Despite living in the year 2019, there is still often a weird stigma associated with meeting people online. While dating apps like Tinder, Bumble and Hinge are becoming more common, there is still a great deal of skepticism aimed at those who confess to meeting their S.O. online. There is almost some unspoken judgment, as if someone weren’t good enough to find a partner in real life through normal means that they were relegated to the Internet, where all the deviants live.
It’s an unfair (and inaccurate) assumption, and one that we would do well to divest ourselves of, especially as we learn that the dating pool, once working our way through friends, school, work or the bar scene, isn’t all that deep. Celebrities, too, have managed to find love online, through apps and social media just like the rest of us. In fact, with their crazy schedules, online dating is almost the more practical course of action, since they can’t always waste time away from the set cruising for dates at the club.
These 20 stars managed to find love – or at least forge a relationship – with people they met online, famous or otherwise. Turns out that slipping into someone’s DMs isn’t as futile as we might have thought!
20 Big Sean & Naya Rivera: Twitter
While the couple isn’t together anymore, they were once engaged, and it all started over a little Twitter flirtation! Naya Rivera made the first move by following the rapper on Twitter, but Big Sean took it up a notch by sliding into the actress’s DM. According to Insider, Rivera said,
“I mentioned that I was a big fan. Then some fans started to alert him that I was following him…so Big Sean became curious and started to ask who I was.”
The couple had a dinner date and six months later, announced their engagement. After about a year together, they called it quits, and Rivera married longtime friend Ryan Dorsey on the date of her planned wedding to Sean!
19 Ariana Grande & Jai Brooks: YouTube
While he didn’t make it onto the list of her exes in “Thank U, Next,” once upon a time Jai Brooks got his own romance with Ariana Grande, all thanks to YouTube.
Back in 2012, Grande’s mom introduced her to Brooks’s band The Janoskians on the video-sharing website, but it wasn’t until months later that the couple actually met. Prior to that, Brooks reached out to the singer on Twitter and even made a video for his popular YouTube channel explaining why she should give him a chance! Evidently, the persistence paid off, and the two dated on and off until about 2014, sharing numerous posts on Twitter and IG of their puppy love.
18 Jennette McCurdy & Andre Drummond: Twitter & IG
Basketball star Andre Drummond decided that flattery was the best way to win over Ariana Grande’s Sam & Cat co-star Jennette McCurdy, and IG and Twitter were the avenues he used.
In 2013, Drummond began posting pictures of the actress as his #WomanCrushWednesday, and McCurdy’s mentions on Twitter soon began blowing up with fans tells her to follow the athlete’s account. She sent him a public message, he DM’d her his number and a romance was born. Alas, the relationship was short-lived, and, according to Insider, McCurdy said, “It only lasted like a week, it was really short.”
According to her, things felt wrong from the first kiss which “didn’t go great.” Ouch!
17 Iggy Azalea & Nick Young: Twitter
Iggy Azalea’s relationship with ex-fiancé Nick Young was a drama that began and ended on Twitter. Like Andre Drummond, Young decided to flatter Azalea with a #WCW post. “We tweeted a couple of times and then we met up,” the rapper told Metro in 2014, as Insider reports. “It’s not desperate, it’s about admiring.”
Unfortunately, the romance wasn’t meant to be, and the couple split up. Azalea aired the dirty laundry on – where else? – Twitter, writing, “I broke up with Nick because I found out he had brought other women into our home while I was away and I caught them on the security footage,” as Us magazine reports. Yikes!
16 Calvin Harris & Rita Ora: Twitter
It’s weird to think that there was once a time when Calvin Harris wasn’t the ex of Taylor Swift, but there was one time when he was involved with fellow Brit Rita Ora, back in 2013. Before ever meeting in real life, the two began messaging each other on Twitter and dated for almost a year before breaking up – very publicly – in May 2014.
Taking to Twitter to address speculation, Harris wrote, “Myself and Rita ended our relationship some time ago. She is a beautiful, talented woman & I wish her all the best.” However, Harris then wouldn’t give Ora permission to perform a song he had produced, and the two had a falling out.
15 Colton Underwood & Aly Raisman: Yahoo! Sports
Before he was the newest Bachelor, Colton Underwood was a football player who had a serious crush on Olympic gymnast Aly Raisman, and was willing to put it all on the line by asking her out in a video posted to Yahoo! Sports.
