In 2020, ‘influencer’ is something of a dirty word. Unsurprising, given that the worst of them scam their followers, make extremely questionable content, and are often involved in endless petty squabbles.
In the world of beauty, influencers are the new rockstars. The royal family includes the likes of James Charles, NikkieTutorials, Jaclyn Hill, and Jackie Aina – all boasting millions of adoring fans, who want to be just like them when they grow up. With the number of influencers growing so rapidly though, the state of the industry today is very different to when these OG names first started out. Feuds have become an easy selling tool rather than genuine personality and the dizzying wealth of the top dogs takes your fave YouTuber from your online BFF to a rich stranger giving you a tour of their $14.6m mansion.
At the end of last year, James Charles announced that he would be launching a YouTube series entitled Instant Influencer, to find the next big name in beauty. “Being a superstar influencer takes a whole lot more than just blending eyeshadow,” he said at the time; cue a giant eye roll from everyone, this writer included. Remember when he called for better influencer representation after attending the 2019 Met Ball? Yet, the show – that debuted its first episode last Friday – is proving that influencing successfully might be harder than we thought.
In the first episode we are introduced to