Long gone are the days of Healthgoth and Seapunk.

The inaugural Instagram Trends Report is here, giving people above the age of 20 a lot to ponder about the year ahead.

Like, WTF is "Goblincore?"

According to Darian Symoné Harvin, who spearheaded the research that went into the app's roundup of fashion, beauty, and shopping trends poised to blow up in 2022, Goblincore is an aesthetic that "teens and young adults" are eyeing as the next big thing.

In addition to the spooky-sounding style, there are other oddly named aesthetics taking over social media — Instagram's report also shouts out Dark Academia, while Google's 2021 Year in Search cited Coconut Girl and Kidcore.

But what do they all mean?! I've done the service of breaking down all the so-called aesthetics you need to watch out for in 2022.

Aged millennials like myself, you're welcome.


According to a report by The Guardian, Goblincore is a "close but more feral cousin to Cottagecore."

Oh, and what is Cottagecore, you ask? More 2020 than 2021, Cottagecore is all about the trappings of a simple, rural life. Think LoveShackFancy's gingham dresses with puffed sleeves, braids tied with silky ribbons, strawberries — Little House on the Prairie, but make it fashion.

Goblincore is less quaint and more "slimy things you might encounter on a camping trip."

Mushrooms, frogs, snakes, bats, and bugs are all fair game for the aesthetic, which embraces the less visually pleasing aspects of nature.

Sartorially, they're translated as earth-toned corduroys, oversized knits, and basically anything printed with mushrooms, frogs, leaves, or a combination of both.

Dark Academia

Essentially the aestheticization of Donna Tartt's The Secret History, Dark Academia romanticizes the trappings of elite academia.

It idealizes intellectual pursuits commonly associated with a certain strain of English and New England society, such as the study of classic literature and poetry, as well as Greek and Latin. Basically, Dark Academia is aestheticism for the TikTok generation.

Styles favored by Dark Academics encompass anything worn in the TV adaptation of Brideshead Revisited: houndstooth, tweed, crisp button-downs, cardigans, and vests.

It's worth noting that, like many TikTok aesthetics, Dark Academia has been criticized for its lack of diversity — a reality that stems from racism implicit in the higher education system, as well as the Eurocentrism of literature and the arts in general.

Coconut Girl

Remember Aquamarine? Coconut Girl is a 2021 version of the 2006 flick, centered on two teenage girls who discover that mermaids are real.

The aesthetic is all about beach-y clothing with a touch of Y2k (another trending look). Hawaiian shirts, crochet bags, platform flip-flops, and wrap skirts are some examples of quintessentially Coconut Girl style.


Lisa Frank stickers, Care Bears, and Furbies are all cultural touchstones of Kidcore, a look inspired by the toys and clothing '90s kids grew up with.

Extremely colorful and entirely optimistic, the aesthetic is epitomized by rainbow-striped tops, animal-shaped backpacks, patchwork knits à la Harry Styles's JW Anderson cardigan, and plastic beaded jewelry.

If you were actually born in the '90s, Kidcore will probably give you PTSD, so tread carefully.

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