Forums > Hair, Makeup & Styling > The Problem with Youtube Experts

Makeup Artist

Davis W

Posts: 1272

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Okay, I have spent countless hours watching youtube makeup channels, there are literally thousands of beauty experts teaching tips. The usual subscription number is 300,000 or more with a million plus hits.

The typical video consists of a gorgeous 20 something or younger girl doing makeup on herself. Rarely, if ever, do we see them applying it to someone else. Never, and I mean, never, do we see a plain looking girl or an obese girl doing these videos. In other words, you could throw a pile of mud on most of these youtubers and they would still be pretty.

So the makeup tips they provide are only for girls who are already stunning. 80 per cent of women don't look like that. So the majority of these hot tips are just fine for a Bridgette Bardot lookalike, but on a regular gal, they suck. Never do I see any decent work correcting imbalances in features or corrections, there is nothing to balance or correct, they already look like models. Then there is the thorny issue of how to do it on another face.

Second, the detailed looks are incredibly time consuming and expensive. I dont know of a single real woman who is going to spend 30 minutes or more on a look which results in twin black liner wings with a rainbow of colors on the eyes. And even if they manage to commit to these extravagant looks, in a bar, from 10 feet away, they all look like smokey eye anyhow.

Thirdly, most looks require a huge investment in products. Hundreds of dollars for the average look.

So all in all, the youtube beauty experts are providing unrealistic information, requiring ridiculous time and money commitments, only doing makeup on their own face, and its all on a young face which requires no makeup at all to look good.

So really, most of these channels are pure cheese. Empty, worthless information. As Kurt Vonneget said in Cats Cradle, "to find the essence of a granfaloon, simply prick the skin of a toy balloon". See the cat, see the cradle?

And so I end my tour of youtube beauty videos with a calm sigh. If this is what passes for beauty instruction now, I have some fantastic land in the Florida everglades to sell you.

To blow my horn a bit, and I am speaking the the converted anyhow, I can make any girl look so hot that men will drool over her. Making a gorgeous girl look even prettier is ez. Taking a girl who is feeling lousy about herself and having her leave the chair glowing and feeling sexual, sensual and confident is what we are supposed to do, no? Yeh, I feel pretty good about my skills right now. Makeup is supposed to be about transformation, not just adding bells and whistles.

smile

Sep 22 10 09:13 pm Link

Makeup Artist

AmyDoesMakeup

Posts: 37

Lake Mary, Florida, US

That was awesome.  Granted, I have seen a few obese and plain-looking girls applying make-up on themselves to show off for youtube watchers, but they're hard to find since those girls are not eye-appealing.  Of the videos I used to watch on there all the time, those "experts" tend to stick to one brand of make-up line too, which also tells you how much investigating or experimenting they are truly.  It's one thing to work for a line and use a lot of products from that line, it's another to have every.single.piece.of.makeup. from that line in the kit and absolutely no other brand.  I never knew it was possible until I saw those videos!  Oh well, today's youtube artist is tomorrow's future professional make-up artist...maybe.

Sep 22 10 09:22 pm Link

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Makeup Artist

Mary

Posts: 7168

Coronado, California, US

DavisWebb wrote:
Okay, I have spent countless hours watching youtube makeup channels, there are literally thousands of beauty experts teaching tips. The usual subscription number is 300,000 or more with a million plus hits.

The typical video consists of a gorgeous 20 something or younger girl doing makeup on herself. Rarely, if ever, do we see them applying it to someone else. Never, and I mean, never, do we see a plain looking girl or an obese girl doing these videos. In other words, you could throw a pile of mud on most of these youtubers and they would still be pretty.

So the makeup tips they provide are only for girls who are already stunning. 80 per cent of women don't look like that. So the majority of these hot tips are just fine for a Bridgette Bardot lookalike, but on a regular gal, they suck. Never do I see any decent work correcting imbalances in features or corrections, there is nothing to balance or correct, they already look like models. Then there is the thorny issue of how to do it on another face.

