Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Happy Birthday JoJo Siwa!

Wishing JoJo Siwa a very happy and bow-tastic 17th birthday! :)

A post shared by Nickelodeon (@nickelodeon) on


From Just Jared:

JoJo Siwa Throws Herself a JoJo Siwa-Themed Birthday Party!

JoJo Siwa is going all out for her 17th birthday!

The YouTube and Nickelodeon star took to her Tik Tok on Tuesday (May 19) to give fans a look inside her JoJo Siwa-themed birthday party.

In the video, JoJo wears colorful, glittery outfit with her signature bow in her hair while she walks around her kitchen – which is filled with JoJo decorations – while eating her own brand of ice cream.

“It’s pretty cool to me that it’s my 17th birthday and I can have my own themed birthday party,” JoJo says. “Like JoJo Siwa is having a JoJo Siwa-themed party. And it isn’t just any my own themed party – this is legit. I have plates, napkins, cups, balloons, ice cream – so good!”


JoJo Siwa having a JoJo Siwa Themed party. doesn’t get much better than this!!

♬ original sound - itsjojosiwa




On the eve of her 17th birthday, teen star JoJo Siwa surprised fans when she revealed a dramatically different look.

The color-loving social media star — who found fame on "Dance Moms," later signed with Nickelodeon and launched a lucrative branded empire based on the brightly colored hair bows that became her trademark – took to TikTok to share a video of herself taking on the "Wipe It Down" challenge.

The short clip, which she posted on May 18 and captioned, "IT'S MY BIRTHDAY TOMORROW," starts with JoJo spraying down her bathroom mirror with Windex while wearing a bright pink and blue sparkly jacket and a large pink bow atop a high side ponytail. But after she swipes the mirror as BMW Kenny's "Wipe It Down" plays, she transforms into a different JoJo: Her long wavy blonde hair is down and flowing and she's in a black Gucci T-shirt.

♬ original sound - itsjojosiwa

It's not the first time in recent weeks that JoJo has shown a different side of herself, which is why fans are speculating that she could soon be transitioning to a more mature look and leaving her neon-dream big-bow persona behind.

On April 20, JoJo posted a TikTok video of herself wearing a series of wildly colorful outfits before emerging in a look fans are not used to seeing: a casual black T-shirt with her long hair down and wavy.

@itsjojosiwa ayyyyyy
♬ original sound - itsjojosiwa

After posting the birthday-eve TikTok video with her new look — the clip racked up nearly 4 million likes in its first 18 hours — JoJo posted another TikTok clip, this time showing fans how she spent the day before her 17th birthday.

@itsjojosiwa what did i do on my last day of being 16 u ask?????......
♬ original sound - itsjojosiwa

"what did i do on my last day of being 16 u ask?????……" she captioned the post, which shows her energetically dancing to Rihanna's "Umbrella" atop a clear covering that sits on her pool while fountains launch water into the air.


From Showbiz Cheat Sheet:

JoJo Siwa Fans Think She Looks Just Like Another Celebrity With Her Hair Down

For the longest time, JoJo Siwa has been known as JoJo with the bow bow. With a high-ponytail, platinum blonde hair, and a colorful hair bows, she has taken the world by storm. But, prior to becoming a household name as a popstar, Siwa developed her platform on YouTube, Dance Moms, and Abby’s Ultimate Dance Competition (AUDC). Her over the top performances on AUDC caught the eye of dance teacher, Abby Lee Miller, and she joined the Junior Elite Competition Team for the Abby Lee Dance Company.

Siwa sported her infamous hairstyle throughout her time on Dance Moms. Ultimately though, she left the popular Lifetime show when she received a brand deal with Nickelodeon. Thanks to her hairstyle, she also landed deals with other popular stores. For example, Claire’s stores began carrying JoJo bows and Siwa’s millions of loyal followers couldn’t get enough of her accessories.

JoJo Siwa has a trademark hairstyle

Now, years later, Siwa is still known for her trademark high ponytail hairstyle, complete with a colorful bow. In fact, the 17-year-old has made a YouTube video showing off her collection of bows. To date, the “Boomerang” singer has racked up over 12,000 bows. But, some people are speculating that Siwa’s bow days are numbered.

