It’s a sight on social media we’re all used to by now; lavish holidays, expensive designer goods and luxe meals.
But one influencer has revealed the truth behind images she posted online of her enjoying a first class overseas flight and presents from Louis Vuitton — she was actually flat broke at the time.
Anna Paul is an influencer from the Sunshine Coast who has more than 1.1 million followers across YouTube, TikTok and Instagram.
The 21-year-old is most famous for her 60 second daily vlogs on TikTok and is also one of Australia’s highest earners on OnlyFans.
RELATED: Influencer’s racy photo ban
Anna now supports herself via the subscription-only website but openly admits she and her family had previously struggled to make ends meet.
It didn’t stop Anna from having nice things and posting them on Instagram as a teen, telling news.com.au it was important to remember social media is your “highlights”.
“A lot of people think that if you grow up really broke you can never have anything ever, which isn’t true,” she said.
“When you’re struggling you’ll still able to save up and buy nice things.”
RELATED: Teen YouTube star’s shock death
In a TikTok video last week Anna hit out at people who were trying to “expose” her by claiming she wasn’t as poor as she had made out.
“It was this girl who had posted my old Instagram pictures that are on my Instagram of me just showing off nice things like a Michael Kors watch or a plane flight to Dubai in first class,” Anna said.
“She was posting those in Facebook groups and then she was posting a TikTok video of me saying I grew up poor.”
Anna said the TikTok video ended up getting quite a reaction, prompting her to expose the reality behind her “rich” Instagram lifestyle.
Despite flaunting a lavish lifestyle, as a teen it had all been “fake”, with each photo actually hiding a reality far less glamorous than what had appeared online.
FIRST CLASS FLIGHT TO DUBAI
Anna explained on TikTok that while it had looked like she went on an long-haul flight first class the truth was far less glamorous.
“This is me 2014, first class right — rich? No. My whole family lives in Germany and we wanted to go visit them but of course we couldn’t afford tickets for everyone so my uncle bought two plane tickets, one for my brother, one for me, economy,” she said.
“During the last 30 minutes of the trip my brother vomited, he vomited all over the seat and he vomited all over me.
“So they put us in first class for the last 20 minutes because we were minors, and I flexed it. Instagram is fake!”
LAVISH DESIGNER ITEMS
“My mum bought me this in 2015, Louis Vuitton wallet, it cost $500,” Anna said of an Instagram photo she posted showing off the customised designer wallet. “She got $250 from Centrelink a week and she saved up for a year.”
Of a photo she posted showing off a YSL purchase, Anna revealed she had actually only purchased one of the brand’s cheapest items.
“This is a $50 YSL lipstick,” she said. “I bought this and I couldn’t afford the train ticket home, I had to illegally jump on the train.”
Her Tiffany & Co jewellery had been a birthday present from her brother that he had worked hard to be able to afford.
“When (my brother) Atis was 13 he used to buy hookahs online for really cheap and then sell them at school for $10 each,” Anna said. “For my 16th birthday he saved up for these for me.”
Since sharing her video Anna said she has received dozens of messagings from people in the same situation as her.
“A lot of people have been messaging me saying, ‘hey girl I was in the exact same situation’,” she said.
“One girl said to me my parents had a mansion and two BMWs even we struggled financially.”
Anna told news.com.au back in July that her family would “scratch our last money together to live a nice lifestyle”, often with a weekly groceries budget of just $30 for four people.
“I know how to have a fun day without spending a lot of money but at the same time we struggled a lot – sometimes our cars would break and we would have to walk everywhere, we couldn’t drive,” she said.
“Sometimes we didn’t have enough money to drive to the fuel station to get fuel, we had no money for a long time.”
Anna said her financial struggles “motivated” her to make more money as an adult and she turned to Only Fans – a subscription website on which users earn money from those who watch their content. It’s creators include those in the fitness, music, creative and adult entertainment industries.
In the first seven days of starting her account she made $7000 and she’s now in the top 0.02 per cent earners on the website.
Originally published as Influencer exposes her own ‘rich’ photos