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TikTok sensation Charli D’Amelio and partner Mark Ballas win the Mirrorball

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At just 18 years old, Charli D’Amelio is a ‘Dancing with the Stars’ champion. She and her partner Mark Ballas were awarded the Mirrorball Trophy during the show’s 31st season finale on Monday night, November 21.

Ballas last appeared on the show in Season 25. He and Charli danced freestyle to Pinar Toprak’s “Us Again.” Instead of focusing on set pieces, the duo kept the props minimal to keep the judges’ complete focus. It turned out to be a winning strategy.

D’Amelio is considered TikTok royalty, with 148 million followers on the platform. Before becoming a social media star, she spent over ten years as a competitive dancer. In 2019, she began posting short dance videos online and gained an enormous following. In March 2020, she became the most followed creator on TikTok. In November of the same year, she became the first person to gain 100 million followers on the platform.

In late August 2022, Charli and her mother, Heidi, were announced as celebrity participants in Dancing with the Stars. They are the first family members to compete against each other on the hit show. While Heidi was eliminated earlier in the season, she danced again on Monday’s finale.

Charli’s father, Marc, sister, Dixie, and boyfriend, Landon Barker, occupied the front row seats at the finale. 21-year-old Dixie D’Amelio was thrilled to see her little sister’s big win. “I’m so incredibly proud of her. I miss her so much, and I’m excited to be around her more.”

Proud papa Marc was “just so happy” to see his daughter pursue her passion and dance again. “She grew up dancing. It’s in her heart. It’s so important to her.”

Charli D’Amelio admitted she had fallen out of love with dancing due to criticism. It’s not uncommon for public figures to receive both praise and criticism, and D’Amelio has certainly faced her share of hurtful comments. A magazine writer even called the teen one of TikTok’s first polarizing figures, referencing other users deeming her “overhyped.” As Charli’s fame grew, others gained popularity on social media by reacting to her. There was a wave of “I don’t get why Charli is so popular” content, and she received threats after a video of her reaction to a meal prepared by a personal chef was posted on YouTube.

Despite all the backlash, including body shaming which triggered her body dysmorphia, Charli D’Amelio has emerged as a champion and found the strength to dance again.

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