The Untold Truth Of Charli D'Amelio

In a true overnight success story, Charli D'Amelio went from your average teen girl to one of the most popular stars on the video-sharing social network TikTok. Amazingly, this dancer didn't even start her TikTok account until the age of 15 in July 2019, according to The Face. From there, the media outlet notes, "It took about 15 uploads for one to howitzer the app's ​'For You' page: a ​'duet' with the instructional dance account @move_with_joy. She got 250,000 likes and immediately gained 3,000 followers." D'Amelio's celebrity quickly blew up and, as of early 2020, she had about 34.5 million followers — making her the fourth most-followed person on the app, third if you don't count the TikTok company account.

Despite this meteoric rise to internet fame, D'Amelio has remained humble, as evidenced by her TikTok page, which boasts the tagline: "don't worry i don't get the hype either." She's still a regular teenager in many ways between her unique hobbies, hanging with cute boys, and dealing with bullies. But TikTok opened up a world of opportunities, like meeting her favorite performer ever and jet-setting off to Europe. 

Just how big will D'Amelio's fame grow? Her dance floor may have no limit. This is the untold truth of Charli D'Amelio.

Charli D'Amelio is the queen of caffeine

Charli D'Amelio loves dance, of course, but also loves to drink coffee. This caffeine bean fanatic is especially fond of the Dunkin' Donuts variety. The TikTok star has stanned for the brand through Twitter posts like, "Can i- someone marry the @dunkindonuts corporation? asking for a friend." In February 2020, D'Amelio even tweeted out a photo of her drinking a Dunkin' Donuts beverage with the caption, "My true valentine sorry @xlilhuddy," referencing her rumored flame and fellow TikTok star, Lil Huddy.

That same month, the Dunkin' Donuts company caught wind of D'Amelio's obsession and decided to thank the young woman. She shared a short video on Twitter showing the incredible swag she received from the coffee chain, including branded candles, a onesie, a fanny pack, and a massive coffee dispenser with the words, "Charli's Cold Brew Tap." The custom gift was a direct reference to a tweet D'Amelio once posted, which read, "If I could get a cold brew tap in my room my life would be complete."

Walk, walk, fashion baby

Among the many perks of rapidly becoming a social media star are the invites to exclusive events. And few things are cooler than a fashion show — especially from one of the most celebrated Italian brands, Prada. The company invited Charli D'Amelio to its Milan Fashion Week presentation in February 2020. As recounted by The Cut, the TikTok starlet "sat front row next to Derek Blasberg, and made a TikTok with some of the models." Quite the VIP experience.

D'Amelio talked about her highlights from the trip to Teen Vogue. "One of my favorite moments was meeting Mrs. Prada, Gigi Hadid, Bella Hadid, and so many more incredible people," she recounted. "I was also able to meet lots of fans, which was crazy to me because I did not expect to have so many in Milan." As if that wasn't enough, D'Amelio also received styling advice from the experts. She revealed, "I'm comfortable with the style I have now, but I'm using what I've learned about fashion, especially from the Prada team and my friends, to help step-up my style and try new things."

The D'Amelios are bringing you next generation home videos

Is your entire family on social media? In today's environment, it's unsurprising to have the whole bloodline involved in content creation. Charli D'Amelio was the first in her immediate family to gain worldwide exposure, but the rest of the crew stays active, as well. "The D'Amelios — mother Heidi, father Marc, and daughters Charli and Dixie — are all on TikTok," The Face reported. "They are the app's Flintstones: the modern algorithm-busting family. Each boosts the popularity of the other, and they frequently appear in videos together."

In this TikTok family, older sister Dixie has amassed quite the following herself — 13.7 million followers, as of early 2020. And she has a theory about the fascination with her younger sister, Charli: ​"There's been a long phase going on of people [wearing] a lot of makeup, a lot of skin showing, and all that. And [Charli] brought natural beauty into [the conversation], which I think refreshed a lot of people."

Dealing with fame can put a lot of strain on family dynamics, but the D'Amelios thankfully seem to have things under control. When YouTube Reporter Tyler Boronski asked how they coped with the business side of TikTok fame and constant traveling in December 2019, Charli responded with, "I feel like we're doing pretty well with the whole thing ... It's very new to all of us, but we're doing our best to figure it out as best we can."

From dance competitions to football's biggest stage

Quick to recognize the massive influence of social media, talent agencies historically representing big movie stars started signing TikTok personalities — not unlike YouTube stars before them. According to The Face, Charli D'Amelio's fame "set off a bidding war between rival agencies WME and UTA, and the latter won out. Their blanket deal with UTA handles tours, contracts, and other fame-bringing activities." In fact, the entire D'Amelio family — mom Heidi, dad Marc, and older sister Dixie — have all signed with UTA.

