A teen TikToker who was mocked for calling a $60 bag 'luxury' responded to online hate in a tearful video: 'Growing up, I did not have a lot'
Zoe Gabriel, a TikToker in Singapore, made a video thanking her dad for buying her a $60 bag.
Some commenters mocked Gabriel, 17, for describing the bag as "luxury."
Gabriel called the negative comments "ignorant" and said she didn't grow up with wealth.
A TikToker in Singapore made a tearful video response to online hate after she was mocked for describing a $60 bag as "luxury."
On Sunday, 17-year-old Zoe Gabriel posted a video with an on-screen caption that said "my first luxury bag." In the clip, Gabriel could be seen purchasing a bag from Charles & Keith, a Singaporean fashion brand.
The video cut to a clip of Gabriel unboxing her bag and putting it over her shoulder. "Thank you dad," the caption under the post said.
thank you dad
♬ Glitch - Just audios
Gabriel's post blew up, receiving 6.7 million views.
While some commenters complimented her and said they liked her new bag, others appeared to mock her for using "luxury" to describe the bag, which costs $76 on the fashion house's US website and 79.90 Singapore dollars, or about $60, on its Singapore website.
Some commenters compared her description to "calling a fast food restaurant fine dining" and highlighted fashion brands that have a similar price point but typically wouldn't be described as "luxury."
Later that day, Gabriel replied to one comment that said, "Who's gonna tell her?" followed by a laughing emoji. She filmed a response explaining why she stood by her use of the term "luxury."
"Growing up, I did not have a lot. My family didn't have a lot," she said. "We couldn't buy things as simple as bread."
@zohtaco Replying to @cressy ♬ original sound - zoe 🦋
She continued, appearing to tear up: "Your comment spoke volumes on how ignorant you seem because of your wealth. To you, an $80 bag may not be a luxury. For me and my family, it is a lot, and I'm so grateful that my dad was able to get me one. He worked so hard for that money." She added, "I can't believe I got hate over a bag that I was so excited to have."
She was met with an overwhelmingly positive response, receiving 2.1 million views and 171,000 likes. People left positive comments under that video and under her original post.
"The haters making fun of you are simply too privileged to see things from another perspective and be happy for someone else," one comment said. "Don't let that get you down."
"Beautiful bag. having a dad who loves you is a luxury in itself," another said.
In a follow-up post on Monday, Gabriel said, "Thank you for all those who have shown me love and support," adding, "Remember to be kind, have compassion, and have the best day ever."
thank you everybody <3 also a reminder that everyone’s life experiences and financial circumstance will be different from yours :) remember that what is cheap for you may be everything to another 😃👍🏻
♬ original sound - zoe 🦋
Gabriel did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.
Representatives for Charles & Keith did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment. They told the Singapore newspaper The Straits Times that after seeing Gabriel's video they invited her and her father to have lunch with the company's founders, who they said also came from "humble beginnings."
"Our founders believe that our products should spark joy, empower fashion lovers and give them confidence, something we believe she presented so eloquently in her video and for which we are so grateful," a company representative told the outlet.
Gabriel, who has over 44,000 TikTok followers, typically posts lifestyle content sharing information about herself, such as facts about her Filipino heritage and her family.
On TikTok, influencers have been scrutinized for talking about making large and expensive purchases and faced accusations of being privileged or out of touch.
In October, Insider reported that an influencer received backlash after saying she'd "accidentally" bought a couch for $100,000 but later appearing to suggest it was a prank. In November, another influencer said she spent $10,000 on Harry Styles tickets so she could be close to the stage, attracting criticism from some commenters who said that level of spending would be beyond the means of many ordinary people.
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Correction: January 13, 2023 — An earlier version of this story included a quote from an article by The Straits Times that was misattributed. Insider removed the quote.
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