Whenever an entertainer builds a public persona online, fans expect them to look their best, which often includes makeup. Many YouTubers are almost unrecognizable without their signature makeup looks, and out of curiosity, some viewers actively seek out their bare faces online. It’s worth noting, though, that makeup — or the lack thereof — can sometimes be used to reinforce sexist values on women, and YouTubers aren’t immune from this. Neekolul, for example, suffered harassment after posting makeup-less selfies online, and used the situation to speak out against those who seemed shocked by her bare face.
Still, not all face reveals go sour, and many women gamers have shared pictures and videos of their bare faces for various reasons. Some have done so with the intention of showing off their makeup routines. Others have used makeup-less selfies to talk about gender in gaming community more broadly, or to simply show scenes from their daily lives. Gamers are, after all, real people, regardless of if they stream online or not. Here’s a look at the "true" selves of some YouTube gamers. Whether they’re wearing makeup or not, these gamers show fans all the different contexts of beauty.
Valkyrae shares her secrets
Valkyrae had a great year in 2020, joining forces with 100 Thieves, seeing a huge jump in her YouTube numbers, and making lots of money. She’s one of the highest ranked women streamers on YouTube, with over 3 million subscribers, but she’s also a normal person with a routine just like anyone else.
In the middle of 2020, she filmed a video with fans sharing her daily makeup look. Before beginning her routine, Valkyrae told her audience that she always makes sure to complete her skincare regimen before putting on any makeup. However, Valkyrae didn’t profess to be an expert. She said, "I grew up as a tomboy, and I stayed a tomboy for the rest of my life." Though she spoke modestly of her makeup skills, she proceeded to produce a beautiful look, complete with a secret some fans might not have anticipated.
After finishing her foundation and eyeshadow, Valkyrae explained to viewers that she doesn’t like to use eyeliner, and instead uses black eyeshadow to create a smokey look. Valkyrae also revealed that she used to have eyelash extensions installed, and kept up the maintenance for almost three years. Now, she uses drugstore mascara. The routine only took 10 minutes and looked lovely — perfect for a night of streaming.
Sssniperwolf gets a voice over
Sssniperwolf, known as Lia on her non-gaming channel, experienced a swift rise in popularity on YouTube. That doesn’t mean she’s afraid to show her authentic self, though. She periodically shares makeup-less selfies of herself performing normal activities, like shopping at Ross. Of course, Sssniperwolf likes to get dressed up sometimes, too, and she often wears elaborate makeup looks on camera.
However, during one special video, Sssniperwolf let her boyfriend do all the hard work of talking. In the video, which has over 2 million views, Sssniperwolf let her boyfriend, Sausage, narrate each step in her makeup routine, and yikes, did he get a lot of it wrong.
Sssniperwolf clearly had fun with the video, making a silly face without makeup and proceeding without knowing what her boyfriend might be saying. Although he gets a little crass at times, Sausage mostly comments on the strange names makeup often has. There is one part of the video, though, where Sausage makes some inappropriate comments about Sssniperwolf’s concealer. But apparently they worked past that, along with some other things. Despite their turbulent relationship, the two were enjoying Disney World together as of September 2020.
Azzy shares a romantic moment
Azzyland, who has over 13 million subscribers on YouTube, also joined in on the "boyfriend does my voiceover" challenge back in 2017. Azzy’s boyfriend, Jordi, complimented her bare face, saying that she’s pretty even without makeup. He then proceeded to comment on every item in her makeup bag. When the fake eyelashes came out, Jordi said, "these are scary!" The awe Jordi had for Azzy’s makeup routine reflects how a lot of men feel about makeup in general.
Fans responded positively to Azzy’s face reveal, with one stating, "She actually looks really nice without makeup and she’s really good at makeup." Another fan complimented Azzy by saying, "Azzy looks so different without makeup but she’s beautiful in both ways!" Some might find it refreshing to see a YouTuber share themselves so openly and get a positive response in return.
