I was browsing YouTube recently and came across quite a few great tutorials. I was especially inspired by Xteeener’s recent tutorial, Sexy Sunkissed Makeup. She was inspired to try this look after seeing it in a magazine ad.
It’s been a while since I wore full makeup, but this looked like a lot of fun to try for the weekend and I had the necessary tools in my collection. What a surprise!
Below I’ve listed what I used to recreate this look. The shades I used were a bit lighter, and more on the neutral side rather than burgundy. I also skipped many steps I find unnecessary for every day, like highlighting.
I’ve touched this topic before in regards to YouTube beauty gurus, back when I had just discovered the community. I wanted to voice my latest opinion.
The YouTube beauty community mostly consists of younger women purchasing things like make-up and clothes and then making videos talking about their purchases. It is also heavily focused on things like make-up tutorials, where the girls illustrate how to achieve a certain look using certain products.
YouTube's beauty community -- good or bad?
Unfortunately, there’s a darker side to the community many are either unaware of or choose to turn their eyes from. What started as something girls did for fun somehow grew into a dog and pony show done every few days for an income. Girls are getting sent free products by companies to review. Getting paid by companies to be mentioned in their videos. Getting paid to host giveaways done by companies. The list goes on.
Here are a few examples of girls who have made the most of their popularity:
Michelle Phan is YouTube’s most popular make-up guru. She’s making over $200,000 a year on her main YouTube channel alone. (Source) That doesn’t include the money she makes from Lancome, who saw her on YouTube and hired her to do sponsored videos using their products. It doesn’t include profit she made from IQQU, a skincare line she advertised but recently withdrew from after legal troubles. It doesn’t include any money she has made through her other channels.
There are also girls like sisters Elle and Blair, who have made so much profit they’ve moved from their parent’s home in Tennessee to a high-end suite in L.A. to work on YouTube full-time. They’ve started a blog, forum, online boutique, and are working on a reality show. (Which I don’t think will ever see the light of day.) Some girls have really been able to take it this far.
BubzBeauty, yet another popular beauty guru, has her own line of make-up brushes coming out soon and was able to launch an online clothing boutique.
I’m not blasting these girls. In fact, I think they’re lucky. Who wouldn’t want to be paid a six figure income for casually talking about make-up? My point, however, is exposing a huge flaw in the community — the sincerity is lost. Many videos look like infomercials. When the girls claim they’re so excited to post a video, you have to wonder if they’re just meeting their weekly quota. The popular community topic “Favorite Products of the Month” is just another long advertisement.
YouTube user addicted2toofaced.
The worst part of all, and the reason I’m writing this, is that young girls everywhere are falling for it. As soon as their idol on YouTube tells them to buy a product, they will run out and buy it. Check out Addicted2TooFaced, a 14 year-old girl who has more high-end make-up than I will ever own collectively throughout my life. I can’t help but watch videos like that and feel sad. This girl just hit her teenage years and she’s already wearing too much make-up, clothes that are too mature for her, and has developed an over-spending habit — using her parent’s money, no doubt.
I think the beauty community is just an endless cycle of spending money on things you don’t really need to gain admiration (and sometimes money) from others. I deleted my YouTube account. My subscription page became overwhelming — one huge commercial. I actually wanted to go shopping after watching. That’s not why I started watching these videos.
Realizing this about the beauty community has made me realize one more thing: The Beauty section on my website contributes to this cycle. Don’t get me wrong, I think honestly reviewing brands is a good thing and will likely continue doing it, but I’ve realized that I’d like to post more about natural do-it-yourself beauty tips and fun ideas that don’t focus on product names. I think that would be refreshing.
We live in such a “mediatized” society. It’s crazy when you sit down and look at all the ways we advertise for companies. What are your thoughts?
This blog entry was posted in Beauty on Jun 20 2011.
A part of growing up for girls is learning how to look good. Not necessarily to please others, but to instill a sense of self-confidence. I’ve talked to other girls in my situation who were late to discover make-up, and for girls like us YouTube has been a savior. Girls upload make-up tutorials onto YouTube and get millions of hits, providing tutorials and inspiration. I’ve learned so many tips from these videos, discovered so many great brands, and have gotten hours of amusement out of them as well.
