Welcome to Balenciaga's TikTok account, the weirdest, surreal-est, and all together trippiest social media page run by a luxury fashion house.
You won't find peppy dance challenges or glossy celebrity partnerships here. Instead, you'll feast your eyes on mind-bending special effects, applied to accessories such as Balenciaga's Hourglass and Le Cagole; sardonic takes on internet tropes ("This is why you can't believe everything on social media," one clip reads while flipping through poorly Photoshopped images of a model); and the odd bit of content totally unrelated to fashion (see: a video of stuffed animals seated at a picnic table).
"Bro what" and "What is this" are sentiments shared across the comments section on Balenciaga's TikToks. It's this mind-bending, "what did I just watch?" quality that makes the label's account so addictive, and confers a certain cool factor.
Balenciaga already makes meme-worthy clothes — its TikTok produces more of the same visual bait, but in video form. If you don't get the joke, the joke's on you.
For a weeklong period, Balenciaga exclusively posted TikTok content to its Instagram (at publishing, the account appears to be wiped). It's not entirely clear what the brand's intent with cross-posting was, but the decision certainly points to TikTok's outsize influence on marketing strategy across all sectors.
Posing competition to Instagram, once the be all end all of social media platforms, TikTok's explore page functions as a full-fledged news feed for many of its users. Fashion brands, courting a growing customer base of plugged-in Gen Z'ers and millennials, must establish a TikTok presence (and learn its language, a formidable task) or risk irrelevance.
Whether you love it, hate it, or simply don't understand it, Balenciaga's TikTok account is nothing if not attention-grabbing — and in an online economy, influence equals the ability to stop someone's thumb from scrolling.