It’s the question of the hour, pretty much every hour: “What’s ‘in’ with the young people these days?” If you’re hungry to scope out the next big thing, knowing what’s hot with teens is a great way to see what’s going to spread upward and outward into the general culture.
I recently compiled a list from Ypulse and a variety of other online trend resources to chart out some of the newest ideas popular with teens. These are not macro-trends – everything here is subject to change over the next week, or even the next five minutes. Consider it a quick snapshot of a few of the things that are resonating with this demographic around the globe.
1. Mipsterz: Around the world, young Muslims – especially women – are bucking Western stereotypes to prove that they can be true to their faith and still be hip, stylish and at the forefront of culture.
2. Insta-Nostalgia: Young people crave nostalgia so much that they often put a frame on the moment as soon as it happens. Year in review apps like Iconosquare (formerly known as Statigram) flooded Instagram and Twitter feeds at year’s end, and visual time capsule apps like Timehop are rising in popularity. Of course, memes like Throwback Thursday (#TBT) also increasingly enshrine the recent past.
3. Welcome to Night Vale: The creators of this darkly comic, surreal podcast found that teen girls were a big audience for them, proving that teens are looking for new types of stories and content that they can consume in pieces throughout their busy lives.
4. Supernatural Exhaustion: After a good run, movie franchises like Twilight are making way for more realistic stories, including TV shows like The Fosters which depicts the challenges faced by a non-traditional family.
5. Plastic Surgery Up Due to Bullying and Selfie-Conscious Teens: Between the inherent vulnerability of youth and the 24-hour spotlight of social media, self-confidence is a major struggle for teens. Now that the tools to change a person’s appearance are more accessible than ever, plastic surgeons are testifying to a rise in young patients.
6. Virtual Non-Stop Slumber Parties: The shrinking of distances through social media not only applies to one-on-one relationships, but to group dynamics as well. It’s easier than ever for teens to stay close with their besties on a virtual level – without having to ask parents to drive them anywhere.
7. Tindr: The hot dating app, which pairs people up using Facebook information, is most popular among millennials, but an impressive seven percent of its users are barely even dating age, at 13-17 years old.
8. Athleisure Clothing Trumps Jeans: Recent retail studies have shown that brands like Lululemon are more popular than old standbys like denim. Leggings and yoga pants have long been popular with adult women, but now the appeal of workout clothes outside the gym is trickling down to teens – especially as select schools start to ban leggings as being too reminiscent of undergarments, since banning them only increases the allure.
9. Spending More on Food than Clothing: If you look at the way teens use Instagram for photographing food and talking about food – not to mention just observing them when they’re in line for coffee – you’ll see eating and drinking is an even bigger priority than sporting what the cool crowd is wearing.
10. PROM: #Prom #SoSoon #WhatruWearing #OMG #FeelLikeaPrincess #Love