"I then started to do more sexy videos in cultural wear"
With the increasing popularity and distinct perception of the site, there has been a rise in British Asians on the social platform, OnlyFans.
As of August 2022, Benjamin Jorgensen of BedBible noted there are 210 million registered users as well as “more than 1.7 million registered content creators” on OnlyFans.
However, a harrowing statistic that Jorgensen also highlights is that over 750,000 new users join the site every day.
Although the subscription-based site launched in 2016, it was really during the Covid-19 pandemic which saw OnlyFans skyrocket.
It gained an immense amount of coverage when users started utilising it as an adult site.
Posting explicit photos and videos, individuals would have to pay a monthly fee to gain access to the content.
However, the difference between this and a porn site are the users themselves. Celebrities such as Kali Sudhra and Poonam Pandey made the site blow up.
Even former Love Island star, Shannon Singh, drew massive attention for having an explicit OnlyFans account as a British Asian.
As OnlyFans subscribers grew, so did the leaks of salary figures which were in the thousands and sometimes, millions.
So, more people flocked to join the site in hopes of increasing their own income, including Desi’s.
But for them, this is a line of work they don’t wish to share, but it hasn’t stopped a rise in British Asians on OnlyFans.
So, DESIblitz exclusively spoke to some British Asian creators on OnlyFans to see why they joined the famous platform.
For the Money
Indian-born American businesswoman, Amrapali Gan, became the new OnlyFans CEO in December 2021.
She succeeded the company’s founder Tim Stokely after he stepped down.
The platform was built upon allowing creators to charge for sexually explicit photos and videos. This allowed thousands of users to make a living out of using the site.
This was one of the main reasons why OnlyFans registrations went through the roof.
Many thought they could replicate the high earnings of personalities like British socialite Chloe Khan, who reportedly earns £1 million per month.
Even lesser-known figures such as former Hollyoaks actress, Sarah Jayne Dunn, receives over £7000 a month.
These lucrative sums are what attracted Sheena Gill* to join OnlyFans:
“I saw all these women on Instagram talk about OnlyFans and all the money they were getting in.
“I used to follow Megan [Barton-Hanson] from Love Island and she was talking about it as well. She posted a bikini pic of her once and put in a link to her OnlyFans.
“So I went onto it and saw you could charge different prices for different time periods. Like £5 for a month or £50 for a year kinda thing.
“But this is a massive no no in our culture. I couldn’t dare to do anything like it, what if I got caught?
“But the money kept calling me back. The more I saw it on social media, the more I wanted to just do it. I didn’t even need to show my face.
“People, especially men would pay for anything. So, I started putting a few pictures on a week and then videos.
“I got like £100 in my first few months and thought ‘what’s the point?’. But, it was like a fetish video for 5 seconds I uploaded and it blew up.
“So I went from £100 in a few months to getting something ridiculous like £1000 in one month.”
“It was crazy but worth it!
“I then started to do more sexy videos in cultural wear – nothing disrespectful but people find it sexy. Well, anything can be sexy if you rock it in that way.
“So bangles, suits and saris are all part of the package. If anything, it kind of promotes the culture in a way and shows the beauty of our fashion.
“But, like I said, men will pay for anything.”
British Asians on OnlyFans are no strangers to how the site operates its finances.
Although this has come into question as the income is based upon popularity and social presence, some have used the site for loose change.
Whilst many people see it as a salary, some users want to use the platform without depending on it. As was the case for Johnny Iqbal*, a 24-year-old student from Manchester:
“As a Muslim, loads of my people see OnlyFans as a porn website. I get that but in the same way, it’s not as ‘hardcore’ as those sites.
“Of course, women are more successful on there, but women have needs too.
“So, I thought to myself ‘I’m a student, even if I get a bit of money that can pay for my food shop, who cares right?’.
“I started posting photos, not even fully nude ones and I got a tenner here and there.
“But I started sharing more d*ck pics and my body, then I got more subscribers which equals more money.
“OnlyFans for me isn’t a way of making a living, but spare money is always welcomed. It’s not the conventional or typical way for an Asian, but it’s money nonetheless.
“I won’t lie though, if I start making thousands then I probably won’t stop.
“I still hide my face because I don’t even wanna risk a screenshot or someone finding out.”
The money available on OnlyFans is not always consistent as Sheena and Johnny highlight.
There’s no doubt that having a bigger social following will attract more subscribers who will pay for your content.
However, British Asians on OnlyFans aren’t just on it for the money.
For the Confidence
It’s well-known that sex is still an under-discussed topic within South Asian and British Asian communities.
This leads many of the younger generation looking outwards to seek the information they need about their bodies, desires and overall sexual health.
Although many distinguish OnlyFans as a platform for sexual workers, this is an entirely different issue.
But, it is a perception that many South Asians have within the UK, especially elders. However, the site has helped many to discover their confidence.
Harley Waldorf provided his first-person account for The Metro in August 2020. He details how OnlyFans rebuilt his morale:
“A few personal issues had knocked my confidence. I was in a struggling relationship, I felt neglected and had for a long time.
