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- Though beauty influencers rule the internet now, they didn’t always exist.
- Just a few years ago, many of today’s most popular internet stars had jobs that were entirely different than what they do now.
- James Charles, for example, sold Instagram pages and worked at a frozen-yogurt shop as a teenager.
- Jaclyn Hill, on the other hand, has always been a makeup artist – she got her start working at a MAC Cosmetics store.
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In 2020, it’s tough to imagine a world without beauty influencers.
Not only have they changed the way we shop for makeup, but beauty influencers also provide constant entertainment through their videos and internet drama. However, many of today’s makeup moguls were doing everyday jobs just a few years ago.
From James Charles to Jeffree Star, here’s how 11 influencers made their livings before becoming famous.
Manny Gutierrez, also known as Manny MUA, has worked in both service and athletic fields.
Back in April 2019, the YouTuber shared a tweet about five jobs he’s worked in the past. At the time, he said he’s been a volleyball coach, restaurant host, waiter, Sephora employee, and MAC Cosmetics makeup artist.
When one fan questioned his volleyball skills, Gutierrez revealed that he even went to the Junior Olympics while in high school.
Chloe Morello’s past jobs range from wine tasting to bartending.
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Just like Manny MUA, Morello shared her work history on Twitter in April 2019. In the past, she’s cleaned motel rooms, tended bar, modeled, worked as a belly dancer and instructor, and also as a plot coordinator at a crematorium.
One fan seemed particularly shocked by the latter job, and asked if Morello enjoyed the work. The YouTuber replied and said she did.
More recently in January, the YouTuber shared a similar list with two additional jobs: wine taster and sales assistant.
Laura Lee has held numerous retail jobs over the years.
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On Twitter in January, Lee said she’s worked as a cashier in a pet shop, wine store, and Dick’s Sporting Goods. She also said she’s worked at a day-care facility, as a medical assistant, and as a Cheeburger Cheeburger waitress.
In response to her tweet, a representative for Dick’s Sporting Goods said: “We miss you, Laura.”
Though he started making YouTube videos at a young age, James Charles still found time to work a “regular” job.
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In February, Charles appeared on Philip DeFranco’s A Conversation With podcast. When DeFranco asked if the YouTuber had ever worked a “regular job,” Charles said: “Yes! I worked at a frozen-yogurt shop called 16 handles in my hometown.”
According to Charles, he was 16 at the time and “loved” working for the company. He also noted that he balanced the job with his growing internet career, meaning he would sometimes film a YouTube video, “speed” to work, and then complete his homework when he’d get home at night.
The YouTuber said later in the podcast that he also “started businesses online” at a young age, and sold two Instagram pages for $15,000 when he was 15 years old.
In addition to her makeup expertise, Nicol Concilio has a lot of medical experience.
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In January, the YouTuber wrote on Twitter that she’s worked as a dog washer, receptionist, and bank teller. She also shared some insight into her medical background, which includes jobs as a medical assistant, EKG tech, and phlebotomist, or a person trained to draw blood.
Tati Westbrook listed her “weird jobs” during a 2016 YouTube video.
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During the video, Westbrook said she’s worked as a freelance makeup artist, cashier at Gap, “perfume sample lady,” accountant, and celebrity personal assistant. She also said she’s been a jewelry seller at Costco, Starbucks barista, bartender, dog groomer, and consultant at a bareMinerals counter at Nordstrom.
Additionally, Westbrook has worked as an actor, appearing in shows like “Greek” and “Unsolved Mysteries.”
Patrick Starrr has come a long way since his early days working in the beauty industry.
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Before becoming a YouTuber, Starrr worked as a makeup artist for MAC Cosmetics. His career came full circle when he collaborated with the brand in 2017, which he announced in a YouTube video.
“I freelanced at MAC, I freelanced at Macy’s, shout out to Florida Mall, shout out to Millenia, shout out to Orlando,” Starrr said in his video. “Orlando is a place where I got to foster my artistry.”
He’s since released numerous collections with MAC Cosmetics.
Jaclyn Hill also got her start working for MAC Cosmetics.
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When she released her first Morphe eye-shadow palette in 2017, Hill used Twitter to reflect on her career journey.
“I was just a girl working at MAC living on food stamps because I couldn’t pay my bills,” Hill wrote at the time. “Five days ago we sold out of my palette in 43 minutes.”
Before becoming a YouTuber, Jackie Aina served in the military.
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In a 2018 interview with Insider, Aina said she joined the army in 2008, and had a lot of free time because she was in the reserves. She began looking for a creative outlet, and eventually made a YouTube channel.
Aina has also mentioned on Twitter that she previously worked at a MAC Cosmetics store.
Emily Noel’s previous career as a morning news anchor led to the creation of her YouTube channel.
- Emily Noel/YouTube
Noel started her YouTube channel back in 2007, and originally did so while working as a morning news anchor for WSIL-TV. In 2012, she posted a YouTube video announcing that she’d be leaving her news position to further pursue online opportunities.
“I’m approached with more opportunities relating to this YouTube channel than I can accept, and I never would’ve imagined it would’ve grown to this,” she said in the video. “This started as a hobby thing, and it continues because I have the love and passion for it.”
Jeffree Star went from musician to makeup mogul.
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As Insider’s Jacob Shamsian previously pointed out, Star has worked in makeup before from working at beauty counters to doing makeup for brides and celebrities after graduating high school.
He eventually became famous on Myspace around 2003, and briefly pivoted to music – he released music videos, an album called “Beauty Killer,” and even toured.
- Read more:
- The surprising real names of 14 popular beauty influencers
- 16 of the most shocking beauty YouTube transformations of all time
- I tried Jeffree Star’s Blood Lust collection, and think it’s one of the YouTuber’s best makeup lines yet
- I bought Jeffree Star’s new Blood Lust collection at a Morphe store, and it was far less hectic than Shane Dawson’s Conspiracy launch