What you see on social media, read on blogs, or hear on podcasts can have a huge impact on your spending habits—but you get to decide whether or not that impact is a positive one.
In one study, 57% of surveyed millennials said they made unplanned purchases due to social media pressure. In another study, which surveyed university students, 39% said social media imagery of things like exotic vacations or trendy clothes motivated FOMO-driven purchases.
Fortunately, you can control the messaging you surround yourself with by curating your feed to support smart financial habits. So, unfollow that friend who’s always bragging about his world travels and start following these 10 personal finance influencers instead.
My Fab Finance
Tonya Rapley’s personal finance journey started when she untangled herself from an abusive relationship and was left with almost nothing. She started blogging as she rebuilt her life—and her wealth. Now, she works to help other women take control of their finances, and uses social media to provide a steady stream of inspiring quotes, concrete money management tips, and tough-love advice.
At age 19, Anthony O’Neal found himself homeless and $35,000 in debt from funding an extravagant college lifestyle on loans and credit cards. Over several years, he worked to eliminate that debt, save money, and turn his life around. Today, he’s the author of several books, including Debt-Free Degree, and The Graduate Survival Guide. You can find him on Instagram and Twitter, dishing out mic-dropping morsels of life and financial advice and sharing the stories of others who have become debt-free.
Mr. Money Mustache
Peter Adeney, aka Mr. Money Mustache, once transported a 250-pound patio set via bicycle to save gas money. By dedicating his life to that kind of creative frugality, Adeney was able to retire at age 30. He’s most famous for his blog, in which he dispenses candid advice to his community of so-called Mustachians on everything from getting fit without a gym membership to investing for retirement to transporting large appliances via bicycle. His motto: “financial freedom through badassity.” You can also find Adeney on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram, where he posts about the merits of bike commuting, life in Colorado, and how to find outsized joy in financial independence.
Financial educator and author Tiffany Aliche started her career as a preschool teacher in Newark, New Jersey. There, she developed a passion for teaching and the ability to break down complex concepts into clear components. Aliche is now a blogger serving up financial education in bite-sized pieces ablaze with personality and down-to-earth humor, both on her blog and across all social media channels. Follow her for budget hacks, home buying tips, and helpful challenges to help you examine your own financial wellbeing.
Mrs Dow Jones
She’s modern. She’s funny. And she’s on a mission to make finance cool. A self-proclaimed “financial pop star,” New York City-based Haley Sacks uses memes, pop culture, and a snarky sense of humor to make investing, financial literacy, wall street, and wealth management more relatable, not to mention entertaining. Sacks goes by the moniker Mrs. Dow Jones on Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube.
Humphrey Yang once counted out 10,000 individual grains of rice on TikTok to illustrate Jeff Bezos’s enormous wealth. That’s just one example of his level of dedication when it comes to helping viewers visualize and digest complex financial topics. Yang delivers daily personal finance videos with a blessedly calming voice and cheerful charm. Want more than TikTok’s 60-second tidbits? Catch him on YouTube.
Coupon Katie Swanson
Katie Swanson, aka Coupon Katie, does the impossible: She makes couponing seem badass. Her candidness, authenticity, and straight talk have made the tattooed mom of two a star on TikTok and on YouTube, where she shares her secrets for scoring great deals. And even if extreme couponing isn’t your thing, the entertainment value—and steady reminders to shop frugally—make the follow worth it.
Unlike a lot of financial influencers, who have already paid off huge debts or written books or are otherwise preaching from the top of the metaphorical mountain of financial struggle, Miss Wise is climbing it with you. An American working as a teacher in China, Wise is working to become debt-free by the end of 2020. As of writing, she has paid off $32,213 of her $53,750 total debt. She shares the steps and struggles of her journey through Instagram and on her blog.
Following Emma Edwards is like having constant access to financial heart-to-hearts with your best bud. A self-proclaimed “recovering spendaholic,” Edwards made a U-turn in her financial life at age 26 through a shift toward mindful, informed spending. She helps her Facebook and Instagram followers gain that same mindset by explaining how sneaky marketing, fast fashion, and emotional spending prey on millennials. Even better: Her feed combines that educational content with electric pep-talks, so you leave feeling empowered.
Zero Based Budget
While getting her law degree, Cindy Zuniga racked up $215,000 in debt, mostly from student loans. After graduating, she decided to take control of her finances and paid off her debt within 48 months. During that time, she posted about her journey on Instagram. Today, she uses the account to share her hard-earned personal finance tricks, as well as glimpses into her personal life as a Latina lawyer and budget coach living it up in New York City.