Beauty YouTuber Nikita Dragun says she was admitted to a psychiatric hospital where she was held involuntarily for eight days, according to statements posted on her Instagram on December 13.
Dragun posted a series of Instagram stories and a 10-post carousel of photos and videos along with a lengthy caption in which she said she was “kicked out on Thanksgiving day” and “walked the streets” before being picked up by the police and hospitalized.
“I was administered into a Psychiatric Behavioral Health Hospital involuntarily,” she wrote on Instagram. “I was drugged so intensely I couldn’t even keep my eyes open for days.” She did not specify which facility in her text but posted a photo of Riverside Behavioral Health Center in Virginia, which did not immediately respond to Insider’s request for comment.
The 25-year-old influencer joined YouTube in 2013 posting beauty videos and tutorials, and in 2015, she came out as transgender. To date, she has 3.6 million subscribers, her own brand Dragun Beauty, and filmed two seasons of a Snapchat reality series. She has also grown an audience on Instagram and TikTok, where she has 9 million and 14.2 million followers, respectively, and is currently a member of the Hype House, a TikTok creator collective starring in an upcoming Netflix show.
In her main Instagram post about the incident, Dragun said she had been detained during a trip to Virginia by a Magistrate order, which is typically granted when a person is found to be incapable of making informed decisions regarding medical treatment and has a “serious illness or injury that is likely to result in death, disability, or serious irreversible injury.”
In an accompanying Instagram story which is no longer publicly available to view, she said she was hospitalized for eight days.
Dragun said the incident occurred when she was picked up by the police while walking outside in “clear stripper heels” in the cold. Virginia state police declined to comment on the incident as the post did not identify which police department or sheriff’s office was involved.
She added that she had been seeking mental health support in the months prior, and told her followers she wanted to share her story because she wanted to be “seen and heard.”
In a follow-up series of Instagram stories posted on December 14, Dragun said she was “nowhere near a clear mindset” when she posted about the incident and was “dazed and confused” but said she wanted to share her experience to feel less alone. She said she is “still reflecting” on what happened, but she will share more details “when the time feels right.”
She added, “There is never any shame in facing struggles with your mental health. Please know that you are not alone.”
Dragun, who is of Vietnamese and Mexican descent, is a recognizable yet controversial figure in the influencer community. She has been accused of blackfishing by artificially darkening her skin and cultural appropriation for wearing her hair in box braids — a hairstyle that is typically worn by Black women. She also faced backlash for defending fellow beauty guru James Charles in the midst of his scandal and was accused of irresponsible partying during the COVID-19 pandemic.