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Is 2024 Coachella’s Comeback?

Is 2024 Coachella’s Comeback?

This article was originally published on April 19, 2022. Updated on March 15, 2024.

Ah – Coachella. 

Two weekends where our favourite influencers and celebrities flock to California’s Indio Desert clad in sequins, crochet, and platform boots, ready to ~party~. 

While the event was once considered one of the most iconic outings on the social calendar, the Coachella bubble has burst over the past few years— especially after the festival’s pandemic-induced hiatus.

As weekend one of Coachella 2024 comes to a close, pop culture enthusiasts are questioning whether Coachella has hit its peak? And if so, what does the future of the festival even look like?

Coachella as the “Influencer Olympics”

Ever since the festival returned in 2022, Coachella has become what social media users have dubbed an “influencer-work convention.” 

Creators are desperate to attend the festival, and when they snag a pass, an unprecedented number of GRWMs and OOTDs are bound to follow. Last year, it got so bad that TikTok creator Loren Gray revealed that some influencers pretend to go to the festival for content’s sake

“Coachella is like the influencer Olympics. It’s like the place to be,” Loren begins. “But most influencers or a lot of influencers don’t even go to Coachella… they’ll go out to the desert get like an Airbnb, stay with someone, get their outfits, get their hair, get their makeup, post up ‘Coachella day one’… and they don’t go to the festival.” 


here to validate ur fomo 🤞🏼😽💌

♬ Rodeo (Remix) – Lah Pat & Flo Milli

In the late 2010s, social media users were captivated by Coachella content. At that time, many of us weren’t fully aware of the highly performative and staged nature of influencerdom. Frankly, even if we had known the content was fabricated, I’m not sure many of us would have minded. It was all so new and exciting. 

But after COVID-19, the pendulum swung back around. Over the course of what seemed like never-ending lockdowns, celebrities and influencers became an everyday part of our lives. With the pandemic accelerating the rise of “casual Instagram” and a more “relatable” side of YouTube, celebrities embraced a new personalised type of influence. As we grew accustomed to this kind of fame, sponcon and over-produced content lost its cultural intrigue.  

Coachella content, by nature, is not exactly what many of us would deem as “real.” Attendees are known for posting perfectly curated outfit pictures and sharing carefully selected videos to show that they are having the best time. In 2022, internet users even went so far as to describe Coachella as “millennial core” — the true mark of decline on Gen Z’s internet. 

As social media remains flooded with lavish and flashy Coachella videos and pictures, brands and influencers find themselves needing to adjust to audience expectations.

One brand that is doing it right is soda company poppi

Instead of inviting a group of influencers to Coachella, poppi capitalised on the “Alix Earle effect,” bringing Alix and her friends to the festival. 

They even branded the trip CoachEARLEa.” 

The decision to fully invest in a single influencer is an uncommon strategy, but it appears to be paying off for the company. Not only does inviting a friend group make branded content feel more authentic, but Alix and her friends appeared to genuinely enjoy themselves. 

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In years past, social media users have criticised influencers for not taking advantage of the festival and appreciating the artists. As creators seemingly prioritise brand events and networking, users have called them out for flaunting their wealth and privilege, feeding into Coachella’s exclusionary and classist nature. But with Alix’s “party girl” brand and persona, she was a natural fit for Coachella, lending credibility to any sponsored content for poppi. 


Welcome to Casa Poppi #coachearlea 🍋🍋‍🟩 @Ashtin Earle @kristin konefal @sallycarden @zz @patrick ta

♬ TiK ToK – Kesha

Ysabelle Wallace is another TikTok creator leading a new wave of Coachella content. Rather than partnering with a brand, Ysabelle opts to camp at the festival and shares timely vlogs of her experiences.

Her series, known as “Ourchella,” gained significant traction last year, and her decision to revive it has only intensified internet users’ obsession. In a viral TikTok by user @ketosurvivor, she questions why “Coachella looks like it’s the most fun it’s ever been?” before crediting Ysabelle’s content for its resurgence in the comments.

“Everybody has been like Coachella is going to fall off and then this year it is like, I’m booking my flight” she says in the video. 

Screenshot via TikTok

While there is no denying that Coachella’s influence has waned, the festival is seemingly going through a transition period.

Although the last few years have been marked by discussions around Coachella’s decline, the festival might be turning things around. But the question remains: will the festival be able to sustain this momentum, or are the golden days of Coachella already behind us?

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