Recently, Siwa has been teasing fans with a new hairstyle. She’s worn her hair down a couple of times while on TikTok. On May 18, 2020, on the eve of her 17th birthday, she created a TikTok video completing the Wipe It Down challenge. The challenge usually features someone dressed down who wipes down the mirror with a cloth and transforms into a more glammed up version of themselves.

The ‘Dance Moms’ alum goes viral with a TikTok video

Never one to follow the pack, Siwa put her own spin on the challenge. She starts off dressed in her signature look complete with her trademark high-ponytail, hair bow, and clothing. After wiping the mirror, she transforms into a more casual version of herself with a t-shirt and her hair down. This challenge caused Siwa to go viral as she is so rarely seen without her high-ponytail.

Plenty of Siwa’s fans truly couldn’t get over how different she with her hair down. However, others were shocked because they feel that Siwa (without her trademark hair and makeup) bears a striking resemblance to another celebrity, Chloë Grace Moretz. Moretz is a 23-year-old actress who is known for roles like Carrie, If I Stay, and Greta.

Siwa’s fans think she favors Chloë Grace Moretz without her ponytail

“I’m just saying, I’ve never seen JoJo Siwa and Chloë Grace Moretz in the same room,” one fan wrote on Twitter. “They do look similar. They will be up for the same parts. Both beautiful girls,” another fan chimed in, citing how the two young women favored each other when Siwa changed up her hairstyles.

Others could see the resemblance between Moretz and Siwa but felt that Siwa also favored Emily Osment in her Hannah Montana days. “Okayyyy but when Jojo let her hair down my girl Lily from Hannah Montana was my 1st thought, but idk…” one fan added. Some people even felt that Siwa could possibly play Lily in the Hannah Montana prequel. “She would be a good role for lily for the new Hannah Montana show coming to Disney apparently,” they wrote. Seeing as the Siwa is still under contract with Nickelodeon and she’s 17, we don’t see her starring in the Hannah Montana prequel. But, we’re interested in seeing what’s next for her.


From USA Today:

Everything you should know about JoJo Siwa, the 'Dance Moms' alum turned teen Internet star
Hannah Yasharoff USA TODAY
Published 12:34 PM EDT May 19, 2020
JoJo Siwa is breaking the Internet.

The Omaha, Nebraska, native, born Joelle Joanie Siwa, is famous for her giant hair bows, sparkly outfits and larger-than-life personality, and she boasts millions of followers online.

“It’s really fun for me,” Siwa told USA TODAY in 2018 of creating social media content. “It’s like my version of going to the park.”

Now 17 years old, fans think Siwa is entering a new chapter in her career. She turned heads with a TikTok video posted Monday night, which shows her teasing a look much more toned down than fans are used to seeing, trading her trademark high pony and glitter-all-over outfit for long, wavy hair and a simple black t-shirt.

USA TODAY has reached out to Siwa's representative for more info about her new look.

Here's what we know about Siwa and how she rose to digital superstardom.

'Dance Moms' beginnings and more TV appearances
The entertainment world first met Siwa in 2013, when she appeared as a contestant on "Dance Moms" spinoff "Abby's Ultimate Dance Competition" before landing a role as a "Dance Moms" series regular in 2015.

In 2017, Nickelodeon signed Siwa to a talent deal, which led to 2018's animated series about her and her dog, "The JoJo and BowBow Show Show." She has also worked with Nick Cannon on "Lip Sync Battle Shorties" and leant her voice to last year's "Angry Birds" movie sequel.

She's won Kids' Choice Awards four years in a row, each in different categories: favorite viral music artist, favorite musical YouTube creator, favorite TV host (with Cannon) and favorite social media star.

Most recently, Siwa was unmasked on "The Masked Singer", where she appeared as the T-Rex. Some clues about her background, like a plate of junk food seasoned with glitter, were dead giveaways for fans.

"Let me tell you, she subscribes to the idea that there is no 'off day,' " Siwa's coach said in her final episode. "Even though she's young, she's got fans of all ages and always knows how to win over a crowd."

JoJo Siwa revealed: T-Rex goes extinct on 'The Masked Singer,' turns out to be young YouTube star

Music and internet stardom
And win over a crowd she does: The young star is also creating content on her own terms.

Across YouTube, Instagram and Tik Tok, Siwa has racked up more than 42 million followers. Nearly always decked out in her signature giant bow, glitter makeup and bright clothing, she posts music videos and dances, and she gives inside looks at her rainbow explosion of a mansion.

