Hi, everyone! I’m kinda late to the Scribbling game, but better late than never. My blogs will focus on Asian issues, history and celebrities. I will write about the prevalent Asian-American or Asian issues, important Asian-related history (that we often do not learn about in school) and different Asian or Asian-American influencers/celebrities.
For my first post, I want to feature Karen Ip, an Asian-Canadian Instagram influencer, widely known by her Instagram name "Fruitypoppin.” Karen Ip is an 18-year-old university freshman who currently lives in Toronto, Canada. Ip was born and raised in Hong Kong but immigrated to Canada when she was four. With 1.5 million Instagram followers and 770k YouTube subscribers, Karen Ip has amassed a large following from making funny videos, promoting self-love, filming makeup videos and working to empower other Asians. Her initial rise to fame was through her comedic Instagram video called “Pika Pika,” which many big meme pages reposted and gained over millions of views. Her other viral and popular comedic videos often relate to Asian culture and feature her dad.
Karen Ip is also well-known for her “dual image” of being very glammed up and not caring about what she looks like. In her interview with NextShark, “Fruitypoppin” commented on her duality, saying, “I’m 100% fine with putting both sides of me online because I think it’s very important for people to understand that there’s no need to force yourself to be someone you’re not! I find that many people try to follow and be just like those they look up to online, but only seeing the super perfect aspects of another person’s life online can be super bad for one’s self image! I know it was for me when I was younger.” In her Youtube video “get UNready with me Rant | Fruitypoppin” (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rP_6Sascw64_), Ip comments on the importance of self-love and confidence and explains that she wears makeup to enhance her beauty rather than to hide herself.
“Fruitypoppin” hopes to inspire and empower all of her followers, especially Asians. Through her videos, which often highlight Asian culture, Karen Ip works to make other Asians proud of their heritage and culture. Karen Ip’s biggest goal on her social media platform is to act as a role model for Asians living in the West. In the same interview with NextShark, Ip shared, “I’m very happy to be Asian, however, I haven’t always been confident with my heritage. I very distinctly remember when I was maybe around 10, I asked my mom, ‘Wouldn’t it be great if I was born Caucasian? I would be so pretty!’ It was sad. Don’t get me wrong, though. It’s not that there’s anything wrong with being White; it’s the fact that I didn’t accept who I was. Growing up, I saw very little Asian representation in the media, so I thought that was the only way to be accepted in North America. I started being proud [of my heritage] when I started to realize that it was pointless for me to try to be who I’m not. So I started embracing who I am. I embrace my culture in hopes of letting other Asians know that they should be comfortable with who they are as well!” The insecurities Karen Ip feels about her heritage is shared amongst the Asian youth community as the lack of Asian representation in Western media can often skew the community’s perception of itself.
I decided to make Karen Ip the first Asian celebrity feature on my blog because of how much she empowers and relates to me. Like many other people of color, I never really saw myself that much in the mainstream media. Consequently, my confidence level was negatively affected. When I found “Fruitypoppin” on Instragram, I immediately knew I loved and admired her. I loved how she was not afraid to show the difference between her natural self and “glammed-up” self. As I’ve also struggled with self-image and love, seeing someone who I can relate to acting confidently no matter what she looks like is extremely empowering. Having a famous Instagrammer who wears similar glasses to me, also has immigrant parents, and also has a “dual image” has helped me gain confidence and self-love. I instantly connect to her comedy due to the elements of Asian culture in her jokes. Through her positive messages and jokes, Karen Ip has created a supportive and loving platform, which inspires many of her followers to be proud of themselves.
If you want to find out more about “Fruitypoppin,” check out this Youtube interview with her: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bN1aN0pf8Jo.