But do you know the details about how some of these “beauty gurus” live their lives? Okay, I’ll admit it, I’ve fallen victim to the gossip forums. It’s intriguing to see these girls make these videos, update their Twitters, and post on their Facebook — and then have someone throw out some of their dirty laundry.
A reason to be wary! Here are a few of my favorites, some who I now no longer respect because of what they try to hide.
Michelle Phan is the most subscribed female on YouTube and is by far the most notorious make-up guru. Her videos are well edited, and she’s a beautiful girl. I watched Michelle’s videos for a long time, and she introduced me to the make-up videos on YouTube. However, there are claims (some with evidence and some without) that she is a pathological liar, delusional, egocentric, a gold digger, and just plain ignorant. Believing them or not is up to you. Here are some things Michelle Phan is accused of:
Giving away her adopted cat because she got bored of her.
Lying about her rabbit surviving a fatal disease by bringing up his death months later.
Lying about coming from a poor family.
Lying about almost being raped in NYC.
Constantly uploading pictures on her Twitter of extremely expensive merchandise that she buys.
Dumping her long-term boyfriend for a much older guy who is loaded with cash.
Deleting any comments anywhere questioning her integrity.
Overuse of black eyeliner and eye-enlarging contacts.
Advocating for her skincare line, but having terrible skin.
Dissing a video game or never playing at all, and then trying too hard to look like a “gamer girl.”
Her expenses: Flying in pizza from NYC? Jet setting all over the country? Buying expensive cars? Thousand dollar jackets? First class?
Her “at home” or “do it yourself” tutorials are sometimes bad for your skin.
She has a skincare line and tries to preach about how well her products work by incorrectly using scientific terms, or even making up words to prove her point.
Elle and Blair
Elle and Blair Fowler are two sisters who are very…interesting. I admit that I watch these two girls purely for entertainment. They do not use their real first names because they want privacy, but they use their real last name. (Is that even common sense?) They both started out doing innocent tutorials on make-up, but they are now so interested in making money off of their tutorials that most of everything they do, show, or say on their channel is sponsored. Here are a few things they are accused of:
Lying about their names.
Using product placement in their videos.
Using products they’ve been paid to advertise in their “monthly favorites” videos.
Not mentioning they have been gifted or sponsored anywhere in their video, only adding it to the FTC disclaimer at the very bottom of their information bar.
Not knowing anything about professional make-up, but being asked to do make-up for or being invited to fashion shows.
Getting nose jobs.
Getting hair extensions.
Having an insane amount of make-up in their collections.
Dropping out of school to pursue YouTube fame.
Only approving “gushy” comments on their videos and blocking anyone who dares to ask questions.
Pretending to act stupid and oblivious to be well-liked. (This has actually been proven with a video edit mistake.)
DulceCandy87 is a 23 year old girl who focuses on both fashion and make-up on her channel. I’ve been following her for a long time, because she seemed down to earth and I love her cute Spanish accent. She is a bit of an odd ball, though. Here are a few things she’s accused of:
Having a serious shopping addiction or hoarding problem. (Check out the closet in her videos.)
Every video being sponsored in one way or another.
Trying to disguise commercials as tutorials.
Being (or formerly being) promiscuous.
Having terrible or out-dated fashion sense.
Often saying things that make no sense; generally being grammatically incorrect.
Being “ghetto” and acting “White” to make more money. (I personally don’t believe this.)
Buying thousands of dollars worth of clothes, bags, shoes, make-up, and professional cameras instead of investing for her upcoming baby boy.
So my point is… I’ve been sucked into watching a lot of these girls do tutorials on YouTube. Some of them are more talented than I will ever be! But I also learned that you can’t really trust anything these days. I never would have believed some of these things that turned out to be true.
However, you really do have to put personal issues aside. What I really hate is when people try to sneak in advertising. Always, always, always read the disclaimer at the bottom of these videos, girls!
This blog entry was posted in Beauty on Sep 28 2010.