Azzy earned her following by curating a massive base of fans through her various entertainment videos. She posts reaction videos, life hacks, and challenges, along with let’s play videos full of Grand Theft Auto, Among Us, and Roblox. In a 2016 interview with Based Gamer, Azzy confessed that she previously tried to move from cosplay to YouTube, but found herself too awkward on camera. After working for another YouTube channel, she finally had the courage to start her own brand. Luckily for her and her fans, it worked out.
LDShadowlady shows it goes both ways
LDShadowlady, or Lizzie, rose to YouTube fame by playing games like Minecraft with her husband Joel. With her brightly dyed hair and rosy cheeks, Lizzie usually wears makeup on camera, but that doesn’t mean she’s afraid to show her bare face. Lizzie sometimes posts no makeup selfies on her various platforms, including Instagram.
More importantly, Lizzie sometimes discusses how the world perceives women with makeup. In a 2014 tweet, Lizzie posted, "Walked into class without makeup on today. ‘You look tired.’ Oh." Lizzie aptly pointed out that when women don’t take the extra time to get ready in the morning, people assume something is wrong.
In a fun twist on the "boyfriend does my makeup" challenge, Lizzie did her then-boyfriend, now-husband’s makeup. The entire exchange felt remarkably cute, with Joel asking Lizzie if his makeup would look "as fabulous" as Lizzie’s own. True love does exist. The finished look seemed like a bit of a joke, with Joel sporting a unibrow and lots of pink blush, but fans reacted positively. One fan even suggested that Lizzie do Joel’s makeup everyday.
GamingwithJen takes a chance
GamingwithJen has over 5 million subscribers on YouTube, and chances are many of them have seen her without makeup. Back in 2015, Jen and her then-husband Pat participated in the "boyfriend does my makeup" challenge, and Jen began the video, of course, without makeup. Jen expressed some nervousness about Pat’s makeup skills, commenting that she planned to wear the same makeup look for Pat’s 6 million subscriber celebration video later that day.
Ultimately, the look turned out to be frightening, with eyeliner leaking down Jen’s cheeks, lipstick all over her mouth, and lots of bright pink blush. Jen jokingly said she had found her new Halloween look.
More recent comments on the makeup video referenced Pat and Jen’s breakup a few years later, and some fans expressed that they watched old videos to relive the best parts of the couple’s relationship. While nothing lasts forever, the internet always remembers. Jen’s YouTube homepage indicates that she mostly plays Roblox and Minecraft now, with just a bit of Among Us thrown in, continuing the trend of creative, world building games in the YouTube community.
Yammy becomes a Sim
YouTuber Yammy regularly posts videos of Gacha Life, Minecraft, and The Sims, but she also participates in some challenges. In 2018, Yammy took part in a Sims-themed makeup challenge where she attempted to do complete a randomized Sims look on herself. The results were truly wild.
Yammy tried a few different approaches, including her final look, which required her to put dark eyeshadow and eyeliner all around her eyes to almost cartoonish proportions. The last look also included dark blue contouring and gold lipstick, which Yammy pulled off well despite her shocked expression. Fans responded enthusiastically. One said, "beauty gurus are shaking," while another mused, "you look pretty with no makeup!" Yammy has posted elsewhere about enjoying the "makeup free life" while on holiday, laughing that Snapchat filters help mask any imperfections.
In a recent poll on Yammy’s Twitter, fans voted that Yammy should stream on Twitch instead of YouTube, although the results were fairly mixed. For now, Yammy continues to upload to YouTube, but who knows what her future holds.
PressHeartToContinue masters perfect brows
Dodger, who goes by PressHeartToContinue on YouTube, had a makeup free chat with her fans during a special holiday vlog in 2018. In the video, Dodger talked about the time she spent with her sisters and milestones in her daughter’s life. In the video, Dodger seemed warm and inviting, which highlighted one of the reasons fans love her: her charismatic personality.
But the video wasn’t all fun and chat. Dodger had a very specific purpose for the video, and quickly set to work attempting to give herself thick, full brows with the help of several makeup products. Even though Dodger bemoaned the fact that her brows weren’t even, she said the journey was fun. Her cats, for their part, seemed to enjoy hanging out and watching the show.
