You know what they say about not believing everything you see on social media? Yeah, well Paris Hilton has a lesson for you to really hammer that idea home. You’ve seen that photo of her standing on stage in a flowy, pink skirt and a tank top that bears the words “STOP BEING POOR.” It’s one of those undying internet images that's floated around digital spaces for years. Well, it’s fake. It’s Photoshop. Some people were already aware of that fact, but apparently many, many people were not—so much so that Hilton had to set the record straight on TikTok.
“So there’s this photo online of me. I’m sure you’ve seen it,” says Hilton. “I never wore that shirt. That was completely photoshopped. Everyone thinks it’s real.”
Hilton then reveals an unedited photo in which she’s clearly wearing a shirt that says “STOP BEING DESPERATE.” Fellow former ‘00s celebutante Kim Stewart is beside her wearing a matching tank.
“Don’t believe everything you read,” concludes Hilton.
The original photo actually dates back to April 2005, when Hilton and Stewart wore the shirts to the Las Vegas launch event for Nicky Hilton’s clothing line “Chick by Nicky Hilton.” We can’t pinpoint where or when exactly the Photoshopped version originated. Clearly, it’s been around for a while, but in recent years it seems to have taken on a new life as a meme often used to critique conservative economic policy.
In case you need further proof it was indeed from a fashion show, here’s Hilton in a similar outfit from the same event.
This is all, of course, very silly, but it does stand as a reminder to not believe everything you see floating around online. It’s not even that anyone was necessarily trying to fool you with this one. What started out as a joke clearly became reality in some people’s eyes. We’ll let you in on another secret, too: the thing Ariana Grande actually yells in that one video is, “Vegas let me hear y'all make some noise!”