Fish-Hooking Is The New Instagram Trend Women Are Using To Get More Likes—Are You Guilty?

If you have loads of pictures on your Instagram account in which you’re posing with your fingers slightly bent and placed close to your mouth, you’ve been fish-hooking! This is a trend women are participating in to get more attention on the social media site, but what’s the point? Here’s what you need to know.

  1. It started with Kylie Jenner. She’s rumored to be the celeb who started this trend, and she’s been followed by other stars like Selena Gomez. Even the cover of Anna Kendrick’s autobiography looks like she’s fish-hooking. What’s the deal?
  2. It’s all about looking fierce. When you try fish-hooking in a picture, you have to make sure you look serious and sexy. It’s all about bringing attention to your mouth, but some people like to look like they’re scratching their necks. Some even go so far as to roll their eyes back while doing this pose. Uh… OK.
  3. Apparently, it can be flirtatious as hell. Fish-hooking in a selfie can look sexy and sultry to some people. It’s like you’re pointing out where your crush should kiss you. I guess that could work if you’re a teenager but for grown women, it can seriously backfire.
  4. Do you really want to be like everyone else? This is like the duck-mouth trend that started to look stupid instead of sexy after a while. People thought they looked super-sexy by pouting at the camera, meanwhile, they were being mocked by everyone. It’s really easy for the fish-hooking trend to go the same way.
  5. It really doesn’t look natural. Trained models might be able to pull off a professional-looking and sexy fish-hook selfie, but even their selfies can look weird, to be honest. Fish-hooking just isn’t natural, unless someone snapped you while you were deep in thought or mindlessly biting your fingernail. If you try too hard to get it right, it can look forced, like laughing when you don’t want to laugh. Cringe.
  6. It actually leaves more questions than anything else. Sometimes, the fish-hook selfie can make people look like they’re confused AF or like they’re trying really hard to remember what was on their grocery shopping list. Other times, the person’s finger looks really out of place. Like, what would cause you to have to touch your lips right this second? Fail!
  7. It actually stemmed from an insecurity. When Kylie Jenner first took a fish-hook selfie, it was down to an insecurity she had with her mouth. As she told ELLE, “I was so insecure about my lips. Even now I always post photos where my finger is always in front of my mouth…it’s a habit. I would always cover my lips. I couldn’t even talk to people. Or guys.”
  8. Fish-hooking can make you seem insecure. The fish-hook selfie is considered to be a confident pose, but is it really? Why would you need to cover up some of your face or neck? It’s the type of body language that actually makes it seem like you’re unsure of yourself or you really don’t want to be in that picture.
  9. It can fuel people’s imaginations in a bad way. It’s not just that you might look confused in a fish-hook selfie, but guys might think, “What’s she hiding under there?” They might think that you’ve got a nasty pimple next to your lips or you have a missing tooth. The fish-hook pose is actually the female equivalent of the guy who takes pictures with sunglasses on all the time. Shady!
  10. Enough with craving likes. Does it really matter if 10 guys have liked your selfies or not? Will it make you feel like a better or more attractive person if you get more likes? Of course it won’t. If you have to try the fish-hooking trend to get male approval, then it’s not worth it. None of those selfie trends are.
  11. It’s not really about creating intrigue. Some say that the fish-hook pose is really about leaving something to the imagination and creating mystery. It’s like you’re a bit shy or just covering up your face instead of showing it all. Whatever. If it’s not natural or real, then it’s not really creating the right kind of mystery at all. Everyone knows that fish-hooking is a planned selfie tactic to get more attention and trying to look mysterious will just make you look awkward. Ugh.
  12. People won’t take the bait. It might be flirtatious, but fish-hooking is really asking for attention, which makes it pretty boring. We have enough of that on social media and it’s not really going to do much for your popularity. Ultimately, people want to see what you’re about, not see you try to be Kylie Jenner or anyone else. Besides, a natural and genuine smile in a selfie is still the most attractive thing you can do with your face.
Giulia Simolo is a writer from Johannesburg, South Africa with a degree in English Language and Literature. She has been working as a journalist for more than a decade, writing for sites including AskMen, Native Interiors, and Live Eco. You can find out more about her on Facebook and LinkedIn, or follow her on Twitter @GiuliaSimolo.