TikTok Creator Nyethebrat Gives Us a Behind-the-Scenes Look at Her Life Before She Decided to Hit the Record Button
It’s not every day that you open up your social media feed and see someone as authentically unapologetic as Nyethebrat across your screen.
From her real-life experiences to the witty comebacks that have served as every troll’s nightmare, this New Jersey-bred creative has cultivated a lane of her own that surpasses what meets the internet’s eye.
To the world, we may know her as Nyethebrat (the blunt-speaking, sarcasm-spitting, comedically-carefree personality that has dominated our timelines), but at her core, she’s simply Nija Spencer from The Garden State.
With a jocular sense of rawness to accompany her captivating content, Nyethebrat has the type of star quality that shines with each and every engaging video that she contributes to her thriving platform.
We recently had a chance to catch up with Nyethebrat to talk about her journey to becoming an influencing entrepreneur with TikTok at her fingertips.
Check it out below!
Parlé Magazine: Let’s start with the basics. I want to take it back to your roots… the beginning. Where were you born and raised?
Nyethebrat: I was born and raised in New Jersey, South Jersey, specifically. I’m from Woodbury.
Parlé Magazine: What was your experience like growing up there? And how would you say the environment shaped you into the person you are today?
Nyethebrat: My experience here has been a rollercoaster, but this ride is never-ending. I dealt with a lot of bullying growing up here–from the moment we moved from Salem, NJ. It wasn’t until I was older that I found my voice, personality, and stood firm in who I was. Nobody was gonna keep bullying me and I didn’t say anything. I had to stand up for myself, which was rough. I was always a part of catty arguments, fights, etc, while being a student. So, it was hard. I loved school so my passion for that would die out here and there and I hated that sometimes. Our parents send us to school to learn and get an education, not to be harassed by other kids.
Parlé Magazine: Tell us what life looked like for Nija Spencer before she became Nyethebrat.
Nyethebrat: Life for Nija Spencer before Nyethebrat was very nerdy. I was such a nerd growing up, and I still am. I always had my head in a book; I loved to read. Junie B Jones, Judy Moody, and Diary of a Wimpy Kid were all my favorites. I was an all-year-round athlete and a writer. I had part-time jobs too because I loved hustling and providing for myself. I was just a regular girl trying to figure out life. I had to grow up fast being a big sister and a provider in my household. I had a double life. How I acted in school was not how I acted at home, but, soon enough, with those personalities combined, NyetheBrat was born.
Parlé Magazine: Speaking of life before Nyethebrat–for those who may not know–prior to your transition into influencing, you were an urban fiction author! So, walk us through what actually made you put down the pen and pick up the camera. Is content creation a lane that you’ve always wanted to shift into?
Nyethebrat: What made me put down the pen was the experiences I endured with publishing companies behind closed doors. It sucked the fun out of what I loved doing, and that was writing. Now, I probably wasn’t the best author under a company’s belt, but the passion and creativity I had were there and unmatched. I also entered the author game at the tender age of eighteen. So, I didn’t know much about the industry either, and that didn’t help. I love writing about what I want to write about–with the creative titles I come up with–and I hated feeling like I was on a time limit or rushed.
Before I got into the writing industry I was a popular Wattpad fan-fiction author with a huge audience. Over three million reads later and the His Miracle series is still doing well almost a decade later. Whenever I wrote on Wattpad I felt free. Nothing was being altered, all my ideas were my own, I wrote when I wanted to, I just did me. You can’t do that under a publishing company or with most of them since they’re paying for your books to come out. I will forever thank my very first publisher Treasure Milan for believing in me and seeing my vision. She did right by me and I love her to this day.
I always wanted to pick up a camera, but I was so insecure growing up. I was worried about what other people would think, and I didn’t have support at home, so I never picked up the camera. But once my insecurities died and I learned to love myself, I picked that camera up like the lights turned on at a show. I never saw myself as a content creator, but the more I did it I fell in love with it, and that’s when I knew I wanted to separate Nija from Nyethebrat. I never thought I’d be a content creator. I naturally became one because of my Youtube channel and honestly fell in love with it. Getting behind the camera boosted my confidence and self-esteem. I fell in love with myself after years of trauma, bullying, and torment. Honestly, I never looked back.
Parlé Magazine: Although it appears that you tapped into the YouTube arena first, TikTok definitely increased your visibility. Over 300,000 followers, and you’re steadily growing!
One of the things that instantly drew me to you as I came across your platform was your straight-no-chaser, take-me-as-I-am personality.
You’re so confident and unapologetic in your approach, even when it comes to covering topics that are, particularly, uncomfortable within the Black community.
Have you always been in this space? If not, what did it take for you to get here?
