Wifi Witch: The Make-up Tutorials You Haven’t Seen On TV

This is “Wifi Witch”—a new series where I, Chelsea Beeler, talk about all things Internet. If it’s a trend, I can talk about it—or at least pretend like I know what I’m talking about. See something absurd online? Send it my way via nyulocaleditor@gmail.com.  

Meet Tori Locklear (above), the most “relevant” make-up tutorial star (if you can even call her that) on the Internet/your taxi TV/Ellen today. That’s right. This middle schooler (who is billed as a comedian on Facebook) was on Ellen and appears in the back of hundreds of cabs because she burnt her hair with a curling iron and put it on the Internet.

Does anyone else think this is completely crazy? I mean, I feel like I grew up with the Internet as much as anyone else, but it never occurred to me to upload self-deprecating videos to the web. I was, however, raised in a household where “opening a digital window into our home” was frowned upon, but the point I’d like to make is that kids are exploiting themselves via YouTube because they don’t know how to cope with a small patch of shorter hair and it’s ruining an art form that is completely overlooked.

 

In case you weren’t aware, make-up tutorials are a pretty big deal on YouTube because every woman (okay not every woman, but a good amount) is, at some point in her life, interested in how to achieve that smoky eye look or that “barely there” foundation technique. Unfortunately, however, tutorialists like Tori merely scratch the surface of this online make-up world, with base jokes that reflect poorly on the talented and intriguing women (and maybe men) who don’t pander to brain dead audiences’ derivation of pleasure from suffering. Take Michelle Phan for example. Unlike Tori, who burnt her hair off and instead of being embarrassed was like, “Look! I can laugh at myself!,” Ms. Phan has uploaded over 200 make-up/style videos to YouTube, many of which have accumulated several million views. Watch how Michelle turn herself into Angelina Jolie. Why? Well, “Why not?!,” she says so sweetly around the 5:55 minute mark of her video.

In the same vein as the celebrity look-alike make-up tutorials there’s Promise Tamang Phan who transformed herself into a spitting image of Drake and is self-described as a “purely self taught” make- up artist. What?! This video was actually in the media about a year ago when The Huffington Post covered it, but has only been viewed around 2 million times to Tori Locklear’s 21 million. Maybe it’s wrong for me to say that a 3:30 minute video where an Asian woman uses make-up that can be bought at a drug store to transform herself into Drake is more impressive and much funnier/interesting than one where some girl burns her hair. I’m just saying, there’s funnier shit on the Internet and in the make-up tutorial world than this.

Maybe you’re not interested in the underbelly of the make-up tutorial world, but if you are and you’re looking for humor I suggest watching the videos of Gloria Shuri Nava. Ms. Nava, a.k.a. glowpinkstah approaches tutorials from a significantly more comical angle than Michelle Phan and Promise Tamang Phan. Unlike her more, uh, serious counterparts, Gloria chooses to emulate subjects like a person from Pandora (that fictional place from Avatar) or a character from Human Centipede. This is real humor, not some basic bullshit some insecure kid felt the need to post on the Internet. I don’t want to seem like I’m attacking Tori Locklear, but I guess in a way I am, but only because the Internet—and more specifically YouTube—is an amazing tool she has used for (relatively boring) evil.

It might seem ridiculous to talk about make-up tutorials as I just have, but I think this art form deserves more attention than it has received. As I said, these women are beautiful and talented and use make-up to not only show off their skills, but to teach viewers something they want to learn. Although I’ve picked up a few tricks from the “make-up tutorial k-holes” I’ve entered, I mostly watch because I am so fascinated with these ladies’ abilities to transform themselves completely. Make-up tutorials are a wonderful thing, which Internet “stars,” Tori Locklear, are unfortunately fucking up.



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