While Dodger gained a following through let’s play-style videos, she then branched out into vlog territory, doing more informal chats like her makeup tutorial. According to her YouTube channel, she hasn’t been active since the start of 2019, most likely because she’s been busy with other things, like being a mom and business owner. She does, however, post makeup-free pictures to her Instagram often, keeping connected with her fans. Who has time for makeup when you’re too busy being awesome?
Meloniemac criticizes the industry
Meloniemac earned over 300,000 subscribers on YouTube through her gaming videos, as well as through sharing some of the more personal moments in her life. Though Meloniemac frequently wears makeup in her videos, complete with sharp winged eyeliner, she’s also posted pictures of herself without makeup on Instagram.
In one picture, Meloniemac included the caption, "RAWR! Here’s a #nomakeup selfie since it’s been a while and you guys request it a lot." Meloniemac looked happy in the picture, with messy braids and a smile on her face. Though some fans responded by calling her ugly, most praised Meloniemac’s natural good looks, calling her beautiful.
Meloniemac also tweeted a meme suggesting that men can’t handle women without makeup, no matter how much they think they can. Meloniemac elaborated, tweeting, "All these ‘shocking’ makeup vs no makeup pics are just normal and just as beautiful either way. It’s baffling to me how many boys on the internet don’t know what women look like without makeup." Mostly, she said, it’s tiring hearing men say she looks different from picture to picture. No matter what Meloniemac chooses to wear or not wear, her fans love her either way.
iHasCupquake does a wild makeup challenge
Tiffany Herrera, better known as iHasCupquake on YouTube, produces a variety of gaming and geek related content across several platforms. She even has an entire channel dedicated to lifestyle vlogs and DIY content, as well as a channel for her gaming.
In one video that combined both gaming and makeup, iHasCupquake participated in a The Sims-themed makeup challenge where she recreated iconic makeup looks from the game. iHasCupquake began her makeup journey with a fresh face, then proceeded to walk viewers through each step in the glamification process. At one point in the video, iHasCupquake even commented on "the makeup face," an open-mouthed expression many women make when applying makeup. "It’s not a makeup video if you don’t make the makeup face," she explained.
Aside from her video content, iHasCupquake has an online store where she and her husband sell merchandise related to her videos. The site describes iHasCupquake as dedicated to the gaming community and seeking to grow geek culture through her ideas and products.
LaurenzSide takes awful makeup advice
LaurenzSide, or Lauren, earned followers on YouTube for The Sims 4 content and collaborations with other YouTubers, but that doesn’t mean she’s stuck to strictly gaming content. In 2019, Lauren posted a video where she tried Troom Troom makeup hacks, and she even dared to show her bare face before attempting some truly horrible "hacks." Troom Troom, an eerie Ukranian YouTube channel, often dispenses bad DIY tutorials and makeup hacks. Needless to say, things didn’t go well for LaurenzSide.
Even when she’s being silly, Lauren takes time to remind her fans and herself that beauty isn’t something others can take away. Lauren recently tweeted a message of encouragement to fans that feel like they don’t measure up to others. "I don’t ever want to come across as seeming ‘perfect’. I hope I never have," she said. "Don’t ever compare yourself to me or anyone else. I love you all because you’re wonderfully weird & imperfect like me. Don’t ever forget that. "
Lauren’s dedication to her fans makes her content special, and her willingness to participate in silly beauty challenges shows that she’s not afraid to show her own imperfections.
Gloom comments on gender norms
Gloom has been around on YouTube for years, first appearing as CloudyApples back in 2011, then later creating a new channel to better reflect her personality. She’s a staple in the YouTube community, and even collaborated with pop star Shakira to look back at the Columbian singer’s career. Gloom’s internet celebrity has offered her the unique position of discussing gender norms, including makeup, with her millions of subscribers.
Back when Gloom went by CloudyApples, she uploaded a video discussing how the media and men in general discuss women who wear makeup or choose to go bare faced. She stated that sometimes people congratulate her for choosing not to wear makeup, calling the decision a way people think she’s "more real." Gloom went on to say that makeup isn’t necessary, and she sees it similarly to putting on a fancy suit for special occasions.