The Oakland Raiders’s tight end invited Raisman to join him on a double date with Shawn Johnson and her husband Andrew East, and the two began a relationship shortly afterwards. After about six months, however, the two decided to call time on their love.
As Insider reports, Underwood said, “We’re taking a break right now. We’re still good friends and talk, but all that travel has been a nightmare.”
14 Wiz Khalifa & Amber Rose: Twitter
After rapper Wiz Khalifa admitted in an interview that, if he could be with anyone in the world, he would choose model Amber Rose, Rose took it upon herself to contact him on Twitter. After dating for a while, the two got engaged in 2012, married in July 2013 and had a son in September 2014. Back when the relationship was still new, Rose told MTV, as Insider reports, “I love him; I would do anything for him.”
After about a year of marriage, however, the two split up. Although rumours of reconciliation emerged, Rose took to Twitter again to set the record straight, saying, “We are very happy co-parenting and giving Sebastian [their son] the best life possible.”
13 Bella Thorne & Gregg Sulkin: Twitter
When these two were together, they were flirting up a storm online! Bella Thorne began posting photos of Gregg Sulkin on her Twitter account – both with and without a shirt – and the actor began to flirt back. By the summer of 2015, these two were officially an item, but they only managed to make it a year together before calling things off.
However, they still managed to remain friends, and towards the end of 2017, the actress posted another picture online of them snuggling in a pool. They never did get back together, though, and Thorne has since had more than her share of relationship drama (offline this time, however).
12 Amy Schumer & Ben Hanisch: Raya
We heard it from her directly. Comedian and actress Amy Schumer wrote in her book The Girl With the Lower Back Tattoo that she had met ex Ben Hanisch on the exclusive dating app Raya. “He was a Chicago guy,” she wrote, as Insider reports. “We sent each other very simple hellos and short, funny messages.”
Just a few weeks later, the two met in person and ended up dating for a year and a half. Everything seemed pretty solid, until it was announced unexpectedly that they had parted ways and then, equally as unexpected, that Schumer had suddenly married chef Chris Fischer, with whom she is expecting her first child.
11 Madelaine Petsch & Travis Mills: FB
While these two knew each other very basically through mutual friends, it was actually through FB that they were able to develop into a serious relationship. Back in 2017, singer Travis Mills sent actress Madelaine Petsch a congratulatory message for her new role on the hit show Riverdale. They soon began chatting regularly and have since had their conversations blossom into a full-blown relationship that’s still going strong to this day!
Speaking to Glamour in 2018, Petsch gushed, “He’s taught me how to be selfless and how to love, because I never knew I could love like that. I think that’s so interesting. He’s said I do the same for him.”
10 Emmy Rossum & Adam Duritz: Twitter
All the way back in 2009, Counting Crows frontman Adam Duritz – who counts beauties like Courteney Cox, Jennifer Aniston and Christina Applegate in his list of gorgeous exes – reached out to actress Emmy Rossum on Twitter to see if she’d like to sing with his band. Rossum accepted his invitation and even toured with the band!
At the time, Rossum played coy about her rumoured romance, telling People, “I get why chicks dig him. He’s extremely kind, incredibly intelligent, thoughtful, creative, and respectful.” Despite the compliments, the pair didn’t last, and the Shameless star has since married Mr. Robot creator Sam Esmail.
9 Austin Mahone & Katya Elise Henry: IG
As a stunning fitness model, Katya Henry was the one who caught singer Austin Mahone’s eye, and this was an example of a celeb being the one to slide into a regular person's DM. Sending Henry lavish praise on IG, Mahone got Henry's attention. The two struck up a dialogue that eventually led to an offline relationship.
In an interview, the singer admitted how their meet-cute was rather strange, as People reports. He said, “I mean, it’s a classic new-generation kind of meet-up thing. It’s crazy. I just think how funny it would be if I tell my kids one day I met her through Instagram.”
Too bad for the young lovers, they’re no longer together.
8 Lauren Bushnell & Devin Antin: Tinder
Ah, Tinder. Occasionally the bane of a single person’s existence but sometimes the one thing that brings you to the perfect person you might not have otherwise met! While Lauren Bushnell had a very public relationship – and then split from – Bachelor Ben Higgins, she found love again, this time online, with real estate investor Devin Antin.
Actually, prior to The Bachelor, Bushnell had matched with Antin, but put things on hold for obvious reasons. It wasn’t until two years later that the couple rekindled things and ended up dating for almost a year before ending things after a few months of being off and on.
