While I've never considered myself "old," even I, a 30-year-old, often feel completely out of touch when I open TikTok and start scrolling. It seems like these days, Gen Z'ers, 20-somethings, and teenagers are incredibly ~unique~ compared to older generations.
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In fact, I recently wrote a post about things older women find baffling about their younger counterparts — and lots of people chimed in to air their confusion about kids these days. So, here are even more reactions from the BuzzFeed Community about the behaviors and trends popular among young people that older people find incredibly confusing.
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"Their makeup routines. I’m 45, and my oldest daughter is 19. She can do makeup in such different ways. Concert makeup versus university makeup versus job makeup versus makeup she wears when she visits her grandparents... and it all looks amazing. She attributes it to all the makeup tutorials she watched growing up, and she’s teaching her 12-year-old sister. I could sit all day and watch them interact and paint makeup on one another's faces. I love it."
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"The openness young people have on social media these days. They post about all their problems as if that could possibly help. It's not going to. In fact, getting away from social media might be the better solution."
"I've been surprised that most of the Gen Z students I work with don't have good computer skills. I assumed that growing up with smartphones would make them great at IT and computer stuff, but I think in reality, the smartphones and apps make it so that young people don't really learn how things work."
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"The way they make everything into a diagnosis. Everyone on TikTok seems to have something. If they like to have a clean room, it's OCD. If someone doesn't like them, that person is a narcissist or sociopath. I have mental health issues myself, and it's really hard to find people to talk to about them because pretty much everything I see online is kids self-diagnosing and spreading misinformation."
"Cancel culture. It seems to me that a lot of young people don’t seem to understand the difference between someone having opinions you don’t like and having opinions that are morally reprehensible."
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"The trend of making a full-blown social media account for your baby and tagging yourself in the bio."
"In terms of positives, I work with young people, and I’m super impressed by how much more confident young women are around periods and menstrual talk. They’re so much more confident than my generation was to just ask for what accommodations they require and the information they need to know. I’m really glad the taboo is slowly shifting in this area."
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"I work with a lot of 17–20-year-olds, and I've noticed a weird obsession with young people needing to know where their partners are at all times. One girl threw a fit because her partner's Snapchat location wasn't on, and she was scarily angry about it. It's such a red flag, IMO."
"All the swimsuits that go up your butt crack. It just looks SO uncomfortable to me, but y’all do you. I’ll sit here in my full coverage, granny bathing suit that’s probably ugly, but at least, I’ll be comfy. 😂"
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"The constant posting of children on social media. I see a ton of mothers doing this. I just think children have a right to privacy, and by posting their photos, you take that away from them. You are also influencing them at a young age to constantly be on social media. I hate that for kids."
"The fascination with eyebrows. Since when did eyebrows become so important? All of the sudden, people became so focused on brows and making them look absolutely perfect. It's so silly and ridiculous to me. They are just two small lines of hair on your face, and most of the time, I don’t even notice someone's brows."
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"Wearing headphones as accessories! This is my biggest beef with Gen Z. They fully wear AirPods with no sound coming through them, considering it some kind of fashion statement. It's dumb, and I will happily die on this hill."
"The celebrity-obsessed culture. I feel like young people these days have a conspiracy theory-level investment into the lives of their favorite celebrities. It's creepy. Fandom has always existed, and sure, I had boyband posters all over my room when I was younger, but the celebrity obsession has become very unnerving."
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"I don't understand the whole obsession with influencers. Why would you want to scroll through a bunch of selfies from strangers on Instagram? Or watch some random family document their totally-staged-for-the-camera day on YouTube? It's just so deeply weird to me that so many major Gen Z celebrities aren't talented musicians or writers or actors or artists. Rather they just post pictures of themselves with some boring caption like 'so busy lately,' and it gets literally a million likes."
"The skimpy clothes they wear. I know crop tops are a thing right now, but my goodness, put some clothes on! Aren't you cold?! Some day, these young people will realize comfiness is key, and there's no need to impress people by dressing in revealing clothing."
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"Bachelor/bachelorette parties. These pre-wedding traditions have totally gotten out of control; I've seen so many friendships soured because a bride-to-be expected her friends to shell out thousands of dollars for a very one-sided, pricey vacation. More often than not, these 'celebrations' seems to take a toll on relationships."
"Hook up culture. I do not understand it. Aren’t you afraid of STIs?? And sleeping with random people just seems gross and dangerous to me."
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"What I genuinely don’t understand is the utter obsession with zodiac signs. A girl literally told my little sister that she was going to hate her just because of her sign. And she was being totally serious. It’s the dumbest thing I’ve ever seen, and it's not backed by any science!"
"The hair styles. I see Gen Z are all competing for 'world's worst haircut,' and they're all winning."
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"The popular look of mom jeans with crop tops. So far, it doesn’t flatter anyone that I’ve seen!"
"I find my half-sisters who are 15 and 17 years old to be so confusing. They routinely rely on TikTok for information instead of using a search engine like Google. I tried to explain how stupid that is, and she claimed she 'doesn't have time to Google.' So, she uses TikTok to search for info and watches videos, but doesn't have time to Google? She basically doesn't have the patience to read but has plenty of patience to watch and listen."