A social media star with half a million followers who relocated to Turkey says he has enjoyed keeping people inspired during the lockdown.

Aneece Malik has racked up more than 500,000 followers on Instagram sharing images of his lifestyle and friends.

He said, “Since I have been a child I have always been into fashion and looking good and smart and always been into my designer clothes this motivated me a lot to post on Instagram.

“I used to look at other people’s profiles and think to myself I can create better content. It was really hard a lot of people used to try and discredit me at the start.

“I am now inspired by people who feel enthusiastic about their job their life or their family and who convert their enthusiasm and good energy to me as I always like giving good energy out. 

“Being with people who are passionate about what they do makes me feel good and they are an example to me.”

He said moving to Turkey from Bury was a major decision.

“I decided to relocate to Turkey because of my business here it has been very successful and I have found happiness in this country the people are very nice and welcoming they are very hospitable.

“The English weather was making me miserable. I have been travelling to Turkey for eight years now and the first time I came to Turkey I always knew in my heart that I would live here one day and I made my dream come true.”

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The lockdown brought with more challenges.

Aneece told us, “During this lockdown period it has been hard I am not going to lie at the start of lockdown it was very hard.

“There hasn’t just been one lockdown we all had our own experiences some people are forced into months of unbroken solitude what does trapped for weeks on end with an estranged spouse. 

“Some people like me saw this as a positive experience. A welcome opportunity for example going for walks relaxing with my family and enjoying quality time. It also just gave me a big opportunity to sit and think very clearly about what I want in my future.”

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He did have this advice for anyone contemplating on following in his footsteps.

“Being an influencer is not easy as it looks. At the start it is very hard I have spent way too much time on social media when I first started it was time that was not used wisely. 

“It’s good to hear criticism but remain your own person always because people will love you for you there is no certified rule book on any of this it’s all about self-expression also being authentic.

“I don’t like copycats and some people put way too much effort in copying other people’s style and soon they forget their own. It’s exhausting trying to pretend to be somebody else.”

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Aneece said he had plans to appear on television shows.

“I cannot speak too much about this but my business here in Turkey will be expanding soon into other areas this makes me very happy. I’m also doing a lot of charity work in Turkey and in England and I would like to carry on with this and take it as far as possible.

“I always take a break from social media as I think this is very important you cannot let social media have control over you. I have to be in control over social media because it can get unhealthy for your life so I think it is very important to take a break from it all.”