Second, the detailed looks are incredibly time consuming and expensive. I dont know of a single real woman who is going to spend 30 minutes or more on a look which results in twin black liner wings with a rainbow of colors on the eyes. And even if they manage to commit to these extravagant looks, in a bar, from 10 feet away, they all look like smokey eye anyhow.

Thirdly, most looks require a huge investment in products. Hundreds of dollars for the average look.

So all in all, the youtube beauty experts are providing unrealistic information, requiring ridiculous time and money commitments, only doing makeup on their own face, and its all on a young face which requires no makeup at all to look good.

So really, most of these channels are pure cheese. Empty, worthless information. As Kurt Vonneget said in Cats Cradle, "to find the essence of a granfaloon, simply prick the skin of a toy balloon". See the cat, see the cradle?

And so I end my tour of youtube beauty videos with a calm sigh. If this is what passes for beauty instruction now, I have some fantastic land in the Florida everglades to sell you.

Your under the assumption that young women in this age range don't spend 30 minutes on a look and lots of money on makeup...   From what I have witnessed they do...  the percentage of sales I get from these videos is probably equal to what I get from makeup artists and I have never even done a video...   People buy my product and talk about them on youtube...they send their young friends who probably live with parents and have no real bills to pay yet.. These young women have money and time believe it or not.    I have a link on my store that tells me where my customers come from and youtube is quickly taking over as number one

And you say you have spent hours... imagine how much more time a young girl sitting in a bedroom at her parents home has

Sep 22 10 09:28 pm Link

Retoucher

Aphoristic Precise

Posts: 290

Los Angeles, California, US

Lauren Luke? Incredibly cute but she's as plain as one can get.

Sep 22 10 09:34 pm Link

Makeup Artist

Artifex

Posts: 1621

Columbus, Ohio, US

It's really a win-win for most of the youtube "gurus".

They are able to get compensated for their videos by being a partner, also come up with these "make up classes" (cha ching!), and also receive many free products for reviewing them to their subscribers (and sometimes, paid to review them).

A lot of the times, this happens to "gurus" who like was said, have never done an application on others or at least, has little experience.
Some end up in magazines which gain them even more subscribers.

It's a pretty easy gig. Especially if you know how to market yourself and get your videos viewed (a la M. Phan).

I think they are more popular if they are attractive, bubbly and commercial. But there are quite a few that get a large amount of views that are overweight or a little different looking. There seems to still be that group of consumers that adores the type of person they would work or go to school with that looks like the 'average girl'..

And as we have seen, it doesn't take a shit ton of talent or experience on youtube or even a portfolio to be a 'make up artist' or have a lot of views.

Sep 22 10 09:36 pm Link

Makeup Artist

Artifex

Posts: 1621

Columbus, Ohio, US

Aphoristic Precise wrote:
Lauren Luke? Incredibly cute but she's as plain as one can get.

Even she has changed a lot since she first started on youtube, though.

She got her teeth fixed and lost some weight.

Not that these are negative things, but does prove a point.

Sep 22 10 09:37 pm Link

Retoucher

Aphoristic Precise

Posts: 290

Los Angeles, California, US

Artifex  wrote:

Even she has changed a lot since she first started on youtube, though.

She got her teeth fixed and lost some weight.

Not that these are negative things, but does prove a point.

And what was the point? She snagged her own sephora line, and could afford to get her teeth fixed and lose some weight.

Sep 22 10 09:47 pm Link

Makeup Artist

Artifex

Posts: 1621

Columbus, Ohio, US

Aphoristic Precise wrote:

And what was the point? She snagged her own sephora line, and could afford to get her teeth fixed and lose some weight.

Davis said you hardly see plain girls with a lot of views.

She was pretty plain, now she amped it up a bit after a little success. I just mean the point that you can get more fame by being more marketable and changing your looks.

