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Russian women are posing for sexy selfies while holding shawarma

We talked to the man behind the bizarre trend.


Dylan Love


Posted on Jun 19, 2015   Updated on May 28, 2021, 1:08 pm CDT

Meat and social media are colliding in Russia.

The latest surreal trend on the Russian-speaking Internet sees young women posing for sexy photos while holding shawarma. That’s it. The photos are being posted on the “Beautiful Girls And Shawarma” VKontakte page.

Roman Bordunov, who works does social media marketing for a Russian business media outlet called Секрет фирмы (“the secret of the company”), started the page three weeks ago after experiencing what sounds like a eureka moment: “I saw a photo of one girl with shawarma in her hands, and—bam!—I [knew I had something],” he told the Daily Dot. 

“Five minutes later, I created this public page. Moreover, I am crazy about shawarma.”

Other news outlets like Metro have reported that the photos are tied to a Russian governmental initiative to get people to eat healthier. But Bordunov said that’s not the case. The VK page does indeed say that it’s supported by the ministry of health, but it’s an obvious joke. “Everybody knows that shawarma is not a healthy food,” Bordunov said.

He’s surprised at the runaway success of the niche meme. “Since the start, I haven’t done anything. Girls and their boyfriends just send me photos, and new followers are coming and coming. I think the reason [it took off] is that everything is better with a beautiful girl, and the shawarma in their hands adds some absurd comedy effect, perhaps.”

Some participants seem to be in it for no other reason than to eat a delightful doner. Others clearly see it as a sly way to hold a phallic analog near one’s mouth on social media.

Photo via Beautiful Girls And Shawarma/VKontakte

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*First Published: Jun 19, 2015, 12:39 pm CDT