Flash in the Pan-demic
Written by Megan Baranuk // Illustrated by Jillian VanDyke
Exploring trends and our shortening attention spans
Trends during quarantine have been generating, regenerating and dying at a quick speed. At the genesis of lockdown due to COVID-19, you might remember trends such as the whipped coffee, the “SUPALONELY” TikTok dance and homemade bread. TikTok is one trend that hasn’t yet slowed or died in popularity, unlike the other aforementioned trends. Let’s take a look at trends that saw immense popularity for a quick moment in the spotlight:
Whipped (Dalgona) Coffee
This trend rose to popularity around April 2020. This special type of coffee is especially foamy, and can be whipped up at home. To create a homemade whipped coffee, the only ingredients are boiling water, sugar and instant coffee. By mixing these ingredients together and placing them over iced milk, an aesthetically pleasing coffee transformation has occurred!
Choreographed TikTok Dances
The “Renegade” was the first dance to go extremely viral, and this trend hasn’t truly died yet. However, the dance of the moment was the “SUPALONELY” dance, a fun dance choreographed to the track by BENEE featuring Gus Dapperton. This dance is one of the easier dances to learn compared to the other complicated routines that are prevalent in the app today.
The inner baker emerged during isolation. Confined to their homes, people baked a variety of breads. Banana bread, sourdough, white bread and other baked goods flooded the timeline at the beginning of quarantine. This may be because stores were running low on bread, and baking provided an escape from the social turmoil. Baking can be extremely therapeutic, and provide a tasty treat afterwards!
DIY clothing, especially tie dye, became a must-try over quarantine. Colorful tie-dyed sets, shirts, and sweatpants dominated social media and populated the streets. Bleaching was another clothing DIY that saw popularity throughout quarantine. On any given day, you could catch teens drawing designs with bleach onto jeans and other apparel items. Quarantine and isolation allowed people to find their muse, and people really let loose their creative side!
Tiger King premiered on Netflix on March 20 and quickly became the bingeable docuseries of choice. The series centers around Joe Exotic, his collection of infamous cats and his long-time feud with Carole Baskin. Tune in to the Netflix original seven-episode series to see what the hype was all about.
“Animal Crossing: New Horizons”
The popular video game “Animal Crossing: New Horizons” was released on March 20, and the entire world seemed to be talking about it. The game saw immediate popularity, and memes and related trends sprung up on all social media, especially Twitter.
"Trends continue to have an ephemeral lifespan as of late."
These trends died off just as quickly as they came into the limelight. Trends continue to have an ephemeral lifespan as of late. This may be due to society’s collective shortening attention span. Because of apps such as TikTok, in which content is a minute or less, and the ease of scrolling quickly through content on Instagram and Twitter, our minds have grown accustomed to receiving, interpreting and digesting information rapidly. This can partially explain why trends seem to be cropping up and then disappearing at record speed.
As the pandemic’s reign continues indefinitely, trends continue to climb the trending ladder only to find themselves replaced by the next trend. This is likely to continue, at least through the pandemic. Whether trends will begin to stabilize after life returns to (relatively) normal will remain a mystery until we as a society reach that point. Introducing regular routines back into our lives may stabilize the short attention span the world seems to have when it comes to trends, but only time will tell.