Hey, Quick Question: Why Is Everyone Talking About 'Ab Cracks' All of a Sudden?

Say "crack" again.
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Welcome to our new column, "Hey, Quick Question," where we investigate seemingly random happenings in the fashion industry. Enjoy!

Do you know what an "ab crack" is? If you do, you're in the minority: At the time of publication, the "#abcrack" hashtag only had 376 posts on Instagram, but that doesn't mean I haven't noticed the term slyly wafting around the Internet as of late. It's not just me, though: In the last two weeks, it's warranted explainers on Elle.com, Health.com and The Cut. So, why does everyone want to find out what this vaguely lewd-sounding phrase means? 

Because it's typically in reference to Hot, Fit Girls on Social Media, of course.

To the uninitiated, an "ab crack" is what Elle.com referred to as an "irrigation ditch for your abdomen," or the substantial definition that runs down the middle of one's stomach from the breastbone to the belly button. Often, these moats exist in the place of six- or eight-packs, instead being more commonly surrounded by taut channels of muscles.

For reference, Bella Hadid is a proud owner of such a trench:

As is Emily Ratajkowski:

And so is wildly fit Victoria's Secret Angel Jasmine Tookes:

Now you know what an "ab crack" is! But this doesn't explain why select corners of the Internet are in a flurry over the latest in disturbing physical trends. These crazes are well-documented to be bullshit — see also "thigh gaps" and "thighbrows," as well as a series of body-shaming trials such as the "collarbone challenge" and the mother of all that is vile, the "A4 skinny waist challenge." And as was the case with each of the above and all of the Instagram-induced fads that came before them, "ab cracks" are difficult to replicate. In fact, it's unclear how you even go about crunching your way towards achieving one. They're a misplaced badge of honor that announces that you, too, have clocked countless hours in a gym or a boutique workout studio, most likely under the direction of a personal trainer. 

Remember, folks, many — not all, but many — "ab crack" possessors earn a living from their good looks. As with all such trends, do take this one with a heaping, reality-tinged grain of salt and remember: the Hot, Fit Girls on Social Media did not wake up like this. 

Homepage photo: Timur Emek/Getty Images

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