Seeking comfort in memory is an innately human trait, and it’s something we’ve been doing for eons. Even Odysseus used memories of home to get through tough times. Our modern trials and tribulations may not be as trying as the Trojan War, but it’s been a rough few years for lots of folks. And in tough times, nostalgia reigns supreme.

“This younger cohort is engaging with nostalgic content, but using platforms like TikTok to re-create and share older trends among peers,” said Maxim Kabakov, VP and group partner for strategy at UM Worldwide. “Given that the internet has democratized access to nostalgia, and the speed at which culture spreads on TikTok, we’re seeing the nostalgia cycle becoming shorter, with some Gen Zers currently expressing ‘lockdown nostalgia’ for the early 2020s. In the future, expect to see even more of a collapse between nostalgia and the present. Something that happened only a few months ago could be ripe for ‘nowstalgia.’”

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