To make sure you never miss out on your favourite NEW stories, we're happy to send you some reminders

Click 'OK' then 'Allow' to enable notifications

Influencer apologises after being slammed for dressing up as the stingray that killed Steve Irwin

Influencer apologises after being slammed for dressing up as the stingray that killed Steve Irwin

Aussies on social media are kicking off over the 'distasteful' outfit.

An influencer has found herself in some hot water after sharing a sneak-peek of a costume she was planning to wear to a party.

Sophia Begg shared her controversial outfit of a stingray onesie in a TikTok video and said she 'can't wait to wear [it] for European summer'.

But the 19-year-old revealed her outfit's true purpose in the comments section of her own TikTok video.

One fan wrote: "Steve Irwin could never."

According to the Daily Mail, Begg replied: "This is what this is for! I'm going to an Aussie dress-up party in a duo costume."

She added: "They're going as Steve Irwin and I'm going as a stingray."


Steve Irwin is a sacred local hero in Australia and jokes about his untimely demise are considered very off-colour and distasteful.

On 4 September 2006, the Aussie legend was killed by a stingray while filming at the Great Barrier Reef.

In one of the few human deaths by stingray ever recorded, he clearly annoyed one of the reef's usually docile inhabitants who shot a barb at the wildlife warrior.

The venomous stinger pierced the 44-year-old's heart, killing him almost instantly.

Irwin's death triggered shockwaves throughout Australia and the world, and resulted in an outpouring of grief.

And, as jokes about Irwin's death are still deemed to be off-colour nearly two decades after his demise, Begg has been copping it for her choice of costume.


One person commented on TikTok: "You're making a joke out of someone’s death. WTF is wrong with you lately."

A second chipped in with: "Definitely not a joke."

Another person who stood up for Begg also copped it in the comments section.

They wrote: "Not the people getting offended over a stingray."

Someone replied: "Her partner is dressing as Steve Irwin. They're literally joking about a devastating death."

The person who stood up for Begg fired back: "It’s really not that deep."

And, hoo boy, the haters hit back thick and fast on that one.

One user said: "No ones taking it deep, it's literally blatant disrespect."

Another fired back: "If it was one of your parents, would it still be 'not that deep'?"

A third replied: "Pretty sure it's that deep to his loved ones."


As well as being lambasted on her own social accounts, a screenshot of her video made its way to an influencer watchdog account called Dutchminty.

The account featured a poll to find out if its followers thought Begg's idea was 'fine and funny' or 'disrespectful and offensive'.

And, yeah. The majority of voters agreed the costume definitely fell on the 'yeah, nah' side of things.


Begg has since taken to social media to speak out about the controversy, issuing a heartfelt apology over any offence taken.

"Hi guys, I just wanted to jump on here to clear up some things," she wrote on TikTok.

"I love Steve and Uber never want to cause disrespect to his family or legacy. He is an iconic Aussie and no offence was meant by my costume. I’ve thought about and reflect on my costume, and I will not be wearing it, and apologise wholeheartedly to anyone who was offended by it, that was definitely not my intention."

She added: "I apologise sincerely."

Featured Image Credit: TikTok/notsophaadophaa. United Archives GmbH / Alamy Stock Photo

Topics: Steve Irwin, Social Media, TikTok, Australia, News