There are about a million parenting styles and trends out there. But finally—finally!—there seems to be one that appeals to many (most?) of us. If you haven’t yet heard of “scrunchy moms” the name comes from a combination of silky mom and crunchy mom (more on that later). Though the "scrunchy moms" trend isn’t new, it’s new to me and, let me tell you, never have I felt so seen.
Scrunchy moms have been taking over TikTok lately, and it’s an absolute breath of fresh air. In a world filled with all-or-nothing parenting styles, it’s easy to feel confused, lost and completely overwhelmed.
Enter: Scrunchy Moms.
Scrunchy moms is a term used to describe those of us who are part silky mom and part crunchy mom. Silky moms gravitate toward things that make life as easy as possible. Think iPads, fast food, disposable diapers and plastic toys that come in Amazon boxes. Crunchy moms, on the other hand, are akin to modern-day hippies, who take a more holistic approach to parenting. Think homeopathic medicine, cloth diapers and Montessori-approved wooden toys.
While there’s nothing wrong with being a silky mom or a crunchy mom, the reality is most of us fall somewhere in the middle. My kids played with wooden blocks, and also with plastic toys that made loud and annoying noises. We grow plenty of our own vegetables and compost (when I say "we", I really mean my husband), but we also eat more fast food than I’d like to admit. I’m a vegetarian; the rest of my family are meat-eaters. I formula-fed both of my kids, and I was also a stay-at-home mom who loved babywearing. My kids are vaccinated on schedule and we also have plenty of homeopathic cold remedies on hand.
Scrunchy moms are taking TikTok by storm—and for good reason. Because it makes sense. Being a scrunchy mom is a practical, buffet-style approach to parenting. A little of this, a little of that.
For instance, scrunchy mom and TikTokker @millennialmidwesternmom says she vaccinates her baby and puts her down to sleep in a crib, but she also breastfeeds and cloth diapers.
In one video, scrunchy mom Jess Katz (@jesskkatz on TikTok) shows the things in her home that “just make sense” as a scrunchy mom: cloth diapers, (back-up) disposable diapers, a compost bin, wooden toys, plastic toys, modern medicine and vaccinations.
In a couple TikTok videos, Haley Halliburton busts out the disco vibes to share the things that make sense to her as scrunchy mom, such as limiting dyes, letting her kids use iPads, trying homeopathic meds and cleaning the bathroom with bleach. In another TikTok, Halliburton says she had an unmedicated birth but also gets Botox, breastfeeds and also takes her kids to McDonald’s, co-sleeps with her kids and also watches Peppa Pig.
In comments to TikToks on being a scrunchy mom, parents praise the middle-of-the-road approach to parenting.
“What does “scrunchy” mean? Do whatever works best for your family kinda mom? Because that me for sure!” Deanna Hodge commented.
TikTokker Jorden says, “It’s called ✨ balance✨”
Vanessa McGrath wrote, “I’m a doula. My group calls me “Chewy”. Not super crunchy lol”
Whether you call yourself scrunchy, chewy, or something else, this judgment-free and balanced approach to motherhood is the breath of fresh air that we all could use.