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TEAM ZOELLA DECEMBER 29, 2021

The People We’ve LOVED Following on Social Media in 2021

Whether it be their outfits, their words, their sense of humour, their crazy good creativity or simply their gorgeous digital presence, these are the people who light up our feeds like the human lighthouses that they are!

Social media is often condemned for the negative impact it’s had on our lives – the comparison, the relentless consumption of information and unsolicited opinions to name a few, but for all its messy & murky pitfalls, it has created this incredible sense of community and connectivity, allowing us to discover some incredible people from all walks of life and all corners of the globe.

Whether it be their outfits, their words, their sense of humour, their crazy good creativity or simply their gorgeous digital presence, these are the people who light up our feeds like the human lighthouses that they are, continually making these platforms an open and inviting place to spend our precious downtime.

Here are the people, brands, meme accounts and insanely talented creators who have given us a much-needed daily dose of serotonin throughout 2021.

Maddie’s Faves

Ashley James – @Ashleylouisejames

Since becoming a mum the content I consume has changed slightly and I’ve definitely noticed a gravity pull towards other women in similar shoes to me. One woman in particular who has been a real source of inspiration and comfort this year is Ashley Louise James. Her little boy is just a few months older than my daughter and it’s been so reassuring seeing her be so honest about her feelings towards motherhood, breastfeeding and postnatal depression. She shows all sides of motherhood and isn’t afraid to share the dark as well as the light, in social media that can be very rare to find.

Lorna Andrews – @Lorna_luxe

My life turned upside down this year, things got very REAL and responsibilities have peaked now I have a person to care for. Pre pandemic I was always working and playing in equal measures at a million miles per hour. If I had a free weekend, a quick trip somewhere in Europe wasn’t off the cards. Those days are behind me and although I wouldn’t change where I am now for the world, sometimes it’s nice to escape in some content which echos your past life. For me that’s Lorna! She’s so genuine and down to earth yet she lives this absolutely fabulous life and takes any opportunity to explore the world whilst clearly also working very hard at the same time.

Lareese’s Faves

Carrie Santa da Silva – @wishwishwish

s/o to my number one baby girl. Not only does Carrie’s creativity leave me floored every single time (her Space NK Christmas campaigns are nothing short of a masterpiece), but she has a wonderful way of making life’s most ordinary moments an art form. Crumpled bed sheets, desk days, breakfast in bed, a cup of tea and some welsh cakes – how she captures the quiet and easily overlooked joys the every day on film brings me a ridiculous amount of happiness year after year.

Her account feels a lot like a home within this app, forever inspiring me to pick up my camera and savour life’s simple pleasures whether it be a stroll in the park or a misty morning. Her account is curated and considered but with a lived-in magic that’s so quintessentially her own. If I sound like a fangirl it’s because I am.

Lydia Millen – @lydiamillen

I’ve followed Lydia for years now but watching her invest in herself this year and show up for herself in ways she’s never had to before has made for the ultimate wholesome feel-good viewing. I find great comfort in people sharing their vulnerability openly and the way she’s spoken about her personal hardships over the last 18 months and the changes she’s put in place as a consequence of what she’s gone through in the online space has been so inspiring to see. I love it when women love themselves harder, fight for their boundaries and live their truth, all while creating a wonderful life for themselves. It’s bloody beautiful. No, you’re crying!

Chloe Plumpstead – @chloeplumpstead

This woman needs a book deal because no one crafts words like her. I’ve always loved long chatty captions and glorious streams of consciousness full of observations about life, relationships, orgasms and all the vanilla moments in between; all the glimmers of existence we often forget are the absolute essence of living. Chloe is a wordsmith of the highest order and reading her musings on everything from working from home to the thundering passing of time has been like food for the soul. Praise be for your glorious mind CP.

Grave Victory – @gracefvictory

Following her survival story has been incredibly life-affirming and inspiring for so many reasons. Grace was put in a coma after contracting Covid whilst pregnant with her son. After delivering him two months early via c section, she then spent 3 months in an induced coma and was given just a 5% chance of survival. Hearing her brave account of her experience and watching her be the mama she was always destined to be to her baby boy feels like the reminder we all need to LIVE life to the fullest.

