Gen Z subcultures like cottagecore and dark academia to e-boys, e-girls, and VSCO girls, are all thriving virtually, especially in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. Followers of these aesthetic movements use social media to express themselves and build a community—whether it’s via their love for baking and pressing flowers, or something a bit moodier, like reading a gothic novel by candlelight in a library.

Our editorial series Culture+ looks at trending topics and events with an eye toward what they reveal about our shifting culture. Culture+ Trends is a special installment of this series, that breaks down the macro-trends impacting our audiences and businesses.

Our new Culture+ Trends video, Alt Aesthetics, examines the latest niche subcultures, including dark academia, cottagecore, e-boys/e-girls, and VSCO girls, where people are finding a sense of community—mainly online.

To learn more about Alt Aesthetics and other Culture+ Trends, visit the ViacomCBS Newsroom.