Behind most viral products is an active community of Generation Z shoppers. They're trendsetters in every sense of the word, tirelessly determined to share the things that have brought them joy or ease in everyday life.
They don't shy away from trying out new products, compared to other generations. According to audience insights of 2022 by the US-based visual social media Pinterest, Zoomers are constantly in search of new experiences to cultivate their identity, and, therefore, are open to novel knick knacks.
Thanks to their adventurous shopping habits, the rest of the world gets to enjoy all the filtered good stuff. Here's a peek into the latest fashion trends, beauty items and practical products that Gen Zers, born between the years 1997 to 2012, deem cool and absolutely worth the coin. You'll notice how most items hark back to the 2000s, otherwise known as the 'Y2K' decade.
We pored over the internet and picked out best-rated options from Amazon, where a Prime membership can get these to you with free delivery.
1. Best Tech Item: Nokia 2660 Flip 4G
- Classic flip phone with easy-to-read display
- Bluetooth function
- 4G cellular connectivity
- Long battery life
- No Wi-Fi connectivity
In an era of foldable smartphones, Gen Z would rather pocket a traditional flip phone. As 'digitally native' as they are, young people are increasingly realising the perils of screen time and the loss of precious quality time. A 'dumb' phone removes online distractions when they're out with friends, where it's stripped down to its bare purpose: calling loved ones. Plus, the flip form factor and grainy pictures from a 0.3MP camera truly drive the 'Y2K' aesthetic home. Nokia's 2660 Flip is a popular choice, which still has Bluetooth function, a headphone jack, 4G cellular support and an emergency call button. The big 2.8-inch colour display and tactile buttons make the phone a breeze to use. Reviewers say that the battery lasts for days and is good enough for basic calling and texting.
Warranty: Amazon offers a one-year extended warranty for Dh29, a one-year accidental protection for Dh48, and a two-year damage protection and one-year extended warranty for Dh61.
2. Best Bag: Rungion Crossbody Bag
Zoomers are always on the lookout for the perfect daily bag, one that's spacious enough to fit a book, snacks, cosmetics and necessities. Inspired by Uniqlo sling bags, this nylon alternative on Amazon looks just as chic, sporting the popular crescent shape. Buyers love that it keeps its form even when unzipped and comes in several colours, which are as accurate as the display images. They're able to toss in many small accessories, so there's room for everything you might need on your commute to work or the park.
3. Best Skincare: Starface Hydro-Stars Big Pack (96 Count)
Narratives surrounding beauty have shifted noticeably in the last few years. Now, it's all about embracing imperfections, whether the flaws in question are an acne breakout or enlarged pores. Most pimple patches (hydrocolloid stickers that extract all the gunk) emphasise a skin-blurring effect, but the Starface Hydro-Stars do the opposite. These star-shaped, bright yellow stickers sit proudly on the face. Upon launch, they were immediately adopted into Gen Z skincare. As reviewers mention, they're a fun way of dealing with the stressful aftermath of discovering a new pimple. Hydro-Star patches work to reduce inflammation and speed up the healing process. They also get bonus points for being vegan and cruelty-free. Mums and dads in the reviews note how these are a hit with their teens.
4. Best Lip Product: Clarins Lip Comfort Oil #03 Cherry
Everyone knows that lip oils are the new lip gloss. These nourish the pout with extra hydration by using natural ingredients, instead of glazing the lips with a short-lived sheen. From NYX's Fat Oil Lip Drip to Dior's Lip Glow Oil, several variations of the product have gone viral, but one persevered - the pioneers of lip oils, Clarins. The Lip Comfort Oil includes botanical oils like jojoba, rosehip star extract and more. Since it's a treatment product, you can expect great results, even over lipstick. We've picked the popular shade Cherry, which reviewers say adds a natural tint.
5. Best Cup: Owala Stainless Steel Triple Layer Insulated Travel Tumbler
Water tumblers are in for both Gen Z and millennials, who equate staying hydrated with self-love and self-care. The search for the perfect cup isn't ending any time soon, as people scramble to find a leakproof, easy-to-clean product. What's slowly replacing the famous Stanley Cup is Owala's improved design for a splash-resistant lid. The 40-ounce insulated bottle with a carry handle lets you sip with and without a straw. If you're an iced coffee fan, this is going to keep the beverage icy for hours. Some reviewers even find ice cubes after two days.
6. Best Y2K Frames: Burberry BE2073 Eyeglasses
Traditional eye frames are coming back, and Gen Z are calling them the 'Bayonetta glasses'. Named after the titular 2009 video game and protagonist, Bayonetta frames are acetate, often rectangular and mean pure business. Famous young stars are seen sporting this sharp fashion accessory, propelled by viral pictures of American model and musician Gabriette Bechtel in her signature Y2K look. You can't go wrong with this tortoise-shell Burberry pair that's made in Italy. Buyers say that they're lightweight and comfortable, and arrive in the original Burberry box.
7. Best Tubing Mascara: L'Oreal Paris Makeup Double Extend Beauty Tubes Mascara
At the end of the day, we all want our mascara to come off with a bit of water. This is exactly why many Gen Z prefer tubing mascaras, where the coating on the lashes comes off in 'tubes' with a gentle rub. L'Oreal's Double Extend is a great place to start if you want a mascara that doesn't smudge but cleans easily without a make-up remover. It comes with a primer on one end, infused with ceramide and panthenol, so your lashes are going to look longer and nourished all day. Reviewers attest to how easily it peels off with water, while still accentuating their sensitive lashes.
8. Best Shoe: Crocs Classic Clog Baya
- Airy, lightweight shoe
- Roomy toe box
- All-rubber construction makes it easy to clean and dry
- Available in many colours
- Can run small, per reviews
It would hardly be an exaggeration to call Crocs a Gen Z shoe. You can run errands in them, wear them around the house or accessorise them with charms to complete an outfit. Crocs shoes are fully rubber, so your feet keep cool and comfortable in these. The material also makes them very easy to maintain. Our pick, the Baya Clog from the range, has amassed a whopping million ratings on Amazon! Many buyers who work in the medical field vouch for their all-day comfort, while others happily note that the pair comes with charms.
Our recommendations are independently chosen by Gulf News editors. If you decide to shop through links on our website, we may earn an affiliate commission, as we are part of Amazon Services LLC Associates Program.