Interview by Jana Letonja

Known for his Adonis-like good looks and his captivating TikToks, Vinnie Hacker is quickly becoming the most versatile talent in the digital space. Vinnie is a pro gamer, a picturesque model and a trendsetting entrepreneur. Vinnie currently has 5.7M followers on Instagram and 15.3M followers on TikTok, with numbers growing rapidly. In 2022 he was also seen in Netflix’s ‘The Hype House’.

Vinnie, you’re one of the most popular social media personalities, with over 5 million followers on Instagram and more than 15 million followers on TikTok. What made you start a career in social media creation?

I started creating after using my account to post streaming clips in 2018, but then I realized what type of content my audience was engaging with and shifted to posting more of what I post now. I always thought of TikTok as a platform to build my Twitch account off of, but it took off and grew so much faster than I ever thought it would.

Your content ranges from esports highlights, daily vlogs at the skatepark and engaging with your highly devoted fanbase. How do you decide on what content you post and share with your fans? Do you have a schedule for what and when you post?

I don’t have a schedule. And I decide on what to post depending on how I feel that day. I love having a community of fans that support me no matter what I’m posting about.

In 2021, after your underdog victory in the ‘Battle of The Platforms’ boxing match against YouTuber Deji, ending a three-round TKO, you gained 1.2M followers on Instagram and 3.2M on TikTok in only one week. Have you ever anticipated having so many followers on social media and especially gaining so many in such a short amount of time? 

I never thought anything like that would happen, especially that quickly. I almost didn’t know what to do after gaining so much attention.

Would you say that being a social media personality and having so many fans changed you in any way?

I would be lying if I said it didn’t change me, but not in a bad way. I’ve just become more driven from knowing what I’m capable of with my platforms. 

What do you believe is the most important for young and popular social media creators to be able to stay true to themselves?

To remember how grateful they have to be, because not everyone has this chance. It’s a blessing to be able to do something you love and stay humble about it.

Last year we’ve been able to see you in Netflix’s ‘The Hype House’, which is a show about TikTok stars living in LA. Why did you join this show and what have you gained from it? Would you ever do it again?

I joined because it was a great opportunity, but I wouldn’t do it again. You have to invest all your time into something like that and it’s not really my cup of tea.

You’re also a pro gamer. How would you describe the gaming world to someone if you’d want to inspire them to become a gamer? What excites you the most about gaming?

I started streaming very young and have always had a passion for gaming. You have to be able to be very interactive, especially with streaming. But, what excites me the most would be the competitive play style. I love competing in tournaments and Twitch Rivals events.

You’ve done some modeling in your life and are passionate about fashion. What’s your view on fashion? What makes you passionate about it?

I’ve always loved fashion, but it took me a while to educate myself about it and see what it is about fashion I truly like. I love the idea of people creating art with clothing.  

How would you describe your own style?

Relaxed, comfortable, but not afraid to dress up and look clean for an event.

With being present at many fashion shows lately, what amazed you the most about the collections you’ve been able to witness firsthand? What amazes you the most about designers and runway collections in general?

What amazes me most is a designer’s passion and confidence to put their clothing out to the world.

With 2023 only just beginning, what’s in your plans for this year?

So many things. I want to be able to balance them all, especially with continuing my own brand ‘Purgatory’, as well as getting into acting. I’m beginning to take classes and talk to coaches before making any moves. I want to be ready for an opportunity instead of relying on my notoriety for one.

Talent Vinnie Hacker @vinniehacker
Photographer Jonny Marlow @jonnymarlow
Stylist Christian Stroble @christianstroble
Groomer Mira Chai Hyde @mirachai
Photography assistant Evadne Gonzales @799a.i
Styling assistant Gaia Khatchadourian @gaiakhat
Editor Timi Letonja @timiletonja
Cover design Arthur Roeloffzen @arthurroeloffzen