She has two EPs: 2018's "D.R.E.A.M. The Music" and 2019's "Celebrate." Major songs include "Boomerang," "Hold the Drama" and "Kid in a Candy Store."

Her mother, Jessalynn Siwa, told USA TODAY in 2018: “The greatest thing about it is she literally was doing it all herself, from filming to editing to thumbnails to producing. To see her have the success is really just the cherry on top.”

Keeping up with JoJo: Playdate with the Kardashians

Building her brand over the years has also attracted some famous fans: After Kim Kardashian West tweeted last year that her oldest daughter, North, 6, was "obsessed with JoJo Siwa," North got a special visit from the sparkle-enthusiast herself.

In a playdate that turned into a YouTube video viewed more than 37 million times and landed in an episode of "Keeping Up with the Kardashians," Siwa showed North and Kim around her house and sent her home with tons of JoJo merchandise.

"Kim is one of the sweetest people I have ever met," Siwa told "Today." "She's so nice. She's a very good mom. I wasn't sure what to expect, because you know her as Kim Kardashian… Just such a good human."

Product lines galore: JoJo-branded everything

Siwa and her sparkly bows are practically synonymous: So much so that she told "Today" she's sold over 60 million of them to fans, among other merchandise items.

But controversy sparked last year after Claire's announced it was voluntarily recalling the JoJo Siwa Makeup Set because the U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued a warning saying it tested positive for asbestos.

Siwa released a YouTube video addressing the recall soon after, laughing at the beginning and saying, "I was gonna start this video all serious and dramatic but that's not who I am. That's not what this video is about."

She went on to stress that "safety is myself and Nickelodeon’s No. 1 priority in everything, in every JoJo product and in everything out there” and lamented putting "too much trust in other people" with the makeup line.

Aside from hair and makeup products, Siwa fans have turned out to malls and big-box stores to buy everything from JoJo-branded kitchen-ware to activity books to Band-Aids.

"I do not have $50 trillion," she joked to "Today last year. "I will tell you that I am very happy. My bank account does not matter to me if I have a billion dollars or $2. If I'm happy and if I love what I'm doing, that's what matters to me."


From Hollywood Life:

JoJo Siwa Nails Rihanna’s ‘Umbrella’ Dance In Her Massive Backyard For Her 17th Birthday

Happy birthday to the one and only, JoJo Siwa! In honor of her big day, JoJo took to Instagram to share an epic video of herself showing off her dance moves to a Rihanna classic.

In case anyone forgot that JoJo Siwa started her career as a dancer — she’s here to remind us! The Nickelodeon star turned 17 on May 19, and celebrated with a new dance video on Instagram. With Rihanna’s classic, “Umbrella,” playing in the background, JoJo stepped it out in the middle of her giant backyard, which even features a basketball court. She held onto a baton and jumped up and down to the beat of the song.

For the video, JoJo wore an all black outfit, with her hair pulled back into her signature tight ponytail with a black bow. Fans are used to seeing JoJo with her hair styled this way, but recently, she’s actually been showing off a variety of other hairstyles. Ahead of her 17th birthday, she actually posted another video to TikTok, in which she took out her ponytail to reveal her soft, natural waves. In another recent video, she blew out her locks so that they were long and straight down her back.

JoJo has literally grown up in front of her eyes. It’s hard to believe that it was seven years ago when she first appeared on Abby’s Ultimate Dance Competition in hopes of impressing Dance Moms star, Abby Lee Miller. Although JoJo didn’t win the show (she finished in the top 5), she went on to train at the Abby Lee Dance Studio after the competition ended. She was selected for the team in 2015, and appeared on seasons five and six of Dance Moms.

JoJo segued into music in 2016 with her first single, “Boomerang,” and she signed a deal with Nickelodeon the next year. The teenager quickly shot to international superstardom as a singer and YouTube star. She went on her first world tour in 2019.


From toofab:

JoJo Siwa Breaks Social Media by Letting Her Hair Down -- Fans Think She's Teasing Her Future

The Nickelodeon star celebrates her birthday eve with a "wipe" TikTok video where she sheds her classic look for a more relaxed and natural style and Twitter simply cannot handle it.

