Influencers: role models or bad influences?
Gracie Moore offers some relief from a sometimes oppressive influencer culture and spotlights some lesser known content creators.
Without a doubt, when we hear the word “influencer”, we immediately think of plastic surgery-fueled ex-Love Island girls advertising their new makeup brand or their collaborations with fast fashion outlets. However, there are smaller influencers whose efforts tend to go unnoticed- influencers who just want to make life easier for the rest of us. The five examples below are non-exhaustive but you may find some reassurance, knowledge or plain and simple fun in their content.
Spencer is an influencer from Canada who uses her platforms to speak out about female body positivity, loving your body from all its angles and simply showing up for yourself. She firmly believes that if you are too loud or energetic for someone, they should “go and find less”. This has been the continued mantra that is driving force behind my unapologetic extroverted personality as well as many other young girls.
Going by “Itssozer”, Samuel is a proud advocate of looking out for others, asking the question “How are you really?” and generally trying to make others feel good. His TikToks can consist of performing random acts of kindness to strangers, such as paying for their shopping or standing on the street offering free hugs and a chat. Influencers like Samuel go a long way in showing us that kindness is free.
Zanna Van Dijk
More of a personal choice for this one, Zanna is a fitness influencer who doesn’t believe that exercise is a punishment for eating and rather, eating and exercise can easily exist concurrently, offering a healthy approach to food. Also, my bias for Zanna lies in the fact that, like me, she is six feet tall, something that plagued me when I was younger. Her confidence in her height and the fact she promotes taking up more vertical room in the world has really helped me over the years and is there to help other young girls concerned with their appearance too.
Max is a fashion influencer from London who also happens to struggle with OCD. He doesn’t shy away from talking about his symptoms and how he copes with bad days and this is especially important in showing men that they are allowed to struggle and ask for help too.
Going by “Getcliterate”, Calee is an advocate of hormone health, focusing her content on the experiences of people who menstruate as well as providing (often humorous) sexual health tips. Calee shows her viewers that periods do not have to be difficult and that we can all be our happy and sexy selves if we look after hormone health.
The true definition of an influencer is to not feel jealous about their lifestyle, but rather to feel inspired and reassured. It is important to find content online that makes you feel this way and hopefully the above list is a good place to start.