Friday, July 23

Pretty Little Liars’ Lindsey Shaw Takes Social Media Break Post-Controversy


Seeking solace, ASAP! For some celebrities, the best way to find peace is to take a hiatus from cyberspace, where total chaos reigns.

Stars including Selena Gomez, Kim Kardashian and Sarah Hyland have taken breaks from social media in order to refresh their minds, their mentions and their search history.

The “Bad Liar” songstress, who at one point was the most followed person on Instagram, is a huge fan of stepping away from the internet when trolls get her down.

“I have not, personally, in two years had any social media on my phone,” she said during an Instagram Live in October 2020. “I use the platform, I make sure I approve and write things I want to write, but I don’t look at it and it’s not on my phone.”

Though the former Disney star had plenty of fans following her, she also had her fair share of haters, who made it difficult for her to enjoy the apps.

“I just felt like every day I woke up and I was like, ‘Why am I doing this?’” she explained. “These words hurt and they add nothing to my life and the truth is they’re lies. So, that is how I handled it, by saying, ‘You know what? I’m going to step out of this because I don’t think it’s helping me at all.’”

Even Kardashian, a veritable Instagram queen, has taken brief breaks from the app. After she was robbed at gunpoint in Paris in October 2016, she didn’t return to her accounts for three months.

Since then, the Skims founder has changed how she posts and no longer adds Instagram Stories in real time.

“I learned from a bad experience I had when I was robbed that people really knew my every move,” she explained during a New York Times conference in November 2019. “They knew what I had, they knew where I was, what I was doing and that, to me, really changed the things that I post.”

Now, the Keeping Up With the Kardashians star waits a beat before sharing her life with her fans. “I still want people to feel like they’re on that journey with me,” she said. “But I might video something, then post it 30 minutes later when I’ve left the location, more for privacy.”

Keep scrolling to see which celebrities stepped back from social media:

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Brie Larson

While commemorating the one-year anniversary of her YouTube channel in July 2021, the Captain Marvel star announced that she decided to put her social media project on hold for the moment. “So I did not think that I would hit the one-year mark on this, to be quite honest,” she said in a video message to her followers. “I didn’t know how I’d feel putting myself out there weekly in this way. I think some of you know that I started this channel, I started thinking about it before the pandemic, and it was because I needed to just, like, I needed to shake it up. I needed to feel like I could just be silly and normal.”

The Oscar winner explained that because film production had resumed more regularly after the coronavirus lockdowns of 2020, she would have less time to spend on her vlog. “I can’t keep up on doing videos weekly,” she added. “I’ve got to go back to my job. My first job. My acting job.”

YouTube

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Bindi Irwin

The Crikey! It’s the Irwins star announced she’d be taking a month-long break from the apps in June 2021, almost three months after giving birth to her daughter, Grace Warrior.

“I feel tremendously grateful to share our life and conservation work with you but I need some time to focus on the happiness that is my family (both human and animal). You can keep up with our adventures by following my family and Australia Zoo on social media. 💙,” she wrote via Instagram. “Recently, I’ve had many people reaching out to share their own stories of working hard to protect their mental health. Thank you for sharing and speaking your truth. To my friends who are dealing with depression, anxiety and other battles every day — I see you. These issues are very real and deserve to be discussed and addressed. Surround yourself with the light of people who genuinely care about you and will support you during the good times and the hard times. Remember there are helplines available. Mental health deserves more understanding and support instead of being dismissed or patronised. You are absolutely worthy of love and kindness.”

John Salangsang/Shutterstock

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Margot Robbie

The Harley Quinn actress hadn’t been on Instagram for six weeks when she announced that she was officially taking a break in June 2021. “Jumping off social media for the time being – check out @luckychapentertainment if you’re interested in what we’re up to, otherwise ciao for now!” the Aussie revealed via Instagram. Along with the statement, she posted a picture of herself and some colleagues from Lucky Chap, her production company, celebrating their latest hit film, Promising Young Woman

Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP/Shutterstock

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Eboni K. Williams

In June 2021, the Real Housewives of New York City star announced that she would be stepping away from social media for “about two weeks” because of difficult RHONY episodes that were about to air. “Tonight’s episode and next week’s episode are really intense and really important … and I want you to lean into them and I want you to watch them,” she said in an Instagram video. “It’s different this season. You’re right. We’re in a pandemic, we’re in the middle of the most dynamic call to action around racial reconciliation, certainly in our generation, and we’re in the heartbeat of it all in New York City. So we’re doing a heavy lift here.”

Sophy Holland/Bravo

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Rebel Wilson

After frequently showcasing her slimmer figure online throughout her “year of health” in 2020, the Pitch Perfect actress decided to take a step back to focus on her career. “I’m going to sign off for a bit because I’m filming a movie here in the U.K. that needs my full attention,” she said in a March 2021 Instagram video. “It’s a very different type of role for me, so I’ve really got to immerse myself in it. … It’s time for me to work my ass off, once again.”

Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP/Shutterstock

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Hailey Baldwin

“I don’t even have a Twitter anymore because there was never really a time where I would go on there and it didn’t feel like it was a very toxic environment,” the model explained during a March 2021 YouTube video featuring psychiatrist Jessica Clemons. “The thought of even opening the app gives me such bad anxiety that I feel like I’m gonna throw up. … I want everyone to like me, it’s like, my downfall at times and I’m working through it. I think one thing I’ve had to come to the conclusion of is trying not to feel like I owe everybody an explanation or owe anybody anything, and really just try to correct what I need to correct personally behind closed doors.”

Baldwin also made some changes to her Instagram feed, restricting comments in order to create a more “encouraging and uplifting” environment.

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Kerry Washington

The Scandal alum announced in a Twitter video in March 2021 that she was “going to be gone for a few weeks” because she needed a break from social media. “I love you guys. … Miss you already,” she captioned the post.

Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP/Shutterstock

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Evan Rachel Wood

The actress opened up about her decision to quit Twitter in September 2020, explaining that anytime she’d tweet her feelings, it would become a headline. “It would be, like, ‘Evan Rachel Wood goes on a rant!’ or ‘Evan Rachel Wood attacks this person!’” she told Variety. “Honestly, I think [deactivating my account is] one of the best decisions I ever made! Really.”

Photo by Bad Robot/HBO/Kobal/Shutterstock

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Ant Anstead

The TV presenter announced his plans to take a break from social media in August 2020. “The world is crazy right now. And for all the good things social media has it also carries a toxic element,” he wrote via Instagram. “I have blocked over 100 people in the last few days. Humans are lashing out. And it saddens me! So I am going to take a little break! Use the time to pamper the wife, annoy the kids, eat a vast about of carbs and watch movies that were made in the 1980’s! Pretty Little Liars’ Lindsey Shaw Takes Social Media Break Post-Controversy pretty-little-liars-lindsey-shaw-takes-social-media-break-post-controversy  Be kind to each other and seeya.

Can Nguyen/Shutterstock

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Cole Sprouse

The Riverdale star took a break from all platforms in June 2020 after being accused of sexual assault by an anonymous Twitter user. He denied the allegation before returning to Instagram the following month, writing, “Know I’ve been off of social media for a while. Decided to take a much needed mental health break. I’ve never been the most active user of social media, but even the minor amount I had been engaging during quarantine had become a bit too taxing.”

John Salangsang/Shutterstock

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Jenna Marbles

The YouTuber announced in June 2020 that she would be taking a step back from her channel after apologizing for past racist videos. “I’m not sure that I want to continue doing stuff on this channel,” she told her followers, after saying sorry for the use of blackface and more offensive sketches in her catalogue. “I don’t want to put anything out in the world that’s gonna hurt anybody. I need to be done with this channel for now or forever, I don’t know.”

Eric Charbonneau/Shutterstock

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Drew Barrymore

The actress returned to social media in March 2020 amid the coronavirus pandemic. “So, I’ve been on a social media break for a while,” Barrymore wrote at the time alongside a series of memes. “I just haven’t known what to say… But here are some things my friends sent me that made me laugh this week, helping me remember the inventive comedy that lives in the wild world of social media ❤️”

Charles Sykes/Invision/AP/Shutterstock

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Tom Holland

Though his account is still up and running, the Marvel star revealed to E! News in February 2020 that he had to delete the Instagram app from his phone entirely. “It was taking over my life, and I was becoming obsessed by it,” he explained. “Like, ‘How many likes did I get?’ and ‘What did people say about my picture?’ and who’s doing this and who’s doing that. I found myself focusing more on my Instagram life than I was on my real life … Now that I’ve taken a step back and I’ve started to focus on Tom and the future of what Tom is gonna be. I’m just working on myself, and I feel really great for it.”

Shutterstock

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Lizzo

The “Juice” singer started off the new year with a bang — and a break from Twitter. On January 5, 2020, the “Good as Hell” artist told her followers that she is done with social media — for now. “Yeah I can’t do this Twitter shit no more … too many trolls,” she tweeted at the time. “I’ll be back when I feel like it.” When it comes to Instagram, however, the musician is still active.

MediaPunch/Shutterstock

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Ed Sheeran

The “Beautiful People” singer revealed his New Year’s resolution a little early in December 2019. “The Divide era and tour changed my life in so many ways, but now it’s all over it’s time to go out and see some more of the world,” the British songwriter wrote in an Instagram statement. “I’ve been a bit nonstop since 2017 so I’m just gonna take a breather to travel, write and read … I promise to be back with some new music when the time is right.” He previously took a social media break in 2016.

