If you're like me, the very mention of TikTok might make you feel like a wholesome parent, trying to understand the new slang your kids have brought home. And while I've secretly wished the app and my growing irrelevance would just go away, it is clear that this is a growing beast, so it's about time to figure out which TikTok accounts to follow. The platform's user number has amassed a weighty 1 billion downloads worldwide. More and more celebrities are also popping up on the app, in addition to the countless creators who have gone viral through their use of the 60-second video constraint as a challenge to reinvent how we tell stories, give tutorials, share cooking recipes, show off new dance skills, and everything in between.
After finally coming to the conclusion that TikTok is completely unavoidable, we did some homework and rallied up some of our favorite creators on the app as a beginner's guide for you. Scroll ahead for our definitive guide to the TikTok accounts you should follow in 2020. Each account on our list has posted videos we can't stop watching (and rewatching), and hopefully, they will help you be able to use the app as more than a buzzword.
Spencer X (@spencerx)
Spencer X has risen to popularity on TikTok for his incredible beatboxing skills. The 27-year-old has amassed 33 million followers with his fast-paced, original beats. He also makes comedy sketches and does collabs with his friends, as well as with big-name artists, like Alicia Keys and G-Eazy.
Jason Derulo (@jasonderulo)
Jason Derulo has made quite an impression on TikTok, garnering almost 24 million followers. The singer often posts dance challenges with his friends, as well as clips of his dogs, and even the "life hack" of eating corn on the cob attached to a drill, which ended up chipping his two front teeth (would not recommend trying this one at home). Check out his page for a constant source of entertainment.
Emily Ratajkowski (@emrata)
Emily Ratajkowski's TikTok account furthers the supermodel's ability to use any social media platform as a reminder that she has the most perfectly chiseled abs. Only now, you can see Emrata's abs while she hangs out with her husky and tries out all the TikTok dance challenges you've seen on your ordinary friends' pages. The supermodel only has five posts right now, and already has amassed almost 1 million followers.
Megan Thee Stallion (@theestallion)
Rapper and social media queen Megan Thee Stallion's presence on TikTok extends far beyond her budding account—she has her own TikTok dance challenge. The "Savage" challenge has skyrocketed as thousands of users posted themselves performing choreography to the namesake track, which dropped earlier this year. The challenge was originally additional promotion for the single's release, but as TikTok users inevitably found more time on their hands at home, Megan's song went everywhere. The challenge even got updated when the remix of "Savage" dropped, featuring Beyoncé, in early April.
Charli D'Amelio (@charlidamelio)
Charli D'Amelio is the quintessential TikTok user. After being on the app for a few months, she amassed an impressive 5 million followers, and she's now about to hit 30 million. Her secret? The popular Gen-Z teen is famous for her choreographed dances that she posts, in addition to showing off her vocal abilities. A trained competition dancer, the 15-year old star's versions of TikTok dance trends have gotten the attention of many major media outlets and brands. D'Amelio has made an appearance on Ellen, opened for the Jonas Brothers alongside Bebe Rexha, and most recently, she attended the Prada Fall 2020 show at Milan Fashion Week, where she of course took the chance to capture some signature TikTok content.
Lizzo took to her account recently to prove why she is both the queen of TikTok and tiny bags. While “Truth Hurts” has already enhanced many a TikTok video, Lizzo's viral post showed she is a force to be reckoned with on the app. It turns out we just needed a major star and Grammy nominee to prove what the fashion world has been trying to tell us: you actually can fit a can of Pringles and a bottle of wine in an itty-bitty Jacquemus bag.
Watching a nail tech plop a glob of polish all over an acrylic nail might be the most satisfying thing ever. Make that acrylic chock-full of glitter and I’m in heaven. If you’re like me, @youngnailsinc is the place to go for oddly satisfying and absolutely flawless nails.
Abby Roberts (@abbyrartistry)
With 5.8 million followers, 18-year-old Abby Roberts indeed knows the power of an eyeshadow palette. But not only does she create mind-blowing transformative looks with the help of stencils, prosthetics, and full-on costume: she also takes her viewers through her elaborate looks with step-by-step tutorials.
Think of Buzzfeed’s Tasty videos, but with a bit more speed. The @salt_to_taste account shares a variety of cooking hacks, from personal cultural recipes such as chicken tikka masala to step-by-step, McDonalds-style cheeseburger tutorials.
Howie Mandel (@officialhowiemandel)
Howie Mandel’s TikTok account can best be described as what you would expect if your dad picked up a new social app and started posting with too much enthusiasm. Yet with 5 million followers and counting, we would have to say he is definitely doing something right. From cringe-worthy dancing videos to sitting with Terry Crews lipsyncing “A Thousand Miles,” there is surely a little something for everyone on Mandel’s page.
Allison Ponthier (@allisonponthier)
Allison Ponthier’s TikTok is full of light-hearted and funny videos of her pretending to be popular video game and movie characters such as Black Mirror’s Yorkie, It’s Beverly and Midsommar’s Maja. Additionally, she's known to post song covers and a fair amount of simply making fun of herself, making for a well-rounded TikTok account you should definitely follow.
Justin Bieber (@justinbieber)
While four out of his 11 current videos feature him eating dinner in bed, Justin Bieber took TikTok by storm when he used the app to post a three-part series of him singing “Yummy” in a kitchen, complete with a fork in hand. Bieber appears to be making a full media return as he is expected to release his fifth studio album later this year, as well as a new 10-part documentary series on YouTube entitled Justin Bieber: Seasons. With a tour also kicking off this May, 2020 seems to be the year of the born-again Belieber.
Remember when Steve from Blue’s Clues would take to his thinking chair notebook to draw clues? Well, if Steve (or his brother Joe, or their cousin Josh) had a TikTok, it would probably be this soothing doodle account. Complete with '90s cartoon characters, Pokémon, and even some tutorials, this a TikTok page you can easily watch for hours.
Iris Apatow (@irisapatow)
You may know Iris Apatow for her acting work on Netflix’s Love, but the 17-year-old is also quite the comedian on her own TikTok page. From impressions of Euphoria’s Maddy Perez to entertaining cat videos, Apatow proves comedy runs in the family.
Miley Cyrus (@mileycyrus)
Miley Cyrus may be one of the newest celebrities to join TikTok, but she is by no means the least. As the musician is debatably one of the most perfect candidates to join the app, tune in for pranks, silly dancing, and Miley being, well...Miley in a way that makes for perfect #content.
Ben Johnson (@sneakermechanic)
Ben Johnson of @sneakermechanic takes the popular term sneakerhead to a completely different level. The artist customizes shoes to unthinkable heights, and if you’re one of his 500,000+ followers, you can even take to his Instagram account to put your bid in for a commission.
Taj Reed (@donidarkowitz)
Taj Reed knows exactly how to draw in an audience with her jaw-dropping makeup looks. And though her videos aren’t exactly tutorials, you can pick up a lot of tricks by being an avid viewer. For one, the makeup artist uses a glue stick to keep her brows in place. Guess it's time to break out our old craft supplies in the name of beauty.
Speaking of the designer behind one of fashion's favorite tiny bags, Simon Porte Jacquemus has also recently joined the TikTok family. He currently has only one video, which shows him pretending to be an animated, frustrated customer shopping online only to realize his own bag is sold out. Weird flex but okay.