So You Want To Be A Beauty Vlogger? 5 Things To Know First

by Stephanie Montes

It’s no secret many beauty bloggers have made major names for themselves (and often also small fortunes) off their bubbly personalities, a webcam and a whole lot of makeup. Be honest, have you ever thought about sitting in front of a computer and teaching young girls how to get the perfect cat eye or achieve killer contour? If you have, you should know there is actually a lot that goes into it. We talked to one of the original vloggers, Michelle Phan–whose rise to fame began with YouTube tutorials–to get tips on how to be the next big thing in the world of beauty. Lights, camera…beauty!

Build A Beauty Kit (Even If You're On A Budget)

“When I started in 2007, no one knew what a beauty vlogger was. It was really hard for me to get beauty products from brands because it seemed sketchy to be putting it on YouTube. I was also a college student–and worse off, an art student–so I didn’t have any money. I busted my butt waiting tables and was able to save a little money and buy products once a month. I would go online and find makeup that was discounted and do my best to be savvy about finding affordable, high-quality products.

Back then it was difficult to find products that were affordable and of good quality, but that’s changing now. For example, Colourpop makes some of my favorite eye shadows–they’re creamy and easy to blend and are only $5. Their products are so great and are in an affordable price range–this is a real testament to how the market is changing.”

Photo: @ipsy

Do Your Research

“Being one of the first vloggers and posting religiously allowed me to build a brand when it was still a new concept. If you're first getting into vlogging, you need to do research—find other vloggers that inspire you and experiment with what you like. Be fearless and don’t be afraid to make mistakes.”

Photo: @ipsy

Be Your Own Unique You

“Before blogging was a thing, we had one authority: print magazines, which dictated what fashion and beauty was—but in the digital world that’s not the case. Every vlogger has a different style, face shape and body type, which is a variety you don't always see in magazines. Most readers don't relate to a model. People want to find a unique voice they can relate to. I don't believe there is a one-size-fits-all beauty and style type.”

Photo: @emcosmetics

Don’t Give Up

“This isn’t something that I was taught–I was intuitively following my gut instinct as a new entrepreneur, and in 8 years I learned a lot. If there was anything that made me want to quit during this time, it was dealing with untrustworthy people. I got to know Hollywood and how the industry worked. Some people had ulterior motives, which eventually pushed me to find an alternative route.

If I never pursued vlogging I imagine I would still be doing something creative. I was adamant about becoming a creative director or being a children’s book illustrator. I know I would have been doing something creative, and I would have loved my job.”

Photo: @emcosmetics

Find A Mentor

"Ipsy is an online beauty community I founded in 2011 for beauty lovers to discover new beauty products and share tips. We launched a space in Los Angeles this month called Ipsy Open Studios where beauty artists and content creators can take part in our mentorship program and utilize our tools and resources. We’re giving talented individuals the opportunity to create high-quality videos and develop new technology, tools and even apps. Aspiring beauty creators fill out an application on our website and we evaluate their profile and/or content pitches–the best part is you don't have to currently have a social-media presence to be considered. If we like their ideas, we have them come into the studio and get started on filming. We just want to help bring great ideas to life–it’s that simple. These videos are not Ipsy branded, and it all goes on their own channel.

The best part is they have 100-percent control and can use any products they want. I started beauty vlogging on YouTube 8 years ago, and I wish I had something like this when I was starting out. It’s really exciting that I can pass on everything I’ve learned and experienced to the next generation of beauty vloggers.”

Photo of ipsy Open Studios: Courtesy