As an audience, the beauty bloggers and YouTube gurus we follow on sites such as Instagram, Facebook and Twitter are always posting about new product launches, collaborations they are a part of, trips they have been sent on as part of a PR package, and new looks they have created. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, check out Desi Perkins’ Bora Bora vlog, from her trip with tarte.
On average, the beauty bloggers have around 2 million followers on each platform alone with some followings being much more and some a bit less. However, this does not make them any less influential. Together as a team, they are a force to be reckoned with.
Many followers tend to be females, as the beauty world was obviously famously aimed at the female gender to begin with. Yet more and more males find themselves becoming involved within the beauty community and this is a triumph for not only gender but boys in general, as makeup really shouldn’t be something we consider as gender specific.
Through the platform of social media, the beauty bloggers and YouTube gurus are able to remind followers and subscribers of their videos, collaborations, sponsorships and successes. A typical teen girl may follow anywhere from 1 beauty tycoon to ten, which ultimately may make them feel overwhelmed with how much they are being subject to. This alone is enough to pile on the pressure, let alone the amount of stress young people are put under to conform to the idea of perfectionism. Bloggers have affiliate codes and make money off the clicks, views and adverts included in and around their posts, and fans of these bloggers may feel encouraged to support their bloggers’ ventures in a way that makes them spend all their money, and also feel under pressure to look like their favourite beauty guru at the same time. While many beauty bloggers do include “real life” moments and personal struggles (when applicable) on their YouTube channels, a lot of their content is of course beauty and makeup related. They do show that of course, they aren’t perfect -WHO IS?!- but is this enough to avoid the unwanted inner struggle and pressure of being beautiful within the beauty world?
Although many of the gurus do feature themselves without makeup on during their videos, the majority of the time they are fully done up and are teaching young individuals how to create their looks. As they are a source of inspiration for their young audiences, this may be making people feel like they need to stay in touch with the latest makeup trends, and put pressure on people to keep buying the same expensive products that a lot of the gurus get sent through promotion and don’t even buy themselves. This coupled with the idea of the constant strive for perfection may again make audience members and subscribers feel inadequate compared to their favourite beauty bloggers or YouTube guru.
My point is, that even though it is fun to see what the trends are and learn how to create new looks from our impressive creative make-up counter-parts, it is also important to understand that we don’t need to look exactly like them to be beautiful and accepted as a “beautiful” person.
I’m not saying that following beauty bloggers and gurus is a bad thing, I do it myself. It’s fun! And obviously not every audience member will feel pressure to act a certain way or buy a certain product. However, it would make a difference if people realised that makeup isn’t everything. And the idea of “beauty” is something that comes from within just as much as what you look like.