“Real 40 Year-Old Virgin “Bachelor” continues search for his one true love in America this Spring, 2019”
In this day and age it seems that romance has become an Instagram ideal; everyone striving to become the illusive “#goals” that are seen in the media. Since the birth of dating app Tinder in 2012, the dating world has been changed forever and social media has taken a strong hold over how we interact with others. Some may think real romance is a thing of the past or something that can only be seen on ABC’s The Bachelor. Shows that have fallen under the large umbrella of the Bachelor Nation have gained notoriety over the years for their strict formula of creating “true love.” Just last week football player Colton Underwood ended his search for love, seemingly as well as his reputation of being a virgin.
Philipp Hebestreit, a German 40 year-old “real-virgin bachelor,” hopes to follow in Colton’s footsteps by taking his search for love to the states. He launched his initial campaign “Free Philie” ten years ago, making headlines in his attempts to enlist the public in his search for the one. To launch his search in America Hebestreit will begin his search in New York City’s Time Square district later this month.
“My parents are my inspiration and the reason I began this campaign to find my one true love,” said Hebestreit. “They have been deeply in love for several decades and it’s the kind of everlasting love you just don’t see anymore.”
“Most Romantic Man in the World…” – Marie Claire
“Free Philie,” one of the largest searches for love in the word, began in 2008 with a lonely plea on Hebestreit’s personal blog. His post garnered the attention of a multitude of women and sparked his curiosity in expanding his search even further. He then took to the streets of several German cities with flyers and large posters. His efforts became even more elaborate with newspaper advertisements, recorded video messages, bulletins and cars equipped with “Free Philie” flags.
He began going even bigger with his attempts and traveling further in order to reach a wider audience. He donned a full body shield in Hamburg, sent out thousands of messages in bottles into the North Sea, advertised on electric boats in the canals of Amsterdam, placed speaking stands in London’s Piccadilly Circus, placed an inflatable Frog at the Eiffel Tower, and even more international exploits for love. Philipp Hebestreit has spread his “love art” as far as Austria, Switzerland, Norway and Italy.
“A phenomenon that is conquering the hearts of women around the world…” – Wall Street Journal
Hebestreit is one of the very few virgin men turning to the public in order to enter his first relationship. This aspect of his sexuality is what drew most of the attention to his search as Philip is amongst just 10% of European men of his age to remain virginal. Those choosing celibacy often keep this fact to themselves to avoid social backlash. As for Philip, he tackles this topic with pride sparking public discussion. It is through his “Free Philie” campaign that Philip has attempted to tackle the belief that male virginity in the Western world should be something to be ashamed of.
By bringing attention to the conversation of virginity, “Free Philie” gained international attention in the form of letters, packages, texts and emails from celebrities and other public figures from over 100 countries. He received gifts such as lingerie and nude photos to a “Medal of Knightliness,” and a 5 foot teddy bear that caused his P.O. box to be terminated.
While stateside, ten years after the campaign’s inception, Philip will begin in New York City and continue his travels with teasers on his whereabouts on his “Free Philie” social media accounts.
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