“I felt unwanted, and as more of an afterthought as opposed to part of somebody’s life.”
He added that after getting back on track with working out and regaining his body confidence, a friend suggested OnlyFans.
However, Harley felt he would be bullied for his body but actually received more praise from subscribers. He said:
“It became a way for me to take back control – not just of my sexuality, but my entire life.”
Although Harley is not British Asian, the feelings he expresses are similar to that of Anj Kang*, a 22-year-old from Birmingham:
“I never had the sex chat with my parents. They were quite adamant about that in our house but it’s quite typical for most Asians I guess.
“My mum did talk to me about my body changing at one point, but after that it was nothing.
“I got into sixth form and my body was kind of the same. All the boys would try and be funny with me but in a weird way.
“They’d say ‘oh, when are you going to get an arse?’ or ‘tell your t*its to grow?’
“It made me feel so conscious so when I got to uni, I was shy, didn’t talk much and definitely didn’t entertain any boys.
“It was actually one of my friends that told me she was on OnlyFans and said I should try it.
“I full-on said ‘no’ because one thing I’m Asian and who would even notice me anyway?
“But she kept pestering me for so long and I just said she can post one picture of me in a bra and no face or anything else.
“She came to me the next day and showed me all the comments. They weren’t even weird, it was like saying how they loved my curves, I’m pretty, I made them feel happy.
“It actually made me smile haha.
“I know it was just my body, but it still just gave me the confidence and almost a no b******t attitude.
“So, I kind of said to myself ‘f**k it’. Made an account and still to this day, I just post bikini photos and that’s it.
“Yet, I still feel the excitement and it’s made me more open to meet guys in real life.
“In a confusing kind of way, it made me think ‘I know I’m beautiful no matter what’.”
Even Johnny Iqbal hinted at the same kind of feeling:
“I’m not an athletic guy at all, I’d say I’ve got the dad bod down to a tee. So, I was always conscious not to get my body in photos.
“But, I took a mirror selfie once in a vest and got a comment saying I should show more of my upper body.
“It made me feel so good. Like yes, some people might say ‘oh you’re an object’ but then again, I’m getting praised for something I felt so self-conscious about.
“It’s improved my sex life. Before I never took my top off and now I’ll do it and it’s that confidence which girls love.”
Interestingly, this shows a different side to the social platform.
Whilst the sexual connotations still linger, some British Asians on OnlyFans see the site as a much more insightful tool for their own confidence.
For the Thrill
British Asians on OnlyFans have a plethora of meanings as to why joining the site helped them financially and sexually.
Similar to body confidence, one couple detailed how the platform refreshed the sexual nature of their relationship.
Aman* and Nisha Patel* from Birmingham said they joined the site after watching other couples do the same.
Realising their marriage was losing the sultry and sensual emotions it once felt, they took it upon themselves to see if OnlyFans could be the difference-maker:
“We joined OnlyFans in September 2021. It was quite interesting actually because we were having a few arguments up to this point.
“One of the other couples we hang out with came over and was talking to us about how they joined.
“They said it was great for their sexual chemistry and added this risky element that excited them both.
“We’re both from Gujarati households so we looked at each other like ‘hell no’.
“But what we did do was record ourselves that night to see if it added anything and it definitely did. We rewatched it the next day and it sparked our passion right back up.
“Nisha saw how I looked at her and I saw how she was touching me, and we saw all the things we forgot about.
“Then this thing came over us like we wanted to rip each other apart and I thought well why don’t we get paid for showcasing our sexuality?
“We posted photos together first once we got a following and then started to post short videos.
“Seeing each other in that nature and having people witness it was just thrilling. It’s like being naughty in public, we love it.”
When asked if they were scared their families would find out, Aman jokingly replied with:
“Well, I’ll ask them why they’re subscribed to our content.”
Nisha added in:
“Of course, you can monitor this up to a point but there comes a time when you have to just break down these barriers within our community.
“Asian politics and certain ideas are just outdated. OnlyFans shouldn’t be a stigma or taboo, it’s what you make of it.
“The thing is, it’s not even just for explicitly things. It’s mostly used for that yes but other socials like Instagram and Twitter have sexual spaces as well.
“No one bats an eyelid and that.”
British Asians on OnlyFans is still a massive taboo due to the sexual aspects surrounding the site.
Whilst many communities see the platform for ‘sex workers’ or sharing explicit material, it is much more than that.
It can promote body confidence, help with relationships and of course, provide an individual with income.
However, OnlyFans is just part of the stigma that stems from the lack of conversation surrounding sex as a whole.
Additionally, the site is used for many other avenues. Remember, the premise is for subscribers to pay for exclusive material.
This content can be new music as displayed by superstars like Megan Thee Stallion and Cardi B.
Users like DJ Khaled and P Diddy use the site to give motivational speeches that you can’t find elsewhere.
Even Shannon Singh highlights on her page:
“Filled with exclusive photoshoot content, lifestyle and travel, behind the scenes and most of all great vibes. NON EXPLICIT.”
So, likewise, British Asians are also pursuing this avenue. Sharing their talents or artistic qualities, OnlyFans is definitely more expansive than one may think.