Singapore

YouTuber Lilly Singh in town for It's A Girl Thing

YouTube star Lilly Singh, in town for female empowerment event, is helping further women's education in Kenya

With more than nine million subscribers on YouTube, Lilly Singh is capitalising on her popularity to spread some love.

#GirlLove, to be precise.

Last December, she kick-started the #GirlLove challenge on social media to put a stop to girl-on-girl hate. She encouraged fans and celebrities to post a compliment about other women with the hashtag #GirlLove.

The Indian-Canadian, who goes by username IISuperwomanII and has been doing comedy skits and vlogs on YouTube since 2010, told The New Paper yesterday: "When I started making YouTube videos, people would always be like, 'Why are you trying to be like (YouTube comediennes) Jenna Marbles or Grace Helbig?'

"I just feel like there's a mentality online that (suggests) more than one girl can't be successful, and I think that's wrong."

Singh, along with other popular YouTube personalities such as Claire Marshall and twins Brooklyn and Bailey McKnight, are in town for today's It's A Girl Thing.

It aims to bring women together to promote positive personal development and discuss social issues such as anti-bullying, self-worth and expectations of the future.

Singh, 27, also gave talks at high schools in Canada and realised that girl-on-girl hate is as prevalent now as it was during her high school days.

She said: "I just thought like, 'Yo, we need to tell each other that we actually like each other and want to support each other'.

"And more than anything, I have a lot of influence and power, which I'm so grateful for, and I want to do something positive with it."

As part of her #GirlLove movement, Singh has collaborated with celebrities - such as the cast of the 2016 movie Bad Moms, Mila Kunis, Kristen Bell and Kathryn Hahn, and singer Bebe Rexha - on videos about female empowerment and social issues, which are posted on her YouTube channel.

Just last week, she was invited to the White House to speak to US First Lady Michelle Obama and record a video with her, which will appear on Singh's channel.

She said: "She is so wonderful and down-to-earth. We even had a little moment where we sang some Beyonce songs together off-camera.

"It was just cool to talk about real issues with one of the most influential women in the world."

Singh also travelled to Kenya last month to learn about furthering women's education there.

BRACELETS

She will start selling #GirlLove bracelets later this month, with all proceeds going towards helping women go to school in Kenya.

For It's A Girl Thing, Singh - who grew up amid a traditional South Asian culture and was raised by parents from Punjab, India - hopes to discuss cultural challenges that Asian women might face and hopes to inspire her audience here.

She said: "I'm pretty unapologetically myself in my videos. I don't really wear make-up. I cry if I need to cry, I look ugly if I need to look ugly, and I think that's just me being myself.

"So when my fans watch my videos, I hope they feel comfortable being themselves and know that they don't always have to look pretty."

Her views on female empowerment is that a woman can do whatever she wants, as long as she wants to do it.

"I do feel like in our culture, we are taught that our sexuality has to be controlled by people, whether it's our parents or guys," she said.

"I think if there's a girl who feels sexy and wants to dress a certain way or do certain things, it's her choice. She should be able to make that choice. Why should it anyone else's choice what you do with your own body?"


It's A Girl Thing

WHEN

Today, 4pm


WHERE

MasterCard Theatres, Sands Theatre, Marina Bay Sands

TICKETS

$72 to $92 from www.itsagirlthing.live/tickets/

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