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The austerity influencers of TikTok: ‘I wanted to share the things I have given up’

By Sirin Kale

28 Sep 2023 · 9 min read

informed Summary

  1. A new trend of "austerity influencers" has emerged on TikTok, where users share the sacrifices they've made due to the rising cost of living. These include cutting back on non-essential items like makeup, skincare and eating out, and even more drastic measures like cancelling health insurance and skipping meals.

Admitting that she couldn’t afford shampoo any more – that was the hardest thing. “People might think it was gross,” says 23-year-old Yash Jayachandran, a psychology master’s student and podcaster from Brisbane, Australia. “But I was like, this is just the reality of where I’m at.”

It wasn’t that Jayachandran couldn’t buy shampoo. Technically she could. But at what cost to the rest of her budget? For months, she’d watched in horror as the cost of everyday essentials rose. At the supermarket, she’d fill her cart, calculate the bill and start putting things back. “What can I substitute for something cheaper?” she says. “What can I cut down on?”

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