4) Beauty YouTube Videos – A Subgenere of YouTube Videos


As Vivian and Jordan talked about in their blog posts, I am writing my Digital Genre Wiki Entry on something that interests me – Beauty YouTube videos. When I started watching videos by the likes of Jaclyn Hill, emilynoel83, and Jessica Braun, I was in high school and just learning about beauty and makeup. Beauty videos became a part of my everyday; I would watch these videos as I was getting ready, before I started on my homework, and before I went to bed. I find, as a digital genre, that beauty videos are often looked over as fake or superficial, and not something worth taking a closer look at.

I found that doing research on this topic was not easy at all. Luckily I had prior research on the topic of beauty videos on YouTube from working on my thesis, but I did not find a lot of information about the genre itself. These videos are usually hosted by “beauty gurus” who have established their credibility with makeup and beauty on their channel (García-Rapp, 120). These beauty videos “specifically share tips and educate viewers about beauty…[and] due to the nature of the topic, most YouTube beauty gurus are females” (Choi, 82). Some of the markers of these videos include showing close ups of different makeup products and the beauty gurus giving their opinions on said products.

The audience of this genre is pretty self explanatory – those interested in makeup, young to old, female or male. The kairos/exigence, or perfect circumstances for a response for beauty YouTube videos, is YouTube itself and the desire for a wide variety of content. Like I imagine for blogs, people wanted specific information about certain topics, including beauty and makeup, and some people wanted to share their skills on the site as well.

The content of this genre is a little wider than some genres/subgenres. Beauty YouTube videos have different subgenera within itself, from makeup tutorials to products reviews and many other video topics. Kristen Forbes in Examining the Beauty Industry’s Use of Social Influencer, talks about the five characteristics of beauty YouTube videos: Reliability, Knowledge, Helpfulness, Confidence, and Articulation (Forbes, 80).  These characteristic make beauty YouTube videos stand apart from the others, and give beauty YouTubers a standard to work against when they are creating content for their channels.

Works Cited:

Choi, Grace Y.1, grace.choi@mail.missouri.edu and Elizabeth1 Behm-Morawitz. “Giving a New Makeover to STEAM: Establishing Youtube Beauty Gurus as Digital Literacy Educators through Messages and Effects on Viewers.” Computers in Human Behavior, vol. 73, Aug. 2017, pp. 80-91. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1016/j.chb.2017.03.034.

Florencia García-Rapp (2017) Popularity markers on YouTube’s attention economy: the case of Bubzbeauty, Celebrity Studies, 8:2, 228-245, DOI: 10.1080/19392397.2016.1242430

Forbes, Kristen. “Examining the Beauty Industry’s Use of Social Influencers.” Elon Journal of Undergraduate Research in Communications, vol. 7, no. 2, 2016, pp. 78–87., www.elon.edu/docs/e-web/academics/communications/research/vol7no2/08_Kristen_Forbes.pdf

García-Rapp, Florencia. “’Come Join and Let’s BOND’: Authenticity and Legitimacy Building on YouTube’s Beauty Community.” Journal of Media Practice, vol. 18, no. 2/3, Jul-Nov2017, pp.120-137. EBSCOhost, doi:10.1080/14682753.2017.1274693