This isn't the first time JoJo Siwa has let her hair down in recent weeks, but the "wipe" video she shared to her TikTok on the eve of her 17th birthday has many fans speculating that the kid star is teasing a less technicolor future.

Many are saying this is an indication that perhaps JoJo's time with Nickelodeon may be coming to an end. The former "Dance Moms" star signed with the brand back in 2017 and has since spawned a branding empire.

Throughout, she has maintained her signature look and energetic style, including the high ponytail, massive bow, rainbow-colored sparkles in everything she wears and an energy level that can only be described as a sugar high on a sugar high.

She even brought all of that signature swagger to "The Masked Singer" this past season, though everyone immediately knew that it was her.

In this new short clip, which has been viewed nearly 14 million times on her TikTok page, JoJo is seen cleaning a mirror in her signature look before wiping the glass and transforming into a more typical looking teenage girl, with her hair down in a casual t-shirt.

The video is part of a "wipe" trend on the social media platform where people experience instant and dramatic transformations, but JoJo's caption emphasizing that tomorrow is her birthday has many speculating that this is indicative of the direction she's going with her career once she turns 17.

If so, it's a challenging road well trod by many who've come before her, including Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera, Miley Cyrus, Demi Lovato, Ariana Grande and Selena Gomez. While all can arguably be said to have come out well, it was definitely a rocky road for several to get to adulthood.

As JoJo's name blew up on Twitter over this video, fans began to speculate about what it might mean, with some joking -- or fretting -- that she may be heading down the more salacious path some of her predecessors have gone.



From Newsweek:


Jojo Siwa is 17 today, and we've got good news for the YouTube star on her birthday: All of a sudden, it seems like everyone loves her.

That wasn't the case, even recently. The teen sensation has received a boatload of criticism in the past, usually because of her loud public persona and color-splattered style. But while Siwa has been labeled as immature or too childlike by her detractors, some adults online are starting to recognize—and adore—another side of the multi-hyphenate.

Siwa's TikTok presence has made her seem, to some, like more of a real person—one worth stanning.

The singer/dancer/YouTuber started her career on the reality show Dance Moms when she was just a kid, and she parlayed that into a solo music career. Now, Siwa has a handful of songs on streaming platforms and has even toured internationally, which gave her the space to become the youngest performer to ever headline at London's O2 Arena, according to her website. Oh, and she just appeared on The Masked Singer.

But Siwa isn't all bows and glitter. Lately, she's literally let her hair down from her signature high-ponytail, and it's all netizens can talk about. On Monday night, Siwa posted a video of herself doing the TikTok wiping challenge, and it's already gone viral.

The challenge has TikTokers clean a mirror and as their hand wipes the glass, a new persona emerges. Siwa's clip starts with her in her typical more-is-more get-up, and ends with her looking like a casual teen, wearing a t-shirt and her hair down. In less than 24 hours, the video had nearly 20 million views.

Twitter users started a conversation on Tuesday, Siwa's 17th birthday, about her apparent contract (she signed with Nickelodeon in 2017). Many were under the impression that the teen may evolve entirely when the contract ends, in the likes of Miley Cyrus or Selena Gomez breaking free of Disney Channel. Siwa addressed her contract recently, in a TikTok posted on May 6; she confirmed that yes, she is under contract, but said she is in full control of her own life.

While some people online expect Siwa to switch to another style or look entirely in the future, others just seem excited for the superstar to have control over her image, assuming she doesn't now.

Whatever happens to Siwa's image, it's fair to say that some people are already coming around to her—a pleasant birthday surprise.


From CNN:

JoJo Siwa debuts new hairstyle
Morning Express with Robin Meade

Nickelodeon star JoJo Siwa shocked fans when she ditched her famous ponytail in the "wipe it down" TikTok challenge. Source: HLN


From E! News:

It's Not Just North West! How JoJo Siwa Became the Reigning Tween Queen

Her army of Siwanators extend far beyond Kim Kardashian's eldest: Inside YouTube star JoJo Siwa's journey from Dance Mom standout to Gen Z icon.

Never heard of JoJo Siwa? You may need more youth in your life.