The deal may have helped Charli land her first primetime appearance. During the 2020 Super Bowl, Sabra Hummus aired its surely expensive commercial, which featured D'Amelio and Norman "Boomer" Esiason, the NFL commentator and former professional quarterback. The young star gives a disgusted look toward Esiason's audible snacking and says, "OK, Boomer" — a pun referencing the retired QB's nickname and internet catchphrase. Though some publications, like The Washington Post, didn't love the ad, it still marked a major career moment and likely a big payday for the young D'Amelio.

Dreams do come true for Charli D'Amelio

Ever since Charli D'Amelio got popular and started interviewing, a common theme has popped up — her adoration for Jennifer Lopez. In a Q&A session for Famous Birthdays, the TikTok starlet described her favorite concert experience: "J.Lo is [a] very, very big inspiration in my life. And I would say going to her concert was one of the best ones I've ever been to."

In an interview with Entertainment Tonight, D'Amelio confessed, "A couple years ago, I decided that my dream is to dance with J. Lo., and she was on top of my vision board. I've talked about her in almost every interview I've done whenever they've asked what my biggest dreams are." Luckily, her dreams came true and D'Amelio got to meet and dance with Jenny from the block herself during Super Bowl LIV weekend in February 2020. At first, the TikTok celeb was starstruck. But then D'Amelio couldn't help but become emotional as she came face-to-face with her idol for the first time. "And then it kind of set in and tears just started rolling down my eyes because this was all I ever really, really wanted to experience and it happened and it was really, really crazy," she recalled.

Life at home takes on a whole new meaning

When you were 15 years old, where did you live? Was it in a mansion with your best friends? Such is the reality for 19 social media celebrities, who reside and work at the "Hype House" in Los Angeles. Charli D'Amelio and other internet stars often spend their days in this lush residence, full of mirrors perfect for viral moments, per The New York Times. Founded by Chase Hudson and Thomas Petrou, the Hype House rules are relatively simple: no parties, replace any broken items within 15 days, and "churn out content daily." Petrou elaborated, "This whole house is designed for productivity. If you want to party, there's hundreds of houses that throw parties in L.A. every weekend."

While D'Amelio and her sister, Dixie — who are both still in high school — don't actually live full-time at Hype House, the young women often make the cross-country trek from their parents' home in Connecticut to Los Angeles to be a part of the crew. "The internet can be a little harsh," the younger D'Amelio sister told the publication, before explaining her love for the collaborative house: "Everyone here is ready to bring positivity and kindness." According to the article, "Charli also credits the group for expanding her creativity and helping her branch into new content formats like vlogging." Or, in her own words, "I'm trying things outside my comfort zone that I might not have done if I was alone in my room."

Did Charli D'Amelio find social media love with Chase Hudson?

During a February 2020 interview with Entertainment Tonight, Charli D'Amelio coyly hinted at her love life. D'Amelio's older sister, Dixie, couldn't keep a straight face when correspondent Kevin Frazier asked about Chase Hudson (a.k.a. Lil Huddy), their fellow social media star and Charli's rumored other half. "He's a really, really sweet boy," D'Amelio giggled. Though she wouldn't admit if Hudson was officially her beau, D'Amelio divulged, "Not boyfriend yet, but definitely exclusive."

As for Hudson's side of the story, he similarly said that the two weren't "officially" a couple later that month, even though the two TikTok stars sometimes live together in the Hype House in Los Angeles. "It's exclusive, we're not talking to anyone else. We really like each other, we just don't wanna put a label on it yet. I told her I wanna take my time and make sure everything's right for me before I make it official," he told Entertainment Tonight about D'Amelio. Hudson also explained his and the rest of the Hype House's support of D'Amelio's career goals: "We've always been close to her and I cared a lot about her during her path to success."

The D'Amelio sisters are speaking out against online bullies

One of the hardest things to deal with as a celeb is hateful internet comments. And for teenage stars, this can be even worse during their most formative years. As a young woman, Charli D'Amelio unfortunately deals with haters on a regular basis. For instance, she once wrote in a March 2020 Twitter post, "I will never understand adults that will yell at me over the internet or in real life it's pathetic."

To speak out against negative comments, D'Amelio and her sister, Dixie, starred in a UNICEF campaign against online bullying that February. Explaining that trolls constantly body shame her, Charli confessed, "They don't like the way my face looks for some reason. A lot about my body shape, my body type, which hits close to home, because I struggled a lot with body image, body dysmorphia, bad eating habits." Older sister Dixie said that despite the influx of online attacks, her sister "never quit making videos even with every hate comment she was getting." 

Much respect for the two siblings speaking out against cyberbullies and continuing to make content that people love, even in the face of negativity.

