From selfies to cosmetic surgery, these women have very modern addictionsJanuary 26, 2022
WE tend to associate addiction with alcohol, drugs and gambling.
But modern life offers a host of new fixations that can take over young people’s lives.
Reality TV star Charlotte Crosby, 28, recently claimed she is addicted to FAME.
Jenny Francis speaks to four women who admit to very modern addictions.
Demi Bailey, 21 – addicted to dating apps
HAIRDRESSER Demi, from Sheerness, Kent, spends 40 hours a week on dating apps.
She says: “My entire day is spent on apps that promise to find me love. I send more than 100 messages a day and view thousands of profiles.
“I first started using dating apps when I was 17. It seemed a logical way to find a boyfriend. From there it just escalated.
“The first thing I do when I wake up is look through all my messages. I go through each of the eight apps I use and make sure I’ve not missed any good matches or conversations.
“It takes about an hour before I drag myself away for a shower. I eat breakfast while sectioning out the boys I want to focus on for the next 24 hours.
“I get a thrill checking out all the new profiles – what he’s wearing, the pictures he’s uploaded, the tidiness of his clothing.
“I then check if he’s on more than one app. It takes time to cross-reference all the apps but if their profiles are consistent on more than one app, I trust them enough for a date. I don’t just say “Hi”, I ask questions. If they reply too fast, they haven’t taken my question seriously.
“I’m constantly juggling guys I’ve just matched with and those I’ve been messaging for a while and guys I’ve been on dates with. I constantly update my profile, then at 11pm I do a final round of messages to guys who have made the cut and do a final check of new profiles.
“I found my last boyfriend via a dating app and we were together for two years. I honestly think using apps to find a date – or a future husband – is the only way in 2018.
“Hoping your future husband will just happen to be at the same party as you isn’t realistic.”
Gemma Pell, 24 – addicted to selfies
SINGLE Gemma says her life revolves around taking selfies and posting them on social media.
The events organiser, from Brentwood, Essex, reckons she takes up to 100 selfies a day and she has more than 40,000 followers on Instagram.
She says: “Five years ago, I joined Instagram. At first I joined just to share pictures with friends but in the last three years, it’s gone from a bit of fun to a full-on addiction.
“I started uploading selfies and getting lots of likes.
“I got a huge buzz when people I didn’t know would comment, saying how nice I looked.
“I noticed how other people built up their followings and wanted to do the same.
“On a typical morning, I wake up and immediately check my phone. I spend a few hours in bed while I edit and post pictures, then read through all my comments and messages.
“When I first started to gain followers, I’d get really annoyed if some of them unfollowed me.
"It’s important to post regular content, so I never miss a day without uploading something.
“Everyone knows I’m the queen of Instagram Stories! I post at least a dozen a day.
“I can’t walk into a restaurant or down a street without instantly thinking of the best place to take a picture for social media.
“I have a lighting ring to get the most flattering shot if I’m out.
“My phone tells me I’m on Instagram for 13 hours a day – that’s how I know I’m addicted. I can’t see myself ever coming off it.
“I’m addicted to seeing the likes and I hate it when a picture doesn’t do very well. I take over 100 pictures a day.”
Tracy Kiss, 31 – addicted to fame
THERE isn’t much Tracy would not do to be famous. The fitness instructor and mum of two from Wendover, Bucks has appeared on 27 TV shows at her last count and in almost 50 newspapers and magazines.
She even got a “designer vagina” for media attention.
Tracy says: “From the age of 18, I wanted to follow in the footsteps of Katie Price. I wanted to be known, recognised and have people look up to me, like I did to her.
“I started by glamour modelling in newspapers and magazines. I loved the attention and had no life plan apart from wanting to be famous.
“After my daughter Millie was born in October 2007 and my son Gabriel in April 2012, I was single and thought I might have missed my chance.
“I started applying for every reality show. I’d put the kids to bed and write hundreds of applications. Any spare cash went on photoshoots for my showreel.
“I appeared on First Dates, Mind The Age Gap and Mary Portas: Secret Shopper.
“In 2014 I had a filmed breast reconstruction on Sky News. I didn’t care that it was nude, I just wanted to be on TV. Soon after, I got calls from the dating show Naked Attraction and immediately said yes. I was starkers but the attention I got after was amazing.
“I booked surgery on my vagina and invited a TV crew to film it for a documentary. I’ve been an extra in Towie and hoped I’d get picked as a main character.
“I’m always thinking of ways to get on TV. It’s an obsession. If I go a month without achieving that, I get really down. I’m constantly chasing the high. Each time I appear, I feel amazing. I feel important.
“My parents are embarrassed but I’m proud. I dream of my own TV show or magazine column.
“I sometimes wish I could just be happy living my life without trying to broadcast it everywhere, but I just can’t imagine that.”
Samantha Beer, 26 – addicted to cosmetic surgery
SAMANTHA, a trainee beauty therapist and mum of one from Gillingham, Kent, has spent more than £60,000 feeding her addiction to plastic surgery.
She claims planning surgeries and going under the knife is better than sex.
Samantha says: “Plastic surgery is my drug. I’m completely addicted and love that I can change my looks.
“As a teen, I hated my body. I knew at the age of 14 that I wanted a boob job. When I received £20,000 compensation for a car accident at 18, my parents begged me to buy a house. But I bought new boobs.
“In 2008 I had my first breast augmentation, taking me from a C-cup to an F. From that minute, I was hooked. I thought of everything else I could change. I started having fillers and Botox in my face at 20.
“I just wanted everything to be bigger and more defined. I have filler in my cheeks, forehead and lips every three months.
“After I lost weight, I paid to have the loose skin around my boobs removed and my breasts uplifted.
“In 2016, I booked myself in for a Brazilian bum lift. Then I got filler to give me a sharper jawline.
“In December 2017, I had my son Albie. While I love being a mum, I hated my post-pregnancy body.
“I had my eyebrows permanently tattooed in October and I visit tanning salons every two weeks. Once I’ve had one thing, I’m always planning the next.
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“Next year I’m having fat cut out of my cheeks, liposuction underneath my chin and have scheduled a tummy tuck for April 2019.
“My partner Darren, 38, who’s a builder, has asked me to stop. But I’m addicted to the high of booking the surgery and the thrill afterwards.
“I get a real comedown when it’s over but I fix it by booking another procedure. I’m £8,000 in debt and try to pay it off. There isn’t anything that replaces the feeling of cosmetic surgery, even sex.”
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