Ask most card-carrying members of Generation Z about JoJo, she of the ever-present bow bow (she has more than 1,000 of her trademark accessories, even sleeping with one at night), and they'll tick off her accomplishments: nine singles, including the platinum hit, "Boomerang," a YouTube channel that boasts more than 11 million subscribers, a TikTok with 20 million more, an exclusive licensing deal with Nickelodeon and enough branded merchandise with retailers such as Claire's, Walmart, Target, Payless and Amazon to place her net worth close to $12 million.

Not to mention her new role as celebrities' go-to bestie.

It seems whenever she's not calling up Ciara to wish her 3-year-old daughter Sienna a happy birthday, she's hanging out with Meghan Trainor or dancing with idol and "golden human" Miley Cyrus.

But it all started with North West. When the Nebraska native discovered Kim Kardashian's eldest, 6, was a fan, she sent over a caseload of bows and other branded products, sparking a dialogue that led to them filming a video for Siwa's popular YouTube channel in which she "pretend" babysat the elementary schooler, helping her make glittery slime, playing hide-and-seek and hosting a dance party. And if Siwa has her way it'll be the start of a long relationship with the Keeping Up With the Kardashians star.

North and 7-year-old cousin Penelope Disick were among the guests at Siwa's Sweet 16 birthday bash last year and no doubt they'll be in touch to wish her a sweet 17th today.

Not to mention, the multi-hyphenate has already met Kanye West, when she found herself rehearsing next to his stage, and she basically has his wife on speed dial.

"You don't understand, me and Kim, we probably text, like, five times a day," she told E! News before picking up her Favorite Social Music Star trophy at last year's Nickelodeon's Kids' Choice Awards. "Kim is so sweet, so nice, so normal, so down-to-earth." After Siwa agreed to FaceTime with North, "She was like, 'Thank you so much. I know people ask you for things all the time,'" the YouTube personality shared. "I was like, you're just so sweet and so normal. It was crazy. They're just, they're awesome people."

When Kim Kardashian is thanking you for taking time out of your busy schedule, well, you've definitely made it.

But Siwa insists she's nowhere near her peak. She's determined to expand her lines even further, eager to brand a trampoline ("Jumping on my face would be really fun," she told Kidscreen in 2018) and ink a deal with Kraft Mac & Cheese "because I want to eat my face. I want them to be JoJo shaped." Beyond that, she told the site, "I've done a Nickelodeon movie [last February's Blurt], but I want to do a big-screen movie. And a full album."

Lofty ambitions for someone who just earned the right to drive, but the homeschooled star ("I was too smart for school. When I was in kindergarten, I got tested and I was smart enough to be in third grade," she told Justine Magazine) is already more than a decade deep into her career. "It's taken me since I was two-years-old," she shared during a 2017 appearance on Live With Kelly and Ryan. "I've been doing this for a million years."

That's right around when mom Jessalyn Siwa, owner of Just Dance Co. in Omaha, began bleaching the toddler's locks and stocking up on bedazzled lycra and hair extensions.

"I just knew from about the time she was, like, one-and-a-half; that she was really special because I'd seen a lot of kids," she explained to TIME last year. "She just liked being onstage, and everyone liked to watch her. I just took it and ran."

That meant sending in an audition tape for Abby's Ultimate Dance Competition and, having heard back from producers that same day, arriving to set and boldly declaring, "I would say it's my mission in life to make JoJo a star."

Which, well done.

The series' youngest contestant at only 9-years-old, Siwa has since admitted the 2013 experience performing for notoriously hard-nosed dance instructor Abby Lee Miller was a struggle.

"The dances were hard, by the way," she shared in her 2017 book, JoJo's Guide to the Sweet Life. "We had only two days to learn each one—and only two hours with the choreographer each day."

She ultimately placed fifth, but emerged a big winner, her impressive moves ("I am pretty good in rehearsal and then, like, fabulous on stage," she asserted on the show) and overall state of being extra earning her a guest spot on Miller's flagship show Dance Moms. She was only supposed to stick around one week, but, as Jessalyn has said, "It's not her fault she's a star."

Seven days turned into two seasons and by the time mother and daughter exited stage left—purportedly annoyed that Siwa was being asked to perform a ballet number—the tiny diva was primed for stardom.

"One of the biggest things that I ever learned from Dance Moms was either to sink or swim," she shared with Ripa. "Not, like, physically, actually in a swimming pool. But to really just be able to survive and to want it."

