6 Love Lessons I Learned From ‘Clueless’ That Still Hold Up Today

“Nothing is off-limits if it’s Paul Rudd.”

What can we say? Growing up a radical ’90s kid awarded us some fun lessons from movies, and Clueless (1995) is no exception. We got some slang gems like “as if” and a renewed love for plaid skirts–a trend that’s found its way back into the mainstream thanks to ’90s-loving Gen Z. And of course, Clueless started an entire generation’s unwavering love of never-aging hottie Paul Rudd. Though it was just a simple rom-com based off Jane Austen’s Emma, it was so thoroughly jam-packed with love lessons that they’re still relevant decades later. So pop on the cherry lip gloss and Coolio’s “Rollin’ with the Homies,” while I break down the love lessons I learned from Clueless, everyone’s favorite ’90s teen rom-com.

Quit meddling in the love lives of your friends.

Paramount Pictures

Even though you might think you know better–and sometimes you’re right–if your friends don’t want the advice, you shouldn’t give it. They’re their own people, and they can make their own mistakes. And you may even be wrong! Cher was certainly wrong when she tried to steer Tai away from lovable stoner skater Travis. Those two belonged together. Even if your intentions are pure, sometimes you just have to stay out of it.

Learn to read the signs if a guy is into you.

Cher was trying so hard to hook up Tai and Elton, and for what? Elton was a steaming bag of trash who clearly didn’t have respect for women enough to treat them with a modicum of decency. And to make matters worse, Elton was obviously into Cher, not Tai. All of this heartache could have been avoided if Cher was looking for the signs that Elton was into her. So look for those signs. Don’t ignore your intuition about the true intentions of those around you.

If the guy you like doesn’t like you back, sometimes it’s even better to be friends.

Cher has a brief moment when she thinks she’s on a date with school newcomer Christian. Much to her surprise, it turns out Christian is gay. Rather than wallowing in heartache and self-pity, Cher immediately starts a gorgeous friendship with the guy. You’re not always meant to be in a relationship with someone, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still be a part of their life. Some of the best relationships of your life will be platonic.

Don’t help people at the expense of your own feelings.

Cher becomes so focused on helping others that she puts her own feelings aside. She winds up wandering the streets of Beverly Hills having a complete existential meltdown because she forgot about herself. While it’s noble, only ever focusing on the health and happiness of others will hurt you in the end. You know the directions they give on an airplane? “Secure your own mask first before helping other passengers.” The same goes for real life. Don’t forget about yourself.

Go for what you want.

In the end, Cher gets to watch everyone in her life finally finding love and happiness, and she realizes it’s her turn as well. She likes her step-brother, Josh, and she isn’t going to let a little taboo stand in the way of that. Not only that, but she wants to improve herself to make herself good enough for him. She doesn’t just sit back and wait for good things to come–she makes them happen. Speaking of which…

Nothing is off-limits if it involves Paul Rudd.

Paramount Pictures

Yeah, the step-sibling romance plot is a little iffy. But it’s Paul Rudd! Everything’s forgiven when it’s that guy. I’d fall for him, too. If you find your own Paul Rudd, you go for it.

Trisha’s your resident tarot reader, rom-com lover, and horror connoisseur. In addition to using her vast knowledge of all things cinema for Thought Catalog’s TV + Movies entertainment section, she also offers her astrological and tarot expertise to Collective World. Trisha splits her time between making art and being awesome.

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