The internet is great for a lot of things, but one of the things it's best at is making people feel deeply insecure about everything from their income bracket to their features. The latest feature likely to burrow its way deep into your subconscious? The nose gap, which is trending on TikTok and making many people wonder what a nose gap even is.
What even is a nose gap?
The nose gap is the small piece of skin between your upper lip and your nose. It's scientifically known as the philtrum, and it contains the medial cleft, which is the small indentation that should be near the middle of your upper lip.
The feature has been trending on TikTok for largely negative reasons, as most people discuss why they hate the feature on themselves.
Users are suggesting that having a small gap between your lip and nose is more attractive while having a big one is far less so. Having a tiny one is actually pretty rare, though, and in general, nose gaps tend to exist within a fairly narrow range of sizes. Now that it's trending, though, plenty of people are posting videos in which they check how big their gap is and report out their findings.
Nose gap videos have become controversial.
Beauty standards are inherently messy and complex, which is why so many TikTok users have been offended by the nose gap trend. These users argue that there's no reason to make people feel insecure about their nose gaps, which are a normal feature of human anatomy. What's more, when you land on a narrow standard of beauty, that standard inherently comes weighted with plenty of cultural baggage.
“To all the people saying, ‘Oh look at the gap between my nose and my mouth,’ YOU’RE A HUMAN," one person said in a video responding to the trend. “You are a Homosapien. Humans have eyes, nose, mouth. They can differ but like usually there is space between those features. You are a human, do you not want to be a human?”
Other people weighed in with similar comments, pointing out that it doesn't make any sense to be insecure about a feature that almost every person has.
“Y'all seriously need to get off the internet and get a reality check. Nose gap? Really? Stop inventing stupid insecurities to make people feel bad. Everyone has a ‘nose gap,’” another person wrote.
The internet is remarkably good at making people feel insecure, but there's no reason we need to actively participate in these kinds of trends. If you're insecure about something, it can be helpful to share it, but nose gaps are something that everyone has.
Ultimately, it's important to embrace a broad definition of beauty, understanding that there are no precise goals that need to be met to achieve perfection. Find way to revel in your own beauty, and don't worry too much about features of human anatomy that you can't do much about anyway.