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The undying nostalgia for the first ever beauty videos

Before Youtube became an advertising machine

The undying nostalgia for the first ever beauty videos Before Youtube became an advertising machine

Zoella, Michelle Pham, Bethany Mota... do these names evoke a wave of nostalgia for you? It seems that TikTok is in the process of (re)discovering the videos of these beauty content pioneers. The account @forevernostalgiaa compiles vlogs from beauty YouTubers of the 2010s, such as the famous "Morning routine" or the "3mins makeup challenge," and these videos accumulate quite an impressive number of views, reaching up to 11 million views. The audience could be a mix of Millennials nostalgic for the videos they watched when they were younger and Gen Z, curious about a time when influencer marketing culture didn't yet exist. One might believe that we're witnessing a collective mourning for a time when YouTube was a simple platform not saturated with product placements at every turn. Because diving back into these videos is a bit like opening a time capsule, a return to an era when product recommendations came from a friend sitting in her room, sharing her favorites without commercial motives. Back then, the video platform hadn't yet been overrun by advertisements. While some ads already existed from 2007, they were far from being as intrusive and omnipresent as they are today. Videos were often shot with a simple camera and edited quickly, without excessive pursuit of perfection. "Influencer" wasn't yet a profession; the first beauty gurus were just students, employees, ordinary people creating content for fun.

@forevernostalgiaa 10 years later and i still havent been #coachella #mylifeaseva #oldyoutube #nostalgia #2014 #tumblr #lanadelrey #2015 original sound - ˚₊‧꒰აForeverNostalgia໒꒱ ‧₊˚

Over the years, with the growing success of content creators, brands began to see YouTube as a fertile ground to promote their products. The influencers, once simple passionate amateurs, have become extremely lucrative commercial partners, as we know them today. Since then, the platform has transformed into a powerful advertising machine where profit is the primary driving force. Naturally, the influencer profession has completely transformed. Additionally, greed, the pursuit of views, the constantly changing algorithm, have created an environment where drama between creators is constant, leaving little room for courtesy and morality. The beauty world has drastically shifted from simple DIY videos by a friend to sophisticated overproduction where one settles scores with another. Bretman Rock, an American OG influencer who has openly expressed not wanting to be associated with beauty influencers anymore, has stated: "Since when did the beauty community become so ugly?" Unfortunately, it's impossible to turn back time and return to YouTube's humble beginnings. However, the OG videos are still there to comfort us.