Made in Chelsea star Sam Thompson has been slammed by an alopecia sufferer over a joke post in which he pretended to make his co-star sister bald.
The 28-year-old prankster mocked-up telly star Louise without any hair using a Snapchat filter.
Fan Emma Archer, who has had alopecia for over 20 years, was left feeling offended after seeing the post.
Sam’s video post – which racked up 62,000 views – was later removed but married mother-of-two Emma claims he then mocked her in a string of direct messages.
Emma – who lost 80 per cent of her hair at the height of her alopecia – said: ‘All I wanted was him to say “Sorry it was never meant to be offensive”.
Made in Chelsea star Sam Thompson (left) has been slammed by an alopecia sufferer over a post in which he made his co-star sister (right) bald
Emma claims Sam’s responses were ‘surprising’ and ‘f*****g insensitive’ and that they upset her.
Sam put the hairless snap of sibling Louise – who also starred in the posh Channel 4 reality show Made in Chelsea – last Wednesday.
He told his 1.3million Instagram followers: ‘Gotta love Snapchat filter. Pulls it off to be fair.’
Emma, 37, posted a measured comment saying: ‘I love following you and think you’re great. But as a woman living with alopecia for 20 hearts this is not funny at all.’
The photo of Louise was later removed from the star’s account but Emma, of Witney, Oxon, then direct messaged reality star Sam and was left stunned by his responses.
The 28-year-old prankster mocked-up telly star Louise without any hair using a Snapchat filter
She said: ‘Hi Sam, as I said on your post before you deleted it, I love following you and think you’re great but that video was really bad taste and offensive.
‘Saying Louise could pull it off, what about those of us who have no choice to pull it off, being bald due to medical conditions.
‘Instead of deleting, I think you need to acknowledge your mistake and say sorry to be honest.’
Sam – dating former Love Island star Zara McDermott, 24 – said he didn’t choose to delete it.
He posted laughing emojis and said: ‘If I had it my way it would still be up’ and ‘I think the filter is funny. You may not.’
Fan Emma Archer (pictured) took offence to the post after battling with alopecia for over 20 years
After Emma informed Sam that she has had alopecia for the last 20 years, the star responded: ‘Being so offended to need a full blown apology is worrying.’
Emma said she has had to cope with people taking ‘the p**s’ all her life, to which Sam responded by asking: ‘At what point did I mock you or alopecia?’
Emma replied that being bald isn’t a choice or a filter for her, but Sam responded by saying: ‘But that’s you… So you think that because you didn’t have a choice that filter shouldn’t exist?’
Emma added: ‘It’s like a wheelchair filter? This is my disability.’
As their fiery exchange intensified, Sam said: ‘If I were to mock alopecia or someone with it, I would agree.
Emma said: ‘I agree it shouldn’t exist.’
Sam – who has also starred in Celebrity Big Brother, Celebs Go Dating and The Celebrity Circle – added: ‘But it’s not a disability.’
Emma responded: ‘It’s the same as mental health or any other hidden disability.’
But Sam wouldn’t budge and added: ‘It’s a filter that shows what you look like if you were to shave your head. Much like the Snapchat beard filter.
Emma, of Witney, Oxon direct messaged reality star Sam about the post and was left stunned by his responses
Sam wouldn’t budge and added: ‘It’s a filter that shows what you look like if you were to shave your head. ‘Much like the Snapchat beard filter. ‘You are turning it into a mocking alopecia filter’
Made in Chelsea star Sam (pictured with his girlfriend Zara McDermott) has also starred in Celebrity Big Brother, Celebs Go Dating and The Celebrity Circle
What is alopecia?
Alopecia areata is an autoimmune disorder that causes your hair to come out, often in clumps the size and shape of a quarter.
The amount of hair loss is different in everyone. Some people lose it only in a few spots. Others lose a lot.
Sometimes, hair grows back but falls out again later. In others, hair grows back for good.
There are different types of this condition.
Alopecia areata is most common in its main form, but there are other, more rare types:
Alopecia areata totalis means you’ve lost all the hair on your head.
Alopecia areata universalis is the loss of hair over your entire body. Diffuse alopecia areata is a sudden thinning of your hair rather than lost patches.
Ophiasis alopecia areata causes hair loss in a band shape around the sides and back of your head.
The main and often the only symptom of alopecia is hair loss.
You may notice:
- Small bald patches on your scalp or other parts of your body
- Patches may get larger and grow together into a bald spot
- Hair grows back in one spot and falls out in another
- You lose a lot of hair over a short time
- More hair loss in cold weather
- Fingernails and toenails become red, brittle, and pitted
‘You are turning it into a mocking alopecia filter.’
Emma: ‘I’m really sorry but your reaction is f*****g insensitive. Just own it if you find that s**t funny.
‘It’s not to the millions of people who follow you who are going through chemo or alopecia who feel mocked.’
Sam concluded: ‘What offends you may not offend someone else.
‘It’s your right to be offended. Nothing I can do about that.’
Emma said: ‘As a person with 1.3 million followers I believe he should be using his platform to promote positive messages.
‘Not taking the mick out of people’s disabilities.
‘His castmate Oilivia Bentley suffers from alopecia and has opened up about the effects of this on mental health on the show.
‘I sent Sam a DM saying that I love following him but think he should apologise and say the video was in bad taste.
‘I was so shocked and upset at the messages I received back from him.
‘He said he hadn’t wanted to delete the video and that alopecia is not a disability.
‘How does he think this will affect someone’s mental and health?
‘The fact the post was deleted shows it was distasteful.’
Distraught Emma – who works in purchasing – added: ‘I have suffered with alopecia for 20 years.
‘I lost 80 per cent of my hair at its height.’
She now has hair extensions weaved into a mesh in her locks but she still suffers from alopecia areata – where spots of it can fall out.
‘But I can wake up with a patch of hair missing and then it grows back,’ she added.
‘As a woman in your 20s, hair loss is a big deal.
‘I have not not been able to get in places because I have to wear a hat.’