Fake it ‘Til You Make it (Or Don’t) Part 4: Are We All Catfish?
By Gemma JoyceSep 20th
Published October 6th 2017
As we all know now, the internet has opened up professions previously difficult to get into.
YouTube, Instagram, and Twitter all offer platforms for musicians, artists, and models to get noticed, build up a fanbase, and make some money. All without the backing of a label or a studio.
MUAs, or makeup artists, have been part of this change. You’ve no doubt seen makeup videos on your feeds, be they basic tutorials or full-on drastic makeovers like this one:
A search for “makuep tutorial” on YouTube returns over 31 million results. There’s a huge demand for this content, and in turn, huge opportunities for brands to get involved with influencers. MAC, for example, created a whole range with MUA influencers. So we thought it would be interesting to see who is the most influential MUA on Twitter.
We used our Brandwatch Audiences tool, which can build audiences around topics, locations, and many other areas, to find our MUAs. We looked for anyone who had terms related to ‘MUA’ and ‘makeup artist’ in their bios. Then our Audiences tool works its magic, analysing their tweets and engagement to see who is the most influential on Twitter.
This returned over 80k different accounts from all over the world. Within that group we got to see their demographics.
The vast majority of MUAs on Twitter are women, taking up 86% of the group. Their interests are also, unsurprisingly, heavily weighted towards beauty, health, and fitness. Meanwhile, their bios often act as promotions for their channels elsewhere, like YouTube and Instagram.
Right. Let’s get to the list.
Our first of two UK TV show ‘The Only Way is Essex’ stars on our list, Maria Fowler starts us off. She’s managed to build up a following of 459k Twitter followers, with another 158k on Instagram and over 2.7k subscribers on YouTube.
Since appearing on TOWIE, Fowler started her own company selling cosmetic brushes. One of a number of reality stars on this list, it shows how many of them are using social platforms to build careers after their shows finish airing.
— Maria Fowler (@MariaFowler) May 18, 2017
At number nine we have another TV star, Love Island’s very own Kady McDermott. Since being on the show back in 2016, McDermott has built a huge following. 328k followers on Twitter, near a million on Instagram, and over 90k subscribers on YouTube.
Moving beyond her own personal brand, McDermott creating her own company, By Kady, which sells beauty products. The company’s channels have built their own strong followings too.
At number eight is Mikala Walker, an “aspiring makeup artist” according to her YouTube profile. She’s managed to rack up a following of over 118k on Twitter, while she’s got 14k subscribers on YouTube.
At the moment she just has a single makeup video on her channel, which you can check out below:
Next is Patrick, who goes by PATRICKSTARRR. Patrick has amassed over 494k followers on Twitter, another 2.9m on YouTube, and 3.6m on Instagram. On top of that, he has one of the best pinned tweets we’ve ever seen.
With such a huge following, it’s no surprise he’s on this list. Of course it doesn’t hurt to have people like Kim Kardashian and Katy Perry appear on your channel too.
From there we go to Charlotte Tilbury. 162k Twitter followers, 1.5m Instagram followers, and a hundreds of thousands more across Facebook, Pinterest, and YouTube, Tilbury is a big hitter in the MUA world.
Tilbury was a succesful makeup artist before she got involved in any social media. But after launching her blog and YouTube channel, she’s gone on to launch her own make up range. Goes to show social isn’t just a place to start a MUA career, but can bolster an already huge profile.
There are thousands of food blogs online but only a few are successful. We use Brandwatch Audiences to find the cream of the influential food bloggers crop.
At the half way-mark is Sam Chapman, another example of a successful MUA using platforms like YouTube to reach a wider audience. Chapman has 287k Twitter followers, while her YouTube channel has 2.1m subscribers. This isn’t to mention her thousands of followers on Instagram and Facebook.
Chapman and her Pixiwoo co-host, her sister Nic, were posting on YouTube earlier, launching the channel way back in 2008 – only a few years after the video site went live. Chapman is a great example of how early adoption can lead to massive success.
In at number six is another The Only Way is Essex star, Chloe Sims. With over 1m followers on Twitter, nearly another million on Instagram, and 12k subsrcibers on YouTube, she’s using her appearance on the reality show to her advantage.
Her YouTube channel has a few MUA videos, but it’s been inactive for about a year. But with her continuing appearances on TOWIE and her own beauty bar, you can’t blame her.
And net we have Ἅὴήẚ Ḑ’~ʝṏℌἁἦṤṦṏἡ, which we think is Anna D-Johansson. Based in Sweden, she has built up a 35k strong following on Twitter. We’ve not been able to find her on any other accounts.
Generally, we couldn’t find out much about Anna. Although she is a massive Everton fan, so maybe when we do an influencer piece on fans on the Toffees she’ll appear in that too.
Enjoying New York in The Snow.
Here For a NYX Make-up Convention. pic.twitter.com/bgjqj2K2jM
— ❣ Ἅὴήẚ Ḑ’~ʝṏℌἁἦṤṦṏἡ❣ (@Anna_EFC) February 21, 2017
In second place is Pat McGrath, one of the biggest names in the makeup industry. With 788k Twitter followers, 323k Facebook likes, and 1.5m Instagram followers, McGrath has perfected the transition from traditional to digital promotion.
McGrath has had a hugely prestigious career working with a range of designers including Prada, Dolce & Gabbana, and Versace (there’s many, many more). And to top it all off, she was even made a Member of the Order of the British Empire by the Queen. You can’t knock that.
And so we reach the top spot taken by one of the first internet celebrities, Jeffree Star. Star currently has 1.19m Twitter followers, along with 5.1m on Instagram and 5.4m subscribers on YouTube. This is by far the biggest following on the list.
Star being top of the list shouldn’t be much of a surprise. Having been influential on social since the days of MySpace, he’s managed to make a place for himself on new platforms as they’ve appeared.
Having said all that, in 2016 old videos of him making a number of racist remarks resurfaced. People still haven’t forgotten either and it eventually led to Star posting a video apology on his Instagram. The whole affair has seemingly failed to dent his popularity though.