The Imperfect Vegan
By Dani Taylor
In a perfect world, all humans would recognize the enormous benefits of veganism and live a cruelty-free lifestyle. The reality is that while the number of people adopting a vegan diet is growing, a world filled with perfect vegans is unlikely. While we can remain hopeful for the future, we can also look at the positive impact that millions of imperfect vegans can have right now. Celebrities and influencers can be impactful game-changers for veganism in many ways, even if they haven’t fully committed to a plant-based lifestyle.
In the early days of veganism, options were limited. Educating yourself about how to prepare food, where to buy products, and meet nutritional needs was based on word of mouth or reading books. Today, celebrities like Kim Kardashian create videos that highlight the benefits of choosing plant-based products. People who may never have thought about trying a vegan product may seek it out based on a celebrity or influencer who brought it to their attention. While celebrities like Kim may not be perfect vegans, sharing her story of committing to eating vegan when dining at home could inspire others to do the same.
Reliability and Relatability
There is a reason that companies seek out specific individuals to promote their products online. Social media influencers have a powerful impact on consumers. Viewers who find the influencer relatable are more likely to trust them and their opinion. Videos, pictures, and other content make veganism seem accessible to all. Influencers like Tabitha Brown have recently blown up in popularity as their lifestyle tips move beyond food. Influencers promoting the benefits of veganism like Tabitha seem reliable and trustworthy, which can lead to the willingness to take a chance on something new.
The latest trends in food are not accidental. Tiktok videos of vegan hacks are often strategically made to advertise the newest products. What better way to show how delicious vegan food can be than to create content that makes it look fun and trendy? An impact is made even if viewers make small swaps using vegan ingredients rather than animal products. Millions of views making small changes can translate to a significant change over time, especially when viewers stick with those changes.
A Unique Platform
Because of their visibility as role models, many celebrities have taken on the responsibility of social change. Veganism is one area that more and more celebrities have chosen to support for various reasons. For example, professional athletes like Chris Paul and Venus Williams have a unique platform to promote a vegan lifestyle. Strength, success, and physical fitness are goals for many people, and celebrities who embody those traits while living a vegan lifestyle can strongly influence public opinion.
While every celebrity or influencer promoting veganism may not be a perfect vegan, it is essential to realize that the visibility they provide can make a significant impact. We don’t have to agree with all of their values or be their biggest fan, but we can surely appreciate the steps forward gained by their influence.