Social media platforms have turned into one of the most influential places on the internet. It only takes minutes for a new trend to set foot on these applications that suddenly spread like wildfire. And the current trend that has captured the attention of TikTok users, especially couples, is the “Orange Peel test“.
TikTokkers are obsessed with theories, particularly those about relationships. While scrolling social media recently, you would have come across “Orange Peel Theory” posts, in which people ask their partner to peel an orange for them as a kind of litmus test for their relationship. Apparently, you can tell how much your partner loves you based on their willingness to perform the simple task of peeling an orange.
However, this trend isn’t *actually* about oranges. The idea is that a small act of kindness, such as peeling an orange, can demonstrate how your other half shows up for you in a relationship. This trend first went viral back in late 2023 but has had a revival on social media over the past few days. We have been seeing couples testing the theory out on their partners to varying degrees of success.
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Opinions On The Trend
As explained by TikTok user Anna Birmingham (@annabhamm), the “orange peel theory” is about your partner performing tiny acts of service, which is one of the original five love languages, especially ones that you can do by yourself. Their response to you asking them to peel an orange, according to Birmingham, “reveals so much about their attitude towards you and your relationship.“
According to relationship therapist, Dr. John Gottman, “…in a world where many relationships are characterised by weaponised incompetence, sometimes it’s nice to be reminded that your man cares enough to do little things for you.” Netizens have been filming themselves asking their partners to peel them an orange as if to test their devotion. Some “pass” immediately while some need more convincing or straight up refuse to do it.
“Relationship tests are not really fair because they don’t take into account context, the situation, personality, or another persons intentions and motivations,” says sex and relationships psychologist Charisse Cooke. But it can be useful to draw attention to attitudes or behaviours in a relationship that are not healthy or loving.
What might seem like a straightforward task has evolved into a unique relationship test, with advocates asserting that it unveils crucial attributes about one’s partner like readiness, patience, and thoughtfulness. The trend motivates people to employ this unconventional approach to evaluate the resilience and nature of their romantic relationships.
How Did The “Orange Peel Trend” Start?
In November, a text slideshow of a breakup went viral on social media. One person sent an iMessage text to their ex about how they miss it when they peeled oranges for them. Eventually, they sent another text saying, “I peeled my orange today” which went as an SMS message, meaning the ex blocked them. A poem about finding joy in ordinary things called “The Orange” by Wendy Cope, is also popular on TikTok.
It started when this video went viral on X (formerly Twitter). It’s the most viral version of this trend where a girl called Shelby asking her boyfriend to peel her orange, only to be told “she’s not that special” and that he’s trying to “build her up as a female” by telling her to peel it herself. The trend then picked up on TikTok where partners started filming their test outcomes with their significant other.
The Internet’s Take
Netizens have been reacting to this viral trend. Some are conducting their own tests while some are having fun with this viral phenomenon. The “Orange Peel theory” memes are sure to crack you up like this one!
Here’s Aparna calling out this trend for not even being the bare minimum standard. She appeals to her future partner to peel a pomegranate for her if he truly cares about her.
Here’s a twist on the trend with a man asking his girlfriend if she would peel and slice an apple for him. When she agrees to do it he just becomes all mush and constantly showers compliments on her. Couple goals, really!
This meme wins. Nothing greater than a parent’s love for their child. The one true and pure relationship to exist.
Dads who have been peeling and cutting fruits for years seeing their daughters settle for bare minimum orange peel guys pic.twitter.com/CJZbjyHn4P— Abhishek (@MSDianAbhiii) January 17, 2024
And the opposite side where Mummy is fed up with her son not helping her out with daily chores but wanting to peel an orange to impress his girl. Hilarious!
Is anyone up for the challenge?
tf is an orange? peel this instead pic.twitter.com/fFvvkm20u0— Lok 🥦🥝🥑 (@wtfflok) January 17, 2024
This or nothing, tbh. Don’t settle, girlies.
when a beautiful woman asks me for an orange this is what i do. it’s that simple pic.twitter.com/tvTDYuaTnz— h*zzie@$#! turned into a roach (@gatozandart) January 16, 2024
POV: you just said you won’t peel an orange for her pic.twitter.com/Q0AQTSacHK— Sopranos World (@SopranosWorld) January 16, 2024
“Do women still like flowers or I gotta peel their oranges?” read one post. Peeling oranges is the *new standard* now. Asking all the right questions, this post says, ““i would peel oranges for you” but would you bookmark the page of the book i was reading when i accidentally fall asleep?” Another user wrote, “wtf is an orange peel test I would peel the earth for her“
The orange peel trend has also evolved to predict which fictional movie/show characters would pass the test. From Chandler of FRIENDS to Rocky of Rocky Aur Rani, from Phil of Modern Family to Jai of Jaane Tu Ya Jaane Na, all of these fictional men are walking green flags. And of course, the King Khan – Shah Rukh – and all the characters portrayed by him.
And not just this, brands have jumped on this viral trend too. Swiggy Instamart is out here giving tips on how to have a successful first date. When asked what are your skills, show them a peeled orange. Swiggy also created the most adorable series by placing its cute cat in romantic situations ft. a peeled orange. Meanwhile, men on Bumble are busy updating their profiles now.
Of course, not peeling an orange for you if your partner is busy isn’t necessarily a red flag. It might not even be a beige flag, they simply might just not have the time or inclination. And not everyone has the same way of expressing love.
We all have different love languages and communication styles and some people are more into small acts of service than others. A peeled orange does sound nice, but ultimately, like other TikTok trends, this one shouldn’t make or break your relationship.