And it's a lot.
There’s no better way to describe what’s going on in the YouTube beauty community right now other than calling it a straight out shit show.
During the last couple of weeks, the number of drama and “my truth” videos that have been circulating throughout the community is bad enough to have anyone shook. I’d personally like to stop the train and get off now, thanks.
Some of our favourite beauty influencers have been uploading videos talking about their “truth” or experiences that they’ve had being a member of the community and also dealing with companies and brands. From Marlena of Makeup Geek to Tati Westbrook and, most recently, Jaclyn Hill, the tea has most definitely been spilled and we honestly don’t know who or what to believe.
Me trying to find a video on my youtube sub feed that isn’t something to do with the drama in the beauty community pic.twitter.com/FgGTLxpVjp
— rosijaypierce 🐝 (@rosijaypierce) September 1, 2018
For me personally, Jaclyn Hill’s “Let’s Talk…” video was the most highly anticipated. She’s been the subject of an awful lot of scrutiny over the last couple of years, particularly due to fans thinking the money and fame have gone straight to her head, and also because of her incessant affiliation to controversial makeup brand Morphe.
The video came after viewers showed outrage at Jaclyn “shoving Morphe down [their] throats” when she uploaded two Morphe videos consecutively, and also after the beauty rumour mill started churning out some questionable JH stories.
Jaclyn opens the 44 minute long video saying: “I just want to be so honest with you and talk to you about what has been going on recently in my career, and just address some things that I think I owe you guys, and that you deserve to hear.”
The first issue she addressed was her latest Vault collaboration with Morphe that was postponed due to negative performance reviews. She acknowledged the inconsistencies in the eyeshadow palette collection saying: “People are getting palettes that are not having good pigmentation, not swatching well. First of all, let me just say that this news broke my heart. It does not matter what I feel, what matters is that you guys are spending money on a palette and it should be exactly what I say, and what Morphe says, it should be what we promise.”
Jaclyn also acknowledged that she is aware that she has been “shoving Morphe down [people’s] throats” and apologised to her viewers for doing so.
2 more days until The Vault Launches!!! 8.14 @ 8AM PST / 11AM EST Online & In-Store. In celebration we are giving away 20 Vault PR packages in the super glam box! I will be selecting 10 winners from this post, and @morphebrushes will be selecting 10 from theirs🎉 RULES: 💎 Follow @JaclynHill & @MorpheBrushes on IG 💎 Like this post 💎 Tag 2 friends The giveaway ends Monday 8.13 at 9 AM PST. Morphe will reach out to all 20 winners, via DM, by 5 PM PST on Monday 8.13 Good luck! ✨ #MorpheXJaclynHill
The next thing Jaclyn moves on to discuss is a video posted by the owner of Makeup Geek Marlena Stell in which she talks about her brand’s struggles due to not being able to pay YouTuber’s “massive amounts of money” to support them. In her video, Marlena claimed that she was asked to pay an influencer $60,000 per video, a fee that her company simply couldn’t afford.
This statement, of course, led viewers to speculate that the influencer charging $60,000 per video was Jaclyn Hill. Addressing the rumours, Jaclyn said “yeah, $60,000 is a pretty normal price for influencers to charge, I’m just being real.”
“I’ve never charged that, I’ve never taken a dollar from anybody outside of my earned commission. Me talking about it and giving you a code, or a link, that is the only way I’ve earned my money, and then my products and my [YouTube] views.”
She later went on to say: “I sat at a table with a bunch of influencers last year and everyone was talking about sponsorships and some of that table told me ‘I get $70,000 just to mention a product'”.
She also admitted that she was offered two separate one million dollar contracts, from two separate beauty brands, but ultimately turned them down as they weren’t right for her.
In the video Jaclyn also discusses her planned collaboration with Makeup Geek, explaining to viewers that the collaboration didn’t go ahead due to business and timing issues rather that Jaclyn’s alleged disloyalty and flakiness.
So what Jaclyn is basically saying is that a YouTuber can make thousands of money from simply mentioning a product in their video for 30 seconds. However, although that seems extreme to normal people like you and I, Jaclyn reminds her viewers that influencers have the ability to make cosmetic brands a ridiculous amount of money.
“If you’re charging $100,000 for a video but you’re making that company a million dollars because of your video, that’s 10%. It’s a business.”
Whether we believe her 100% or not, we can admit Jaclyn is one hell of a business woman.
Watch the full video here.