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Twerking Nine to Five.... Ex Teacher Now Earning A Six Figure Salary As A Professional TWERKER!!!
Jessica Vanessa is a bonafied Vine star. The 22-year old has racked up 2 millionfollowers after just one year on the video-sharing site. She makes a lot of comedic clips, but it's her twerking videos that have grabbed everyone's attention.
“People like to define twerking as you’re a w**** if you do it,” the Puerto Rican cutie toldBarcroft TV. “No, it’s just a type of dance — that’s it. If you were open-minded you would understand that.”
Jessica's previous job involved working with children. In a Cosmopolitan interview she described herself as a former day care worker. She told Barcroft TV she had been a pre-kindergarten teacher. Whatever the case she quit because of the travel demands required as her popularity grew on Vine.
Twerking has proven to be a lucrative business for Jessica.
Either I make money on the internet. Make money doing these videos or I'm going to be broke and jobless," she explained to Barcroft TV regarding her decision to Vine full time. "And once I quit, thank God all these opportunities just ran into my face. What I make in six seconds would have taken me four months to make as a pre-K teacher I work. I bought a new car, paid it off in full and was able to get out of debt.”
Most of the six figures Jessica is pulling in is from promoting either online products or artist's music. It's turned into a family business. Her brother Joshua is her cameraman
Jessica hopes more women of color find the same success as Miley Cyrus has by twerking.
"Well, people assume that I'm white, even though I'm Puerto Rican, so yeah, I don't get that either," she told Cosmopolitan. "I don't get why Miley gets all this respect for twerking when women of many colors, white girls, black girls, Spanish girls, we all do pretty much the same thing. I don't know why the media is so focused on what I do when twerking has been around for so long. I don't know what makes me any different. I'm over here reading all these articles and they act like they just discovered twerking [laughs]."
Formerly working as a teaching assistant Jessica, from Florida, quit her job after advertisers discovered her dance moves through her Vine videos.
The large companies had noticed the attention that Jessica's assets were drawing in and offered to pay her large amounts of money in exchange for her mentioning their products to her two million strong following.
For Jessica quitting her role as a teacher was a no-brainer when she did the maths and realised that she could earning more twerking than she could ever have dreamed of working in a school.
She said: 'What I make in six seconds would take me four months to make as a teaching assistant.
Jessica has over two million Vine followers so advertisers are willing to pay her thousands of pounds to mention their products during her twerking films
Jessica quit her job as a teaching assistant in order to pursue her twerking career
'It's definitely a blessing. I bought a new car, paid it off in full and I was able to get out of debt from the school that I graduated from.'
Jessica says that she has her loyal fans to thank for her sudden turn of fortune.
'It's quite simple really, the more followers you get, the more advertisers want to pay you for mentioning their products - and I've got lots.'
Jessica describes herself as a normal girl from Florida before her first viral Vine put her on the road to social media fame.
Jessica now earns in six seconds what she would have earned in four months of working in a school
Jessica says that she is fortunate enough to have had lots of support from her family
She mixes comedy sketches with twerking videos to keep her legions of fans entertained - and it was when she saw the popularity of her short videos growing that she finally decided to give up her previous occupation.
'Quitting my job was definitely a risk because I knew once I quit there was no turning back. Either I make money doing these videos or I'm going to be broke and jobless.'
Although Jessica appears to be brimming with confidence now the 22-year-old admits that she was once quite shy and hated dancing in front of others.
'When I was younger I was very shy and I didn't like dancing in front of anybody.
The 22-year-old says that she wasn't always this confident and was very reluctant to dance in front of others as a child
'Then I kind of fell in with a different crowd and got more confident. By the time I hit high school I was definitely a party girl.'
Jessica appears to be living a dream life however she admits that she has found some aspects of her fame difficult to cope with.
'I do get plenty of rude and mean comments. I've even had two breakdowns over them - where I have literally locked myself in my room and considered taking down all of my social media accounts.
She says that some aspects of her new found fame have been very difficult to deal with, including strangers criticising her looks and calling her both 'fat' and 'ugly'
'I'm not a celebrity but I do get a taste of what they have to go through - I have strangers calling me a whore, people calling me fat, people calling me ugly, people saying just about any mean thing you could say.'
Jessica says that the nature of her dancing attracts a lot of misconceptions and causes people to make assumptions about her.
'People like to define you as a whore for twerking but it's just a type of dance, that's it, if people were open-minded they would understand that.'
But Jessica has found strength from the support of her family who have overcome their own prejudices about twerking.
'They're very open-minded people - they don't look at it in any type of sexual way, they don't look at it as degrading, they're very supporting.
Jessica says that the cruel comments she has received have caused her to have two 'breakdowns' where she considered deleting all of her social media accounts
'I would have no problem showing my grandmother my twerking videos - she is wild and crazy and would probably want to join in with me.'
Jessica's dad Rafael De Leon, 46, has struggled with her career choice in the past but now supports Jessica wholeheartedly.
Rafael, who works as pawn broker, said that it was hard to accept her profession at first as it was difficult to get used to the fact that she had grown up.
Jessica says that twerking is just another form of dancing and that she wants people to be more open-minded about it
'As a parent I still see her as my little girl, I don't see her as an adult. She could be forty years old and she'll still be my baby.
'It just keeps expanding more and more, no matter what she does I'll just keep supporting her 100 per cent - I love everything she does.'
Jessica added that she feels as though she is finally doing what she was born to do.
'As a little girl I always wanted to be somebody big, I always wanted to entertain people, I would sing, I would dance, I would do whatever it took and if I got a laugh out of people I knew I was doing something right.
'I always enjoyed doing random crazy stuff so when I got a day job it was not something I enjoyed doing. Now I look at Vine as an outlet to many different opportunities which I enjoy doing now.'