16 Weird Gen Z Trends We Just Really Don’t Understand

What’s up with Gen Z? Confused about some Gen Z Trends? As a millennial, I feel totally lost when it comes to Gen Z things. 

Sometimes, it feels like the teens have a culture where everything is different, and we just don’t understand anything. As we age, we are more removed from the young folks. Here are some Gen-Z Trends that leave us baffled and confused.

Some Gen-Z Trends are problematic, but some are just plain weird! Recently, someone posted, “What’s a trend among Gen Zs you find weird?”

Here are some of the responses!

1. Making Everything an Aesthetic

Beautiful girl in carnival mask
Image Credit: Voyagerix via DepositPhotos.com.

“Filming everything and the need to add -core at the end of every clothing aesthetic/style they rediscover lol,” someone wrote.

“Rediscover-core,” joked one person.

While this is something every generation does, it seems like Gen-Z is the only one that makes it into an aesthetic and makes everything into a “core.”

2. Making Videos With No Talking

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Image Credit: javiindy via DepositPhotos.com.

“Posting videos where they’re just making faces with some text while a song plays that usually has nothing to do with the text. Just talk?” wrote one person.

Another added, “I don’t know if this is Gen Z specific, but TikTok / reels / etc., in general, are so full of these. Putting your face side by side with someone else’s video, so we get your “reaction” to it, when that reaction is just making stupid faces. I mean, I’ve come across some actually entertaining “reactions” where they play the original video first, then cut to the reaction, and it’s someone actually saying words out loud about what was good or bad about it. This other s*** is just… ugh. How/why would someone find that entertaining?”

3. Broccoli Haircut

shocked woman
Image Credit: krivenko via DepositPhotos.com.

Ok… lets talk about the Gen Z haircut that kind of looks like broccoli!

“Broccoli haircut. Will definitely age like milk,” wrote one person. Another quipped, “The Pubadour.”

While it’s cute, it is pretty funny to imagine all the Gen-Zer’s looking back at pictures of themselves with a broccoli haircut in a few years and cringing!

4. Desire To Go Viral

Three teen girls smiling and shoots a video on a pink background
Image Credit: videoforyou0304 via DepositPhotos.com.

“The desire to “go viral.” One of my greatest fears is being involved in a viral video in any capacity, but for so many zoomers that’s their number 1 goal,” wrote one person.

Someone added, “I don’t think this is a new thing, though. Plenty of Gen Xers and Millenials wanted to be famous as well, they just didn’t have TiKTok and Instagram to do so. This is just a natural desire for the youth to want to be noticed and to stand out.”

5. Not Capitalizing Words

Three teenagers sat together
Image Credit: photography33 via DepositPhotos.com.

“Finally, I can ask this. Why do a large amount of gen Z’s not use capital letters? Is capitalization going the way of cursive writing?” asked one person.

Another answered, “It’s probably because of texting. Over time, texting with capitalized letters became seen as too formal, and people began to intentionally remove capitalization to seem more laid-back and informal.”

6. Wanting To Sell Out

Excited young adult woman holding dollar banknotes in hands
Image Credit: AntonLozovoy via DepositPhotos.com.

“It’s very weird that in 30 years or so, we’ve gone from selling out being a bad thing to it being the main goal. To the point where large numbers of people genuinely don’t even understand the concept. Edit: Someone making money from art is not necessarily selling out. See my second sentence above,” wrote one person.

7. Punctuation

Outraged woman asking what the heck
Image Credit: Giulio_Fornasar
via DepositPhotos.com.

“Proper punctuation in text messages being seen as aggressive or rude,” wrote one person.

It is funny how the cultural norms have changed so much in a few years! This is a weird trend that definitely confused boomers and Gen X!

8. Refusing Phone Calls

young woman smiling at phone screen
Image Credit: marinademeshko via DepositPhotos.com

“Hate talking on the phone to…anyone,” wrote one person.

A Zoomer piped in, “Gen Z here. I think my take is common among many people my age. I don’t actually hate talking on the phone, providing someone is calling me. If I have to call someone, that’s a different story because I feel like I’m inconveniencing that person or whatever even though I’ve never, once in my life, felt that way when someone calls me.”

This is one of those Gen Z things that I actually understand- I hate talking on the phone!