Sep 22 10 09:50 pm Link

Photographer

Babylon Dubaron Imagery

Posts: 342

San Antonio, Texas, US

definitely Lauren. And petrilude is a boy and does some killer make up better than most females

Sep 22 10 10:05 pm Link

Hair Stylist

A J T

Posts: 3113

Brooklyn, New York, US

What about that girl the Queen of Blending or whatever her name is. The one who puts out those joke tutorials sometimes amongst her very informative regular tutorials? She's pretty overweight (but still beautiful, I think) and gets a good amount of exposure.

And most of my girlfriends have cabinets full of makeup and used to spend at least an hour on their own makeup every day doing fairly intricate looks.

As far as doing makeup on others, you have to think about their market. They're usually not focused at the pro artist, they're looking at their market that is going to make them money: girls who do makeup on themselves.

Now, those really complex looks that aren't "wearable"-- compare their youtube channel to a portfolio. What purpose do the complex avant-garde looks really serve in a portfolio? Typically, they are ultimately there to dazzle people and sell the regular looks that are the bread and butter of most careers. So they do the really crazy stuff to sell their regular tutorials that real women and girls actually try and wear.

Sep 23 10 06:58 am Link

Makeup Artist

Megan Mateo

Posts: 522

Savannah, Georgia, US

I'm no looker, but I'm not after capturing the guru market either.  I'd rather use my videos to supplement my bridal and everyday-girl makeup site.  It's a fun way to relate to the client (bride, parent, or party girl), and has helped that part of my business by letting them get to know me before booking me.

Sep 23 10 07:44 am Link

Photographer

Christy - Lynn

Posts: 972

Elmira, New York, US

You must not have looked hard enough because there are MANY fatter girls, plain girls, ugly girls...etc doing beauty tutorials. I know at least one of each right of the top of my head.

Sep 23 10 07:52 am Link

Makeup Artist

christilena

Posts: 62

Los Angeles, California, US

There is definitely a mix of different looking people on U-tube and I don't think they are teaching the makeup for everyday wear.

Sep 23 10 08:31 am Link

Makeup Artist

Heather Schumer

Posts: 633

Fort Lauderdale, Florida, US

I am a bigger girl, what one would consider obese, and I do videos. I have seen some others, but we don't get as many subscribers, views, comments, etc. I'm not in it to be a partner and make money, or get free product. I'm on there to show girls (and boys) of all sizes that makeup can be a fun way to express yourself.

Sep 23 10 08:41 am Link

Photographer

Zhiffy Photography

Posts: 1090

Singapore, Singapore, Singapore

Sep 23 10 09:10 am Link

Retoucher

Natalia_Taffarel

Posts: 7665

Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina

christilena wrote:
There is definitely a mix of different looking people on U-tube and I don't think they are teaching the makeup for everyday wear.

+1

Sep 23 10 09:15 am Link

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Makeup Artist

Mary

Posts: 7168

Coronado, California, US

i get requests at least 2 times a week to send products for review on youtube.. 90% of the time the girls are overweight and just average looking young ladies, not beauty queens, just like 90% of the real population and so I see this as a plus...someone who relates with their peers...they are selling makeup and ideas to their friends not to pros....

I normally will send a product for review if they have 300 or more followers, sometimes 200 and also one stipulation is that they speak properly...I get requests all the time from people that say "um" after every few words, or giggle into the camera...sometimes they are perched up on a non-made bed.  LOL!  I do have my standards.   

Once in a whie I get a request from someone thats new to you-tubing (is that a word? it should be)  but for some reason I just like them, I help a few of those people get started but thats pretty rare.

Mary
www.CameraReadyCosmetics.com

Sep 23 10 09:22 am Link

Makeup Artist

Davis W

Posts: 1272

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Oh I just wanted to state, that there are some very very good channels out there. Pixiewoo is an example of a great learning experience. So I am sorry if I painted every one of thousands of channels with the same brush. Its just that unless you are as in the know as we are, you cant tell the diff between Pixiewoo and some lesser site.

