Gwennan Rees

Blogger and Illustrator

A Reaction to Zoella's 'Revealing' Snapchat.

A Reaction to Zoella's 'Revealing' Snapchat.


So if you haven't already heard of Zoella, I don't know what rock you've been under for the past 2374827348 years but if you are a blogger/vloggers/youtube star, you probably have her to thank for your industry. 

Zoella is a beauty Youtube star and blogger and she essentially paved the way for people who have a little section of the internet to make a career and to be taken seriously as businesspeople. 

So what you might not know if you don't follow her or take an interest in what she's up to is the snapchat she posted this week and the articles and the aftermath that followed. 

After posting a selfie of her in bed in her Calvins, I doubt Zoe Sugg anticipated the articles that appeared in the newspapers and the hate and shade she got for it. 

The original articles can be read here FYI:

The Sun Article on Zoella. 

The Daily Mail Article on Zoella. 

So what's the problem? Well exactly in my opinion, I don't have a problem with it at all. It ISN'T very revealing, it ISN't overtly sexualised, it ISN'T shocking...it's just a 25 year old girl sleeping in a t shirt and pants...LIKE WE ALL DO. I didn't realise we'd reverted back to the early 1900's and the media thought we were sleeping in nighties or full length stripey pjs? I didn't realise when I, like 99% of girls my age, sleep in vest tops and shorts or t shirts and pants, that I was being revealing and sexual. As far as I was aware it was just comfortable for a good nights sleep?

The other problem I had with the articles was the needless repetition of stating how much she earns per month and her 'long term boyfriend' Alfie Deyes. I don't see how either of those facts had anything to do with the selfie and with the content of the article and the more I read how she 'reportedly makes OVER 50,000 POUNDS PER MONTH', the more it wound me up. As if the money she's making has any kind of affect on her bedtime wardrobe? Or that maybe her boyfriend Alfie would have a problem with her sharing the photo because 'they are long term?' If you've seen Alfie's selfie in the aftermath of the articles, you'll know he really didn't have a problem with it. 

So what did the articles achieve? Well the Twitter backlash was INSANE and you couldn't scroll through your feed without seeing #westandwithzoe somewhere. Most people (me included) just wrote about how ridiculous the articles were but a lot of people posted similar selfies to Zoella of them in their pants. 

And this is where it all got a bit out of control. Some were funny, some were lads in their pants, some were dogs in pants but some WERE sexual which was literally the opposite of the point of the hashtag and then, a lot were posted by under 18s. 

I saw a lot of girls my age pleading with underage girls not to post selfies in their underwear and I also saw a lot of teenagers getting all mouthy and professing that the legal age of consent is 16 and this is where I think the problem lies. 

Zoe Sugg is 25. She is an adult woman and she can quite frankly do what the fuck she wants and who is some journo to tell her not to post a picture in her calvins? #mycalvins has been a trending hashtag on Instagram since god knows when because of the Kendall Jenner campaign and is that only ok because she's a paid model? Of course not. 

People really got angry about how a lot of Zoella's fans are tweens and teens and I saw a lot of "You should think about what you're posting, my sister loves you". But lets be honest here...Zoella doesn't have a duty to protect your sister or your cousin or all the teenage girls in Britain? Yes she has a responsibility, as done everyone over what she posts online but you have to remember, as well as the scores of tweens, Zoella also has a lot of fans and a lot of friends her own age online, the ones she connects with and responds to. 

Maybe instead of writing some kind of slut shaming article about a 25 year old who wears pants when she's supposed to be 'a wholesome, no drinking, no swearing' celebrity, maybe we should be teaching our girls to be savvy online. 

Maybe we should be teaching them that they could have put the hashtag to better use because of the legal implications about sharing those types of photos and how they could, and anyone retweeting could, get into trouble over distributing what is child pornography in the eyes of the law. 

Maybe we should teach them that whilst the legal age of consent is 16, there could be a lot of consequences to things if you are under 18. 

Maybe we should teach them about body confidence, about loving yourself and NOT slut shaming other girls whilst also teaching them they don't need to be sending dodgy selfies to boys. 

Maybe we should be teaching our girls, our teenagers, our impressionable young adults to be safe online and use Zoella's example as a mantra for being natural and body confident NOT as a overly sexualised girl in her underwear in a world which is already putting enough pressure on our tweens to look good. 

Zoe Sugg's selfie was not sexual, did not tarnish her reputation and was frankly, not news at all. 

How did you react to #westandwithzoe?

Follow Zoella on all forms of social media and have a look at her website here!

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