The Antidote to TikTok Consumerism: De-influencing.

By: Hannah Chang

From the now notorious Stanley cups to skincare, makeup, clothes, and more, consumer trends have been at an all-time high as of today. All it takes is for one person to rave about a certain product before it is sold out. 

TikTok has been known for being a social media platform where influencers as well as everyday users could reach millions of people through a 60-second video. What started to be lip-syncing videos, funny clips, etc., has now become home to the trendiest of trends — a very efficient marketing outlet. 

Though product recommendations have been a popular trend recently, there’s another trend that is starting to gain popularity: De-influencing. 

De-influencing is when influencers as well as other users tell reasons why a product is not worthy to purchase. This is an effort to encourage users to refrain from overspending and to promote sustainability. 

“I definitely bought lots of things because of TikTok. TikTok has brought many different products to my attention that I wouldn’t have known about otherwise,” stated Mt. Hebron senior Fallon Hill.

“I feel like on TikTok, there’s always some video of traditionally attractive young people showing their outfits or lifestyle, and this puts people on a pedestal just for having money and good looks,” said Mt. Hebron senior Luke Pinksy.

The cycle of influencers recommending/displaying products and their followers instantly purchasing the product has greatly contributed to overconsumption. Trendy items such as a pair of shoes or pants can only stay in the spotlight for so long. This results in factories needing to mass produce items just to disregard them as soon as the trend passes. 

Following the trend of de-influencing, other, more sustainable, trends have also been surfacing on users for your pages. 

“I think thrift shopping is very efficient for both money and the environment since you are buying previously owned clothes,” said Pinksy.

Thrifting is another form of de-influencing by encouraging people not only to buy previously owned clothes but to also donate their own to their local Goodwill or other thrift stores. This allows consumers to hop off the bandwagon of consumer culture and builds sustainable shopping habits/trends. 

It is always fun to take part in trends alongside everyone else, but this is not a sustainable lifestyle. TikTok, having the power in the marketing world provides an “antidote trend” to overconsumption by giving users a second opinion from the opposite side of the line. 

While de-influencing isn’t and will not be the golden solution to solving the problem of over-consumption and consumer culture, it is a start.

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