There are lots of ways to cope with the coronavirus lockdown blues: family Zoom calls, remote therapy sessions, online shopping sprees.
Or you could just take some smoking-hot selfies and post them online.
“Thirst trapping and getting attention is totally getting me through this quarantine!” Michaela Shae LaGesse tells The Post. Over the last few weeks, the 29-year-old has been filling her Instagram feed with sexy snaps showing off her abs and arms on Instagram. “It’s amazing what some mascara and a good photo can do for you and your self-esteem.”
Instead of languishing in week-old sweats, scores of sexy singles — and even a few celebrities, including Lori Loughlin’s influencer daughter Olivia Jade and Victoria’s Secret model Martha Hunt — are taking advantage of their extra time at home to take tantalizing pictures for fawning followers on social media. And while the sudden surge in selfies may seem short-sighted during a pandemic, a study by the University of California Irvine found that taking selfies is actually linked to feeling less lonely — something experts agree we should all strive for at the moment.
“If there was ever a time to boost self-esteem, it would be now, during these difficult times,” says Shaudi Adel, the clinical director at Centered Mind Therapy, a virtual therapy company. She says that, in these crazy circumstances, thirst traps can actually be a powerful form of therapy. “Selfies can be a picture version of a positive affirmation, such as ‘I am enough,’ or ‘I am beautiful,’ or ‘I accept me as I am in this moment.’ ”
That’s why LaGesse, of Nashville, Tenn., started posing for her camera. When the massage therapist began self-isolating on March 20, she felt herself morphing into a couch potato.
“I laid around, watched way too much Netflix and joined the ‘Tiger King’ train,” she says, referring to the hit Netflix docuseries. “After about a week and a half of no discipline or schedule, I was feeling pretty bad about myself and needed to do something.”
So she started following a few Instagram fitness models for inspiration, meal prepping and working out. Soon, she was back on a healthy routine — and feeling herself.
“I wasn’t intending on taking a bunch of photos of myself, it just turned into that,” says LaGesse, who has posted nearly 20 seductive portraits on Instagram since April 2, mostly of her workout routines. “I enjoyed the attention I got from my friends and complete strangers, and I am gaining confidence in myself and my image.”
The practice has lifted her spirits more than ever.
“I had been jerked around by a series of liars and cheaters in the past that left me feeling broken and unwanted,” she says. “Now, dressing up and making myself look good has helped me to stay in touch with being in love with myself.”
For Miller Pyke, 28, “Taking hot snaps gave me that spring feeling.” The Brooklyn resident recently posted a series of skin-baring mirror shots to Instagram. In spring, “We get to throw off our winter coats, show off our revenge bodies and finally remember why we live in New York City.”
Showcasing her thrift store finds has also been a “fun distraction,” she says, to “keep myself motivated and give myself something to look forward to once we are out of quarantine.”
Sustainable fashion brand owner Olivia Pudelko, 25, loves to take selfies as a way to connect with people while she’s locked up in her apartment alone.
“If I am feeling lonely, it’s definitely nice to have a response after I post an image,” says Pudelko, who runs Western Affair. “It’s so easy just to stay in pajamas or loungewear, but putting together an outfit, or a look, even if it’s just for yourself or your Instagram friends, it changes how you see yourself and what you think you’re capable of.”
The pics come with other perks, too — including lustful DMs from potential post-pandemic love interests.
“[My] thirst traps have woken up some hungry wolves on Instagram,” says LaGesse, laughing.