Selena Gomez gained more than 12 million followers in 10 days amid speculation that Kylie Jenner mocked her
Selena Gomez gained 12.8 million followers in 10 days.
Last week, fans speculated that Kylie Jenner and Hailey Bieber mocked Gomez on the platform.
Bieber and Jenner appear to have lost followers during the same timeframe.
Selena Gomez appears to have gained nearly 13 million Instagram followers since speculation began that Kylie Jenner and Hailey Bieber mocked her.
The musician had 380,240,643 million followers on February 21 when the drama began, and had 393,087,497 as of publishing, according to Social Blade, a difference of 12,846,854 followers. According to the social media analytics site, the gain in monthly followers is comparatively significant for Gomez; Gomez gained over 15.5 million followers in February compared to a relatively large surge of 9.6 million followers in June. Fans who've noticed social media users following or unfollowing the stars as a way of expressing support or disapproval believe the fluctuations to be related to the drama that's gone so mainstream it's become a meme.
—juulie albright ♡ (she/her) (@juuliealbright) February 27, 2023
Jenner and Bieber have encountered decreases in followers, though the impact appears less sizable than Gomez's gains. Jenner appears to have lost 494,581 followers (dropping from 380,523,687 to 380,029,106) during the same time period, according to Social Blade. Hailey Bieber appears to have lost 922,250 followers (dropping from 50,663,086 to 49,740,836).
Following widespread rumors of drama, users said they had started following Gomez in support of her.
—queensh$t (@t_queensh) February 25, 2023
The 30-year-old musician became the most followed woman on Instagram early last week, surpassing Jenner. (Cristiano Ronaldo is the most followed person with 555 million followers, Leo Messi the second-most with 436 million, and Gomez the third overall with 393 million).
On February 21, Gomez posted a playful video, telling viewers that she'd accidentally over-laminated her eyebrows.
Shortly after, Jenner posted two photos to her Instagram stories: one a selfie with the text "This was an accident?????" placed over her eyebrows and the second being a screenshot of a FaceTime with Bieber in which the pair were close enough to only show each other their eyebrows. Viewers were quick to speculate Jenner meant to mock Gomez.
Jenner commented on a popular February 22 TikTok, describing the posts as "childish" and the women as behaving like "mean girls." Jenner called the idea she was "shading" Selena "silly."
"This is reaching," Jenner commented. "No shade towards Selena ever and I didn't see her eyebrow posts! You guys are making something out of nothing. This is silly."
Gomez responded to Jenner, saying: "Agreed @kyliejenner. It's all unnecessary. I'm a fan of Kylie!"
@devotedly.yours Replying to @happy_mama3 Selena Gomez is a such a kind soul and I love that she will never get involved in the petty drama 👑 #kyliejenner #haileybieber ♬ original sound - Nuha
Since then, fans have spotted other TikTok comments made by Gomez's account that they believe indicate Gomez is not as indifferent about the situation as she initially seemed.
Bieber, who limits comments on her social media, has yet to address the recent rumors publicly. Her Instagram account has continued posting, including a tribute to her husband, Justin Bieber. Some users have suggested her account blocked certain terms, such as Gomez's name, from Instagram posts. (Insider repeated the same experiment and found the same results: comments including Selena's name were successfully posted, but those tagged in such comments didn't appear to receive a notification).
Gomez initially told fans that she would take a break from social media, explaining that she's "too old for this" in a TikTok Live, but her Instagram account has since continued posting.
The "Lose You to Love Me" singer's TikTok account, which currently has 53.2 million followers, was briefly deactivated on February 23 but has since been reactivated. The most recent upload was on February 21.
Gomez has spoken at length about her complicated relationship with social media in the past. As recent as February, Gomez told Vanity Fair that she had outsourced social media to assistants in the past because the unsolicited negativity was ultimately a "waste of my time."
"I went through a hard time in a breakup and I didn't want to see any of the [feedback] — not necessarily about the relationship, but the opinions of me versus [someone] else," she said. "There'd be thousands of really nice comments, but my mind goes straight to the mean one."
At the time, Gomez said TikTok was the only social media app she had on her phone because she found it to be "a little less hostile."
Representatives for Jenner, Bieber, and Gomez did not immediately reply to Insider's request for comment.
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