35th anniversary versions of six original American Girl historic dolls
Mattell

These '80s Collectibles Are Worth More Than You Think

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35th anniversary versions of six original American Girl historic dolls
Mattell
Dr. Frankenstein Castle of Freaks VHS
eBay

VHS Tapes

Although most well-known VHS tapes have little to no value today, some of the more obscure ones have a high value. Take the super-schlocky 1987 horror movie "Tales From the Quadead Zone," which was never released on DVD or Blu-ray. Yet it has become something of a cult classic, and since VHS copies are the only ones available, collectors have paid up to $2,000 for a tape. The equally schlocky "Dr. Frankenstein's Castle of Freaks," a 1974 movie released on VHS in 1986, is similarly valuable; in 2016, somebody paid $2,100 for a copy on eBay. Any VHS movies that were never re-released on other media have at least the potential to be valuable.


Related: 33 Products We Never Thought Would Be Obsolete

A DynaTAC 8000X (First commercially available mobile phone from 1984)
A DynaTAC 8000X (First commercially available mobile phone from 1984) by Redrum0486 (CC BY-SA)

Old Cellphones

Next time you upgrade to a new phone, you might want to hang on to your old one just in case: even obsolete cellphones can have some collector's value. For example: a 1983 Motorola DynaTAC 8000x, one of the first cellular phones ever made, can be worth more than $500 — even if it's not in working condition. Granted, that sum seems paltry compared with the phone's original $3,995 price tag (in 1983 dollars), but it's still a lot more than you'd get from simply tossing a phone in an electronics-recycling box.


Quick Cash Tip: You don't have to own a vintage or collectible phone to earn back some cash. Gazelle will buy used smartphones and other electronics that are from this decade.


Related: The Best Cellphone Plan for Seniors: AT&T vs. Verizon vs. T-Mobile

Masters of the Universe Playset
eBay
Skeletor Action Figure
Amazon

Skeletor Action Figure

The Eternia playset is not the only Masters of the Universe toy worth four figures today: a 1982-model "Skeletor" action figure has been valued recently at up to $1,500 (if it's in mint condition and still in the original box).


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Jem Doll
eBay

Jem and the Holograms

Back in the day, Jem was "truly outrageous," and now you can say the same about the prices Jem and her friends can fetch on the collector's market. A "Glitter and Gold Jem and Rio" set still in the box recently sold for $400 on eBay. Even Holograms dolls out of the box often sell for three figures (especially when their accessories are included).


Related: 11 Barbie Dolls That Could Become Collectors' Items

Adam Bomb Garbage Pail Kids
eBay

Garbage Pail Kids

Some of the original 1980s Garbage Pail Kids stickers are very valuable today. The most valuable of all is the ultra-rare "Adam Bomb," who was discontinued soon after his introduction (presumably because a cartoon drawing of a kid with a mushroom cloud exploding out of his head offended far too many of parents back then) and can be worth $12,000 today.


Teddy Ruxpin
eBay

Teddy Ruxpin

The animatronic Teddy Ruxpin, would move his eyes and mouth while reading stories to children (thanks to the cassette tape player hidden in his back). Today, a working Teddy Ruxpin in good condition can fetch up to $500 without the tapes and $5,000 if the tapes are included.


Related: 50 Toy Fads That Drove Us Crazy

Molly American Girl Doll
eBay

American Girl Dolls

Certain discontinued American Girl dolls have high collectible value today. If you have any dolls from 1980s, when the product line was first introduced, they can be worth anywhere from $2,000 to $5,000 today. For example, a mint-condition "Molly" doll, still in its box, from the 1980s could be worth up to $5,000 today. Mattel recently released new versions of "Molly" and her five historic friends for the American Girl line's 35th anniversary.


Related: Vintage Toys That Will Make You Wish You Were a Kid Again

Nike Air Jordan III
eBay

Nike Air Jordan III Sneakers

The third version of Nike's popular Air Jordan basketball shoes first went on sale in 1988. Of course, the vast majority of those shoes have been worn and worn out, but collectors have paid up to $3,000 for pairs in good condition.


Related: The Most Expensive Sneakers Ever Sold at Auction