How Instagram fame completely ruined my love life
It’s not all thousands of likes and #sponcon
Back when I had fewer than 300 followers on Instagram and exclusively posted photos of sunsets and succulents with the Valencia filter, I dreamed of Insta fame. Getting the almighty “k” in my follower count would mean working with brands on collaborations (#ad #sponsored) and maybe even some male attention after six whole years at an all-girls school.
After a solid three years of not knowing what the fuck I was doing and posting some truly horrible, oversaturated photos of myself awkwardly holding chickens at the school petting zoo, I gradually — through a series of secrets I'll share with you later — amassed more than 19,000 followers.
I get hundreds of comments, a bunch of brands blowing up my inbox to send me free stuff, and a seemingly unstoppable wave of thirsty men invading my DMs every single goddamn day. And it sucks.
Not all of it sucks, obviously. The part where I get free stuff is awesome. But becoming Insta-famous definitely took a toll on my dating life. I get male attention, all right — I get the attention of men who flirt with me for weeks only to hit me with this brutal request:
Look, I can deal with swimsuit companies pretending to like me for my “free-spirited nature” or whatever when we both know that they just want me for advertising space. But it’s another thing completely when the cute guy who’s calling me “beautiful” and “bb” suddenly offers to pay me in exchange for a Insta story shoutout. Especially when he ghosts right after he gets what he wants.
One time, a guy I was casually hooking up with invited me to hang out, practically forced his friend to take a bunch of photos of us together, and not-so-subtly hinted that I should post one of the shots on my Instagram — and don’t forget to tag him, of course!
The worst part about this whole story is that I am so obviously perpetuating the problem. I have plenty of opportunities to meet non-creepy, non-conniving men on apps like Tinder, Bumble, Hinge, and the League, but what do I do instead? This self-promo bullshit:
I’ve ended up getting in somewhat-serious relationships with a few dudes through this, but they crashed and burned horribly because — surprise, surprise! — they were all wannabe social media stars.
Realistically, it goes one of two ways: they either fail at curating the clout they crave and grow desperate, trying to pay me for a shoutout or finesse their way into one of my photos and then ghosting me when I can't give them social media stardom. Or, if they do became a successful social media star, they think of themselves as hot shit, slowly stop leaving heart-eye and water-droplet emojis on my photos…and then ghost me to move on to another social-climbing ladder.
I don’t know if you noticed, but in both scenarios, they end up ghosting and moving on to a girl who’s pretty much me but with 10,000 more followers.I thought that becoming Insta-famous would land me a super-hot boyfriend who looked like Neels Visser or Manu Rios, but I’m stuck wasting my time with the same garden variety fuckboys everyone else deals with, too.
At least I get free swimsuits, I guess.
The rules of 2019 have already been decided and there’s nothing we can do about it
People are already mad
by Caroline Phinney
I feel kind of bad for 2019 because people are already mad at it and it hasn't even started. It's like when you get with someone following a breakup and you're already assuming they're cheating on and lying to you, because why would anyone ever be genuine? How can you blame us though? Even if…
An Instagram influencer told us how to travel the world for free (or at least cheap AF)
Fine, I’m the Instagram influencer
by Nian Hu
So everyone's always asking me how I'm able to afford all of my many, many glamorous vacations to exotic destinations like Thailand and Greece. The answer, of course, is that I'm chronically broke and I literally wear the same three shirts over and over again. Now there's a solid money-saving hack! But another part of…
‘Inhumane and depressing’: Skoop describes the worst prison lockdown she’s ever experienced
‘They will fuck your whole cell up’
by Skoop Hernandez
Skoop is babe.net’s prison correspondent. She’s currently incarcerated in SCI-Muncy, a maximum security women’s prison in Pennsylvania. She loves flirting, cooking and trap music. She’s also a writer and she sends her columns to us by letter. Her nickname, as she likes to say, is Skoop because she scoops up all the girls. She’s here…