By Michelle Tian

Alright, guys, get ready for the most Gen Z blog post you’ll ever read in your life. 

When TikTok first gained popularity in February, I wanted to be like those “cool kids” and hop on the bandwagon of completely dissing the app. I hadn’t heard a single thing about it that would convince me to get it, so I figured I wouldn’t be downloading it anytime soon.

Then, my friends started learning the “Renegade” dance, so I tried it out and I kept telling myself I would delete it right after. 

But boy, was I wrong.

I learned the “Renegade” and then more dances appeared on my “For You” page, and I thought it probably wouldn’t hurt to try a few more. But, you can probably assume where that thought led me, seeing that I now spend, like, three hours a day on TikTok. 

Then, we got sent home in March and had to stay in place. So obviously, I spent the majority of my time on the app, learning dances and following various influencers.

After a few weeks, the TikTok algorithm started to pick up on what kind of videos I liked to watch. So even though I knew I was slowly getting addicted, I couldn’t put my phone away because every video on the “For You” page caught my attention. 

Eight months later, I’m still obsessed. It’s toxic, but at this point, I don’t really care. TikTok audios just float around in my head 24/7. I break out in random dances sometimes, even when I’m in public or in my Zoom classes. The trends on this app are so addicting and it’s near-impossible to not get sucked in. 

So, yeah, it’s taken over my life. But I do need to point out some positives, because it’s not all bad. 

TikTok has actually taught me more than I expected. It shows me life hacks — and not those wack-ass 5-Minute Crafts — that I can actually use daily. For example, I see people taking science quizzes and it’s a good test to see how much attention I actually paid in chemistry. 

I’ve even learned some things about the election. It took me a while to figure out the whole Electoral College system because I’m Canadian and have never thought of following along until this year. TikTok translates these lessons into short videos full of humor, and I find that my attention never wavers.

Lots of influencers are always posting body-positivity videos, too, and it makes me feel a little more confident. Other clips on my “For You” page are hilarious and give me a boost of serotonin. 

TikTok can be used for a lot of good, and I’m a little ashamed of myself for judging it so harshly in the beginning when I barely knew a thing about it. 

So, if you were looking for a sign to download TikTok, here it is. I promise it’s worth it.

It’s a gross and cliche saying, but don’t judge a book by its cover. There’s a lot more to this app than meets the eye.