By Stephanie Malangone
One year ago today, James Charles was just a high school student in upstate New York, doing hair for friends and watching makeup tutorials in his free time. Whilst doing hair for a friend, he was asked to do her makeup because she was running late for a military ball and had no other option. He told her, “Ff you look awful, I’m not taking credit for it.” It turned out great, and it was the start of a whole new chapter in his life.
From there, James began doing makeup on friends more often. At first it was just for fun. Then, soon enough, he had so many people asking, he began to charge — just 5 to 10 dollars. He used the little money he made from this and invested in quality brushes and supplies for a makeup artist. A star was born.
Today, James Charles has 772K followers on Instagram and 117K on YouTube. He became a sensation for the teens of Bethlehem, NY who needed their makeup done and slowly he became a sensation to the whole world.
When CoverGirl picked up James Charles as their newest CoverGirl (CoverBoy) after seeing his senior photos from Bethlehem High School,he became part of a movement much larger than highlight trends and glitter tips. James is revolutionizing the 21st century and breaking gender stereotypes. He’s been able to travel, star in photo shoots, and work with celebrities like Katy Perry. Previously, these were dreams of many girls his age, but his participation in makeup and magazine shoots has inspired other boys his age to speak up and reveal that they want to experiment with makeup, too.
“Hopefully other people will see this, and when they think, “Oh, this random 17-year-old kid just started doing makeup recently and is now the face of CoverGirl,” I hope that inspires them to really be themselves and feel comfortable and wear makeup and express themselves in a manner they haven’t been comfortable doing before.” James told the New York Times.
Even though he knows there will be critics along the way, James is optimistic about how the world is changing to be tolerant of gender fluidity and what that could mean for the future. CoverGirl has taken a huge step toward equality that will continue push the boundaries gender stereotypes in years to come.