A pro explains why you can’t truly learn makeup from YouTube tutorials
Whether you’re a beauty beginner or a seasoned Sephora veteran looking to master a new technique, chances are you’ve turned to YouTube tutorials when you want to learn something – whether it’s how to contour or how to apply a loose glitter eyeliner.
But if you’ve gotten all of your makeup knowledge from YouTube, there’s a good chance you’re missing out on some key info and that you don’t know what really works best for your face.
Take it from Ashley Strong, a makeup artist whose biggest pet peeve while working at MAC was dealing with women who had gotten all their beauty knowledge from YouTube.
“I kinda got hit with a dose of reality of how misleading YouTube is when I worked at the MAC counter,” she tells Galore. “I think a lot of the gurus have a lack of training, but the main thing it doesn’t teach is individuality.”
She has a good point. After all, how can you guarantee that the makeup look (and products) that work for a certain beauty blogger will also work for your face and skin type?
“I think watching any of those YouTube videos are going to mislead you,” she says. “It’s not that the YouTuber isn’t doing what’s good for their skin, I just feel like every single ‘YouTube customer’ had to be retrained when they came to me… Every single person has a different skincare routine or foundation routine. If you go on social media and watch a video, not all of that stuff is going to work for you.”
So what exactly were Ashley’s customers doing wrong after learning from YouTube?
Ashley said some of the most frequently made mistakes included not applying foundation correctly – causing it to look cakey or clogging pores. She also said lots of girls had “learned” how to do eyeshadow, but were blending it incorrectly for their eye shape and using the wrong tools.
Lastly – and this is a big one – Ashley constantly saw girls who were putting product in the wrong place, such as contour and highlight in the wrong parts of their face, causing an undesirable bone structure illusion.
After all, it’s hard to copy an influencer with a totally different face shape than you and know exactly where to place a product on your own face, not to mention if that’s even the right technique for someone with your features.
“I think that somewhere along the line we started doing the same type of makeup, which goes against absolutely everything I’ve learned as a makeup artist,” says Ashley. “Makeup is supposed to be tailored and specific to you and your features and your lifestyle. [Kylie Jenner is] a beautiful girl, but you’re also really gorgeous too.”
She makes a good point. Haven’t you noticed that some of your BFFs have started looking like your other friends? And not because they have similar features, but simply because they do the exact same type of makeup.
“It’s like manipulating your features so they’re all ‘desirable features,’ which is the big eyes, the small nose, and the big lips. That message is damaging and detrimental,” says Ashley.
So what’s a beauty noob to do if they don’t know the first thing about makeup and want to learn? Should they not turn to YouTube as a free and easy to use resource?
“It’s not necessarily that you can’t learn from YouTube, but you have to be aware of your mentality,” says Ashley.”It’s more about understanding that you’re an individual and that yes, YouTubers can guide you and perhaps you have things you can relate to on that girl, but you’re a different person.”
Ashley recommends finding vloggers who look similar to you, are relatable to you (eg: also only have 15 minutes to do their makeup in the morning before work), have similar skin issues as you, etc. But she says the first step should always be going in for a consultation.
“The only way you’re gonna be able to [follow the right girls] is if you’re aware of your own [skin type],” she says. “The first step should be to go into a makeup counter and have them analyze your skin and give you a diagnosis so you know what category you’re in, like if you have oily skin or dry skin or need to contour on your cheekbone or if you don’t.”
After going in for a consultation, Ashley says to feel free to YouTube tutorial your little life away. The good news is that if you’re still not keen on beating your face for 45 minutes, Ashley says natural lewks are definitely the way makeup trends are heading this summer. So, if you want to sleep in and leave the house sans anything but mascara, you’re not lazy – you’re trendy!