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WATCH | Here’s what 2021 looked like on SA TikTok

13 December 2021 - 08:00 By TshisaLIVE
Cassper Nyovest's 'Siyathandana' scored big on TikTok this year.
Cassper Nyovest's 'Siyathandana' scored big on TikTok this year.
Image: Supplied.

There was no doubt the creative people of Mzansi would thrive on the latest social media platform TikTok, and their year-end review has proved that.

Placed under different categories, Year on TikTok 2021 ranges from popular songs that kept South Africans on their feet and dancing to creators who became voices of change and celeb/creator breakthrough stars of 2021 — and everyone has played a part in bringing creativity and joy to a platform and a world that needed it. 

“It's been incredible to see how Mzansi has continued to grow and support one another this year on the platform. We've seen trends such as the recent Love Nwantiti and #Amapiano started and spread across ‘For You’ feeds on the app. We're humbled to see how much joy our community has brought us this year, and we're excited to experience more incredible moments as we continue this journey together,” said Boniswa Sidwaba, TikTok content operations manager, Africa.

Take a look at the Year on TikTok 2021 report:

Breakthrough stars: Creators, celebrities and public figures on the rise

Here are the TikTok creators who broke out and hit new heights this year.

  1. @sphokuhle.n — SA’s darling. 
  2. @williamlast_krm — the funniest man in Africa.
  3. @lloyiso — first SA artist to be signed to New York music label, Republic Records. 
  4. @khanyisa_jaceni — has risen to local stardom as a phenomenal vocalist.
  5. @witney8 — recognised globally as a social media sensation and creative.
  6. @mooyamusunga — known for his cool dance moves, Mooya has risen to global popularity. The party starter. 
  7. @shandorlarenty — known to the world as “the lion man”.

#MusicOnTikTok Report: Amapiano, most popular music hashtag in SA

In 2021, these were the top locally produced songs loved most on the platform.

  1. Siyathandana — Cassper Nyovest
  2. Banyana — DJ Maphorisa & Tyler ICU 
  3. Iyamemeza — DJ Sumbody
  4. It Ain't Me — DJ Abux
  5. Yaba Baluku — DJ Tarico 
  6. Sisonke — Thozi, Khanyisa, Sphokuhle & PD Jokes
  7. Izolo — DJ Maphorisa & Tyler ICU & Visca 
  8. Summeryomuthi — Blaq Diamond 
  9. The Whistling Man — Blaqnick & MasterBlaq 
  10. Dangerous — Jah Prayzah 

The Playlist: Popular songs

These are some of the favourite videos from our community.

  1. Siyathandana — Cassper Nyovest
  2. Banyana — DJ Maphorisa & Tyler ICU
  3. Iyamemeza — DJ Sumbody (feat. Drip Gogo & The Lowkeys)
  4. Cognac Queen — Megan Thee Stallion

For You Faves: Popular videos

Here are the videos that make up some of this year's memorable moments.

  1. @sachi_hime96 — local Anime at play.
  2. @shandorlarenty — one of a kind animal love. 
  3. @wian — magic at its finest.
  4. @_lxndi — when comedy meets school life.
  5. @zayaan4 — local is always lekker.

Powered by Joy: Videos that brought joy

Take in the good vibes from the videos that brought us so much joy this year.

  1. @chadjones957 — a family jamming to amapiano.
  2. @clementmaosa — Mzansi celebs showing their goofy sides.
  3. @brwnskn — Nurse Thandi at her best.
  4. @zayaan4 — back to school days we can relate to.
  5. @khanyisa_jaceni — it’s a form of self-love.

Culture: Videos showing our rainbow nation

Creators from different parts of Mzansi have come to the platform to creatively express their cultures, languages and heritage. See how others have done it this year:

  1. Proud South African Heritage — @sophy.zeeigh.
  2. Cartoon Parody — @nokomashabax.
  3. A mix of local tunes — @thozimusic.
  4. #StreetFood — @larnelle.

Sports: Local sports highlights

Sport is one of the things that bring South Africans together. Let's look back on some of the videos that made our community roar with passion:

  1. New Season means new warm up drills — @sundownsfc.
  2. #Bhopa vibes on the field — @supersportunited.
  3. #LadyPogba — @lady_pogba.
  4. #MyRugbyMoment — @springboks.rugby.

Breakthrough stars: Creators, celebrities and public figures on the rise

As the beating heart of TikTok, creators make our community what it is today. Here are the TikTok creators who broke out and hit new heights this year.

  1. @sphokuhle.n.
  2. @williamlast_krm.
  3. @lloyiso.
  4. @khanyisa_jaceni.
  5. @witney8.
  6. @mooyamusunga.
  7. @shandorlarenty.

Only on TikTok: Trends powered by TikTok features

Here are the TikTok trends made possible by our tools and effects, and your creativity in 2021.

  1. Photo crop — @pd_jokes.
  2. Freeze-frame — @karl_kugelmann.
  3. Body zoom — @zayaan4.
  4. Glowing bling — @witney8.

Voices of Cchange: Creators, celebrities and public figures at the forefront of social movements and moments

This year  TikTok continued to be a safe space for creators and our community to come together, lift each other up, and support the causes they care about. Find out more about the impactful creators and public figures who continue to fight for positive change.

  1. Woman pilot of colour — @pilot_onthegram.
  2. Local doctor recognised by World Health Organisatoin — @doctor.siya.
  3. A wake-up call to love yourself — @paballokgware.
  4. #RisingVoices, TikTok project to upskill SA creators of colour — @tiktok.southafrica.

Eats on repeat: #FoodTok trends and other favourites

Foodies around the world continued to find a home on TikTok this year. Check out all the recipes and food hacks TikTok got Mzansi craving for this year. 

  1. Oreo in a cup — @whisksandladle.
  2. They are never going to know — @zaynabparuk.
  3. Cookie baked oatmeal — @thebakeaholic.
  4. Chicken liver pasta — @mealsbysiya.

The throwbacks: Trends inspired by #NostalgiaTok

In 2021, we saw a resurgence of trends being discovered and rediscovered by our diverse community. Let's look back on the trends that made us reminisce and revel in nostalgia.


  1. #OurParents —  @shorttempered_goat.
  2. #OurParents — @witney8.
  3. Back to school days — @zayaan4.
  4. Safarina — @moghelingz.


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