Daisy Cooper – @Daisymaycooper

The wonky knob showdown with her publisher had me howling for days. And then she called him again when his cat died and that sent me over the edge. I mean she dedicated said book to ‘fit’ Ben Shephard on morning tv – get this woman knighted for her services to public morale already.

Danielle’s Faves

Adéṣayọ̀ Tàlàbí – @simplysayo

Most people who know me well know I love a poem, I have an IG folder of saves packed full of Brian Billston and Rupi Kaur and Zoe actually bought me a poetry book for Christmas last year! So when I came across simplysayo on TikTok I was immediately obsessed! Hilarious poems in short video format from many of her different characters are a joy to watch, some are ridiculous, some are hard-hitting, and some are so clever it takes you three watches to get all the double meanings and puns thrown in! Sayo perfectly captures the vibe of the nation when she comments on the most popular stories of the week which can be anything from England in the world cup final to Matt Hancock doing… Matt Hancock things. Her recent poem covering the Omicron variant and its original roots poorly portrayed by the media was nothing short of a masterpiece. As with most of my favourite TikTok accounts, I end up finding them on Instagram so I can gobble up even more of their content and get a feel for who they actually are as a person and let me tell you Adéṣayọ̀ is such a badass and beacon of inspiration. Watching her celebrate so many milestones with followers this year has been brilliant, and I can already see it’s opened up so many doors for her as it absolutely should because the talent is immaculate! 100% one to watch over the coming years, urging you to follow!

Christina Najjar – @itsmetinx

If you haven’t heard of Tinx yet you must have been living under a rock for the last year! Tinx’s rise to creator stardom started with her pretty profound dating advice (see box theory, and reverse box theory) using a tiny mic on TikTok but I must say I now watch her far more on the gram. Her stories are always right at the front of my follower list and they’re super casual, funny, inspiring, the list goes on. As someone who is quite happily engaged you wouldn’t think one of my favourite creators would be someone who gives so much advice on finding your person but I assure you Tinx is so much more than that. From telling us what she’s eating at all times, to what book she’s binging, to whether or not she’s spotted a Bronco that day, it’s always fun to see a day in the life of someone in LA/New York/ London (she gets around!) There are so many ‘Tinxisms’ that knowing her codes makes you feel like you’re in a fun millennial internet crew, for example, RMW = Rich Mom Walk – getting your steps in early morning and thinking about the day ahead/manifesting what you want out of life and kick-starting the day with power and control. I might not be doing the whole thing justice so just go and follow and join us in the club!

Abisola Omole – @AbiMarvel

I’ve followed Abisola for YEARS, ever since she created a relaxing apartment for LFW bloggers needing a rest, so we’re going on 8ish years, however, this year Abi’s content just hit different! Currently, Abi is delivering the chicest, sexiest, on-trend fashion and interiors content on Instagram, no contest. From showing us what’s going on in her studios (available to rent out for shoots) to where she’s travelling, I’m always hooked by both her feed and story content. Where Abi really shines for me is through her branded content, usually something you might skip. The utmost care, respect and effort is always put into the content she delivers and you can tell she only works with brands that she has a really natural fit with, recently Abisola was commissioned to create a temporary retail space with By Rotation and seeing her put together the space and why was so interesting to watch, unsurprisingly it turned out beautiful! I’ve loved watching her on her travels to New York and LA, quickly scribbling down all of her recommendations and saving her outfit inspo. Go and check out Abi on IG now if any if this sounds like your vibe as she does it SO WELL.

Charlotte’s Faves

Ethan and Hila Klein – The H3 Podcast

Can the Klein family adopt me already?! Listening/watching along to the H3 Podcast during lockdown honestly got me through those first dreary months of 2021 and it’s become a solid part of my WFH routine to have Ethan and the crew in the background of so much of my life now. For those who don’t know the podcast is a comedy and chat show based on popular culture and current internet moments and it’s kept me going having such regular content to go-to whenever I need a laugh- 100% my comfort watch! I would also love a wardrobe full of Teddy Fresh (Hila’s brand) in 2022, please.

