BY LESLEY HAULER
Not everything is how it appears.
One Instagram star showed her followers the brutal truth behind those 'effortless' shots before quitting all social media.
Essena O'Neill's life seemed perfect -- at least on social media. The 18-year-old from Australia had racked up half a million followers on Instagram, 200,000 on YouTube and Tumblr and 60,000 on Snapchat, according to Marie Claire.
The "regular teen" constantly posted #fitspo photos and selfies on the platforms, which amassed tens of thousands of likes.
But the girl put all that to a halt the other week after abruptly announcing she was quitting all social media posts. O'Neill deleted 2,000 posts from her Instagram and renamed the account, "Social Media Is Not Real Life."
In one last YouTube video, the Australian revealed the reason behind her sudden departure from all things social media.
%shareLinks-quote="I haven't done anything for this success except put pictures of myself online." type="quote" author="Essena O'Neill" authordesc="Social media star" isquoteoftheday="false"%
She also re-edited her captions to drop some brutal truth bombs about what really happened behind the scenes of these snapshots.
%shareLinks-quote="I have created a celebrity mentality or a celebrity concept of myself online and I wish for that to stop right now." type="quote" author="Essena O'Neill" authordesc="" isquoteoftheday="false"%
%shareLinks-quote="I get people saying every day on my Tumblr or on Instagram... 'I wish I was you' ... Lately I've realised how horrible that is. For someone to follow my content and think I wish I was you, that is the opposite of what I want to promote." type="quote" author="Essena O'Neill" authordesc="" isquoteoftheday="false"%
However, some of O'Neill's friends have spoken out against her social media outrage, calling the blackout a "hoax." According to The Independent, YouTube bloggers Nina and Randa posted a video about the Queensland girl's campaign, dismissing it as false.
The girls, who O'Neill visited while she was in LA, believe that O'Neill's claims all stem from a recent breakup with her boyfriend:
The reason she is so upset is because of the breakup with this guy. And then she is putting all the blame on social media and saying everyone in LA is horrible and claims about fame and is depressed ... That's just not true, what she is saying is fake.
O'Neill has since spurned YouTube for Vimeo, where the teen says she can post daily videos because of the site's "positive and value based ranking, not likes or followers of BS ads."
Since O'Neill's story has gone global, the teenager has deleted her Instagram account and made a video response about all the coverage generated from her story, entitled, 'LETS TALK ABOUT SOMETHING MORE IMPORTANT THAN ME, okay?'
The video was posted on her website letsbegamechangers.com, which the Australian hopes "to create a platform that acts to spread new age messages of conscious living."
The teen may not be so far off. See how one study says obsessing over the perfect social media post could be ruining your life:
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