“First Lady of TikTok” Heidi D’Amelio Talks About the Impact of Social Media On Daughters Charli and Dixie
“Sometimes mama bear has to type it out because it feels so good to clap back, and then I just delete it. It’s not worth it.”
on September 09, 2021
Ask your pre-teen who Charli and Dixie D’Amelio are… we’ll wait (but not too long; they’re bound to respond quickly!). These TikTok superstars have taken social media by storm. Charli began posting dance routines to the app when she was just 15 years old in 2019, and quickly became the most followed account on the social media platform. Soon, her older sister Dixie joined in on the fun. And one key to their massive success: their mom (and our guest on The MomForce Podcast brought to you by Chatbooks), Heidi D’Amelio!
These days, the D’Amelio family has a combined following of more than 200 million. And their influence extends well beyond social media. Dixie and Charli have their own clothing line, podcast and makeup line with Morphe Cosmetics. Dixie just released her first album and both girls continue to make a name for themselves.
And Heidi and her husband Marc are keeping themselves busy, too. When they’re not hosting their podcast, Marc and Heidi: The Other D’Amelios, they’re starring in their new 8-episode docu series on Hulu, The D’Amelio Show.
During her conversation on The MomForce Podcast with Chatbooks co-founder Vanessa Quigley, Heidi shares her advice on raising teens alongside social media, what she really thinks about her daughters’ careers and so much more. Download the episode to hear it all, and read some of her best tidbits below!
How would you describe TikTok in a nutshell?
It’s an app where you can create your own short videos. For some reason when the app started gaining popularity, during the summer of 2019, my kids happened to be two of the accounts that grew really, really fast. And here we are. I know there is a lot between here and there, but that's pretty much it in a nutshell. It's fun, it started out with young users, and we've seen it age up since summer of 2019.
The comments section on TikTok can be a scary place. Has the mama bear inside you ever responded to comments on your daughters’ pages?
I've gotten much better since things first started. When their accounts started growing and negative comments started happening, I would try to find out who the commenters were and what they were all about. And it would be a 10-year-old saying these terrible things, and I would just think, “Where is your mother?!”. Sometimes the mama bear inside me has to type it out because it feels so good to clapback, and then I just delete it. It’s not worth it.
Do you think social media has an impact on today’s kids?
We can't deny it: Social media is a part of our lives and it's going to be even more a part of our kids' lives. I think more and more that it's going to be used almost as currency, when you're going to get a job they're going to look at your social media and see if it looks good. Maybe the other candidate didn't do that. Who's going to represent your company better?
I don't know, I think the person that represents themselves better has some leverage there.
What is your advice for teenagers that are just starting to use social media?
If you put something stupid out there, it’s going to come back to haunt you. When Dixie and Charli had 100 followers and they would get something negative, it hurt the same. Negativity always hurts—let's just be nice.
Your girls are getting older. Dixie is 19 years old and recently moved out of the house and got her own place, and Charli is 17 years old. How do you continue to parent them and help guide their careers without being overbearing?
I’m kind of at this stage, I like to call it, the “consulting” stage. I’m still a parent, both Marc and I are, obviously. But you take on a different role at this age.
Do you have a memory of a magical everyday moment that was captured in a photo?
We went to a UConn vs. Michigan football game when the girls were younger and we lived in Connecticut. The tailgating and the whole experience was wild! I was surprised by how many Michigan fans came out for the game. We had a blast.