TikTok star Dylan Mulvaney has spoken out publicly for the first time about the hate she received following an advert she featured in for Bud Light.
Mulvaney rose to fame on TikTok in 2022 when she began sharing her transition journey and has remained a key trans figure on the platform with over 10 million followers.
The transgender influencer worked with the brand back in April. She posted a promotional video for Bud Light dressed as Audrey Hepburn sipping a personalised beer.
However, she was quickly targeted with backlash by high-profile conservatives. Trolls declared the brand shouldn’t endorse a trans woman and subsequently boycotted Bud Light.
“For months now, I have been scared to leave my house. I have been ridiculed in public”
Now, she has finally addressed the “hateful” and “transphobic” abuse she was subject to online in the aftermath.
“For a company to hire a trans person and then not publicly stand by them is worse, in my opinion, than not hiring a trans person at all,” said Mulvaney, while sipping on a non-branded beer.
She went on to note that a lack of condemnation gave room for “customers to be as hateful and transphobic as they want”.
Since posting her ad for Bud Light, Mulvaney has experienced “more bullying and transphobia than I could have ever imagined”.
“I patiently waited for things to get better
“I patiently waited for things to get better,” she went on to add, when explaining why she didn’t speak out sooner. “But surprise: they haven’t, really.”
“For months now, I have been scared to leave my house. I have been ridiculed in public. I have been followed, and I have felt a loneliness that I wouldn’t wish on anyone,” she said.
She added: “I’m not telling you this because I want your pity. I’m telling you this because if this is my experience from a very privileged perspective. Know that it is much, much worse for other trans people.”
Bud Light saw their sales drop by 25% in the four weeks that followed ending on June 3 compared with 2022. They then lost their spot as the US’s top-selling beer.
The company later claimed the work was from “an outside agency without Anheuser-Busch management awareness or approval”.