Charli D'Amelio and the shift from YouTube to TikTok

According to Variety, VidCon was "founded by veteran YouTube creators John and Hank Green (Vlogbrothers)" back in 2010. Since then, the event has brought famous YouTube stars together every year for fans and hopeful content creators alike. Yet, almost a decade in, the tide seemed to be changing. In 2019, The Atlantic recapped the event, writing, "This year, the platform everyone is talking about isn't YouTube — it's TikTok." Indeed, stars on the app, like Joe Waud and Payton Moormeier, seemed to generate the most buzz. 

Organizers took note and invited a huge amount of TikTok celebrities to the 2020 iteration of VidCon. Naturally, Charli D'Amelio was a featured guest. Speaking about the opportunity with Elite Daily, she said, "I'm still very new to the whole social media creator thing, so it's really cool getting to kind of jump in and get all these amazing opportunities, like being a featured creator at VidCon." It was an especially high honor, considering she had only been making TikTok videos for about eight months before the announcement. "I know a lot of people that have been creators for a lot longer than I have ... [and] have gone, and they talk about how much fun it is, and how cool it is to meet all of these people," D'Amelio added. "So, I'm just excited for that."

This TikTok star used her fame to help others

Even early on in Charli D'Amelio's rise to fame, she used her popularity for good causes. The teenager from Norwalk, Conn. started off as a dancer, so it made sense to call-back to her roots. In November 2019, the Norwalk Daily Voice reported, "D'Amelio and her family hosted a meet and greet at the teen's hometown dance studio, charging $100 per ticket for the 'VIP' experience." But this wasn't just a self-promotional stunt, as D'Amelio herself said in a YouTube video: "I'm honored to donate the money raised from ticket sales for the meet and greet to advancing abilities for people with special needs and a fellow dancer at my home studio, whose father has recently been diagnosed with ALS."

In fact, this marked the TikTok star's first-ever YouTube video — and she used it to recap her meet and greet at the "Carnival for a Cause" event. In the video, fans from her hometown went understandably crazy, while D'Amelio herself also seemed to love the experience and support. Positively beaming, she said, "I didn't know how people were gonna be. This is so cool!"

The real story behind the Renegade

In her first YouTube video, Charli D'Amelio described her least favorite TikTok dance to fans. "At first, I hated Renegade, because it took me such a long time," she said of the popular but complicated routine. The dancer went on to dish, "Over a span of three days, I would learn a little bit of it, then I was like, 'OK, can't do it,' and then, now I got it, and it's my favorite one."

While it was teen dancer Jalaiah Harmon who originally created the Renegade dance, The New York Times reports, "Charli D'Amelio had posted a video of herself doing it, as did many other TikTok influencers. None gave Jalaiah credit." At first, Harmon was understandably upset that her original dance got so popular through other people, while not receiving due recognition. But, the publication noted, the Atlanta dancer "said she doesn't harbor any hard feelings against Charli D'Amelio for popularizing the Renegade without naming her. Instead, she hopes she can collaborate with her one day." For her part, once D'Amelio discovered the origin of the dance, she stated, "I know it's so associated with me but I'm so happy to give Jalaiah credit and I'd love to collaborate with her."

Both their wishes came true in February 2020, when Harmon posted an Instagram video of herself, D'Amelio, and Addison Rae — a fellow Hype House member — performing the Renegade together. We're hoping for more fire collaborations between these dancers in the future!

Charli D'Amelio went from one dance stage to another

First and foremost, Charli D'Amelio is a dancer. In a Q&A session for Famous Birthdays, she revealed she started taking dance classes when she was only three years old, and began competing by age five. Ten years later, D'Amelio's dance moves would reach audiences everywhere through TikTok. "We knew that she was a special dancer, so we knew at some point we'd see her on stage," her father, Marc, told NBC News. "We knew that she would do great things at some point in her life, it's just come a lot earlier."

Though her moves on the social media platform can hardly be classified as competitive dancing, that's not necessarily the point. In an interview with Mel Magazine, D'Amelio admitted, "I know all my years of training aren't helping with TikTok dancing, but I know that TikTok dancing is fun."

Not to mention, these dance moves helped earn D'Amelio a spot on stage with a famous pop star at the Barclay Center in Brooklyn in late 2019 — no big deal. Speaking with YouTube Reporter Tyler Boronski, D'Amelio recounted how singer Bebe Rexha had "reached out to [her] through DM" and told the TikTok star, "I'm gonna have you go on stage with me and dance." Despite the understandable nerves, D'Amelio made the most of the opportunity, saying, "I've been on stage dancing my whole life, but that was the biggest thing I've ever done." And we imagine it's only the beginning.