Connecticut Teen Becomes First Tik Toker to Reach 100M Followers Milestone

Charli D’amelio started by posting short videos of herself dancing in her bedroom on Tik Tok and has now hit 100M followers as the app’s first, making her the most followed account. She’s become a household name after a viral video of hers launched her into stardom, a duet she claims only had eight basic moves. Every day, she's been gaining followers at an exponential rate and has billions of likes on the app, too. Previously, she was a member of the Hype House which helped get her name out more by collaborating with big names Addison Rae, Avani Gregg, and Chase Hudson. Not expecting to blow up, at the young age of 16, D’amelio has easily become the most successful Tik Toker there is to date.

D’amelio has an older sister Dixie, 19, and parents, Heidi and Marc. Her parents have always been supportive of her dreams as a dancer, allowing her to train since the age of 3 and competing since she was 5. The D’amelio’s have a family YouTube channel with just over a million subscribers and both of the girls have a channel of their own, with the younger one having over 8 million subscribers and the other sister with just over 6 million. On her YouTube, she has made videos with Molly Burke, James Charles, Bebe Rexha, and Brad Mondo.

Growing up as a dancer and still obviously having a passion for it, D’amelio finds it important to “give back to the community that made me the person that I am.” Working together with Tik Tok, she’s made it possible for $100,000 to be donated to the American Dance Movement, an organization that helps provide Americans with access to dance education. Through this collaborative effort, D’amelio has also allowed for $10,000 to be granted to 10 different dance schools across the country. With UNICEF, she’s raised awareness about cyberbullying alongside her sister, both of whom receive hate online. She’s even used her platform to talk about her experience with eating disorders and body image, amongst other things.

On her own, the young teen has managed to become the youngest ever to make Fortune’s 40 under 40 list along with partnering with Hollister to create clothing, voicing Tinker in the movie StarDog and TurboCat, and even having a cameo in a 2020 Super Bowl commercial. She was also featured dancing in Jennifer Lopez’ newest music video for the song “Pa Ti.” D’amelio even has her own drink at Dunkin’ Donuts named “The Charli”- a cold brew coffee with caramel swirl and whole milk. The Tik Tok star has also appeared on talk shows with Jimmy Fallon and Ryan and Kelly.

Even though D’amelio reached celebrity status fairly quick, the way to the top wasn’t easy. On top of dealing with hate, the star has found herself in hot water with her most recent scandal resulting in her losing over a million Tik Tok followers in a matter of days after a video on her family's YouTube channel brought people to believe that she was being ungrateful. With the storm of hate and even death threats she was receiving, D’amelio tearfully shared in an Instagram Live, “If this is the community that I’m in and the community that I put myself in, I don’t know if I want to do that anymore.” She bounced back a short while later by hitting 100M, but fans were quick to allege that she bought followers to hit the milestone. Prior to this incident, D’amelio was called out for partying during the coronavirus pandemic and not crediting the original creator of the Renegade dance, Jalaiah Harmon, after popularizing the dance herself.

Despite all the drama she’s had, D’amelio will likely remain in the spotlight. In the future, she hopes to go on tour and meet more of her fans, with mentions of this on her segment on the Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. D’amelio is also planning to release a book in December, while her entire family has been teasing a reality show of theirs for the upcoming months. A 14 second dance clip started it all for D’amelio, but at the rate she’s growing, time will only tell how far she’ll truly go in her career.

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