With a unique style, specializing in destroying cumbersome and silly tricks on TikTok, “black guy” Khaby Lame became a huge money-making star at the age of 22.
Starting to join TikTok in March 2020, to date, Khaby Lame has become the 2nd most followed character in the world with more than 146 million followers and 2.3 billion likes in videos. Every time this “black guy” is mentioned, people will remember the person who specializes in “solving all problems” and is the fastest growing content creator on TikTok. This unexpected success was so amazing that Khaby Lame himself found it hard to believe.
01. Unemployed worker and his charm come to Tiktok
Khaby Lame’s full name is Khabane Lame, born in 2000 in Senegal but moved to Italy to live with his family when he was 1 year old. Khaby Lame’s father is a wealthy businessman and his mother is a housewife. After graduating from high school, Khaby Lame became a worker for an electronics factory in Chivasso, northern Italy. Although it was just a low-paid job, it also brought him a little income enough to survive.
This guy’s life went on as normal until March 2020 when Italy entered its first blockade due to the Covid-19 epidemic, this was also the time the “black guy” lost his job. While looking for a new job, Lame spent most of the day at home. In his free time, he downloaded TikTok – a video social networking platform from China to his phone, created an account called Khaby Lame and started making his first videos.
Initially, the video content he made was also nothing special, simply showing his face, speaking Italian with English subtitles below. Things only started to get better in April 2021, when Khaby started making reaction videos about social media tips.
In the video, he doesn’t say a word but instead uses his funny body language and facial expressions to make him laugh. Shaking his head, rolling his eyes or spreading his arms became Khaby Lame’s “brand” and created an unbelievable virality for this young TikToker. Khaby calls it a “universal language” that helps him connect with anyone anywhere in the world.
His videos with humorous content quickly spread around the world. The total number of likes for his TikTok videos is 1.5 billion and his most viewed video has 158 million views.
“Maybe because the expression on my face looks interesting and makes people laugh. I like that,” Lame shared when talking about his unexpected success.
02. Hot Tiktoker makes a lot of money but lives very simply
Along with the “huge” amount of interaction comes the opportunity to make money. According to Influencer Marketing Hub, this website estimates that Khaby Lame can earn from 50,000 – 84,000 USD (equivalent to about 1.1 billion – 2 billion VND) for a satirical post on TikTok. Especially when watching Khaby’s videos, many observant people recognize that he cleverly integrates advertisements for brands. This is also a big source of income for Khaby. To date, he owns assets worth more than 2 million USD.
Currently, content creation has become Khaby Lame’s full-time job. He has now become the character with the largest following in Italy with a series of popular, intimate videos. However, even though he earns a lot of money, the “black man” still maintains a simple lifestyle.
Khaby Lame identifies himself as a simple guy, far from other stars. The most expensive item he bought since becoming famous was an iPhone 12 for work purposes. He also admitted that he still has not been able to buy a house for his mother and is trying to fulfill his dream for a long time.
However, compared to the time when he started joining Tiktok, his life has changed a lot. From a young man who suddenly became a social network phenomenon, Khaby Lame tried to make his parents proud of him.