Everyone is talking about TikTok and for good reason. Not only is the short video-sharing app having a huge impact on the music charts, but it's also where trends start, meme formats are born, and the ubiquitous TikTok dance happens.
But it's easy to feel lost on there. If you're new to TikTok it can be loud, jarring and a little confusing. You're not alone either.
However, unlike most social media sites where celebrities and established influencers with large followings often perform well, that's not necessarily the case with this platform. That isn't to say that there aren't artists who have the hang of things. There's Lizzo who users love, thanks to her twerking, cooking, and hilarious videos. Meanwhile, Jason Derulo has become the unofficial king of TikTok thanks to his over the top antics that span pranks, illusions, and two-storey pancake towers.
Old woah ?????????
Once you get yourself on TikTok, what you will notice quite quickly is that celebrities like Derulo are hanging out with a new guard of up-and-comers on the app. And surprisingly, they outrank him with their follower counts by the millions. So, who are they?
Congrats @dixiedamelio on releasing her first song ##HAPPY
TikTok rewards authenticity over money, fame, beauty, and follower counts. And that's why you might not know the biggest names on the app, but you're about to.
Here are 5 creators on TikTok you need to know if you're new to the platform.
Charli D'Amelio might be a name you've heard but not really paid attention to, though on TikTok she's basically royalty. As the most followed person on the platform, the 16-year-old content creator has embraced her newfound fame. It all started in 2019 when she uploaded her first video of herself lipsyncing with a friend. After that, her follower-count steadily rose and to date, Charli's garnered 73.1 million fans.
For those who lurk Instagram and have acclimated to what popular creators look like on there, they might be struck by Charli, who looks, acts, and talks like your average teenager. She's fairly innocent, lives at home with her parents and doesn't at all mimic a Kardashian. What makes her appealing to throngs of users is simply her relatability, and on TikTok that's actually enough. Not to mention that she's also extremely sweet.
THANK YOU ALL SO SO SO MUCH FOR 68 MILLION I LOVE YOU ALL ??????dc @yodamnmomma
Now here's a TikToker you may have seen pop up on a Kardashian's Instagram recently. Addison Rae is the second most followed person on TikTok. She originally gained popularity for dancing videos with her mum, though it was her involvement with Hype House - a content creator house where popular users live - that drove her followers up to 51.7 million and counting.
At just 19-years-old, she's been making appearances in Kourtney Kardashian's Instagram posts and even got the oldest Kardashian sister to join her in a TikTok. But recently, her and Kourtney's ex Scott Disick did a TikTok together and it almost broke the internet. Basically, if there's a dance everyone is doing it's likely that Addison is doing it the hardest.
take 5 @kourtneykardashian
TikTok dances are very specific; they're almost cheerleader-like, following a stringent choreography that can feel strict or even robotic. If that's how you feel, then Zack Jock is the TikToker for you. With over 630,000 followers, it's fair to say that Zack's dancing style might not be as universally celebrated as Charli or Addison's but you can't deny its joy.
Whether he's hitting the woah to MGMT's Electric Feel or banging it out to Lovefool by The Cardigans, Zack has got users enamoured with his energetic - even frenetic - dance style. Our favourite has to be his video set to Regina Spektor's Fidelity.
If you need to know anyone on TikTok, it's Keara Wilson who is the person behind the Savage dance challenge. The 19-year-old choreographer has been dancing competitively for 10 years, which makes sense when you see how effortlessly she adapts TikTok dances to her own style.
Though, Keara didn't gain traction on the app until she uploaded a dance to Megan Thee Stallion's Savage. “I watched my views for “The Savage Challenge “ climb from the thousands to the millions within a week,” she told The Root. Things already felt unreal for the teenager, but then Megan reposted her dance on her Instagram page. "I immediately lost it, crying tears of joy. I was in such disbelief [and] it felt like a dream that was finally coming true."
If you want to see some dancing done with a smile and insurmountable style, Keara has uploaded sleek choreography to everything from Partynextdoor and Rihanna's collaboration, and Chloe x Halle to Wiz Khalifa's Something New.
If Billie Eilish jumped on a viral dance, then you know we can't get away with not mentioning the creator of it here. Zaya Sosho of the Future Kingz created the dance in 2016. According to Zay, its name is a play on "kings" which is then turned into "kangsta" as a play on "gangster." And the wok? Well, he used to work at Panda Express - a Chinese chain restaurant - and he fondly remembers putting the sauce in those giant pans. "So when you walk the kangsta, you walk with the sauce," Zaya surmises
In fact, Zaya's entire TikTok feed is worth checking out. The 22-year-old choreographer has over 700,000 followers and invented one of the most viral dance moves on the internet, so you know he has a few more tricks up his sleeve.
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