11 Key Takeaways from Youtube’s First-Ever Beauty Festival

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For the first time ever, Youtube brought together beauty pros, content creators,and a few of our favorite celebs for its inaugural Youtube Beauty Festival (aka #BeautyFest). The virtual event, which took place on May 14th, was hosted by the platform’s very own head of fashion and beauty, Derek Blasberg.

The festival was a celebration of all things beauty, where conversations about skincare routines were just as frequent as more in-depth discussions about diversity in the beauty industry. Not to mention, there were plenty of beauty tutorials, hair challenges, gadget reviews, and founder as well as creator panels for attendees to experience. Best of all, so many widely known beauty figures were in attendance including Jen Atkin, Pharrell Williams, Gwyneth Paltrow, Nancy Twine, Nabela Noor, and Addison Rae, dishing out their perspectives on a variety of industry-specific topics.

If you weren’t able to tune in to the event, feel free to watch it here or read on below for some of the best moments from the festival.

Addison Rae, @addisonraee

Co-Founder of Item Beauty and TikTok Star

On her love of makeup: “My mom was a makeup artist when I was little so that always inspired me to get into makeup and then I grew up in competitive dance, so I always had to do my makeup. Even at a young age, I was wearing bright red lipstick at competitions. I feel like just growing up around that, I just always loved makeup.”

Chanel Tyler, @buymechanel

Head of Beauty Creators at Youtube

On the Black Lives Matter movement’s impact on beauty consumer behavior: “We have this whole new consumer consciousness where people aren’t just looking to brands to be cruelty-free and not be made with any toxic ingredients and be organic. They’re looking to see what the brand values. Where do they show up and how do they show up in the moments that are really important to me or the people that I care about.”

Melissa Butler, @melissarbutler

Founder of The Lip Bar

On her hopes for the future of the beauty industry: “I think my big, hair, scary goal is that one day we’re in a position to not necessarily have to talk about Black beauty or Brown beauty. That, it’s just the standard of beauty. It reminds me of the ethnic hair care aisle. At the end of the day, I don’t think about Black beauty. I just think about how I want to wake up and look like my best self and I want to have the offerings that will work for my skin tone. I don’t necessarily want to be regulated into a particular part of the beauty aisle or beauty counter in order to be seen. I think that being a Black woman in beauty means that we are breaking the barriers that say Black beauty is beauty.”

Gwyneth Paltrow, @gwynethpaltrow

Founder & CEO of Goop and Actress

On her best beauty trick: “I really believe in great skin as the foundation for beauty. We have this moisturizer at Goop. It’s called Glow Lotion and it’s really nice. I don’t wear a lot of foundation or anything and it gives you a really nice hydrated look.”

Amanda Johnson, @prettypensive

Co-Founder of Mented Cosmetics

On the beauty industry responding authentically to the Black Lives Matter movement: “I think to the ones that have been authentic, there have been several retailers who took the 15 Percent Pledge and we are in real time seeing that. We are seeing them diversifying in real time, all across the store. That’s the kind of beacon of hope that we should all hold onto. I fundamentally believe that more choice is always going to be better for the consumer and the industry, no matter what the  founder looks like. So, I do think there has been some authentic change but also, indie brands have been the ones pushing diversity, inclusion, and authenticity more than anyone else.”

Nancy Twine, @nancytwine

Founder & CEO of Briogeo

On the catalyst for launching Briogeo: “I thought about the times in my life when I was most happiest and one of those times was the time that I spent growing up with my mom. My mom was a chemist and physician and we used to make a lot of our own beauty products at home, using ingredients that we would source from the health food store. I thought that this was the perfect time for me to actually take that childhood legacy and turn it into something bigger which ultimately became the catalyst in me jumping ship at Goldman Sach and starting Briogeo.”

Nabela Noor, @nabela

Beauty Content Creator and Founder & CEO of Zeba and Noor House

On hate towards the AAPI community: “Seeing history repeat itself in this way — in so many ways — after the tragedy, it’s who do we blame? And, that’s what I’m saying when I say history repeating itself. This idea that when tragedy occurs and you’re not white, then we have to blame the entire community. And that’s toxic and scary. I’m very thankful that we have this platform now where we are all online and we can speak up for our community.”

Diarrha N’Diaye-Mbaye, @diarrhaxo

Founder of Ami Colé

On why she’s creating a melanin-focused makeup brand: “I wanted Black women specifically to want to see themselves. I realized over the years that wearing less makeup and focusing on skincare made me feel more confident. Being able to look into the mirror and not have to transform to walk out of the house to feel beautiful. Not having to compromise on the packaging, the experience, the ingredients — all of which I thought through. Hopefully, we can present this as a love note to all the women that we thought about when we made it.”

On the Black Lives Matter movement’s impact on the beauty industry: “I think the first thing that comes to mind is accountability, especially for us. We love the industry so much and a lot of us have been part of it and are willing to show up and be a part of that fabric. I think at that time, we had to sit back and reevaluate like if we keep going at this pace, we’re doing a disservice, because not only are we diverse but the generation coming up after us is going to be the majority. The idea of minorities is not even going to be a thing anymore. It’s a lot of us coming together and realizing that multicultural is the new wave.

Pharrell Williams, @pharrell

Founder of Humanrace and Singer

On the sacredness of self-care: “There’s something really sacred about cleansing yourself. Sometimes just taking that sacred time to cleanse oneself is also an opportunity to cleanse other aspects of your being. For men, there’s always been these stigmas around facials and taking care of your face and we gotta just get past that — like that’s just so crazy. Like, why wouldn’t a man want to take care of his face?”

On the beauty industry becoming unisex: “This is the age of Aquarius. It’s all about spirit. People rarely identify as their actual names online. They have a username that’s usually more reflective of an aspect of their spirit or who they are. It’s going to be less about the things that separate us and more connecting with someone than what gender has done in the past. Because you’re a woman, it’s assumed that you want to do this or you’re not going to do that. Gone are the days that you can put that in a box. We want that for every spiritual identity. That’s what Humanrace is all about.”

Did you attend Youtube #BeautyFest? What were your takeaways? Let us know in the comments.

Camille Nzengung
Camille Nzengung
Camille Nzengung is a Features Editor, based in Georgia, covering all things hair at The Tease. You can find her writing about the best hair products, the coolest hair trends, and all the exciting new hair launches.