Later, once Gloom transitioned to her new channel, she posted a newer video in response to Pokimane’s makeupless selfie that set the internet afire. Gloom took on the persona of a 13-year-old boy to examine the ways in which people commented on Pokimane’s makeup. Ultimately, Gloom concluded that it was strange for people to expect women to look flawless 24/7.
Aphmau shares a moment with her daughter
In 2019, purveyor of cute games Aphmau participated in a makeup challenge similar to the "boyfriend does my makeup," except her guest artist was way more special. Aphmau’s daughter helped her apply makeup with hilarious results. Though Aphmau began the video with a bare face, she ended it with a much wilder look.
The video showed Aphmau laughing and playing with her daughter. At the beginning of the video, Aphmau explained that she’s showing what she looks like without makeup, then proceeded to explain to her daughter what various makeup items did. Aphmau’s daughter loved all of the sparkles in her mom’s makeup kit, and proceeded to apply them to places most makeup artists wouldn’t consider, like Aphmau’s eyebrows.
Aphmau frequently uploads videos where she explores the worlds of Minecraft and Roblox, even engaging in fun roleplay opportunities, like her Baby Ninja series. A mom and gamer, Aphmau depicts what it looks like for parents to juggle their gaming lives along with family.
Vixella shares a quick selfie
Typically, Vixella creates fabulous looks for her characters in The Sims, but she’s also not afraid to show a more raw version of herself on social media. Vixella posted a no makeup selfie to her Twitter, saying, "ok i look jank af, no makeup, its 5am, i’m sick ok buuuut i had to post some pics of the blonde!" Her fans responded positively, and helped her celebrate her new hair color. One fan called her beautiful, while another said Vixella’s hair looked "bomb."
Vixella is a huge participant in the online Sims community. However, Vixella recently tweeted that she might begin posting other content in addition to The Sims soon. She hinted that she wants to do more personal vlogs in the future, or even start a second channel. Regardless of what Vixella decides to do, her contributions to the Sims community likely won’t go unnoticed, and her willingness to share her natural beauty is appreciated by fans everywhere.
Leah Ashe trusts her boyfriend
Leah Ashe typically posts colorful Roblox videos, but she also participates in challenges and vlogs on her channels. In one challenge, Leah got her then-boyfriend Garrett to do her makeup, and the results were interesting.
Leah Ashe began the video by expressing her nervousness at having Garrett do her makeup. She asked if Garrett remembered her doing his makeup for the reversal of the same challenge, to which he responded that he didn’t. From there, Garrett did a questionable job of applying the makeup, smearing lipstick all over Leah’s face and smudging her eyeliner out to huge proportions.
In her own life, Leah Ashe is quite good at makeup, and even created her own makeup line. While the official Instagram page for her cosmetics line has not been updated in a while, Ashe’s chipper personality and colorful persona show that she’s a fashion icon with or without makeup.
InquisitorMaster lets her boyfriend give her a Halloween makeover
InquisitorMaster has over 8 million subscribers on YouTube, and mostly makes content about Roblox and Among Us. She also does a lot of roleplay content in games online, which gives her content a different tenor than many other creators.
In a 2018 video, InquisitorMaster, who goes by Alex in her personal life, let her boyfriend Zach do her makeup. One fan commented that Alex should get to do Zach’s makeup as a sort of revenge, but Zach did a great job putting makeup on himself, testing out some products before putting them on Alex’s face. Alex began the video without her usual makeup, but ended it with a recreation of a Halloween look from Roblox.
Being a popular content creator isn’t all fun and games, though. Some fans were outraged when InquisitorMaster and her boyfriend were announced as hosts of a Roblox event. Their argument was that Alex and Zach might promote online dating to an audience much too young to date. This not only could have served as a bad influence, according to InquisitorMaster’s critics, but some felt that it violated Roblox‘s community guidelines.
Clare Siobhan shares a struggle
Clare Siobhan, who creates content based on The Sims, has always been incredibly open and honest about her makeup and skincare routine. Siobhan typically plays around in The Sims, but she also posts makeup related videos and vlogs to her channel from time to time.
