TikTok's Trending Bookmark Debate Will Have You Questioning Everything

The world of TikTok offers a home to bibliophiles everywhere in the affectionately named subcategory #booktok. It's in this wonderful labyrinth of hashtags that we've discovered so many brilliant new books, like bestselling thrillers, as well as countless tips for how to read more. With so many wonderful avenues to explore on #booktok, we're doubly entertained by a new wave of debate sweeping the community about, of all things, bookmarks. Yup, you read that correctly.


If you're an avid reader, chances are you've adopted a bookmark system that you consistently use without even thinking twice about it. But now, thanks to one viral TikTok video, all too many of us have become aware of how we mark our place. For some readers, the bookmark belongs on the page they finished reading. For others — and here's where the great debate commences — the bookmark goes on the next page they plan to read. Though there isn't any official rule for how to mark a place in a book, for many book lovers, it can completely transform your reading experience.

Putting your bookmark on the next page you plan to read can help you stay motivated

The first group of bookmark users claim that the best place to apply a bookmark is on the page where you're to begin reading. TikToker @readingwithjill was adamant about this being the only suitable method. "You turn the page to the next thing you have to read, and the bookmark marks the spot where you are going to read next time," she said.


Apologies for the sass but there's NO WAY 🫣💀🫠 #booktok #books #reading #bookish #Inverted

♬ original sound – ReadingWithJill🌻📚

Many users, however, were shocked by this approach. Some argued that it could open the room for potential spoilers. One person captured the enthusiasm of all readers, pointing out that readingwithjill's method made it too tempting to turn to a new page. "There's no way I'm risking opening a book to a page I've never read. My eyes wander," they wrote, adding a laughing emoji. "I will see something I'm not supposed to see yet. The bookmark goes where my eyes last fell." Frankly, this seemed to be the general attitude. However, one commenter gave a happy medium. "If I end on a chapter, I put the bookmark on the new. If I stop mid page, it goes there cuz I have to reread a little," they said.


Another TikToker who goes by mandyrulez highlighted how unrealistic this approach could be for some readers, as not everyone is motivated to finish an entire chapter before closing the book. 


The bookmark debate: you guys are finishing chapters before ending your reading sessions?? 😂 #stitch with @ReadingWithJill🌻📚 Two sided bookmarks for the win imo though 🤭 #bookmarks #bookish #booktokfy #booksbooksbooks

♬ original sound – mandy 🎲

One user agreed, noting "Sometimes the bottom of the page is in the middle of a paragraph or dialogue. There's no way they're stopping mid-scene," they wrote.

That's a fair point. Sometimes, you have to stop reading mid-page, and there's no way that it makes sense to put the bookmark between the next pages to come. But if you're completely wrapped up with a chapter, it could totally work to put the bookmark in the next section. It's a nice motivation to pick up the book next time. 

Other bookmark tricks

In the case of the bookmark debate on TikTok, the second group claims that the only way to use a bookmark is to place it on the same page where you finished reading. TikToker @bonitathegoddess explained this method can help prevent any confusion about where you left off, especially if you have a double-sided bookmark. She faces the front of the bookmark towards which ever page she just left off reading. This way, when she opens up her book again, she can note which direction her bookmark is pointing, and continue from there. 


#stitch with @ReadingWithJill🌻📚 #bookmark #booktok #debate #fyp #howdoyouuseabookmark #ifykyk

♬ original sound – T Rod

Another TikToker, @dr.hollyhatcherfrazier, is also on this team. An avid reader, Dr. Holly said that she places her bookmark between the exact pages where she stopped reading, and was in shock that others might do it differently. Many who agreed with Dr. Holly piped up in the comments, such as one who wrote, "i need a little reminder of where i left off." Another came out of left field with an innovative concept: "i use sticky notes so i can know what page i left and the exact sentence i felt off on." That's honestly not a bad idea! 

At the end of the day, there's no right way to use a bookmark. But if you've found yourself getting sidetracked while reading, consider switching up your method to see if it motivates you. It could be what you need to keep up with that New Year's resolution.