How To Spot A Fellow Gen Z


Here’s your rundown of the top gen z trends in Colombo related to fashion, food, and places to visit.

Fashion trends, preference for food, and pop culture references ironically seem to be the only visible indicators of generational gaps whether we like to admit it or not. Differences in what we eat, dress up and places we prefer to visit are part of an extensive culture that naturally transforms when a new generation takes over the reins. All over the world, various forms of expressing oneself have been outlined and each is unique to the culture they have been brought up with and the unique identity of the country that they are from. This cultural shift from generation to generation is simply a very natural process. Sri Lanka is also experiencing a period of unfamiliarity, particularly with the older generation with regard to the cultural shift from generation to generation. Regardless of what the older generation might say, this shift is not about their kids “going through a phase” or “disrespecting our Sri Lankan identity” but rather it is simply a process of them expressing themselves as part of a newer generation ready to take our country to greater lengths in the future.

It’s difficult to box every Sri Lankan teenager into a particular category to assign a stereotype but to make things easier we can take a look at how a typical gen z might be easier to spot while walking down the streets. The chances are you’ll be looking for them somewhere near a newly constructed mall such as One Galle face, a coffee shop, an aesthetically pleasing restaurant, or even near a walking pathway. One thing you might definitely notice is a strategically placed scrunchie in hand, rose gold or layered Jewelry, holding a phone and sporting a pair of loosely fitted denim and a black or white plain t-shirt (or a crewneck from Pepper Street or a crop top depending on the weather). This seems to be the current trend when it comes to fashion particularly the laid-back, casual, plain-toned color theme that fellow gen z seems to be gravitating towards. 

If you’re taking a stroll near Galle Face green the chances are you will see some of the Colombo gen z folks wearing airpods, sneakers, or converse shoes and most gen z love to spend their time going out with friends, hanging around cafes, going to the gym, visiting street food festivals, having a quick photoshoot with their friends, or going to watch a movie. Popular gen z food in Colombo includes the famous Chai tea from Chaiwala, bubble tea, any form of caffeinated beverage, or street food like kottu or wade.

Despite the lighthearted take regarding the fashion, food, and travel practices of the gen z crowd in the previous section, an actually brilliant cultural shift in the gen z in Colombo has to do with the inclination towards social service and community service. It would be almost impossible to find a gen z in Colombo who is not volunteering at a nonprofit, raising funds for charity, or speaking out on a social injustice that had occurred either verbally or on a social media platform. This has to be one of the biggest changes in the attitudes of fellow Sri Lankans that have brought the older generation into disbelief because of the lack of self-preservation and focus towards the greater good that Sri Lankans have been lacking for quite some time. Another cultural shift is how the gen z are focused on understanding what they would actually like to do with their life when selecting a job or an education pathway instead of continuing the monotonous cycle brought on by their predecessors. 

All in all, gen z has taken over as the new generation that is moving forward with the unique culture for many more years to come!

Written By:-

Rtr. Nethmi Aloka
(General Member – 2022-23)

Edited By:-

Rtr. Amali Senadeera
(Blog Team Member 2022-23)

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Piravena Paheerathan

On point and was a fun read!

Subhavi Kariyawasam

A really fun read. 🥰