Tammy Hembrow first hit the social media scene in June 2013 when she pressed ‘Share’ on a slightly unfocused bathroom selfie on Instagram. Unaware of what was to come, it would be shortly after this her follower count would progressively grow as fans became more and more obsessed with her enviable figure and body transformations throughout pregnancy and motherhood.
Flash-forward four years, and this 23-year-old Aussie mum is absolutely kicking goals. With over 7 million followers on Instagram, two children under the ages of two, five fitness programs, and the owner of her own athleisure brand Saski Collection, Tammy is unarguably one of the top social media influencers in Australia.
Growing up in rural Australia and currently living in the heart of Queensland with fiancé Reece, we spoke to Tammy about motherhood, the pressures of social media, starting her own brand, and working with Khloe Kardashian.
Firstly, congratulations on reaching 7 million followers on Instagram! How did it all begin and did you ever imagine your following would be this big?
For me it happened really organically and my main motivation was to share what I’ve learned from women all over the world. When I was pregnant with Wolf, I spent a lot of nights in while my friends were all out, and so I started watching makeup tutorials and taking photos. I realised that this was something I really enjoyed doing so I started to share my fitness goals and journey as well. I never imagined that my following would be as big as it is now. My fans inspire me to keep pushing further and I hope to give back to my followers by sharing knowledge, experiences and expertise.
Your family is adorable! How has motherhood changed your lifestyle?
My lifestyle has changed dramatically! The most challenging thing for me was when I had my second baby, Saskia. I had to adjust to looking after two, which I found extremely difficult at first and it was a lot harder than managing one. I had to try different ways of managing my time and planning schedules around being there as a mum, working out, and work. It took a lot of trial and error to find the right balance.
Do you ever feel pressure to uphold a certain look on Instagram?
Yes, for sure! I think a big misconception is that my Instagram is a direct reflection of who I am. I don’t always look my best – I have nights where I’m up all night with the kids, I’m working, or just having downtime. People can be quick to label me based on my looks, but that is just one part of me. I pride myself on being a young mum who is educated and hardworking, but who also loves fashion and makeup. This is the person I want to show my followers, even though there is much more to me than those characteristics.
With a following so large, how do you handle negative feedback and online trolls?
I’m not going to lie, it does effect me sometimes – but not as much these days as it used to. I have definitely grown a thicker skin. I don’t have time for that kind of attitude and I think sometimes people need to be reminded that I’m a person and I see their comments. So if you write something mean and I see it, I will probably block you.
You are part of the #goodsquad for Khloe Kardashian’s line, Good American. Describe your emotions when you first found this news out.
I was honestly shocked! Khloe Kardashian is a well known name in media and the fact that she wanted me to be a part of her squad was extremely flattering. I was lucky enough to meet her when I was shooting for Good American and she was so lovely! I believe in women supporting other women and she is a great example of that. I’m proud to be a part of her Good Squad and what it represents.
Fitness and health is a big part of your life. What prompted you to lead this lifestyle?
While I’ve always enjoyed an active lifestyle, my teen years were generally unhealthy and unbalanced. With fluctuating weight and untoned muscles, I was unhappy and realised I wanted to change my body but also change my life. My interest in fitness became an addiction, and I was inspired by how good I felt – but also the changes it was making to my body.
Saski Collection has been a huge success since it’s launch. What inspired you to start a luxury athleisure brand and who are your fitness inspirations?
I have always wanted to create my own clothing line. I’ve always been passionate about fashion and fitness from the start, so marrying the two was my dream. I didn’t just want to be the face of a brand, I wanted to invest myself in each step from initial research to designing and personally testing each product. I wanted to ensure the clothes would be able to handle any workout schedule.
And what is your favourite piece in the collection and why?
I really love the Dusty Pink set as a whole, I just love the colour!
Lastly, what are your future plans for Saski Collection?
Lots of new and fresh styles, it’s so fun being able to create them! I think I know our customer pretty well and I can’t wait to bring out the new ranges. We also want to continue to expand so hopefully that will turn into some job opportunities too.