It all started when he wanted revenge for a heartbreak.
TikTok poster Anthony Noh, or “lilants,” has racked up 971,000 followers on the platform with at least 5 million views per week while balancing his school life as a senior.
“A girl crushed my heart, and I started making videos to get over her,” Noh said. “TikTok took up a lot of my time, so I thought about her less, but I also always wanted to pursue a content creator lifestyle.”
Since then, he has accumulated a loyal fan base by creating a total of 150 videos ranging from dance to comedy. His most popular TikTok video, receiving over 5.1 million views with over 9,000 comments, starts off with Noh quoting “ay, yo, I’m asian check,” and continues with a compilation of facial expressions, offering different emotions like happy and cute. “Darlin’” by Tobi Lou plays in the background, and his caption reads, “I’m #korean but I wish I was #asian.”
“Though I’m not gifted in art, I’m good at making videos because I’m creative and smart about it,” said Noh, who first started using his smartphone to video record at the age of 17.
Although the app was originally his way of getting over a past love, he plans to continue making videos beyond high school and aims to pursue that as a career — something that many of his peers acknowledge.
“He takes his social media very seriously and always talks about his aspirations and dreams, and it’s cool seeing him grow as a person,” said senior Jacob Won, who first learned about what Noh does when Noh asked where Won got the app’s trending, color changing lights and has known Noh since sophomore year. “Popularity can often have a negative impact on friendships, but nothing has changed between Anthony and me.”
Noh believes that college is a once-in-a-lifetime experience and still plans on attending one in California despite his quick plans for his future career.
“I don’t want to be hired, I want to independently create something from my own successes,” he said.
Noh does make money from his TikTok posts, but he prefers to keep the amount he’s earned confidential.
Within the last couple of months, Noh stumbled upon some of his first fan interactions in public and finds it motivating to see that people enjoy watching his clips.
“I was really awkward with the first few interactions but got more relaxed as time went on,” he said. “One time, a mom asked me to take a picture with her daughter while I was going out to eat sushi with my friends, and it was awkward at first, but it made me feel excited in the end because it’s almost like I’m making an impact on people.”
With a stable fan base, the senior says he rarely receives criticism and would not mind even if he did.
“I wouldn’t care about hate unless it was from someone who I admire or care about,” Noh said.
Although multiple events and brands have reached out for collaborations with him since December, he believes in creating his own content that will last in the long run.
“I never saw myself as someone who would work under someone else,” he said. “So I plan on building my own brand up from the ground, and I hope to receive verification on TikTok as soon as possible.”