Nyethebrat: I think I’ve always been unapologetically myself and unapologetic with my approach. I’m very blunt–ask my friends and they’ll tell you! I really don’t hold my tongue for anybody, and I think that stemmed from the bullying I endured growing up. People would walk all over me and I’d never defend myself. I grew to learn my boundaries, and I grew to learn to not take sh*t from anybody! Excuse my language.
People will really take advantage of you when you’re nice and sweet. They think they can say and do whatever, and you just can’t with me. It took time, over the years, to get to this point, but I think going to college really helped me. You’re exposed to so many different walks of life, and you have to know how to be unapologetically yourself. People can be miserable and have no problem lowering you to their level. TikTok also helped me as well. Having over 300,000 people watching you on one platform is nerve-racking. But, I can say that they love me for who I am and allow me to be myself.
Parlé Magazine: Expanding on that question…
Some of your most viral videos were those about your experience having to deal with the effects of toxic family members. Not only did you open up about your own journey, but, as a viewer, I could sense that it was also an act of self-healing for you.
What prompted you to share your story? And how did those close to you respond to the success that you instantly gained from doing so?
Nyethebrat: What prompted me to share my story was that chapter in my life at that time. Looking back at it now, I was honestly drowning. I was drowning, and I needed an outlet. Also, I was tired of being quiet and letting everything slide. I was dealing with a lot behind closed doors, and I had truly had enough. One of my best friends kept telling me to expose what I was going through. I didn’t want to at first because I’m like, “I don’t wanna tell my business, I’m embarrassed.” A physical and verbal altercation that I had with my sister and mother is what really pushed me to tell my story. I mustered the strength I had left to tell my story and it went viral overnight.
Those close to me responded how I knew they would. They were in denial and painted me out to be a liar and a crazy person. They stalked me from fake accounts with their close friends spamming my comments with lies about my life. Yes, we all lived under the same roof, but we lived different lives. Could you imagine that? My sister and her friends were stalking my account, sending my mom the videos. I just kept exposing them, and I didn’t feel bad. Nobody is going to paint me as the bad guy nor are outsiders irrelevant to the situation going to bully me. You’d think exposing their foul behavior would prompt them to change, but it didn’t. My household was tense, I’m talking about four against one, and I held my ground.
Parlé Magazine: Any mention of trauma, especially in Black families, is often frowned upon. As someone who has been a victim of such circumstances, why do you think that is?
Nyethebrat: I think that any mention of trauma, particularly in Black families, is often frowned upon because these toxic-a** people in our lives are in denial. The abuse, pain, and suffering they endured back in the day have been beaten and inflicted on them so much to the point where they believe it’s normal and okay when (in all actuality) they are victims themselves. And you have to think, the more we go back, generation after generation, look at abuse and trauma within our community, where does it stem from? Slavery.
That slave mentality is what’s killing our people mentally. I also believe it’s frowned upon because nobody has the courage to admit that they were victimized, and they don’t understand that they’ve been victimized or once were a victim. We were taught, “What happens in this house stays in this house,” and a lot of us are suffering in our own houses for years and decades and so on. Can you imagine waking up in your own home where you should be comfortable, protected, and at peace suffering in silence? It’s such a hard pill to swallow, and, unfortunately, I grew up in one of those houses.
Parlé Magazine: Mentally and emotionally, where would you say you are now?
Nyethebrat: Mentally and emotionally, now, I’m doing amazing. In a few weeks, it’ll be a year since my depression started. To think that this time last year I was so sad makes me sad. I’m far from being a sad person, but I was suffering. I overcame my depression about a few months ago now. Earlier this year I was still suffering–that’s crazy to me! Enduring depression and overcoming it in the same year is one of my biggest blessings. I have my ego in check and my boundaries in place. I took this past summer to heal, and I can honestly say I don’t regret it. It was a healing girl summer for me. I learned so much about myself to the point where I can say I actually know the adult version of me. I still got some work to do, but I’m proud of how far I’ve come mentally and emotionally.
Parlé Magazine: As women of color, in general, we are frequently muffled when it comes to unpopular opinions. However, I believe that it adds an extra layer of difficulty when you’re plus-size as well. People literally feel like they’re allowed to say anything and mask it as if it’s coming from a place of “concern.”
Now, you have this huge online platform with thousands of people who feel entitled to offer up
their unsolicited judgments and viewpoints!
How have you managed to deal with that? Did it ever prompt you to regret being so transparent
Nyethebrat: When I first went viral on TikTok, I definitely wore the crown of “Clap Back Queen.” Anytime somebody had something smart to say I’d go in on them. I don’t care if it’s the internet or not, watch your mouth, and don’t talk to me any kind of way. My clap-back videos would always get reported for harassment and bullying… like how?