So again, I love the Chapman sister's work and there are other many good sites out there. Its just too much buyer beware to be a trusted source. And for many surfers, it is trusted.

Hope that clears up any unintended generalizations.

Now, time to get off my bitching platform and do something about. I am going to create a youtube channel called "Makeup for the Rest of Us". I will post here when my first vids are done.

Sep 23 10 12:18 pm Link

Makeup Artist

Natalia Mendoza

Posts: 70

San Lorenzo, California, US

can't wait to see it!!

Sep 23 10 04:50 pm Link

Makeup Artist

Jordan Liberty

Posts: 4828

New York, New York, US

DavisWebb wrote:
Oh I just wanted to state, that there are some very very good channels out there. Pixiewoo is an example of a great learning experience. So I am sorry if I painted every one of thousands of channels with the same brush. Its just that unless you are as in the know as we are, you cant tell the diff between Pixiewoo and some lesser site.

So again, I love the Chapman sister's work and there are other many good sites out there. Its just too much buyer beware to be a trusted source. And for many surfers, it is trusted.

Hope that clears up any unintended generalizations.

Now, time to get off my bitching platform and do something about. I am going to create a youtube channel called "Makeup for the Rest of Us". I will post here when my first vids are done.

Why do u think I started a channel? I'm sick of seeing...well.....stuff like this.

Sep 23 10 05:16 pm Link

Makeup Artist

Makeup by Melly

Posts: 1192

Oceanside, California, US

Jordan Liberty wrote:

Why do u think I started a channel? I'm sick of seeing...well...Michelle Phan.

Glad you did smile

Sep 23 10 06:18 pm Link

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Makeup Artist

KJB

Posts: 1184

New York, New York, US

The only "gurus" who deserve props are the ones who can do credible makeup on others (not just themselves).

I'm just sayin'...

Sep 23 10 06:36 pm Link

Model

Christie_R

Posts: 635

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

I will have to agree with 99% of what was said in the OP.

That being said, I find Youtube a great place to go to watch reviews on products before I fork away my money for anything. I rarely ever make a beauty purchase without thoroughly doing my research on it.

There is only one makeup "guru" that I find myself watching constantly and that is EnkoreMakeup. He's not a 20 year old woman that has great skin and doesn't need any makeup. He is a real makeup artist with lots of knowledge to share. He actually offers tips and tricks and it's not just "Oh I own this and it cost me this much and it's really expensive so it must be good". I enjoy watching his videos because he has a lot of cost effective solutions, like how to make your own brush cleanser for really cheap.

http://www.youtube.com/user/enkoremakeup?blend=1&ob=4

Sep 23 10 07:16 pm Link

Model

The Original Sin

Posts: 13894

Louisville, Kentucky, US

KJ Bennett Beauty wrote:
The only "gurus" who deserve props are the ones who can do credible makeup on others (not just themselves).

I'm just sayin'...

I can do beautiful, intricate make-up on others.  On myself... well, not so much.  But I think that has to do with being legally blind without my glasses on.

Sep 23 10 07:33 pm Link

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Makeup Artist

KJB

Posts: 1184

New York, New York, US

Christie Romanowski wrote:
I will have to agree with 99% of what was said in the OP.

That being said, I find Youtube a great place to go to watch reviews on products before I fork away my money for anything. I rarely ever make a beauty purchase without thoroughly doing my research on it.

There is only one makeup "guru" that I find myself watching constantly and that is EnkoreMakeup. He's not a 20 year old woman that has great skin and doesn't need any makeup. He is a real makeup artist with lots of knowledge to share. He actually offers tips and tricks and it's not just "Oh I own this and it cost me this much and it's really expensive so it must be good". I enjoy watching his videos because he has a lot of cost effective solutions, like how to make your own brush cleanser for really cheap.

http://www.youtube.com/user/enkoremakeup?blend=1&ob=4

+1  Absolutely adore Koren and totally respect what he is doing. (he's also really fun to hang out with...lol)

Sep 23 10 07:34 pm Link

Photographer

Nina Lux Photography

Posts: 831

New York, New York, US

Christie Romanowski wrote:
I will have to agree with 99% of what was said in the OP.

