covergirl announces its first coverboy

The appointment of 17-year-old beauty vlogger James Charles continues to prove makeup is genderless.

by i-D Staff
12 October 2016, 1:07pm

Over the past 58 years, CoverGirl spokespeople have crossed a lot of demographics, but they've always had one thing in common — they were, as the name suggests, girls. This year, the brand is bringing a boy into the mix: James Charles, a 17-year-old makeup artist and YouTube star. With over 465k Instagram followers and 72k YouTube subscribers, it's not surprising the brand was keen to work with the extraordinary teen; but the appointment is also a sign of the industry is recognizing that makeup isn't an exclusively female world.

Japan and Korea have seen men embracing beauty for years, fed by K and J-pop stars's love of eyeliner and national idealization of perfect, glowing skin. Now the West is catching up; colorful creative people like Matty Bovan are drawing wide followings for their makeup prowess, and MAC is refocusing to appeal to a gender neutral market. In April of this year the hashtags #MalePolish and #makeupisgenderless saw men sharing images of their made up faces to challenge stigma and the perception you couldn't be masculine and care about your appearance.

In an Instagram post announcing his appointment as a CoverGirl ambassador James said: "I truly hope that this shows that anyone and everyone can wear makeup and can do anything if you work hard." And going by the flood of positive comments he's received since, it's clear the world is ready for some fresh beauty icons. Get to know James, and his amazing skills, below.


Text Wendy Syfret
Image via @jcharlesbeauty

make up
james charles