In one video, she walked viewers through some low effort makeup looks that save time on what could be a very complicated beauty routine. Siobhan began the video by accidentally smacking herself in the face, then commenting on her red nose. Siobhan shared an easy makeup routine that anyone could do at home, explaining each step carefully.
Siobhan also participated in a Sims makeup challenge where she recreated a look from the video game. Siobhan’s final look was particularly interesting, with dots covering her face and red undereye shadow. Siobhan just laughed off the look, using angles and effects to emphasize some of the creepiness of the design.
In 2020, Siobhan made a video describing her struggle with trichotillomania, an impulse disorder that causes individuals to pick at their skin or hair. The aim of the video was to help normalize mental health differences and encourage viewers to practice radical self acceptance.
Deligracy gets her makeup done and shares her experiences
Another Sims content creator, Deligracy, doesn’t always wear heavy makeup, but in one video, she went completely bare faced for her viewers. In the video, she let James Turner, her then-friend and now boyfriend, do her makeup. Turner explained at the beginning of the video that he’d never applied makeup to anyone else or himself, which set the tone for the rest of the look. Surprisingly, and with a little coaching from Deligracy, Turner did a pretty solid job. He even managed to apply lipstick.
Deligracy has not only shown her face to the world and encouraged others to love themselves. She’s also discussed her experiences with anxiety, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic that began in 2020. Deligracy attempted to provide some comfort to fans experiencing heightened anxiety during the pandemic, and explained what has helped her in the past. While Deligracy isn’t a mental health professional, and admitted as much, just knowing someone else experienced the same things can be helpful.
TamashiiHiroka wakes up fresh
TamashiiHiroka, who now goes by Tama Hero on most of her platforms, has been a staple in the online Pokemon community for years. However, she recently lost much of her fanbase and explained the trajectory of her channel in a thorough video on her channel. She’s had a YouTube account since the early days of the platform, all the way back in 2006.
Way back in 2015, Tama posted a makeup-less selfie to her Twitter account, one hand sheepishly posed behind her head. Tama commented "dem eyebags tho," noting her disheveled appearance. Her fans and friends were quick to comment on the post. One said, " hmm you don’t look like you," to which Tama responded, "No actually when I wear makeup I don’t look like me. … [It’s] been an illusion this whooole tiiiime."
Tama’s comment indicated that makeup helps her maintain an "illusion," and that her true self is what she looks like without makeup. Either way, Tama seems comfortable in her own skin and willing to discuss makeup with her fans.
Suzy Berhow lets her husband narrate her makeup routine
Gaming fans probably know Suzy Berhow, who goes by Mortem3r on YouTube, as the woman with Game Grumps, but she’s proven time and time again to be much more than that. Berhow has helped with Game Grumps projects in the past, but now she’s largely stepped back from the project in favor of other pursuits. Even though she doesn’t make videos with the Grumps anymore, she still has a long history with them.
In one video, Berhow allowed her husband Arin to narrate a makeup tutorial, to hilarious effect. Arin, also known as EgoRaptor, recognized few of the products Berhow applied, and said as much. Though he struggled to identify the techniques and products used, he supported his wife through the process.
Berhow has opened up an online store to sell jewelry and accessories she designs herself. Regardless of where or how she appears, Berhow has proven that she can apply a fierce cat eye, even if her husband is yelling over it.
KayPea takes an early morning flight
Kelsie, or KayPea on YouTube, rose to gaming fame by posting videos of League of Legends and Overwatch. While Kelsie dominates in the arena, she can also slay a makeup look, but that doesn’t mean she always has to.
Kelsie posted a makeupless selfie to her Twitter account in 2016, and commented, "Super empty flight today at 5:30am this morning so excuse the no make up." One fan commented to thank Kelsie for normally wearing makeup, but noted that she didn’t need to excuse herself for its absence. Still others commented that Kelsie looked better without makeup, and shouldn’t feel pressured to wear it.
In other tweets, Kelsie insinuated that she doesn’t consider herself an expert makeup artist. In response to a photo where she sported a sleek makeup look, Kelsie commented, "someone else did my makeup … can you tell?" Most of the time, Kelsie chooses to focus on gaming, rather than lifestyle oriented content.