If you haven't already realised, most of what you see on your Instagram feed is not real, and I can't help but feel as though the growth of influencer culture is pressuring people into portraying a perfect life to their followers. During lockdown I began to notice that most influencers follow the same themes: they tend to post and promote completely unrealistic and unhealthy lifestyles, all whilst making money from brands that they probably haven't even tried themselves. Generally speaking, I'm not a fan of Instagram's influencer culture, however there are some people out there who are using their platform for good. In today's post I want to share, in no particular order, four of my favourite Instagram accounts who are guaranteed to refresh your feed...
1. POLLY VADASZ (@pollyvdsz)
Polly is an illustrator, owner of @sighh.studio, and one of my favourite people to follow on Instagram. What I love most about Polly's account is the genuine authenticity behind her content; she's never afraid to ask her followers for advice, share her cringey dating stories or talk about how she feels when she's down. Honesty like Polly's can be hard to find on Instagram. On top of the fact that following Polly feels like you're following a friend, she also provides some amazing foodie content. I always look forward to seeing what recipe she'll be tackling next and, as a soon to be uni student, the quick and delicious recipes on her blog will definitely come in handy soon! Polly manages to upload all of this content on to her personal Instagram whilst also juggling her business Sighh by Polly. She is always designing cute and quirky new products, and she often documents the process on her Instagram stories, which makes for an interesting watch.
POLLY'S CONTENT IN 3 WORDS: relatable, realistic, entertaining.
2. TITI FINLAY (@ttfinlay)
When I first stumbled upon Titi's account I was drawn in by her high energy stories and impromptu musical theatre renditions, but I stayed because of her passion, drive and love for what she does. Titi definitely has one of the coolest feeds on Instagram, so it's no surprise that she's found a career in Social Media Management. When I started following Titi she was working for ASOS and I remember reading an article about how hard she worked to secure her dream job. I've often said that I'd like to work somewhere within the media in the future, but part of me used to think that it was unlikely to happen. Through following Titi and reading this article though, I became inspired and was given an insight into how she made her dreams a reality. Titi's Instagram content is highly focused on fashion and sneakers, and - speaking of making dreams a reality - she recently collaborated with Nike and designed her own sneaker, called 'Power To The Female.' Not only is Titi providing some weird, wonderful and entertaining content, she's also breaking boundaries in the fashion world and successfully working towards shaking up the male dominated world of sneakers. Pretty inspiring stuff if you ask me!
TITI'S CONTENT IN 3 WORDS: eccentric, motivating, vibrant
3. ELIZA BATTEN (@elizabatten)
Eliza Batten is best known for appearing on Made In Chelsea. However, unlike other reality TV stars, she has managed to avoid becoming your typical influencer. Instead of promoting a load of rubbish to her followers, Eliza uses her platform to educate people and raise money for charities. I only started following Eliza recently, but it's safe to say that her account is a breath of fresh air! From themed family dinners, to documenting her exercise struggles, Eliza's posts kept me constantly entertained during lockdown and definitely provided some much needed light relief. The positive impact that Eliza had on people during lockdown was not just limited to the occasional funny post though. In the early stages of lockdown, she took to Instagram to share that she'd been shopping for and donating to her local food bank, and she urged her followers to do the same. She then began selling clothes on Depop to raise money for charities such as The Trussell Trust, Stephen Lawrence Charitable Trust and Unicef UK. As of today, her weekly Depop drops have raised over £10,000 for charities such as these!
ELIZA'S CONTENT IN 3 WORDS: funny, uplifting, inspiring
4. JACK EDWARDS (@jackbenedwards)
Jack Edwards is a YouTuber, ex-English Literature student and professional pun maker. He gained his following by uploading revision content onto YouTube and has been helping his followers and subscribers ever since. As a student, I find influencers like Jack to be immensely valuable. Jack works tirelessly to provide fun yet informative content about how to prepare for exams, what to expect at university and his top tips on surviving student life. This type of content is highly sought after and there are hundreds of other creators releasing similar videos and posts, however no one does it quite like Jack. He manages to be serious yet light-hearted, informative yet jokey all at the same time, and this combination makes his content so watchable! He manages to carry this same vibe over to his Instagram account and through to his newly released products - such as his 'Jack-admeic' Academic Planner and his new book: 'The Uni-Verse.' Another thing that sets Jack apart from similar influencers is his honesty. As previously mentioned, influencers often feel a need to portray the perfect life - but Jack is not afraid to share his failures. He was rejected from Oxford University, and - as someone who has been rejected from university before - I appreciated his transparency in sharing this with his followers. Many influencers would've refrained from sharing an incident like this, but there is something admirable about Jack being able to share this experience and pick himself up from it.
JACK'S CONTENT IN 3 WORDS: informative, insightful, helpful
These 4 accounts are all very different, but they are all more than just influencers: they're empowering, uplifting and genuinely passionate about what they post. If, like me, you're tired of seeing the same old content and brand deals on your Instagram feed, definitely check these accounts out and give them a follow!