That being said, I find Youtube a great place to go to watch reviews on products before I fork away my money for anything. I rarely ever make a beauty purchase without thoroughly doing my research on it.

There is only one makeup "guru" that I find myself watching constantly and that is EnkoreMakeup. He's not a 20 year old woman that has great skin and doesn't need any makeup. He is a real makeup artist with lots of knowledge to share. He actually offers tips and tricks and it's not just "Oh I own this and it cost me this much and it's really expensive so it must be good". I enjoy watching his videos because he has a lot of cost effective solutions, like how to make your own brush cleanser for really cheap.

http://www.youtube.com/user/enkoremakeup?blend=1&ob=4

+ 1 Thanks for sharing! Gonna "favorite" him smile

Sep 23 10 07:37 pm Link

Photographer

Nina Lux Photography

Posts: 831

New York, New York, US

Agree with the OP. Product knowledge is extremely important when working with Make-Up. Was a little disappointed with Michelle in this video sad

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8U3DKl089E0

Sep 23 10 07:39 pm Link

Model

Christie_R

Posts: 635

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

KJ Bennett Beauty wrote:
+1  Absolutely adore Koren and totally respect what he is doing. (he's also really fun to hang out with...lol)

He does seem really fun to hang out with!

Sep 23 10 07:41 pm Link

Makeup Artist

Denise

Posts: 1915

Kelowna, British Columbia, Canada

Christie Romanowski wrote:
I will have to agree with 99% of what was said in the OP.

That being said, I find Youtube a great place to go to watch reviews on products before I fork away my money for anything. I rarely ever make a beauty purchase without thoroughly doing my research on it.

There is only one makeup "guru" that I find myself watching constantly and that is EnkoreMakeup. He's not a 20 year old woman that has great skin and doesn't need any makeup. He is a real makeup artist with lots of knowledge to share. He actually offers tips and tricks and it's not just "Oh I own this and it cost me this much and it's really expensive so it must be good". I enjoy watching his videos because he has a lot of cost effective solutions, like how to make your own brush cleanser for really cheap.

http://www.youtube.com/user/enkoremakeup?blend=1&ob=4

I agree, I've been subscribing to Koren for a couple of years. I use his brush cleaner recipe myself and give it to my students (crediting Koren of course).

Sep 23 10 07:42 pm Link

Makeup Artist

SHDavies

Posts: 150

London, England, United Kingdom

Wayne Goss (www.youtube.com/user/gossmakeupartist) is another who does tutorials on people who aren't young 20 somethings who don't need makeup.

I also trust his recommendations 100% as he usually buys his own stuff and on the rare occasion    he is given something he usually slates it!

But on the whole I do have to agree with the OP, I only watch about 4 youtube channels (pixiwoo, petrilude, gossmakeupartist, lisaeldridgedotcom) and the rest I take with a pinch of salt.

Sep 24 10 03:42 am Link

Photographer

Sungoddess Studios

Posts: 5169

Atlantic Highlands, New Jersey, US

The best thing about youtube is a bunch of "experts" are teaching other non experts how to do something.
basically, the comedy channel on the computer.

so if you are looking for something to watch on you tube start here. 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RyasBBoQqCA

Sep 24 10 03:53 am Link

Makeup Artist

Leanne Harpin

Posts: 188

New Haven, Connecticut, US

Some of my favorite guru's are Nireyna, her hand is as precise as a diamond cutter's.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8RcKeNfDlXc

Goldiestarling, love her masks!
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UacssCMRr3I

Why Dia98131 doesn't have more views is beyond me.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4M3Zu0flxFU

Sep 24 10 04:56 am Link

Model

Alice Darcy

Posts: 26

Claymont, Delaware, US

Love Koren and Petrilude, and also Beatfacehoney. I know her personally and she's done my makeup on a few occasions... amazing.

