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UNC senior uses glitter to inspire others like her

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UNC's 'Glitter Girl' is using her story to inspire others

As the Tar Heels chase a championship, one devoted fan is getting a lot of attention for how she cheers on her team.

Chances are, if you've been to a UNC home football or basketball game in the last two years, Alex Koszeghy's caught your eye. The senior, better known as Glitter Girl, attends the games, usually on the front row of the student section, with her body covered in Carolina blue glitter.

"I always just apologize to people around me," said Koszeghy with a big smile on her face, a pair of blue glittered striped down the left side of her face. "I'm like, I'm gonna shed on you. You will have glitter on you by the end. I'm sorry!"

What started as an item on the undergrad's bucket list, showing her school spirit in such a bright, unique way, quickly evolved into a persona of its own. Glitter Girl took off on social media, and with Glitter Girl beloved by fellow Tar Heels fans, came confidence Koszeghy never had before.

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"You would never know what it took to get here," she said. "It just kind of shows even at your darkest there's a sparkly future ahead of you."

Underneath those shiny layers is a young woman still pushing through insecurities with her body that go back years to when she was a ballet dancer.

"Just with my perfectionist tendencies and wanting to be the best, I developed anorexia when I was 15," she said.

There were periods of recovery, relapse, and then a turning point.

"Finally I started Christian counseling and that's when I finally started to find freedom and the chains started falling off," Koszeghy said. "I remember thinking during that game, nobody's looking at my stomach. Nobody cares. It's just sparkly and happiness and glitter."

Unaware at first how something as simple as glitter could help her overcome, she's now watching her own story spreading across social media, giving others the kind of hope she has.

"Just to get messages of people saying I really needed to hear this, it's been extremely humbling to think like, who am I to be able to help others? And that's kind of the essence of Glitter Girl too, is loving yourself entirely as you are," she said.

Koszeghy wanted to go to the Final Four to cheer on her Tar Heels in Phoenix, but the senior said with exams coming up she had to stay in Chapel Hill. She will still be glittering up Saturday night though, when she attends the watch party at the Dean E. Smith Center.

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