Just in case you thought TikTok trends couldn’t get any more creative, unique, or downright weird, fear not, people are now transforming their household items into Chia Pets. If you’re shocked or concerned even, that’s understandable. The people of the internet are covering mirrors, toilets, showers, or creating their own plant holders and lamps decked out in chia seeds. What has caused society to get to the point of covering their Ikea favorites with easy-to-prepare edible seeds, rich in omega-3 fat and antioxidants? I’m not quite sure, but honestly if it makes our homes a bit more earthy and full of nature, I’m totally here for it.
The hashtag #ChiaPet has over 381.6 million views on TikTok, each video allowing creators to connect with the 1980s nostalgia of the vintage toy. Can’t you hear the jingle? “Ch-ch-ch-chia” is going to be stuck in my head for as long as this trend is around. Chia Pet content has been popular on the app for years — with people thrifting abandoned Hello Kitty chia molds to experiment with and using their old Chia Pet kits as a way to pass the time during the lockdown — but now the trend has taken an unexpected turn into home decor.
By late 2021, people were looking to complicate their chia journey a bit and actually grow their own Chia Pet using only chia seeds and water. In August of 2021, one TikTok content creator, @AliSpagnola, revolutionized the chia game by transforming her everyday essentials into growing and evolving plants. In her first viral chia video with 13.6 million views, she covered her car in chia seeds and created her own Chia Pet.
In June 2022, she posted a video covering her toilet in chia seeds, claiming she was the proud owner of the world’s weirdest Chia Pet. Spagnola even gave viewers a look into what it felt like actually using the chia toilet and said it was “comfortably mushy and delightful.” After seven days, Spagnola took apart her chia toilet and found it had left behind not only roots, but a “dead plant” smell. The chia toilet slingshotted chia decor into motion and encouraged other TikTok creators to give this absurdly interesting trend a try.
People began duetting the chia toilet video, specifically @matheus_stancati who turned a lamp into a Chia Pet, taking Spagnola’s video as a challenge. Another plant lover made the ultimate selfie frame by growing a Chia Pet around the edges of her bathroom vanity mirror. The creator, @roominbloomnyc, took the mixture of chia and water in her hands and spread it evenly around her mirror. After 7.2 million people viewed her first video, she posted another video that took viewers through the growing process, updating as the chia started to sprout. By day five, @roominbloomnyc’s mirror had bloomed but not to her liking, so, she placed more chia mixture on her mirror and is continuing to update her 365,700 followers on the journey.
@growithjessie, who has 1.3 million followers and is known for posting gardening and planting tips, duetted Spagnola’s toilet video and put her own spin on the Chia Pet trend — adding her chia mixture to her glass shower door. After four videos in her chia shower series, Jacobson woke up in the morning to the entire patch of chia on the floor, making her chia shower door a chia bath mat. Jacobson then asked her followers what she should do with the excess greenery after her chia shower failed.
According to the millions of comments left on these creators’ videos, audiences are not sure what to make of this trend. One viewer left a comment on Spagnola’s chia chair video saying, “yes, but also NO. but yes?” to which Spagnola replied, “agreed.” Another commenter said on @roominbloomnyc’s video, “my trypophobia could never,” which is the fear of irregular patterns. I’m right there with these confused folks. It’s definitely not a trend I would try, but it sure is oddly entertaining.
This trend is definitely helping people reconnect with their younger selves — finding joy in the simple act of mixing seeds and water to make a sticky paste. I don’t necessarily want to find chia scraps on my toilet paper or in my coffee mug. However, if this pang of nostalgia isn’t hurting anyone and is adding some greenery to their space, who am I to judge? Order your own bag of chia seeds, mix in some water, and turn your coffee table, desk, or maybe even your bed frame into the Chia Pet of your dreams.