Creators are the heart and soul of TikTok. They spend countless hours creating content that inspires and brings joy to the more than 1 billion people who are part of the TikTok community. They're pioneers making a positive impact in their local communities, tastemakers whipping up one-of-a-kind creations in the kitchen, and trendsetters originating key cultural moments that are shaking things up in the entertainment industry.
Today we're unveiling The Discover List, an inaugural list that highlights 50 TikTok stars across five different categories: Icons, Innovators, Foodies, Changemakers, and Originators. With this list, we're honoring both the hard work and the passion TikTok creators put into the content they create — and we're giving credit to originators of viral trends while also showcasing the diverse voices on the platform as well as the strength of our community.
And now, without further ado, here are The Discover List creators who are changing the game in their respective lanes — and beyond.
These creators need little introductions. They embody trends and culture. They're well known up and down For You feeds and outside of TikTok they’re changing the game for content creators everywhere. They live and breathe TikTok culture and inspire others to do the same. Wondering what hashtags Icons used this year to create swoon-worthy content? Here's the scoop: #GreenScreen, #Foodie, #ColorCustomizer, #Stitch.
- Bella Poarch, @bellapoarch: Bella is the world’s fourth-biggest TikTok star with over 81 million followers and counting.
- Boman Martinez-Reid, @bomanizer: Boman shares comedic skits and his most notable video, "When One of Your Friends Coughs Except It’s Reality TV," currently has over 20 million views.
- Brittany Broski, @brittany_broski: Brittany took the internet by storm in 2019 with her distaste for kombucha. Since then, she has created content for Comedy Central and MTV, has a number of ongoing brand deals and currently hosts TikTok’s official podcast, “For You Podcast.”
- Challan, @challxn: Challan has been creating content since she was in high school. All of her hair and makeup skills she shares on TikTok are completely self taught through tutorials and hours of experimentation.
- Christopher Olsen & Ian Paget, @chris & @ianpaget_: Chris and Ian joined TikTok to pass the time during the pandemic. Their couples' challenges and quick-witted editing quickly swept the community by storm and they gained millions of followers in a matter of weeks.
- Jay, @flossybaby: Jay is a content creator who specializes in comedy, fashion, and lifestyle. She started on TikTok in April 2020, and became a breakout star with her comedic skits, relatable humor and special appearances from her dog, who she lovingly refers to as her son.
- Leo Gonzalez, @leogonzall: Leo creates sketches, characters and content related to the Latinx community on TikTok. He recently had the opportunity to tape a podcast and create content with his idol, George Lopez.
- Mark Gaetano, @snarkymarky: Mark found his niche on TikTok poking fun at teachers, teacher’s pets, mean “Karens,” and secretaries. In February of 2020, Mark's viral TikTok video imitating teachers on field trips became his trademark post.
- Tabitha Brown, @iamtabithabrown: Tabitha's unique approach to veganism and her wholesome, comedic personality, has earned her the title “America’s mom.” She draws people in with simple recipes sautéed with compassionate messages, and sprinkled with a pinch of humor.
- Christina Najjar, @tinx: Christina, aka Tinx, is known as "TikTok’s big sister." In less than a year, Tinx amassed over one million followers on her social media platforms, showcasing her quintessential product reviews, Rich Mom skits, and authentic vlogs.
Innovators are creators who put a new twist on what it means to be a content creator. They are pioneers in their fields and have a unique point of view in their content. They're not afraid to experiment and try something new — like adding creative effects to spice up their content, including this year's popular filters: Green Screen, Color Customizer, Bling Bling, and Disco. They are constantly pushing boundaries, and they inspire millions with their creations.
- Billy Yue, @8illy: Billy is a generational talent whose impact holds deep roots in music platforms and the For You page on Tiktok: namely with his cardboard art short films, vibe-y music videos, and mood playlists.
- Devon Rodriguez, @devonrodriguezart: Devon is a New York City-based artist and content creator whose early inspiration came from New York's famed street art scene, which led him to begin practicing graffiti at age eleven.
- Jasmine Chiswell, @jasminechiswell: Jasmine, a social media content creator and television personality, aims to bring as much joy and happiness to as many people as she can through her unique vintage-themed viral dances and comedy.
- Science Akbar, @king.science: Science, an animator, has his famed character appear in blue jeans, a Supreme-esque hoodie, and a yellow crown in every video on his channel, whether he’s starring in a music video, a storytime-style animation, or a quick joke based on trendy audio.
- Maddi Winter, @maddiwinter: Combining animation and dance, Maddi continues to break barriers in the TikTok world while inspiring others to spread positivity.
- Mikayla Nogueira, @mikaylanogueira: Mikayla has successfully taken the beauty world by storm and prides herself on her authentic and honest reviews, tutorials, and lifestyle content.
- Kyne Santos, @onlinekyne: Kyne is a drag queen and math communicator who bridges STEM education with queer entertainment. Today, Kyne explores every math topic under the sun and more, all while dressed in high-glamour drag looks.
- Parker Locke, @parkerlocke: Parker is a 20-year-old self-taught 3D and visual effects (VFX) artist who is best known for recreating scenes from popular movies and TV shows.
- Piff Marti, @piffmarti: Shaquille, aka Piff Marti, is a New York-based rapper who got his first taste of acclaim after his series of self-produced music videos went viral on TikTok in April of this year and has since built a cult-like following.