Karina @StyleIdealist

The queen of Reels! I met Karina in 2019 and her infectious personality and smile has stuck with me since then, giving me a boost of positivity every time she pops up on my feed. Not only are her outfits always 11/10, but I live for her Story updates too and the balance of real-life with a dreamy style that makes you wanna be besties IRL. She is the absolute queen of smock dresses and occasion styling and I always head to her page when I need a dose of achievable and gorgeous style inspo.

Hannah – YogawithHan

Team Zoella did a gorgeous Self Love Yoga class with Hannah earlier this year and I’ve been obsessed with this ray of sunshine ever since. I’ve since been to more of her classes and always leave with a full heart and feeling recharged and with a newfound appreciation for my body and self. Her Instagram is a gorgeous extension of that, regularly sharing unfiltered selfies, easy and accessible ways to connect with your body and in general beautiful tips for a life more in tune with yourself. I can’t wait to learn more from her in 2022!

Bonny & Emily – Chats and Reacts

I got my Taylor Swift/Evermore inspired tattoo in 2021 and with the re-release of Red, it’s clear this year was the ONE for Swifties everywhere. The gorgeous girls from Chats and Reacts came up on my TikTok FYP so many times and I fell in love with both their gorgeous Australian accents, charm and insight into all things Ms Swift. Their reaction to the 10-minute version of All Too Well was a personal favourite of mine and I want to be pals with them both so much!

Mark Groves – Create the Love

Thank goodness the latter part of 2021 saw me heal a lot from a 2020 break-up, but the first 6 months of the year were still pretty rough. Filling my feed with positive energy and healing tools and information was a really transformative choice for me, and the content from Create the Love/Mark Groves was such a big part of that. I can scroll through any of Mark’s posts or videos and gain so much- he just really speaks my language and I can’t wait to learn more from his work in 2022.

Darcey’s Faves

Simple Politics – @simplepolitics

Without these guys I would have never been able to keep up with everything that’s going on in the UK at the moment, from politics to covid, they cover everything and with rules constantly changing for Covid, I’ve found this account super helpful. Definitely an account doing a whole lot of good for the people!

Sarel Madzebra – @cocosarel

I am obsessed with this woman, OBSESSED. She is so bloody funny and her Love Island rundowns are iconic to say the least. You don’t even need to watch the series, just watch her narrow the best bits into one video and you’ll be laughing in seconds. She also does celeb rundowns, things happening in the news etc, but always so funny and also so accurate!

Ellie Beatrice Joslin – @missjoslin

I go to Ellie for the majority of my style Inspo, she dresses super cool and her gram is very aesthetically pleasing. I really like using Instagram and Pinterest for fashion Inspo and building saved folders, I think this is always a real positive from these platforms is people expressing themselves how they choose and inspiring others.

Rosie – @rosiebreenx

At the later end of this year, I decided that I wanted to work on my health and to start eating more nourishing meals accompanied by more exercise. I live a very sedentary life and with the past year of lockdowns, I became quite unfit and wasn’t feeling like myself anymore. I followed Rosie from the beginning of my journey and she is so great, she is super positive and everything she does revolves around self-love and making these changes in life for the right reason. She shares really tasty recipes and keeps everyone updated with her own journey, she also very much preaches to still enjoy the things you love. She’s just bought out a cookbook too so definitely check her out if this is something you are interested in!

Benjamina – @bakedbybenji

If you love baking you need to follow Benjamina asap! She bakes the most delicious looking goods, including gluten-free and vegan options so there really is something for everyone. The other day she posted about a pistachio, cardamon and lemon cake and I was actually salivating. There’s a load of baking Inspo over on her Instagram and she also works with other bakers too on recipes so there’s always fresh new things to try!

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Aphrodite

Loved this blog post! I’m always looking for different people to follow. Happy New Year!

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