(Source: PETA)

Ex-Vegan YouTube Star Kalel Takes Heat For Promoting “Skinny” Tea Online

by | September 24, 2019

Kristin Smith, the ex-vegan YouTuber better known as Kalel, is being hit with criticism for promoting “skinny” tea in her latest video.

In a partnership with Teami Blends for the vlog, the influencer unveils both a “skinny” tea and one marketed as a colon cleanser — which she says is not a laxative — while offering a disclaimer to her viewers.

“Now, before you go and get upset with me for promoting a skinny tea, let me tell you the tea, okay? It’s not actually a weight-loss product. This tea is all natural,” she said.

“It is just tea. It’s just marketed as skinny tea because it helps you… you know. It helps reduce cravings. It helps give you energy.”

Skinny Detox
Skinny tea is said to aid weight loss (Source: natalia bulatova/Shutterstock.com)

Kalel: Positive Influencer?

It’s clear from the comments section that some of Kalel’s viewers took issue with the plug nonetheless, questioning the impact this sort of content would have on her 1.9 million followers.

“I’ve skipped the whole detox tea part,” wrote one user. 

“We all know how bad those are for your body.”

“When you say that it has no laxative but you also say that it [will] ‘detox’ your colon,” wrote another, alongside an eye-roll emoji.

Kalel also spends a portion of the video talking about weight gain she claims she needs to address — another angle viewers took issue with.

“Imagine what younger girl’s are thinking hearing you say that,” one wrote. 

“You are actually healthy own it.”

Chocolate Bar
Kalel admitted that she had been eating dairy (Source: Africa Studio/Shutterstock.com)

Kalel’s Move Away From The Vegan Lifestyle

Controversy was sparked last year when Kalel — a longtime PETA collaborator and promoter of animal welfare — admitted that she’d been eating dairy during the course of her veganism. Feedback varied.

“The reason so many of us are distraught over Kalel is because her motive is wrong,” wrote one Twitter user.

“She does not care one bit about the animals, that’s something we’re all acutely aware of at this point. The truth is she used the vegan label to gain attention and followers.”

Another was more delicate in their response.

“[I love you] Kalel but you can literally buy vegan candy bars especially in LA especially with your money,” they wrote. 

“I mean you’re a PETA activist.. It’s kinda odd that you’d purchase non-vegan items.”

Kalel, who discusses her change in diet during the video, maintains that she’s aware of the impact of her choices, and that she doesn’t take issue with the vegan lifestyle as a whole.

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