Emmi Korhonen/Shutterstock

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Channing Tatum

When the Magic Mike star announced his break from social media in August 2019, he said that he wanted to leave “for a minute” to focus on his creativity. In an Instagram statement, the actor wrote: “To be honest, I don’t really feel, or at least I haven’t felt very creative on social in the last couple years now. I’m gonna go and be just in the real world for a while and off my phone.”

Erik Pendzich/Shutterstock

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Demi Lovato

The “Sorry Not Sorry” singer paused her social media activity for several months following her July 2018 drug overdose. After seeking treatment in a rehab facility for three months, Lovato returned to Instagram for a good cause in November — to encourage people to get out and vote on Election Day. “I am so grateful to be home in time to vote!” she wrote alongside a shot of her at the booth.

Lovato said goodbye to Twitter again in February 2019 after she was slammed for saying her “favorite part” of Super Bowl LIII was looking at memes about 21 Savage, who was arrested by U.S. immigration officials the morning of the big game and faces deportation. The Disney Channel alum clarified that she would never joke about “anyone getting deported,” but still deactivated her social media account. She later wrote on her Instagram Story: “This break couldn’t last long enough tbh.”

Lovato announced another Instagram break in July 2019 after showing support for her manager, Scooter Braun, amid his feud with Taylor Swift over his purchase of the “Shake It Off” singer’s master recordings. “Taking a break for a while,” Lovato wrote on her Instagram Story. “Be kind.”

INSTAR Images

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Kunal Nayyar

The Big Bang Theory star announced he was “taking a break from social media for a while” in June 2019, nearly one month after the series finale aired. “Before I go, I wanted to leave you with this: I used to think that the opposite of fear was courage. But I realized that the opposite of fear is actually love. Love is the opposite of fear,” he wrote on Instagram. “So if you’re feeling anxious, or panicky, or fearful- just focus on being the most loving, compassionate, and empathetic human that lives inside of you. Today when you are out and about- smile at a stranger, hold open the door for someone, help a friend or a loved one in need. Because when you become the epitome of love, when you truly become love itself, fear can no longer exist. I promise you this. With all my heart… good bye for now. #namaste.”

Stefanie Keenan/Getty Images

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Iggy Azalea

The “Fancy” rapper deleted her Instagram and Twitter pages in May 2019 a day after topless photos of her began to surface. Azalea did not speak out about the leaked pics at the time.

JB Lacroix/Getty Images

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Lil Xan

Saying he was “sad, mad, confused,” the rapper announced his social media hiatus in April 2018, shortly after revealing in an interview that he was “50/50” about whether fiancée Annie Smith had faked her pregnancy and miscarriage. “I Love you guys no matter what tho and to all the haters feel free to use me as a punching bag for your own insecurities,” he wrote on Instagram at the time. “Going mia for awhile,need to get away from the devil (social media) but if you see me on the street say wassup.”

Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Billboard

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Aidy Bryant

The SNL star explained why she quit Twitter during a SXSW Q&A for her movie Shrill, “It’s a bad space,” she explained, “I think the thing that shocked me about it — and it’s really the reason I got off Twitter — was every time I played Sarah Huckabee Sanders … every time I did it, I would get a ton of tweets and 50 percent of them would be conservative people who would be like, ‘You are a fat disgusting pig who should not play this strong, independent woman.’ And the other 50 percent were like, ‘Aidy is too beautiful to play this fat, disgusting liar.’”

Mike Jordan/Getty Images for SXSW

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Cardi B

The “Money” rapper left social media in February 2019 after she faced backlash for winning the Best Rap Album Grammy over the late Mac Miller. Shortly before she deactivated her Instagram account, she posted a cryptic message that read, “I used to want this s—t foreva. Ya can have it back!” Cardi was only off Instagram for two days before she came “back from retirement” to promote her latest collaboration with Bruno Mars. 

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Will Poulter

The Black Mirror: Bandersnatch star chose to “take a step back” from Twitter in January 2019 following the release of the interactive Netflix film. “As we all know there is a balance to be struck in our engagements with social media. There are positives to enjoy and inevitable negatives that are best avoided. It’s a balance I have struggled with for a while now and in the interest of my mental health I feel the time has come to change my relationship with social media,” the actor wrote on Twitter at the time, noting that he would continue to post on behalf of organizations with which he partners. “I am privileged to have this platform. I hope that this shift to reduce my personal expression and increase the focus on issues that matter will result in a better outcome for everyone. This is not the end. Consider it an alternative path.”

Netflix

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Jessie J

The singer announced in January 2019 that she was taking a step back from social media. “Starting my new year with some unexpected heavy personal stuff has only made me want to be more present in my life. Spending more real time with people I love and some time with myself. When sadness hits it’s important we embrace it, so it doesn’t define us and it’s for sure surfaced some emotions and things i need to work on with all my attention and love. I have to practice on myself what I talk about [on] stage and in my music too. In a good way :),” she penned via Instagram. “So I am taking a break from all social media for a while. Not forever, but for a while.” 

