Most of us think of American e-girls and e-boys when we hear the words “TikTok star”. After all, the app has made a name for itself as Gen Z’s social media mecca. But that doesn’t mean that Gen Z are the only demographic flourishing on the app!
@ohsokawaiixoxo, aka Sarah, is an Australian thirty-something year old TikToker known for her cute dance routines, and love of all things pink and kawaii. Sarah describes her style as casual Fairy Kei; in her videos you’ll see her in colour blocked, bold statement pieces like platform sneakers and knee high socks from the likes of Listen Flavor and 6%DOKIDOKI. Reality means that Sarah has to wear more practical clothing in her everyday life, so her social media acts as a place where she can truly express herself.
“I am still in so much awe…
I have a wonderful fan base”.
From a young age, Sarah was a fan of Barbie and Hello Kitty but it wasn’t until her mid-twenties that she began to dress as she does now. Growing up, “[only mainstream clothing] was available to me…but it never really quite felt like ‘me’”. Sarah became interested in Japanese street fashion after seeing a Lolita fashion show; she instantly fell in love and wanted to be a part of the community. Lolita allowed her to tap into her creativity and provided a sense of freedom she had never felt before.
Image courtesy of @ohsokawaiixoxo via TikTok.
Sarah lives in Adelaide, a beautiful city with lovely festivals and even better wine. But Adelaide “isn’t the most kawaii place in the world”, Sarah admits. The community is “nothing like…the huge [kawaii] communities you see in…bigger cities” and that makes Sarah even more grateful for the online community.
Sarah’s TikTok was initially created for fun. A friend had just completed a shoe challenge, and Sarah wanted to join in. Her instagram fan base was slow to grow, so becoming a viral hit on TikTok was the last thing Sarah expected. “I was…having lunch with a friend and my phone just started going nuts… [M]y views and followers went up and up,” she gushes. “I am still in so much awe that there are that many people in this world that find me interesting enough to follow what I do for fun…I have a wonderful fan base”.
Sarah admits that it’s a struggle to upload regular content. She doesn’t want to let down fans, but “there is only so much time in the day, so all I can do is my best”. It’s apparent in the content she produces that her fans are very dear to her. Sarah encourages her fans to be kind to one another and to always remember that fashion has no constraints. Her advice for aspiring content creators? Be yourself. “Let your wonderful personality shine through in all you do”. Create things for the right reasons and cherish your fans: “growing real connections takes time but [it] is so worth it”. And when you feel discouraged, just remember everyone starts at the beginning.
Image courtesy of Born Bred Talent.
When Sarah isn’t creating content, she’s working as a disability support worker and studying for a bachelor’s degree in Communication and Media. Her decision to study was absolutely inspired by her social media career. Never having attended university, Sarah was a bit apprehensive about becoming a graduate in her 30s. “[I]t was a bit of a steep learning curve”, Sarah says, but also a challenge that she was more than willing to rise to.
What does the future look like for @ohsokawaiixoxo? “I hope to grow my Instagram and YouTube accounts to match my TikTok one”. Her dream job is social media management and content creation at TikTok—after finishing her degree, of course.
Written by Kay.
Featured image courtesy of @ohsokawaiixoxo via TikTok, photo editing by @nimbus.jelly.