Now that we are heading into a new decade, it’s interesting to look at what trends have survived the 2010s. Trends give us an inside look at what cultures were like during a certain era. Trends have the ability to influence how people live and what they value. Whether we realize it or not, trends have the capability of not only influencing individuals but brands, organizations, television networks, news and so much more. Trends have the power to positively influence society and make lasting impacts on people’s worldview.

Merriam Webster defines a trend in multiple ways but specifically as a current style or preference. Below, I will take a look at some trends, both the good and the bad, from the last decade and how our very own Azusa Pacific students feel about them.

One trend that sticks out is social media. Social media has been around for many decades but began flourishing in the 2010s. People have different views regarding social media, but it’s definitely not going anywhere anytime soon. Social media has become a major platform for networking, marketing and keeping people informed. Kelli Pearce, a sophomore business management major says, “I love how social media allows you to stay in contact with old friends and be up to date with people’s lives.” 

Pinterest, Instagram, Snapchat, Tinder, Twitter, Vine, and TikTok were among the highest-ranking social media sites in 2010, according to an article found on KPS3’s website called “The 2010s: A decade of social media.” I asked a group of 15 APU students which social media sites they currently use from the list and my results showed: six use Pinterest, 15 use Instagram, 15 use Snapchat, four use Tinder, 10 use Twitter, zero use Vine, zero use and eight use TikTok. Even if we don’t currently use these social media applications, we know what they are and their specific functions.

Along the lines of digital trends, YouTube was created before the 2010s, but video blogging took the world by storm during the past decade and influencers have been given a platform to reach millions of individuals. This outlet is a place where people can find out the latest trends and fads in regards to style, beliefs, beauty, sports, food and more. Social media and influencer marketing will be continuing in this next decade. It will be interesting to see how it evolves as digital media advances. 

With the help of YouTube, trends were able to stick. Looking back at the last decade, in terms of fashion and beauty, there were many fads that caught on — including animal print, leggings, Birkenstocks and bold eyebrows. These trends were once popular but made a major comeback during the 2010s. We currently see these trends around today, but let’s see if they can last. I was curious, so I asked college students what fashion trends from the 2010s they enjoyed but are glad have fizzled out. “I hate low-rise jeans because they are just not flattering … on anyone,” says Katie Stepp, a sophomore graphic design major. We saw that towards the end of the 2010s, high-waisted jeans made a comeback, leaving low-rise jeans as a thing of the past. Some people feel strongly about trends and maybe it’s a good thing they come and go. For example, sophomore liberal studies major Maddy Sutton says, “‘No offense to anyone who still wears these as we go into this next decade, but the bulky white fila shoes need to stay in the 2010s.’” As we see, everyone’s styles may be different but when trends catch on, they have the power to unify individuals by finding commonalities and making each decade stand out from the last. 

It will be interesting to see how social media evolves as digital media advances. We all remember Blockbuster, VHS tapes and DVDs but now we have Netflix. One huge trend from the 2010s decade was the way streaming occurs. Digital media took huge steps during the last decade and has advanced in such a short amount of time. Netflix started producing content in 2012 and has taken the world by storm, changing the television industry as a whole. Matt D’Amico, a first-year animation major says that “Netflix is my go-to because it has a wide variety of shows and movies and it’s also nice because there are no commercials.” Naomi, a junior business management major expressed that she, “likes Netflix because it has shows that me and my roommates bond over and watch together.”

Trends can unite people, spark similarities and interests within one another. Whether they last one month, one year or 10 years, it still impacts our world in some way, shape or form. Looking back, a lot was accomplished in the 2010s and the trends prove that. The technological advancements that came out of the last decade allow us to take a deeper look at what is coming our way. We have better resources now to stay current on the newest trends, thanks to the advancements and steps taken in the 2010s. I am looking forward to seeing what new trends are coming our way.