- Wisdom Kaye, @wisdm8: Wisdom is a 19-year-old who is changing the men’s fashion conversation as we know it. Wisdom has come to notoriety through his fresh and unique take on men’s fashion by challenging hypermasculinity with a comedic bend.
Our Foodie creators are taking viewers on mouthwatering adventures on the For You page. They're driving food-inspired hashtags including #Food, #Cooking, #FoodTikTok, #Recipe, and #Baking, starting a modern day food movement on TikTok. These creators aren't just making food, they’re creating masterpieces. The one thing they have in common is that they’re all adding their own creative spin on cuisine — and it’s all delicious.
- Jonathan Kung, @chefjonkung: Jon's journey as a self-taught chef began in Detroit. He now focuses on sharing his culinary creativity with the goal of inspiring people to express themselves, their culture, and their creativity through food.
- Gabrielle Williams, @gabby.jaye: Gabby is the original "Disney food series" creator who takes foods from beloved classics and brings them to life through artistic talent and culinary skills.
- Hajar Larbah, @moribyan: Hajar began her passion for cooking and baking to explore her North African roots. From fusion recipes to popular restaurant remakes, Hajar loves sharing her personality and love for all things food with others.
- Newton Nguyen, @newt: Newt uses his fun personality to create content on all things food, from instructional cooking videos to food hacks and restaurant reviews.
- Ana Regalado, @saltycocina: Ana originally started posting recipes on TikTok with the goal of making a visual cookbook for her children, so that they would always have "mom in the kitchen" no matter where they were.
- Jessica Woo, @sulheejessica: Jessica went viral on TikTok after posting videos assembling beautiful DIY bento-style lunches, complete with a note for her three children.
- Ahmad Alzahabi, @thegoldenbalance: Ahmad's entertaining videos feature a range of delicious and approachable recipes that will make anyone fall in love with cooking.
- Joanne Molinaro, @thekoreanvegan: Joanne began The Korean Vegan as a passion project – where she shares recipes with narrations of personal stories – after adopting a plant-based diet.
- Robert Lucas, @thesweetimpact: Robert is an IT professional turned talented cake artist. He is known for his fantastical artistry, modeling cakes after iconic pop culture references like Nike Air Jordans, Beauty and the Beast, Space Jam and more.
- Violet Witchel, @violet.cooks: Violet, a senior in college, is known for her easy healthy dorm recipes, and often makes fun taco, bagel, and salad videos along with cooking tutorials. Violet also uses her platform on TikTok as an opportunity to talk about important issues.
Creators who speak up and speak out, advocate for others, and stand for something: we call them Changemakers. From educating their followers, advocating for change or covering news, these creators push themselves and others every day to learn something new and to do better for the world. And the community is here for it, too. This year, over 50,000 videos were created using #MakeBlackHistory, #DeafTikTok, #WeAreAPI, and #FreetoBe.
- Alexis Nelson, @alexisnikole: Alexis Nikole sings and cooks her way through teaching her audience about wild edible plants, their history, and their cultural significance.
- Shirley Raines, @beauty2thestreetz: Shirley founded Beauty 2 The Streetz, a nonprofit whose aim is to bring essential services and beauty to the homeless, all with a personal touch.
- Joel Bervell, @joelbervell: Joel is committed to fighting health disparities in medicine through education and regularly shares insights on racial disparities and biases in healthcare.
- Jesús Morales, @juixxe: Jesús is a first generation Mexican immigrant who uses TikTok to crowdfund money for street vendors in Southern California.
- James Jones, @notoriouscree: James is a Cree dancer from Tall Cree First Nations and a full-time youth worker who shines a light on cultural awareness about Indigenous communities.
- Remi Bader, @remibader: Remi is a 26-year-old curve model whose realistic clothing hauls – where she reviews popular fashion brands, often copying models’ poses and exposing the size discrepancies seen across brands – have taken TikTok by storm.
- Scarlet May, @scarlet_may.1: Scarlet is a deaf creator who makes skits, ASL covers, and more, all while educating others about the deaf community.
- Taylor Jones, @taylorcassidyj: Taylor is a content creator on TikTok teaching millions about unsung Black history figures, accompanied by her quick wit and strong passion.
- Ebony & Denise Nunez, @team2moms: Ebony and Denise are a two-mom family who create engaging TikTok videos as a way to connect and inspire the youth of the LGBTQ+ community.
- Zachary & Patrick Valentine, @valentinebrothers: Zach and Pat are brothers who advocate for the Down Syndrome community and others with disabilities through kindness, hope, and love.
Originators are the creators who create the trends we live for. They created the hashtags. They started viral dances, sounds, aesthetics and more. They could be considered the heart of TikTok – they have a finger on the pulse of culture and they continue to make content that is iconically #ForYou.
The creators on The Discover List are just getting started. Whether they’re shaking up the food industry, sparking change, or defining what it means to be an innovator, an icon, and an originator, these creators are the driving force behind culture, both on and off TikTok. We can’t wait to see what they do next.
TikTok is a unique place because of our incredible community, so the process for choosing creators for the inaugural version of The Discover List was also community-driven. Creators were nominated by our community team. We then looked at which creators made a significant impact on the app and started trends and meaningful conversations over the last year. Measurement levers included but were not limited to: engagement, views, video creations, account growth, likes, interactions with followers, and also which creators and content have sparked conversations both on and off the app. To see more about The Discover List, visit tiktok.com/creator-discover-list.