The thrill of unboxing predates the social media trend for watching videos of it. Opening up a box containing new, uniform-compliant school shoes can be as exciting for a child as unwrapping a birthday present. Despite their future being clear—several seasons’ worth of scuffing before they start to pinch—for a moment those shoes are spick-and-span, perfectly arranged and full of promise. Recently, this thrill has taken an odd twist: There are currently more than 100, 000, 000 videos on YouTube featuring people opening products and packages. The first video described as an “unboxing” (item: a Nokia cell phone) was uploaded in 2006. Since then, these videos have come to serve as reviews, relaxation aids and a glimpse of a life less budget-strapped—sometimes all at once. Content ranges from people opening up the latest phone or multimedia release, to luxury fashion This story is from Kinfolk Issue Forty-Two Buy Now Related Stories Arts & Culture Issue 45 Yoga with Adriene The internet’s best friend is—finally—finding her own flow. Arts & Culture Garden Issue 45 Piet Oudolf The Dutch designer bringing life—and death—to traditional gardens. Arts & Culture Issue 45 Thomas MacDonell The conservationist transforming the Highlands. Arts & Culture Design Issue 45 The New Craftsmen From the Outer Hebrides to central London, Catherine Lock is celebrating the crafts heritage of Great Britain. Arts & Culture Music Issue 45 Gerard & Kelly On dance, domesticity and the giants of modernism. Arts & Culture Issue 45 Hang in There How to make the best of a bad job.