9. TikTok

young woman holding phone with TikTok
Image Credit: IgorVetushko via DepositPhotos.com

“Tik Tok. Just, in general,” wrote one person.

Someone added a sobering thought, “The scary thing is, it doesn’t suck, but that’s why it sucks. TikTok has a scary good algorithm, and it will show you content you genuinely do want to see, and that’s why it’s bad because it sucks you into rabbit holes and stops you from leaving.”

They continued, “I’d pick up a new hobby or video game, and very quickly, I’d be getting fairly high-quality entertaining content about that topic on my page. Even educational stuff (I watch a lot of documentaries), and it becomes a massive negative time sink.”

10. Filming Everything

Girl Recording Vlog Video Blog At Home With Camera
Image Credit: diego_cervo via DepositPhotos.com.

“The obsession of taking pics of themselves and videoing concerts,” one person wrote.

“They really don’t live in the moment and enjoy themselves and the environment around them with no judgment or concern. To me, it’s so sad, really,” they finished.

11. Not Driving

spite house MSN
Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

“Having no interest in getting a driver’s license,” wrote one person.

Someone commented, “It is weird to me in the sense that I got my license ON my 16th bday could not WAIT. But it’s not weird in the sense that the world is different now. They “stay home and play video games,” but they’re doing it with their friends live while also staying safe at home. ”

This is one of those funny trends that I am curious if it will continue or if Gen Z will start adapting to car culture. 

12. Micro-Labeling

two girls standing in front of American flag
Image Credit: johan-jk via DepositPhotos.com.

“The way everything needs to be a micro-label or aesthetic, and the differences between some of them feel so miniscule that I’m not sure why they all need to exist in the first place. I’ve seen both “clean girl” and “vanilla girl” on TikTok but…those both just seem like minimalism to me?” one person wrote.

13. Snapchat

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Photo Credit: Adobe Stock.

“Using Snapchat to text message using pictures of their foreheads and the ceiling,” wrote one person.

Someone tried to explain the trend, “Because its really low effort and you don’t have to worry about what the rest of your face looks like. But it still somehow seems more personal than a text which is why people Snapchat back and forth. There is a very interesting messaging platform hierarchy developing.”

14. Using the Word “Aesthetic”

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Photo Credit: Adobe Stock.

“My daughter uses the word “aesthetic” to mean nice. Ex: that’s so aesthetic,” wrote one parent.

Another person commented, “I say aesthetically pleasing. But I’m pretty sure that’s tradition.”

15. Diagnosing Mental Disorders

Face enraged infuriated woman screaming emotion
Image Credit: golubovy via DepositPhotos.com.

“As a gen z myself, I find trying to diagnose ourselves with a mental disorder pretty weird. I’ve never done it and I would never do it but I know some people who do it just for attention and stuff. Pretty annoying for people who are actually suffering in my opinion,” someone wrote.

16. Can’t Spend Time Alone

Three teen girls smiling and shoots a video on a pink background
Image Credit: videoforyou0304 via DepositPhotos.com.

“Their absolute inability to spend even 5 minutes on their own, alone, with no stimulus, just doing nothing. But then, that might be a self selecting sample. The ones who can do that, you don’t notice that much,” someone wrote.

Someone said this might be more unviersal, “As a millennial, I also notice this about my parents’ generation. Not when they’re out and about, but having the TV or radio constantly on in the background at home. It’s not quite the same, but I think it probably comes from the same place to some degree.”

Counterpoint

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Some people came to Zoomers defense. “I feel like many of the things suggested revolving “filming everything”, being “constantly online”, etc. aren’t only a Gen Z problem. I think those are just “humans dealing with our technological revolution” problems. I see people from every generation doing all of those things,” they wrote.

Millennials Did the Same Thing

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Photo Credit: Canva Pro.

“Yeah, millennials had broadband internet, camera phones, and social media as teenagers. I remember hearing the same concerns about taking pictures of everything and being online constantly when I was in college in the 2000s. Gen Z just got into it at a younger age”, added another.

So the cycle continues.

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This post originally appeared on A Dime Saved.

Hi! I am a millennial mom with a passion for personal finance. I have always been “into” personal finance but got inspired to start my blog after a period of extended unemployment. That experience really changed the way I viewed my relationship with money and the importance of accessible personal finance education.