So, you telling me that somebody who doesn’t know me on Beyoncé’s internet can attack me, but I can’t clap back? Make it make sense! I had to learn that people will say and do what they want and I can’t control that. I know myself well enough to know who I am and what I’m not. Your opinion doesn’t matter, and you don’t know me. When I first started to blow up, there were times that I regretted being so transparent, but that’s just who I am. That’s how I’ve healed–by being transparent.
Parlé Magazine: What do you think is the biggest misconception about you? As an individual.
Nyethebrat: I think the biggest misconception about me, as an individual, is that I’m mean as hell. To me, this has to be the funniest misconception ever because I’m the polar opposite of that. I’m such a sweetheart. People see me read someone their rights on TikTok and now I’m mean. I’ve also been told that I’m not approachable. So many people recognized me from TikTok on campus last year, and the majority of them were too afraid to speak to me because I looked so mean.
Listen… chile, I was depressed. I didn’t want to be bothered, I didn’t want to talk, and I didn’t want to have anybody in my sad space. I’d put my AirPods in, go to class, and go right back to my apartment.
You never know what somebody is going through behind closed doors, honestly. I am a sweetheart though… in real life. You only catch me being “mean” on TikTok when I’m defending myself, and, even then, it’s not me being mean, I’m defending myself.
Parlé Magazine: Looking back on how far you’ve come, what advice would you give the younger you?
Nyethebrat: The advice I’d give the younger me is to smile more and be confident. Getting bullied, growing up, really affected me. I didn’t take pictures, and I wore sweatpants and hoodies all the time. I learned that I adopted a “fake smile,” and behind that fake smile was so much pain.
I shouldn’t have been in that much pain at that age. I should have been outside having fun, but, instead, I was sheltered, miserable, and couldn’t go anywhere. I’ve always been beautiful, but I didn’t believe it. Whenever I got compliments I thought people were trying to be funny or make me the butt of somebody’s joke.
I think it’s safe to say I made the younger me so proud because I’m everything now that I would be telling her to be. There is no more covering up; I wear what I want and show skin. I’m always smiling. I have a beautiful smile, and I’ve grown to love it.
Parlé Magazine: Switching gears a minute. You have the podcast, B*tch It’s Okay, your lash business, and you also mentor people who are looking to get into influencing. Listen… Nija, you do A LOT! Talk to us about your entrepreneurial endeavors and what you’ve learned along the way.
Nyethebrat: From my podcast, B*tch It’s Okay, to my lash brand, Brat’s Way, everything I do or create within the entrepreneurial space reflects who I am as a person, and I love it. Brat’s Way will be branching off into cosmetics soon, and I’m super excited about this transition. I’m so obsessed with makeup and spend so much money on it. Why not create my own products? I have so many projects on the way that we’d be here all day talking about them.
Just be sure to follow me @nyethebrat on all social media platforms. As far as my podcast goes, I love Btch It’s Okay because… btch, it’s really okay! I created that podcast to allow us, as girls, to really talk our sht and be comfortable. There aren’t too many spaces that are like that, and with me being so raunchy and blunt, it’s perfect for me. You can listen to my podcast on Apple Music and YouTube. Mark my words, I will be the biggest lash dealer and beauty influencer out of New Jersey, watch. Btch It’s Okay will be the next Caresha Please. What I’ve learned along the way throughout all of my endeavors is that consistency is key and authenticity makes you money.
Be yourself when you’re an entrepreneur. Your audience will love you for being yourself, and you don’t want to be known in this industry as a fake, a scammer, etc. Me being my authentic self has allowed me to generate multiple streams of income for myself, and there’s more to come. Also, think outside the box and be creative. Add your own flair and taste to things so when people see you drop, they know it has your name written all over it and they’re gonna buy it.
Parlé Magazine: What advice would you give to those who are looking to work for themselves?
Nyethebrat: Advice that I’d give anybody that wants to work for themselves is to just do it. And if you’re scared, do it scared. The saying goes, “Scared money don’t make no money,” and it’s true because it doesn’t. Entrepreneurship, even influencing, is all about the risk you take. There will always be a greater reward in the end, but you can’t be scared. Make sure you’re passionate about this, and, also, consistency is key.
Parlé Magazine: What’s next for you?
Nyethebrat: What’s next for me? I honestly don’t know. With me being creative, I have so many ideas that I want to execute. My brain is in overload as we speak. I’m not really sure what’s next for me, but that’s where the excitement comes in. It can be anything, and it all depends on where my projects take me. I’m excited about whatever is next for me, and I can’t wait to get there. I’ve been working so hard behind the scenes it’s crazy. Once I hit 400,000 followers on TikTok, I think I might have an answer!
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