As a Dance Moms cast member, she shared in JoJo's Guide to the Sweet Life, most of her week was consumed with rehearsals at the studios in both Pittsburgh and L.A. "We filmed Tuesday through Saturday and each day had a specific purpose," she wrote. "Tuesday was interview day. Each interview took about two hours. Wednesday was Pyramid. Thursdays we had rehearsal and Friday we had rehearsal in the morning, then traveled to wherever our competition was that weekend. Then Saturday, of course, was competition day!"

With some 40 hours of her week back, she suddenly had time to devote to her other ventures—namely, the YouTube channel she launched in 2015 to share house tours, hair tutorials, dance lessons and her long-held dream of turning her signature bow-adorned side pony into an accessories line.

"My manager literally just called Claire's and was like, 'I need to speak with corporate,' and wiggled her way in," Siwa recalled to AdAge of how the 2016 release came to pass. "Then she got hold of this girl and asked her the next time she was in California to let us know and she was like, 'Well, actually, I am flying out tomorrow.' But then she said her schedule is full so maybe we could do it the next time. And my manager was like, 'Actually, we'll just meet you in the lobby of your hotel, where are you staying?'"

The accessories brand, beloved by middle school-aged girls the world over, agreed to do a test run in 100 stores, eventually upping it to placement in all 3,500 locations. "They took a really, really big chance on me," admitted Siwa. "And I am so grateful for them because without them it wouldn't be what it is today."

Their gamble paid off. And as the star's devoted Siwanators scooped up her brightly-colored bows—"It's crazy! And they're like, collectibles," she gushed to E!'s Jason Kennedy on In the Room of having sold upwards of 80,000—Nickelodeon took notice, signing her to an exclusive multi-platform licensing deal that has her performing at network events such as the Kids' Choice Awards and SlimeFest, producing her own docu-special about her life, JoJo Siwa: My World, starring in an animated series, The JoJo and BowBow Show Show with her dog and hosting two seasons of Lip Sync Battle Shorties with Nick Cannon.

Now she's balancing work at the network with her burgeoning career as a pop star. She released her debut "Boomerang" in May 2016, following it up with 2017's "Kid in a Candy Store" and "I Can Make U Dance" and 2018's "High Top Shoes" and "D.R.E.A.M."

"I go into the songwriting with all of the songwriters and I sit down and I go, 'I want to write a song about positivity and finding positives when there's negatives,'" she told Justine Magazine of the process. "And then we all come up and we're all thinking of ideas and then someone will go, 'What about if we did something candy-themed,' and I go, 'Oh my gosh, I love candy, that's perfect.' So we all work together as a team, which is awesome."

With nine singles under her hot pink belt, Siwa announced plans to visit 24 North American cities for her D.R.E.A.M. The Tour, starting with Friday's show in Phoenix, but when the venture sold out in just a few hours, she revealed she'd be adding 28 more dates to the relief of disappointed hair bow-wearing tweens everywhere.

Through it all, she hasn't forgotten about the YouTube channel that helped her get her start. Eager to continue collecting subscribers, she told Kidscreen, she remains dedicated to creating content, continuing her trend of some nine new videos a week.

"I think what happens with those YouTubers is not that they think they're big enough that they need to stop. I think what happens is they grow and get a TV show, and that takes up a lot of time and so does YouTube," she noted.

"YouTube is a full-time job because you're filming all day, editing all night, creating thumbnails, keeping content fun and exciting. So it's not necessarily that YouTubers want to stop doing it, it's that there's literally no time. I've been in that place before, but I've had to keep doing it because I love YouTube. It's my passion and I want to do it forever, so I always make sure I upload. Even today, I got back to my room at midnight last night and I would have had to edit, and that would have taken until 2 a.m. and I had a 9 a.m. call time, so instead I did a livestream today."

And don't forget about her merchandise, which fills an entire room in her glitter- and rainbow-filled L.A. mansion with clothing, dolls, party plates, Lava Putty Glitt-a-Goo, nail polish and LUNCH KITZ lining the walls. Her bedroom is a shrine to her bedding line and, in the kitchen, Jo Jo-themed decals cover the white cupboards above her nacho machine and life-size posters hang next to her beloved claw game machine.

