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11 TikTok Trends That'll Go Down In 2021 History, And 11 That Were Less Than A Vibe

The Adult Swim bumps were ✨everything✨, but Gen Z should leave Jerking to the pros.

I don't need to explain how TikTok has helped thousands get through the pandemic. Not only has the app proved to be a necessary retreat from all the mess happening in the world around us, but it has also been an outlet for creatives seeking a home for their work, and everyday people who just want to let loose and maybe do a little dancey dance.

Between the '90s nostalgia and foraging through nature for safe sweets to eat, here are 11 history-making trends that we hope will come back to TikTok in 2022, and 11 that are less than a vibe:

1. History: Adult Swim Bumps

These ultra-creative takes on the short clips Adult Swim airs right as your show is about to come back from commercial break dominated For You pages this summer. The videos were always perfectly styled, touched on some of the clock app's best trends (feta pasta bump, anyone?) and appeared effortless, even though the Adult Swim bumps are probably among TikTok's most time-consuming trends. Tbh, would be a pretty cool move if Adult Swim hired a few of these genius minds to make IRL bumps.

2. History: "Driver's License" by Olivia Rodrigo


can this be a trend? 😳 #oliviarodrigo #driverslicense #fyp @livbedumb stream drivers license!!!!

♬ drivers license - Olivia Rodrigo

Before we knew her as ✨Olivia Rodrigo,✨ this trend on TikTok catapulted the former Disney star into fame when her song debuted as #1 on Billboard's Hot 100 chart. Driven by thousands upon thousands of videos made to the lyrics of first single "Drivers License," Rodrigo broke records on both Spotify and Apple Music. It was at this point in the year that we realized TikTok's power over the music industry is undeniable.

3. History: The #SilhouetteChallenge

The #SilhouetteChallenge was the sexy escapism we all needed. Participants started in their everyday sweats or lazy attire, and transitioned into a sultry, red-lit pose that showed off their frame. Celebrities like Normani, Cardi B, Chloe Bailey, and more jumped in on the trend, and I feel like 2022 deserves a 2.0 version.

4. History: Noodle, The No Bones Dog

Noodle the pug was one of TikTok's breakout stars this year. Every morning, Noodle's human gives him a sweet pet before trying to place the pup on his feet. In a cross between the Goundhog's Day groundhog and astrology fortunes, Noodle's mood is meant to predict how your day may go. If the dog stays upright, it'll be a great day. But if he topples over? Welp, it's a No Bones Day and you may want to stay inside. More Noodle predictions in 2022, please!

5. History: The #BussItChallenge


I wanted to play too 🙈 Ib: @erikadavila120

♬ I love women - erika davila

This is the second thirsty trend we included on this list, but it's necessary. Originally created by teen Erika Davila, this challenge put everyone's knees to the test. Whether it be celebs like Rico Nasty or stay at home moms, everybody got a taste of what it's like to be Megan Thee Stallion for the day, and I need all of that confidence back on my timeline right now.

6. History: Renaissance Painting

I know Gen Z loves a vintage moment, but I didn't know we were going _this _vintage! TikTokers morphed their modern photos and videos into works of Renaissance art. The results are absolutely stunning and honestly, would look right at home in the Louvre. You know what they say, everything old is new again!

7. History: The Backyardigans "Castaways" Song

The Backyardigans’ "Castaways" debuts at #1 on the US Spotify Viral 50 chart.

Twitter: @chartdata

Yes. This year, multiple songs from the Nickelodeon show The Backyardigans went viral on TikTok. But none seemed to hold the weight of "Castaways", which y'all pushed into being #1 on Spotify's Viral 50 chart in the US. What kids show will you latch on to in 2022? Personally, I nominate Steven Universe.

8. History: "Study With Me" Livestreams

9. History: Salmon Bowl

In a matter of days, Emily Mariko's salmon bowl recipe went so viral that it catapulted her following from 223,000 to over 2.4 million in a matter of days. The leftovers hack also inspired many to skip tossing aside old food and create their own second-day favorites.

10. History: Olympians Joining The Clock App

11. History: Red and Blue Filter

When _In The Heights _hit theaters, an audio clip of two main characters, Usnavi and Vanessa, quickly went viral. Their heated exchange started off as something fun for people online to play both parts of, but it quickly encouraged TikTok to create a filter that lets users transform from a masculine aesthetic to a feminine aesthetic with a literal blink of the eyes. Teen users coming into their identity and queer kids with fluid genders found a particular love for the feature, which allowed them to see themselves in a new light.

12. Less Than A Vibe: Jerking

Gen Z is trying to learn how to do the jerk on tik tok. Dang we really getting old yall.

Twitter: @___inCANdescent / Via Twitter: @___inCANdescent

In 2021, Gen Z discovered jerking, a 2009 dance that resembles backward skipping. However, though they may be bringing the titular song "You're a Jerk" and the dance back from the grave, the kids simply can't do it. Let's leave jerking to the millennials in 2022.

13. Less Than A Vibe: A TikTok Dance for "Thot Shit" by Megan Thee Stallion

Twitter: @stillnaima

Fresh off the controversy of TikTok star Addison Rae going on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon and performing dances created largely by uncredited Black creators, TikTok experienced a Black creator strike. Megan Thee Stallion's song "Thot Shit" debuted and Black creators refused to choreograph a dance for it, aiming to demonstrate how much the app needs their presence for a catchy trends to fuel the FYP. They wanted the same credit, respect, and attention earned by those who steal their moves.

14. Less Than A Vibe: Inverted Filter

Me calling my dentist 13 years later to tell her I’m ready for that jaw surgery after accidentally using the inverted filter on tiktok

Twitter: @cailynnnnn

Tbh, when I tried this trend, I was on the verge of deleting my whole account because of how destructive to self-esteem it is. And I know I'm not the only one! The filter, which swaps your POV so users can see how they look to others, basically flips all of your features. The goal is supposedly to gauge how symmetrical your face is, but let's just leave that bizarre beauty standard in 2021, okay?

15. Less Than A Vibe: Feta Pasta

16. Less Than A Vibe: Millennial vs. Gen Z Wars

17. Less Than A Vibe: Vinyl Becoming A Trend

18. Less Than A Vibe: Buffering

19. Less Than A Vibe: The Co-Opting Of "Corvette, Corvette"

View this video on YouTube

YouTube: The NDG Family / Via

The "Corvette, Corvette" craze was all fun and games until made its way to mainstream talk shows, where TikTok star Addison Rae performed the dance on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. Controversy erupted because Rae is not the original creator of the dance and co-opted it from a Black TikToker, who didn't get any on-air credit for the viral routine. 

20. Less Than A Vibe: Sprinting Through Versailles

21. Less Than A Vibe: Calling Things "Cheugy"

Did we miss something? Let us know which 2021 TikTok trends will go down in history — and which we can totally leave behind during the new year — in the comments below!

The year is almost over, and we're looking back on 2021. Check out more from the year here!