Sep 24 10 03:24 pm Link

Makeup Artist

Leza1121

Posts: 350

New York, New York, US

SHDavies wrote:
Wayne Goss (www.youtube.com/user/gossmakeupartist) is another who does tutorials on people who aren't young 20 somethings who don't need makeup.

I also trust his recommendations 100% as he usually buys his own stuff and on the rare occasion    he is given something he usually slates it!

But on the whole I do have to agree with the OP, I only watch about 4 youtube channels (pixiwoo, petrilude, gossmakeupartist, lisaeldridgedotcom) and the rest I take with a pinch of salt.

These are my favorites too. I'm also adding EnKore and BeatFaceHoney to the list. as well. Another U-Tuber I like is Goldiestarling. She's an artist (illustrator I think), but her makeup applications and characters recreations (like Yoda) are very good.

Sep 24 10 07:05 pm Link

Makeup Artist

Davis W

Posts: 1272

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Blanche Babcock

Petrilude is a very good looking, almost effeminate guy. Blanche is just a plain dude who does drag well. TBH, I think Blanche has more skill. Its easy to be pretty with a face like Petrilude. Blanche does makeup for the "rest of us".

http://www.youtube.com/user/BlancheBabcock

Pixiwoo are great, but again they fall into the "makeup on my own face" trap.

Dia ..above,, thats wonderful stuff. Right up there with Roshar's artistic level.

Sep 25 10 02:25 pm Link

Model

Meghan Gerhart

Posts: 901

Lethbridge, Alberta, Canada

Ohh! I'm totally subscribing to gossmakeupartist!
I'll agree with everyone else...my must watches are:
Pixiwoo
Lisa Eldritch
Petrilude
Goldiestarling (she's sooo underrated!!)

Sep 25 10 05:05 pm Link

Makeup Artist

Pixi_Sam

Posts: 219

London, England, United Kingdom

Thanks for mentioning us. It's great that anyone watches our videos, let alone other make-up artists.

Sep 26 10 06:25 am Link

Makeup Artist

Davis W

Posts: 1272

Toronto, Ontario, Canada

I send an average of 20 women to your site each week Sam. Thank you for your great work.

Sep 26 10 03:41 pm Link

Model

Lauren-Kay

Posts: 62

Saint Charles, Missouri, US

Kandee Johnson's channel is addicting!  Yes, she is gorgeous to start, but her tips can apply to anyone..

Sep 28 10 08:24 pm Link

Makeup Artist

Fillabula

Posts: 149

Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada

I'm actually starting up a youtube makeup channel, only mine is a different perspective. I'm doing parodies of popular culture and using makeup - big things like prosthetics and bodypaint - in my videos. I want to make people laugh, and amaze them with realistic characters.

My first sort of one I did a bodypaint of a witch elf from warhammer (a really geeky game), it had prosthetic ears and all, and then we went downtown at 3am and recorded people's reactions. My friend filmed it and got more footage of the sidewalk than he did of my elf... but there you go. I went through the footage and salvaged what I could then put together a little video of our adventure, and stuck it up on youtube.

We had these random drunk guys outside mcdonalds actually start bowing to us, and chanting "we are not worthy!". I almost pissed myself laughing. And this other guy started rapping, and there was a guy bragging about having just gotten out of california state penetentary. Also some cops did a u-turn on the street to see what was up, they were super curious. And then some guy offered my elf a drag of his joint, and then an SUV full of drunks drove past and slowed down, opened their windows, chanted and cat-called, and turned their music up as they drove off. Bloody hilarious but the film quality could be better.

I've got a few things on the drawing board, but basically they are all in good fun and all involve really complicated makeup.

Sep 28 10 10:10 pm Link