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Tripped on thin air? Subtract 5,000 aura points. Made your crush laugh? Add 10,000 aura points. You probably have seen the “aura points” on your TikTok For You page or in the comments section in recent weeks. But what does it actually mean? And where did this trend come from?

The term “aura” dates back centuries, as it’s a term often used in ancient systems of medicine and spirituality, typically meaning an atmosphere of energy around a person that can be positive or negative.

However, the aura points trend stems from a much more recent usage of the term that originated from the soccer community, of all places. This started with a 2020 New York Times article called, “Solutions Are Expensive. An Aura Is Priceless.” The article is about soccer in particular Van Dijik, a center-back for the Liverpool Premier League club. The quote that really blew up among the soccer fandom was, “Van Dijk’s mistakes can be dismissed because, basically, he has an aura.” This led to many jokes and memes within the soccer communities about Dijik and his “aura.”

Fast-forward to recent weeks, the trend has finally spread from the sports world to the mainstream pop-culture sphere, becoming a term that simply describes how cool you are. On April 16, @jonybrony posted a video titled, “Guy obsessed with having aura,” which has garnered over 2.6 million views and 400,000 likes on TikTok, and seemingly kicked off a fascination with this bastardized version of auras.

A couple weeks later, @securethabag.mel posted a TikTok about gaining and losing aura points throughout the day, which went viral (like, the “13.8 million views and 1.4 million likes” type of viral).


Almost had a perfect day 🤦🏾‍♂️ #fyp #viral #aura #trending

♬ hahah do it jiggle – captain

But what are aura points, actually? TBH, they’re whatever you want them to be! These days, many people are making videos about how you gain aura points (basically by doing things that make you look cool), and how you can lose aura points (which usually highlights embarrassing scenarios). This isn’t only happening in videos, either — people have taken the trend to the comment sections of other videos as well, sharing whether they think a video (or the creator of the video) is cool or not by adding or subtracting aura points to their total score. 


Next video we’ll give some tips to gain aura #fyp #aura #school #fypシ゚viral @ٴۢٴۢٴ

♬ hahah do it jiggle – captain

The great thing about this trend is that it’s totally arbitrary, so feel free to have fun with it and give yourself all the aura points you think you deserve. (Spoiler alert: The limit does not exist!)

I'm Athena, a freshman journalism major at The University of Texas at Austin. I've interned at The Dallas Morning News and currently work at The Daily Texan. In my free time, you can find me at spin class, facetiming my friends, or listening to music!