From the Payless sequined high tops to the JoJo action figure doll sold at Walmart to her Target clothing, any Siwa-themed items are hard to keep on the shelves. "A normal collection typically stays on the floor for six to eight weeks," noted Leah Kellenberger, Viacom's vice president of retail development for Target. "Many styles sold out in the first couple weeks. It completely exceeded expectations."

Asked to riff on her appeal, the teenager is admittedly a bit at a loss, telling Kidscreen, "I was thinking about this last night: 'Why me? Why am I so big?' It's so crazy. Maybe it's that I'm relatable, I'm a kid. I think that has to be what it is."

And if that's the case, she's feeling confident in her longevity. "My audience is going to grow with me. As I turn 16, my fans are going to turn 12, etc. So I don't think that I'll age out of them. I think that we can all grow up together. I think we can be friends for life."

It's pretty much a dream existence for any 15-year-old, but the for the multi-lingual star (she speaks Spanish, Korean and Russian), her goals extend far behind total tween domination. Watching a student get bullied during a semester-long stint in elementary school inspired her to speak out against the haters.

"I remember the first day I went there, the kids were like, 'Don't hang out with Lucy we don't like her, she's weird,' and I was like, that's not okay," Siwa shared on Live With Kelly and Ryan, using a pseudonym for her fellow third grader. "And then at the end of the year, we had a big ice cream party and it depended on how good you did in math, how much ice cream you got and, you know, she was special needs and she didn't get anything. She had a bowl of whipped cream. And I am very advanced in school and so I had everything that you could possibly have and it was an unlimited ice cream buffet and so I was like, 'I don't want mine. I want to give it to her.' And so that was really the first time I realized, you know, I want to make a change in this because it's not okay."

As for those that dare drag her, she's got enough confidence to let it roll right off. When Justin Bieber commented on a photo of her custom airbrushed red, turquoise and purple BMW convertible, instructing her to "burn it," she turned his diss into her new catch phrase, and instructed that all would be forgiven should he perform at her 16th birthday party.

And for the keyboard warriors attacking everything from her upbeat persona to her receding hairline (hey, you try scraping your locks into a tight side pony for more than a decade), she meets their insults with a definitive shrug—plus a block for good measure.

"When I look in the mirror, I know that my hairline makes me who I am, it makes me special," she shared on The Today Show. "We all have something about us that we don't like. I think we should all end up loving what we don't like."

It's that relentless commitment to be nothing less than fully authentic that may be the true secret to Siwa's success.

"I'm genuine, I am who I am. And, you know, I'm not fake in any which way. I just live my life and that really shows when I'm creating YouTube videos, creating music, whatever I'm doing, it's truly who I am," Siwa shared.

In other words, even if she lets her pony down, she's not ditching any aspect of her louder than life personality. "Recently I've shown myself looking different... not the classic rainbow sparkles and side ponytail with a JoJo bow," she shared in an April TikTok video. "People think this is me 'changing.'"

Uh, nice try, she continued: "LOL Nope! I love who I am! This is just me at night or in the morning!"

So, hate away, because it's only going to make her shine brighter—Siwa sharing that she views any negative comments as comedy and does her best to laugh them off. "I have the best friends and the best family ever. So, that's all that matters," she shared in a recent TikTok.

Plus, you know, a multimillion-dollar fortune and an empire still very much on the ascent.

"It is crazy, crazy, crazy that this is my life," she remarked to AdAge. "I know this is what I've always wanted—I wanted to be Hannah Montana—but it's crazy that this is my reality. I am a kid from Nebraska, I followed my dreams and these are my dreams I'm living now. It's just really cool I believed in myself, my family, my friends they all believed in me and now look at what I'm doing."


From E! News:

JoJo Siwa Ditches Her Ponytail for a New Hairstyle to Celebrate Her 17th Birthday

Jojo Siwa is turning 17 with a bang.

Ahead of her milestone birthday, the famous YouTube star decided to change things up and ditch her signature ponytail, which she documented on TikTok on Monday.

Standing in front of the mirror and donning her go-to ponytail, hair bow and a bedazzled jacket as the song "Wipe It Down" played, Siwa can be seen giving her vanity a good clean with some Windex and a rag. Then as she continued to scrub, she switched out of her sequined ensemble to reveal a more laidback look, which included letting down her long blonde strands.