She concluded: “For now, anything posted will be work related by my team. Want to live in the moment as much as I can, and not through my phone. I love you all. Happy new year. The year of LIVING THE best life for YOU. See you soon.”

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Aaron Paul

The Breaking Bad star revealed in December 2018  that he was stepping back from cyberspace for the time being. “I have decided to take a break from all things social media,” Paul tweeted at the time. “Keeping my head up and phone down for a little while. Need some time to focus on work and family. Can’t  thank you all enough for the love and support. Much love to you all.”

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Lili Reinhart

The Riverdale actress was sick of getting hate from “online trolls,” so she kissed Twitter goodbye. Reinhart announced the departure in a series of pointed messages posted to her Instagram Story in December 2018. “Do people on twitter ever get tired of being so negative and disrespectful to literally everyone and everything? Are they really that miserable? There’s hate everywhere. But especially twitter,” she wrote at the time. “it’s like a cesspool for evil 15 year olds who don’t know what the hell they’re talking about and have nothing better to do. Taking a break from that toxic site and the people on it who feel the need to constantly attack me, my cast mates, my relationship, and Riverdale. Hate to break it to you online trolls: Spreading your hate and overall negativity online won’t make you any less miserable.”

Emma McIntyre/Getty Images

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Selena Gomez

The “Wolves” singer took a hiatus from social media in September 2018 after her ex-boyfriend, Justin Bieber, married Hailey Baldwin at a New York City courthouse. “As much as I am grateful for the voice that social media gives each of us, I am equally grateful to be able to step back and live my life present to the moment I have been given,” Gomez wrote alongside a photo of herself on Instagram. “Just remember- negative comments can hurt anybody’s feelings.” That wasn’t her first time stepping away from the social media spotlight: The Disney Channel alum did the same in 2016 as well. 

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Sarah Hyland

The Modern Family actress announced in December 2018 that she’d be staying “offline for a while” after she received backlash for crowdfunding donations for her family after her 14-year-old cousin was killed by an alleged drunk driver. “You guys finally did it,” she wrote in December 2018. “Your horrible negative ignorant words have broken me.” 

INSTAR Images

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Kim Kardashian

After the reality star was robbed at gunpoint in Paris in October 2016, Kardashian went MIA on her social media accounts — and in the public eye — for three months. She later rang in 2017 by returning to Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat with family-oriented photos: one with her mother and another with husband Kanye West with their son, Saint. 

INSTAR Images

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Ruby Rose

The Orange Is the New Black actress deleted her Twitter account in August 2018 after it was announced she would be playing Batwoman in CW’s Arrowverse — and fans were none too pleased. Rose slammed critics for questioning why she was the right fit for the role before tweeting, “I am looking forward to getting more than 4 hours of sleep and to break from Twitter to focus all my energy on my next 2 projects. If you need me, I’ll be on my Bat Phone.” 

INSTAR Images

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Pete Davidson

The Saturday Night Live star has a love-hate relationship with the internet. During his whirlwind romance with Ariana Grande during the summer of 2018, he deleted his page, explaining he didn’t “want to be on Instagram anymore. or on any social media platform.” He returned to Instagram in September to promote the upcoming premiere of Saturday Night Live, noting, “f–k the internet tho….” Davidson once again wiped his account clean in October after news broke that he and the “God Is a Woman” singer had ended their engagement. He later returned and, while keeping his posts to a bare minimum, the comedian did advise haters in December, “No mater how hard the internet or anyone tries to make me kill myself. I won’t.” 

NBC

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Millie Bobby Brown

The Stranger Things star deleted her Twitter account after memes that attributed homophobic comments to her alongside a hashtag #TakeDownMillieBobbyBrown went viral in June 2018. 

Kevin Mazur/Getty Images

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Cheryl Burke

The Dancing With the Stars pro announced in March 2018, “I’m dealing with some personal things right now and need to take a break from social media. Thanks for understanding and remember to tell the people who are important to you just how much you love them each and everyday.” She returned to Instagram a few days later to post a sweet tribute to her father, Stephen Burke, who died March 9. 

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Kanye West

The “Ghost Town” rapper is no stranger to deactivating his social media accounts. In October 2018, West deleted his pages after he made headlines for his pro-Donald Trump rant on Saturday Night Live and calling to abolish the 13th amendment on Twitter. He later returned to social media while on vacation in Uganda that same month but continued to keep a low profile. A year earlier, West shut down his Instagram account with a source explaining to Us, “It wasn’t a healthy outlet for him.” 

Roy Rochlin/Getty Images



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