Although makeup has been around for thousands of years, recently, social media has had a great influence on makeup and makeup advertising. Social media has exemplified the phenomenon that is makeup and makeup artistry through tutorials, reviews, hauls and celebrity endorsements. Makeup artists and beauty gurus have become more or less celebrities through social media, and many now have careers solely based off of their social media influence.

Social media has enhanced the artistic aspect of makeup. What was once mainly a resource for cosmetic enhancement, has now become a creative outlet for many people. Makeup artistry has recently been transformed due to phenomenons such as YouTube and other forms of social media, as well as celebrities and celebrity sponsorships.

Many makeup artists have found stardom and made careers from posting videos on YouTube and other forms of social media. Popular beauty gurus and makeup artists have millions of subscribers and get millions of views on each video posted. Because of this, many YouTubers have had success with their own brands and collaborations on products with already popular brands. Jeffree Star, a YouTuber who first got his success from the music industry, recently transformed his YouTube channel from music to a makeup channel. His YouTube success led to the creation of his own brand: Jeffree Star Cosmetics. His brand is what is known as an “indie brand,”  which basically means his brand is independent from any major corporations. Although Jeffree’s brand is smaller scale, he has had major success due to his bold and bright liquid lipstick colors, along with the recent additions of an eyeshadow palette and highlighters – all of which have sold out during their launches.

Jeffree is able to promote his brand on YouTube and his other social media accounts, which has led to his very successful career. Like Jeffree, YouTuber Huda Heidik, known on social media as Huda Beauty, has had recent success with the launch of her brand at Sephora. Sephora is the largest and most popular makeup corporation, carrying over a hundred different brands. Huda recently launched her own brand consisting of a liquid lipstick line, false eyelashes and most recently an eyeshadow palette. All of which is now carried at Sephora. She is able to promote her brand on her YouTube channel and her 15 million Instagram followers. Her YouTube success and internet fame has allowed her to start her own brand which is now carried at the most popular makeup corporation.

Many other YouTubers have collaborated with already popular brands to create their own palettes or product lines. These collaborations help to promote both the cosmetics brand to the YouTuber’s subscribers, and it promotes the YouTuber via the brand’s fans. These collaborations are often very successful because of the promotional power of the YouTubers on social media. Notable collaborations are Jaclyn Hill’s champagne collection with Becca Cosmetics, Carli Bybel’s palette with BH Cosmetics and NikkieTutorials’ Too Faced The Power of Makeup.

YouTubers are also often sponsored by brands, meaning companies will pay for YouTubers to use and promote their products in videos. Often times, these brands require the YouTuber to give a positive review of their product in order to get paid. Some brands will send YouTubers their products before the launch to review for their subscribers. However, these types of videos are not sponsored, and therefore, the YouTubers are free to give their true opinions on a product. There has been a lot of criticism towards YouTubers who have sponsored or scripted videos and fans often consider sponsored YouTubers as sell outs. The fans that are watching makeup videos want to hear the YouTuber’s true opinion, rather than a promotional review. Popular YouTubers, such as Zoella and Michelle Phan, have continuously been critiqued for their sponsored videos. However, other YouTubers such as Jaclyn Hill and Jeffree Star promise their subscribers to always give their truthful opinion on products.

These sponsorships also transfer to YouTuber’s other forms of social media. If a YouTuber has a lot of followers on Instagram, companies will pay for them to post pictures endorsing their products. This is seen not only with YouTubers but many celebrities and models as well. Perhaps, the most notable and most criticized social media influencer currently is Kylie Jenner. Kylie Jenner is known for her promotional Instagram posts, making $4 million off of her social media posts in the last year. Since she has such a dedicated following, brands will pay her hundreds of thousands of dollars per post in hopes that her fans will want what she has.

Overall, social media has completely changed how consumers buy makeup and beauty products. Beauty gurus and YouTubers have increasing influence over consumers, specifically their subscribers and followers. Because of this, more and more companies are sponsoring YouTubers and celebrities to spread positive reviews of their products.