From alleged demon-summoning ‘games’ to dangerous Facebook fads, 2015 has already seen its fair share of worrying trends – and this latest one has come with a warning.


You might have come across photos of young women and men posing awkwardly with their arms wrapped around their stomachs to reach their bellybuttons; well, as odd as this sounds, this is the latest trend blowing up social media for young people.


The ‘bellybutton challenge’ poses a test to prove if you have a ‘good body’ or not, challenging you to attempt to touch your bellybutton by reaching around your back. If you fail, the next step is to lose weight until you can comfortably complete the challenge.



Despite the fact that the trend has gone viral around the world, a number of health experts have come out in condemnation, urging people to be aware of the ‘dark side’ of such a bizarre social media craze.


Speaking out this week, Jolene Tan of women’s rights organisation Aware, said that the trend merely serves to perpetuate a skewed view of body image by encouraging competition among young people.



Describing it as “one more way of scrutinising women’s bodies to see whether they are ‘good enough’”, Tan added: “We need to do more to promote acceptance of diversity in women’s bodies.”


Parents, in particular, have been urged to be aware of the latest trend and the harm it could be doing for their kids’ self-esteem and view of body image.