I’m not (fully) ashamed to admit I jumped on the TikTok bandwagon during quarantine. It was a bright spot in the midst of a pretty dark time. If I was having a particularly rough day, I’d flip through my FYP and laugh until my sides were stitched twice over.
But as luck would have it, I stumbled on a whole world of DIYs, product referrals, and testimonials. You can find anything from beauty products or pet training tips to creating a focal wall in your entryway. TikTok and its users made me feel like I too could perfect the now-infamous feta tomato pasta dish or paint and epoxy my kitchen counter.
Inevitably, I ended up starting to buy recommended items and attempt certain tutorials shown to me on the platform.
I’m here to share some of my favorites with you today.
A dermatologist took me on a tour of a drug store beauty section and recommended the best products available. One was La Roche Posay Toleriane Purifying Foaming Face Cleanser, which I purchased at Target for about $15. While there, I got myself a jar of NIVEA Crème Unisex Moisturizing Cream for close to $7. Using them both regularly has really improved the look and feel of my face.
Another dermatologist-recommended product is Aztec Secret Indian Healing Clay Deep Pore Cleansing Facial and Body Mask, which I got on Amazon for about $15. The same dermatologist recommended using organic apple cider vinegar to mix with the clay powder to make the mask. I was able to pick up the vinegar at my local grocery store.
My senior dog has been struggling with digestive issues. Through TikTok, I discovered probiotics for dogs existed. Amazon sold me PetHonesty All-Natural Advanced Dog Probiotic Chews for about $25. They’ve made a noticeable difference for my dog. You can even make them a Subscribe & Save purchase to save on the cost.
One TikToker who frequently travels shared a video show her some of her hotel safety tips. She explained that every time she stays in a hotel, she checks the mirrors to see if they’re two-way or not. You can test this by touching your fingertip to the glass. If there is a gap, it’s a real mirror. If there is no gap, or in other words no reflection, it’s a two-way mirror.
She also showed how the security bar towards the top of most hotel doors can be opened from the outside, as well as the deadbolt. So, she secures the door handle by wedging the ironing board underneath, weaving the leg of the board under the handle so it can no longer be turned.
There is a whole corner of TikTok dedicated to teaching iPhone users secrets, tips, and general hacks, most of which I knew nothing about before. You can learn how to sign documents using only a screenshot, disable pages from the home screen, engage “spy mode” with AirPods, save an entire webpage by simply taking a screenshot, scan documents through the notes app, create custom vibration tones, enable back tap, extend battery life, turn multiple photos into a gif, and so many more.
If you’re not an Apple user, Samsung virtuosos are also sharing their hacks and tricks on TikTok.
As a daycare provider, I’ve gotten a lot of great ideas for activities and crafts to do with my kiddos, most of which use common household items that I already had on hand.
One art teacher showed me a fun trick with chalk. Over a tray of water, shave chalk dust onto the surface, using multiple colors. Then carefully lay a sheet of paper on top of the water for a short moment. The wet chalk dust will adhere to the paper when it’s removed from the water, leaving a beautiful kind of splatter picture.
There are also educational crafts. I saw one mom draw flowers on the top of a large ziplock bag. Each flower had a number in the middle. Then, she painted beans to look like ladybugs. After putting all the beans into the ziplock bag, she taped it to the surface of her table. Then, her children could slide the proper amount of beans to the corresponding flower.
Don’t even get me started on the merch. TikTok is being used as a marketing tool for artists and Etsy shop owners alike to flaunt their goods. I can neither confirm nor deny that I’ve been enticed to buy a sign for my front door with words inspired by a TikTok sound. My best friend may or may not have purchased a coffee much with the phonetic pronunciation of one of her favorite emo songs on it immediately after seeing it in a TikTok.
And all this is only scratching the surface. TikTok has turned out to be more than a useless, time-wasting entertainment platform.
I can’t wait to see what it gets me into next.
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