POV: SLHS senior quietly becomes internet famous — Interview with Lindsay Kaine

Image+via+%40lkaine+on+TikTok

Image via @lkaine on TikTok

Helen Ehrlich, Editor-In-Chief

To students at South Lakes, Lindsay Kaine is just another senior, classmate, friend, yearbook editor and friendly face walking the crowded halls. To millions of followers online, Lindsay is a celebrity.

 

Kaine has 1.4 million followers on TikTok, an official Famous Birthdays profile, numerous websites following her life and 13,100 followers on Instagram. She even has a website where she sells merchandise, like hoodies and phone cases, to her followers.

Image via LindsayKaine.com

After getting her start making fun humor-filled videos that got famous seemingly overnight, Kaine moved into wildly popular acting videos. Lindsay’s followers have watched her grow up in high school through her videos, and now they’re following her off to college.

 

Lindsay Kaine opened up about acting, internet fame and being herself online, all before graduating high school.

 

When/why did you start making TikToks?

I started making TikToks in [the] summer [of] 2018…I honestly don’t really remember why I joined the app, I think one of my friends was on it and I wanted to try it out because it seemed fun. At that time really no one knew of the app so it was fun because there was no pressure to get ‘famous’ or anything, it was just a bunch of teenagers making stupid videos. 

 

When did you start gaining a following?

So I started Tik Tok in 2018, however in February 2019 I wanted to start making videos and try to gain a following without people from school seeing, so I made a new account which is the one I use now. My first video I posted on that account was me dancing to a Kidz Bop song, and that one ended up getting 90k likes which at the time was insane. I remember coming into school the next day when it had 10k likes and just refreshing the app constantly and showing everyone. After that happened I started gaining followers and after a few months I hit 10k, which was my goal, and I thought that I wouldn’t be able to do any better than that. By mid-summer I think I had around 25k followers, which was insane, and then I decided to post a POV video which was a duet with a popular creator named Noen, and that video changed my life. I went from 25k to 200k in a week and after that was when my account changed from comedy to primarily acting videos. 

 

You have over 1 million followers. When did you reach that point?

I reached a million in February 2020, and even thinking of it is still so surreal to me. I never expected to hit this milestone, and I remember I was having a sleepover with one of my closests friends when it happened and I just broke into tears when I finally reached it, it was a moment I probably will never forget. The idea that 1 million people chose to follow me and watch my videos was, and still is, the greatest accomplishment I have reached, as I have a million people who support me and that means the world. 

Image via WikiFamousPeople

Do you have any more goals with TikTok?

 

I don’t have any more specific goals for Tik Tok, I mean my original goal was 10k followers and I have heavily surpassed that, so at this point I’m taking it day by day and just trying to make the best content I can. Though I don’t have any more goals regarding followers, I would say a constant goal of mine is just to put my all into every video I make, as I have so many people who watch my videos and I don’t want to let anyone down.

 

Do you feel like you have a lot of pressure on you with all of those followers?

I do feel like I have a lot of pressure on the app, which has been something I have struggled with, especially since I have started to gain more and more followers. There’s always this feeling that if I don’t get a certain amount of likes, then I did something wrong, and I’ve gone as far as to even delete a video I’m proud of because it didn’t get as many views or likes as I wanted. There was a point where I was making a minimum of three videos a day, which was exhausting and honestly was making me start to hate the app as I felt of it as a job instead of a way for me to have fun. However, I have taken a few breaks, and come to the realization that even if I don’t post everyday my followers will still be there to support me, and that’s why I love my supporters so much, they understand that I sometimes need a break from the pressure, and always give me all their love even when I am not posting as frequently as they want. 

 

You’ve been pretty open in your videos, have the things you’ve shared changed since your following has grown? Have the things you share changed because of the people from South Lakes following you?

I honestly feel like I have become more open since I gained more of a following, which I don’t know if that is good or bad. My whole life I have dealt with insecurities and anxiety and TikTok has become a way for me to cope with those things and almost an escape from stress and issues I face in daily life. Since it is an escape, when I am feeling insecure or anxious I try to be open about it with my followers, as not only does having their love and support help me feel better, but sharing my own battles helps people going through the same thing know they aren’t alone. It is sometimes hard as I am aware many people from school follow me, and I can be very open, however I try to ignore that as all I want is to make other people feel less alone. It bothers me that there is such a stigma around mental health, and I know when I was younger I never understood how I felt because no one ever talked about it, so my goal has always been to be that person for others. 

Lindsay wearing a South Lakes shirt in a video — Image via TikTok Spy

Have people treated you differently at school because of your videos?

I honestly have not been treated that differently at school, of course there have been some instances where people I have never talked to have come up to me and asked about TikTok, but mostly I have still stuck with the people I have always been friends with.

 

Do you want to start making other kinds of videos on Youtube and other platforms?

Yes, I would love to make YouTube videos. I actually tried a few years ago, but found it was much more work then I was prepared for. I think right now I just don’t have the time to film and edit videos, but I would definitely be open to making youtube videos in the future.

 

What are your goals for the future? Do you want to be an actress?

Honestly I have never had any ambition to be an actress, I do love acting and it is a way for me to destress and escape reality for a bit, but it is not something I think I would ever do long term. My goals right now are the same as pretty much any other high school senior, go to college and figure life out from there. That is why I have loved Tik Tok so much because I am able to act as a hobby. 

 
A fan-made compilation of Lindsay’s videos, Image via “Ikaine best pov’s” on YouTube

What are your favorite types of videos to make? What is your favorite type to watch?

My favorite types of videos to make are ones of me just talking to my followers, I love having that connection to those who have dedicated their time to watch. My favorite type of videos to watch are probably funny ones, I think with everything going on in the world it is always nice to find things that can make you laugh.

 

You typically make POVs, which are acting videos. Are you involved with theatre at South Lakes? Have you ever been involved with theatre? 

I am not involved with theater at South Lakes anymore, I was in my freshman year. I did theater all throughout middle school, including being in the Langston Hughes musicals both years. I ended up quitting because I did not have a very good experience with theater my freshman year, and with playing volleyball I did not have enough time to fully commit to both.

 

Where do you get your inspiration?

I get my inspiration a lot from books I read, as well as stories I have written. I have always had a passion for reading and writing so most of my ideas come from these fictional stories that I have read about or created in my head.

Image via @lkaine on TikTok

What are your demographics?

My demographic is definitely middle school to high school girls.

 

How have the type of videos you make changed from the start of your account? Why have they changed? Do you ever miss the original style of videos you make? 

Originally the videos I made were more comedy focused, though it is debatable if they were truly funny, but I always had such a fun time making them. Now I do more acting videos, or just videos of me talking with my followers because that is what I have come to be known for, and it also is what I now enjoy [doing]. I do sometimes miss posting stupid things because there never was any pressure to be good, the point of the videos was to be dumb, but I also know that I have matured a lot since my sophomore year so it would not fit me to make those videos now.