L.A’.s Bigg Chill shuts down fake news that Demi Lovato donated $100,000 after feud

Demi Lovato posing in hoop earrings.
Demi Lovato attends the 2018 Billboard Music Awards.
(Jordan Strauss / Associated Press)

Los Angeles frozen-yogurt shop the Bigg Chill has not accepted what it called a “sorry, not sorry apology” from Demi Lovato after the “Sorry Not Sorry” singer picked an icy feud with the business on social media.

The Bigg Chill debunked a rumor Wednesday morning that Lovato had donated $100,000 and delivered a written apology to the company for her behavior earlier this week. According to ownership, the Bigg Chill has not been in touch with Lovato since the “Dancing With the Devil” artist responded to the ensuing backlash.

On Instagram, the company challenged a recent tweet claiming that Lovato “donated 100k to the [yogurt] shop and wrote a private letter of apology” after accusing the store of enabling disordered eating by selling sugar-free items and “other diet foods.”

Singer Demi Lovato slammed L.A. fro-yo shop the Bigg Chill for what she called promoting toxic diet culture. The store, and its many fans, hit back.


“She really is such a pure soul who just wants to make the world a little bit better and has no ill intentions towards anyone,” read the tweet from @ICUbutterfiy, an account that has since been deleted.

Others went so far as to Photoshop fake direct messages from the Bigg Chill. In one fabricated conversation, the company appeared to confirm that “Demi did in fact donate to our shop,” while another misquoted the Bigg Chill as saying, “Demi Lovato and her team have been anything but nice to us.”

A screenshot of text from the Bigg Chill's Instagram story.
A screenshot of the Bigg Chill’s Instagram story.
(The Bigg Chill / Instagram)

After receiving multiple inquiries about the tweet and doctored DMs, the Bigg Chill set the record straight Wednesday in an Instagram story clarifying that it has “not received any donations from Demi’s team. Nor do we want one.”

“We have not made any changes to our menu,” the company added. “We have not heard anything from Demi since her ‘sorry, not sorry’ apology on Monday. We have not heard from her team. These are Photoshopped images. Thanks again for all of your support.”

In a Wednesday interview with The Times, Cary Russell, co-owner of the Bigg Chill, said she was “hurt” and “shocked” by Lovato’s remarks and expressed gratitude for the outpouring of support the company has seen online and in person. (The shop now has nearly 35,000 Instagram followers, compared to its 6,000 on Sunday.)

“I couldn’t believe that she would attack us like that,” Russell said. “All she had to do is pick up the phone and call me. I would have had a conversation with her and probably handled it and felt differently about it. But I felt like she just came at us and wanted to fight and accused us of things that weren’t right.”

A neon sign for the Bigg Chill.
Los Angeles frozen yogurt shop the Bigg Chill has seen an outpouring of support after singer Demi Lovato blasted it on social media.
(Christi Carras / Los Angeles Times)


On Monday, Lovato posted a video addressing the sharp criticism she received for publicly dragging the Bigg Chill and its staff because she felt “triggered” by the menu, which includes various fat- and sugar-free options. The beloved West L.A. establishment defended its product selection, explaining that it aims to accommodate customers with varying dietary needs and restrictions.

“I’m sorry that I got the messaging wrong. I’m sorry that I may have disappointed some people,” Lovato said after many scolded her for using her platform to pick on a local business.

“I’m not coming after a small business as someone with a lot of followers. That’s not what I’m doing here. ... I walked into a situation that didn’t sit right with me. My intuition said, ‘Speak up about this.’ So I did, and I feel good about that. What I don’t feel good about is ... how the message has gotten misconstrued.”