Pepsi is celebrating the 30th anniversary of Crystal Pepsi by bringing the caffeine-free, clear soda back for a limited time.
The beverage brand will rewind the clock back to 1992 to serve up a taste of nostalgia for fans, giving away free bottles of Crystal Pepsi through a special contest. Those hoping to win need only to post a picture of themselves from the ’90s on Twitter, using the hashtags #ShowUsYour90s and #PepsiSweepstakes.
“We wanted to do something extra special to celebrate and reward the passionate fans who have been clamoring online for [Crystal Pepsi’s] return” Pepsi’s VP of Marketing Todd Kaplan said in a statement. “What better way to kick off 2022 than to throw it back to 1992 in order to get their hands on this highly limited-edition batch of Crystal Pepsi.”
This isn’t the first time the brand has brought Crystal Pepsi back.
It first returned as a similar sweepstakes prize during the holiday season of 2015, after an online campaign led by fans to bring back Crystal Pepsi caught the company’s attention.
Limited runs continued throughout the late 2010s. Bottles were last back on shelves in the summer of 2017, as the free Crystal Pepsi Throwback Tour — featuring Busta Rhymes, Sugar Ray’s Mark McGrath and Salt-N-Pepa — performed at baseball stadiums around the country.
All of this is pretty impressive considering Crystal Pepsi was once considered to be one of the biggest flops in soda history.
The beverage first hit shelves in April 1992, amid the “clear craze” marketing fad that saw product makers across the industry, from Nintendo to Ivory soap, releasing clear versions of its products to give the appearance of transparency and purity.
Crystal Pepsi had a flavor similar to regular Pepsi, only it was made with the absence of caramel color which some said made the drink less “acidic” tasting.
“You’ve never seen a taste like this,” Pepsi boasted at the time.
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Sadly, the product only lasted on shelves for a little over a year, disappearing in retailers by late 1993. (Pepsi competitor Coca-Cola also released Tab Clear around the same time, advertising itself through confusing marketing claims in what they admitted years later was an intentional “kamikaze” effort to kill both products in the process.)
Pepsi tried again the following year, launching Crystal From Pepsi in 1994 with a reformulated citrus-cola hybrid flavor, but that also didn’t stick.
Since then, fans have turned Crystal Pepsi from a punchline into a cult favorite. For years, one could only buy the drink on eBay — with one bottle going for as much as $8,000.
We may have to grab a bottle or two…for the nostalgia.