Last week, I started to talk about the makeup bubble that’s encased YouTube in the form of hundreds of videos on makeup hauls, tutorials on “looks,” best/worst makeup buys, etc. I also brought up the fact that the words “guru” and “makeup artist” have been carelessly slapped on a lot of YouTubers, who have done mainly tutorial videos on themselves rather than others. There are exceptions, of course, but they make up a small number.
More likely than not, if I search for a makeup tutorial on YouTube, the video will feature a “beauty guru” that demonstrates how to achieve a certain look using themselves as a model instead of another person. And I’ll be brutally honest: I’m not impressed. They leave me wanting for the days when I grew up watching Ricky Reyes showcase his hairstylist skills on TV. You could give him any length or type of hair and he’d somehow make it work.
Granted, Ricky Reyes spent years honing his skill set as a hairstylist and on people of varying hair types. I don’t know how long prominent YouTube makeup “gurus” have been doing makeup and if they’ve ever done makeup on others (Lisa Eldridge and NikkieTutorials are the only ones I’ve seen), so comparing the two would seem unfair, right?
Nope. If people refer to you as a “beauty guru,” you better have the skill set to back that shit up.
Am I saying that the majority of YouTube makeup tutorials are made by talentless hacks? No. Like I’ve said before – I don’t question their ability to apply makeup in general because they make it look easy.
I do, however, question the fact that the most-viewed YouTube beauty vloggers are referred to as “gurus” when they have yet to prove that they’ve earned the title by applying makeup on strangers, not lovers / friends / relatives. I want to see how they would apply makeup on hooded, almond, deep-set, monolid, oily eyelids or dry, combo, or oily skin. How about people with psoriasis, vitiligo, eczema? Or those who have a lot of acne?
It would be nice to see explanations as to why some colors are more flattering on warmer or cooler skin tones or why some eyeshadow shades don’t really go together, even if there are supposedly “no rules” when it comes to make up. Let’s face it: these rules aren’t meant to suppress creativity – they’re there because they’ve been proven to flatter facial features. I want to know what goes through their mind when they have to work on a face that isn’t their own.
I mentioned Ricky Reyes because he used to have his own show “Beauty School” (or “Beauty School Plus.” I literally can’t remember which one I watched, which goes to show how ancient I am ^ ^;), there wasn’t a moment when he isn’t styling that he’s explaining why he’s doing it and why it works. To me, THAT is the core of a tutorial – you demonstrate not only the method, but the madness to it as well.
I’d like to see YouTube makeup tutorials that explain why some products are more suitable to pull off certain looks, not how many looks you can do with an eyeshadow palette. Why limit yourself to what one palette can do if it takes more to pull off a certain style? Now, I’m not suggesting that people get all the makeup palettes that are out there and experiment – makeup isn’t cheap, after all.
More and more people are creating YouTube channels in the hopes of becoming the next Michelle Phan or Jacklyn Hill or Manny Gutierrez – the free makeup from companies, the fans, the viewership… it’s dreamy, I’ll admit. Who wouldn’t want that?
But a bubble can only expand so much before it bursts.
Stay blooming, my Beautiful Blossoms!