"IT'S MY BIRTHDAY TOMORROW," she captioned the video. Fans of the viral sensation know that this isn't the first time that she's changed up her look before. Back in April, she shared a video of herself embracing her natural curls on TikTok after a fan asked her to "dress normal for a day."

Participating in TikTok challenges wasn't the only way that the young star prepared for her 17th birthday celebrations. She also shared a video of herself mastering the choreography from Rihanna's "Umbrella" music video. Excited to show off her masterpiece with fans, she wrote, "what did i do on my last day of being 16 u ask?????"

But on Tuesday, the real celebrations began. Standing in front of a wall of balloons and her classic ponytail, Siwa got decked out to ring in the big 1-7 with a bedazzled ringmaster-inspired jacket, matching sunnies and unicorn t-shirt for a festive TikTok video. Fitting the occasion, she danced along to Bruno Mars' "Perm" in the video, which she captioned, "17!!!!!!"

In the past, Siwa has admitted that her famous up-do isn't the most comfortable look to pull off. When asked if the high ponytail left her in any pain during an Instagram Live, she responded, "Yes, actually it can. It doesn't all the time, but some days I'm like, 'Oh! My head hurts so bad.'"

Reflecting on living in the spotlight, the Nickelodeon star also opened up how she deals with negative comments. "It's hard, you know, when I see people commenting things. But I've trained myself to look at it from a comedy angle, and I have the best friends and the best family ever. So, that's all that matters."


From Showbiz Cheat Sheet:

JoJo Siwa Is Under Contract, But She's More in Control of Her Brand Than You Think

JoJo Siwa may have signed an overall talent contract with Nickelodeon at the very young age of 13, but that doesn’t mean she’s just their puppet. On the eve of her 17th birthday, Siwa posted a rare video of herself without her signature hairstyle and clothing and people began speculating that her contract with the popular media conglomerate was ending soon. Many people began expressing joy that Siwa will finally get to be herself and act her age. But, the 17-year-old actually has more control over her brand than most people think.

JoJo Siwa fans are always surprised by her age
With her sparkly costumes, over the top energy, and happy demeanor, it’s clear that Siwa’s target audience is younger kids. In fact, many people are surprised to discover that Siwa is actually 17 given the way she is marketed. People speculate that Siwa’s contract forces her to behave in a way that is younger than she is, but Siwa has refuted that claim several times. In fact, in an interview with Time, Siwa confessed that the Nickelodeon executives have asked her when she would be ready to “age up,” but she decided she was in no rush to do that.

How much of Siwa’s persona is based on her contract?
Others have speculated that Siwa’s over the top personality is a result of her contract with Nickelodeon. But, fans who have followed the multi-millionaire from her Dance Moms days know that likely isn’t the case. Siwa has always had a larger than life persona. She’s always been overly enthusiastic and filled to the brim with unmatched energy. In fact, when Siwa first met with Pam Kaufman (President of Viacom Nickelodeon global consumer products), Kaufman told Siwa she could tone down her “JoJo” act.

“The third time I met with Pam, she said, ‘You know, you don’t have to come to these meetings all JoJo. You can just come normal.’ And I said, ‘Pam, we have to have a talk, because I need you to know that this is my normal. This is my life. There is no other secret. There is no other person. I literally am JoJo. I wear the bright clothes every day. I wear the sparkly hair bows. I wear the high-top shoes. I sing the fun music. I talk really loud. I talk fast, and I talk a lot. This is who I am,” Siwa recalled about the meeting.

The TikTok star has quite a bit of control over her brand
Siwa also has a big say in the products that are released under her contract. “My hand is in everything, along with a lot of other people’s hands. It’s not like I design a hoodie and we release it online, but I have what is called a style guide,” Siwa confessed. The 17-year-old also has the last word on all images, graphics, colors, and fonts of her branded merchandise. Furthermore, the Dance Moms alum also is known to change scripts, making sure the overall tone of what she says works for her target audience.

What will Siwa do when she’s released from her contract?
While Siwa’s contract definitely plays a part in how she is viewed in the public eye, she definitely still has some control. Now that her contract is set to expire, it’ll be interesting to see how her unique brand involves. Only time will tell what’s next for the young entrepreneur.


More Nick: JoJo Siwa Entertains Fans from Her Backyard with First *WORLDWIDE LIVE* Performance!

Originally published: Tuesday, May 19, 2020 at 23:33 BST.
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