to show business, as a judge on the show American´s Got Talent.
The reunion of these five styles worked marvelous for music and for press, who never lacked material as they had always a new story about each one: Star Building 101.
Not too seriously
When they had the chance, as in this still of their movie SpiceWorld where the five cross dress as one another, they mocked this image building that showed only one dimension of them.
As 90s as it gets
A look back through some of their pictures between 1996 and 2001 are a glimpse of a style era. Some of that wardrobe, well, is better back there- no Instagram record.
A cliché for boy or girl bands say that at, least at some point of their careers, matching costumes are mandatory. In this case: same material in every character personality.
One step ahead of that idea is the "same material – same outfit- different shoes" they wore for an event. We are not even discussing the 1940s gangster inspiration.
You don´t have this in white, do you?
They had an event per hour, for sure. But they were the biggest group on Earth, and they presented them this lazy boring version of the other tuxedos? Bad idea.
Still trying to decide where to look? This confluence of colour, shine and texture was the group happily attending to the BRIT Awards at the top of their fame.
Not all looks age well
At some point, the fact that this photo is one of the few that captured these bizarre looks is a reason to be thankful for the absence of social media twenty years ago.
This over produced photo shoot to capture the girls´ differences on an empty background continue to confirm that Mel C´s trousers are the only still wearable item of the pack.
This is a ver 90s look as well: same item, one in every colour for each member of the band. But nothing says it so as the vintage cell phones and computers.
On this shoot the Spice Girls had for Rolling Stone magazine at their peak, the eye of the photographer uses their band personalities and puts them into a playful atmosphere. This could definitely be a recent picture- and work.
The creation of their brand styles was such an important issue for them, that they weren´t going to let protocol get in their way: as Geri´s blue flashy outfil when meeting Prince Charles demonstrates.
Meet and greet
The Spice was the biggest group on Earth and they met with everyone who was anyone back then: would they have shared this moment holding hands with 13 years old Prince Harry?
The other half
On the other side of the ocean, at the same time, the Backstreet Boys were the boy band of the time and this rare pic shows the meeting between them all.
The band met on several occasions with members of the Royal Family and was lucky enough to even meet Nelson Mandela in 1997. Back then, the revolutionary and South Africa's first democratically elected president said "they are my heroes".
House of wax
The Spice Girls were, of course, notorious enough to had their own figures – glitter outfits, signature poses and overall look- sculpted in wax at Madame Tussauds Museum in New York.
Behind the camera
Some of the moments, such as this one behind the scenes of their 1997 movie SpiceWorld would have been gold for an Instagram story that captured the shoot and the real life adventures they were to play for the script.
Filled with cultural references, the comedy was about the adventures of the five while pursuing their music career and what they felt it was the role of the papparazzis and the industry over them.
Alongside their photos, appearances, products and movies, their albums sold. They had three albums and a compilation, but really sold: more 85 million records worldwide by 2010, date of their last reunion.
And, sure, those dozens of songs were accompanied by great music videos. The one in this picture, also showing a rare behind the scenes, was for Say You´ll be there which was launched on 1996.
Nothing seemed too big for them, as they were required and celebrated everywhere: for example, at the 50th International Cannes Film Festival in 1997 were they had this iconic picture taken.
Although they had been a industry-created band, the five were pretty good singers and dancers, and that made their live performances – which were many- powerful, emotional and energetic.
Top of the world
This zero metaphore, yet super famous picture, was the representation of The Spice Girls between their first six years of sudden, massive stardom. They are the best selling girl group of all times.
The pressure to stay on top was definitely rising, as some members of the group confessed later. It led to damaging behavior in some cases and stressing situations between the singers.
Around the world
Their SpiceWorld tour on 1998 took had 97 shows and an audience of around 2.1 million people, only in Britain. During this tour, Geri announced that she was retiring from the band.
Even though the five girls later reunited and even performed together at the Opening Ceremony for the Olympic Games, the moment when Geri decided to go solo was a turning point for the history of the band and for their fans.
Up close and personal
That kind of information is now shared directly on social media by the stars to their fans and to the journalist. A real change that would had allowed us to the know the feelings of the group on that moment of crisis.
When the group began and suddenly grew in power and fame, Geri who was the oldest of the five was only 23 years old. They had all been in the public eye ever since.
The Spice Girls have confessed that they were not exactly five friends, although some of them were closer than others. However, it was among this community where they bonded, as they shared all new experiences for every one of them.
The motto "Girl Power, mostly phrased by Geri but shared but all of them, was said to be the rebirth of mainstream feminism, fun and flirty yet empowering and strong.
Not a phase
Besides all the over produced marketing pictures they had taken, there are some – maybe not so famous- transparent to the personalities and attitudes that reflected on their Posh-Scary-Baby-Ginger- Sporty personas.
Even though it has been more than two decades from their first single, it is their spirit and charisma that transcended and paved their way into pop culture, where they still are a point of reference.
The Spice Girls are forever expected to reunite, not only for a new tour that would join the five on stage but for any event, such as the wedding of Geri Halliwell. The public opinion just want to see them back together.
Their style is iconic, their songs are still just as fun. They haven´t become an ironic consumption product and they have fought hard their entire lives to not being products at all.
Well of course the former Spice Girls are active on social media: this is a recent picture they shared in which they pretty much embody the personalities that made them famous 20 years ago.
Victoria is one of the most active of the band on Instagram and recently shared this image of the Spice Girls dolls, explaining that is now her daughter Harper who loves them.
Time goes by
This is the real Instagram worthy material: those moments off screen, more honest. Yes, Instagram is the land of the filters but also the space to share one o one and to open parts of the lives of celebrity as they want to be seen- sometimes not as the industry expects. Just as the Spice Girls.
At the end, this is the story of five young girls, doing what they love, finding their way, winning, losing. How can you not want to see that on your feed every day?