The Rise of Interior Car Decoration
Interior car decoration is just one of the ways that drivers are choosing to further personalise their vehicles. Insight tools like Pinterest Predicts estimated that ‘hot wheels’ would be a rising topic globally, with a culture of interior car decoration developing.
By analysing the social media platform of TikTok, it’s clear that this rising mode of interior design is going nowhere fast. And it’s not just limited to practicality and organising space as we’ve seen with other trends, it’s a way of injecting personality and life into the vehicles people are driving.
A simple TikTok search will show you just how popular interior car decoration is as a culture or trend on the platform, with hashtags like #cardecor reaching over 400 million views and creators making videos walking others through the process of decorating their car (#decoratemycar 32.6 million views and #decoratemycarwithme 16.5 million views).
As a result, Group 1 Automotive analysed some of the most popular hashtags on Tiktok to gain an insight into the styles that are propelling the interior car decorating culture forward, and where buyers are making their purchases. As is typically the case with TikTok trends, there are key subsectors that have their viral moments, as well as key products and shopping destinations for viewers who want to achieve the same.
Trending interior decor styles on TikTok
With the rise of ‘barbie core’ on TikTok trends and the upcoming release of the Barbie film with Margot Robbie, it is only expected that #barbiecar takes the top spot with 94 million views.
The doll-inspired trend has taken to the masses - videos of car tours, recommendations, and DIY hacks get posted daily for avid fans. The theme tends to run consistently with each car and all share the same love for hot pink, sparkles, and even fake eyelashes for their headlights.
Similar to the #barbiecar, TikTok users are enjoying a #pinkcarinterior on the platform. The hashtag has 63.9 million views in its grasp and follows the same theme as the barbie car trend.
The videos tend to take on a more ‘decorate my car with me’ approach to show their audience how they turn standard cars into their desired pink aesthetic. Users will personalise their interiors with custom steering wheels, seat covers and even kit out their glove boxes with pink-themed essentials.
In third place, the iconic #starlightroof gains 6,600,600 views. Associated with luxury and elegance thanks to cars like the Rolls Royce, the twinkling car interior has become more accessible over time and is widely enjoyed on the platform. Videos show how to insert the starlight roof in cars to get the aesthetic without the price tag, and even how to make personalised shapes out of the lights.
Next comes #carbling with 5.1 million views. Drivers take to TikTok to show different methods of decorating their cars with rhinestones, stickers, and glitter. The sparkling interiors cover any space possible in the cars - steering wheels, cup holders, sun visors, etc. Many link items that they use so that the viewers can buy their own bling for their cars too.
The Japanese-inspired trend of #kawaiicar takes fifth place with 4.3 million views within its hashtag. The term ‘kawaii’ comes from Japanese pop culture and alludes to the quality of cuteness. Recurring motifs of Hello Kitty, strawberries, Rilakkuma, and Sailor Moon are seen throughout the interior decorations as well as fur and flowers.
In order to help their audience, TikTok users share how they kit out their cars and where to get the items from. Users are able to do this in many different ways: putting links in bios, tagging a link on the video, and sharing the shop through hashtags. As of late, TikTok videos have become influential in suggesting new products to purchase.
The quick clips have created a culture of suggesting and then testing new items for the audience to participate in. Amazon and SHEIN are two popular shops typically tagged in car interior design videos.
Amazon seems to be preferred to shop with as it has an impressive 519.317,200 views compared to SHEIN which has 6,363,300 views. TikTok users are able to easily indicate where their shopping takes place to customise their cars, with hashtags like #amazoncarmusthaves gathering 134,200,000 views.
TikTok is seeing a rise in interior car design quickly, with millions sharing the way they personalise their cars. Posting ‘car tours’ allows users to interact with those who have similar interests and has created small communities within these niches. Through these small communities, TikTok users are able to recommend their favourite purchases in order to kit out their cars to their tastes.
We explored TikTok for generic terms relating to the culture of interior car decoration such as #cardecor and #diycardecor and then analysed the top-performing videos for trend breakdowns that also appeared as their own hashtags. We then measured the number of views on each of these hashtags and ranked them according to which had the most.
Analysis of TikTok hashtags and views was carried out in September 2022.