search history

TikTok Fashion Professor Rian Phin Is Over Quiet Luxury

rian phin

Love it or hate it, TikTok is now the engine behind the Gen-Z trend cycle. But some are using the platform to meditate on fads instead. Enter Twitter darling and TikTok professor Rian Phin, aka @thatadult, the fashion theorist and writer who’s grown a cult following of cross-platform culturevores with her deep-dives into topics like dweeb couture, divesting from “aesthetic” culture, and 2010s Tumblr nostalgia. Going beyond mere trend reports, Phin delivers sustainability-minded analyses of her love for Miuccia, Martine, and Margiela. We wanted to know the browsing habits that make her big brain tick, so for this week’s installment of SEARCH HISTORY, we slid into her DMs to find out her most recent Google searches, uncover her most-hated micro-trend, and play “fuck, marry, kill” with vintage shopping sites.



PHIN: 29/F/Brooklyn.

INTERVIEW: What’s the first thing you do when you wake up?

PHIN: Pretend to try to meditate for 10 seconds before looking at my phone and then immediately check email, Twitter, etc.

INTERVIEW: What were your last three Google searches?

PHIN: “Digital art show coeval,” “why is it called lox,” “black girl bachelor.”

INTERVIEW: Favorite meme format?

PHIN: When people color over the words 100 times and completely change the meaning of the meme instead of just making a new meme.

INTERVIEW: Where do you spend the most time online?

PHIN: Twitter <\3

INTERVIEW: Describe your private browsing persona in 3 words.

PHIN: Voyeurism, pervert, fun.

INTERVIEW: What was your first Tumblr URL?

PHIN: Earliest I remember is bapegod.

INTERVIEW: Favorite YouTube rabbit hole?

PHIN: Gymnastics competitions, specifically all the Tatiana Gutsu videos from the 1990s.

INTERVIEW: Print or digital?

PHIN: Both omg.

INTERVIEW: Favorite internet fashion micro-trend?

PHIN: If Luke Blovad’s personal style and online persona counts as a micro-trend, then that.

INTERVIEW: Least favorite?

PHIN: They’re all extremely funny, honestly. I love them all. Maybe “quiet luxury” with cheap blazer.

INTERVIEW: Fuck, Marry, Kill with vintage shopping sites?

PHIN: Fuck, marry Arianna’s closet archive IG story sale, kill none bc I’ve done sponsored videos for like all of them and probably signed non-disparagement agreements.

INTERVIEW: What does your TikTok FYP look like?

PHIN: “Miami girls trip horror story,” “Atlanta hair braider horror story part 10,” and then extremely serious support for unions and labor movements and organizing videos.

INTERVIEW: What’s a website everyone should know about?

PHIN: SHOWstudio.

INTERVIEW: An account everyone should follow?

PHIN: @abeautifulplay on Instagram. I’m one of their many sons.

INTERVIEW: What’s the Vogue Runway paywall hack?

PHIN: I pay <\3 I wanted the free tote and magazine with purchase 😭

INTERVIEW: Money or clout?

PHIN: Money, oh my god. And then hide away in the woods.

INTERVIEW: If you could spend the day with one niche online celebrity, who would it be?

PHIN: @joan.of.arca hands down omg.

INTERVIEW: Another Search History alum!


INTERVIEW: What’s your password?

PHIN: If I knew my pw I wouldn’t have to change it every single time I log into anything <\3