A woman named Gracie Lorincz from Bloomfield Hills, Michigan, used TikTok to call out the vice president of a local boutique where she applied for a job after he accidentally sent an email to her about her, calling her "not that cute."
The TikTok has since inspired mobs of people in support of Lorincz to downrate and troll the store's mobile app reviews, calling the clothing sold at Ava Lane Boutique in Auburn Hills "not that cute."
Lorincz told BuzzFeed News she's not interested in inciting the backlash any further, but initially posted about it to "encourage women to stand up for themselves."
The company did not return requests for comment from BuzzFeed News. However, the Detroit News reported that the boutique's vice president of operations, Chuck DeGrendel, admitted sending the email to Lorincz on social media.
The newspaper reported that DeGrendel appeared in a Facebook Live stream on Thursday to respond to the TikTok. He explained that the email about Lorincz was intended for his wife Laura, and that his phone has not stopped ringing since, but that he "deserve[s] that blowback."
In her TikTok, which has been viewed more than 1.8 million times since Thursday, Lorincz shared the email DeGrendel had mistakenly sent to her about her application to be a brand representative for the store.
According to Ava Lane's website, DeGrendel is the husband of owner Laura DeGrendel, who founded the boutique "to give back and empower other women wherever possible." Ava Lane is also listed as a "women-led" company on Google.
In the email, DeGrendel describes Lorincz as "fresh out of college (Hope college) and not that cute." He then asks the person he intended the message for, "Are you sure you want me to interview her?"
Within hours, TikTok, well, did its thing, as they say. The boutique's Google Play reviews went from nearly 5 stars to one and a half stars. Reviews are flooded with comments calling the store's clothing selection, in return, "not that cute." People are also trying to hype Lorincz up in the comments of her video, reminding her that she is in fact very cute.
Ava Lane Boutique has since made all of its social media accounts private.
In the livestream admitting his error, DeGrendel said in between tears, “I don’t know why I said that … it was very unprofessional and really not in line with my core values."
"I wish I could take it back," DeGrendel added, according to the Detroit News. "I'm not trying to hide. I'm trying to protect people."
Lorincz told BuzzFeed News her "intent was simply to call out bad behavior and to encourage women to stand up for themselves. I don't want to prolong the narrative."
She has not heard from DeGrendel or the store at all about the role or her viral TikTok.