7 Zara Larsson & Brian Whittaker: Twitter
Sometimes being publicly thirsty can work out – just ask Zara Larsson. In 2015, the Swedish singer hopped on Twitter to post two pictures of model Brian Whittaker. As Elle reports, she wrote,
“Who are you, where do you live, how old are you, why are you so fine, how do you like your eggs cooked in the morning?”
The not-so-subtle approach worked for the “Ruin My Life” singer and the pair soon began posting pictures together and being generally adorable with one another on both Twitter and IG. Despite their different careers and likely demanding schedules, they’ve still managed to continue going strong! (It probably helps that she refuses to write any songs about him!)
6 Sarah Paulson & Holland Taylor: Twitter
In all fairness to these two, they had met before, but it was on Twitter that a flirtation then a romance actually began to grow. While the two were previously in different relationships when they initially met, it was through the social media platform that they were able to reconnect.
In a 2019 interview on Watch What Happens Live, American Horror Story actress Sarah Paulson said that she and Taylor had “breezed by each other” at a party, and then began talking on Twitter, as Elle reports. Fellow guest on the show (and AHS co-star) Billy Eichner, asked, “Holland Taylor slid into your DMs?” to which Paulson replied, “She actually did!”
5 Deborah Ann Woll & E.J. Scott: Match
Good old dating websites. Before there were apps, there were these, and, for True Blood actress Deborah Ann Woll, they were what led her to her husband E.J. Scott back in 2008.
While dating sites have a reputation for being a breeding ground for catfish, it was Scott’s honesty that attracted Woll. Scott suffers from a rare eye disease called choroideremia, which means that he is legally blind. In his profile, he was upfront about his affliction, and, according to Woll, that was part of what attracted her. As Nicki Swift reports, she said, “He put it up on his [Match] profile, and I thought that was so brave, that he was so open about it.”
4 Ricky Martin & Jwan Yosef: IG
Another instance of a celeb slipping into the DM of someone who isn’t on Hollywood’s radar, we have Ricky Martin and Jwan Yosef. In a radio interview, Martin admitted that he was scrolling through IG when he noticed a beautiful piece of art and messaged Yosef, the owner of the account.
For about six months, the two exchanged messages on the platform – “we talked about art…nothing [else], I swear,” Martin said, as Nicki Swift reports – and then the singer decided to make things real and flew to London to meet his online love in person.
The couple ended up getting engaged in 2016 and married in 2018!
3 Sarah Hyland & Wells Adams: Twitter
Modern Family actress Sarah Hyland fan-girled over Wells Adams on Twitter when she learned that the hunky guy would be the bartender on Bachelor in Paradise, and the two soon began exchanging cute messages. In fact, Hyland had been open about her crush on Adams since he vied for JoJo Fletcher’s heart on The Bachelorette!
After a few public exchanges, Adams slid into Hyland’s DM, writing, “Next time I’m in LA, I’m taking you out for drinks and tacos,” as Elle reports.
Ever since, the two have been together, dressing up for Halloween in cute couple costumes and sharing adorable anecdotes online (because of course)!
2 Ryan Lochte & Kayla Rae Reid: Tinder
Another case of a couple who met on Tinder, but this time with a happier ending! Olympic swimmer Ryan Lochte matched with former playmate Kayla Rae Reid, and it had been rumoured for a while that the athlete was using the app, which was confirmed after the couple went public.
Despite the controversy surrounding the Rio Olympics and Lochte’s behaviour while there, these two have managed to weather the storm and married in January 2018, with a formal ceremony taking place in September of that year. Back in June 2017, Reid gave birth to their first child, a son, and the couple are expecting a second, due this June.
1 Mandy Moore & Taylor Goldsmith: IG
Mandy Moore is honest about what brought her and Dawes frontman Taylor Goldsmith together: IG. According to Refinery29, Moore recalls,
“I took a picture of their [Dawes’s] album and posted it on Instagram. Somehow, Taylor saw it and sent a note to me. We started emailing back and forth, then we went on a date and the rest is history. Thanks, IG, for helping me meet my fiancée.”
Hey, turns out social media can be better for a lot more than just drool-worthy food pics and body image issues!
After becoming engaged in September 2017, the two officially tied the knot in a backyard ceremony that was Pinterest-perfect on November 18, 2018.