Ms Tricia Young started her YouTube journey in November 2015 in her dormitory while she was studying for the Bachelor of Business Management at the University of Queensland, Australia.
Fast forward to today, even though Tricia is working full-time as a Human Resource Specialist at a local social enterprise, she continues to follow her passion for creating content for her beauty channel on YouTube. She now has almost 4,000 subscribers on her channel and 22,000 followers on her Instagram account.
In this interview with Tricia, we find out how she got into the YouTube scene, what’s her motivation, amid her busy work schedule, behind her undying passion for churning out content, and more.
Why did you start a YouTube channel on beauty?
Funny enough, before going abroad for my studies, I never had interest in beauty (makeup & skincare) unless the situation called for it like prom, severe acne outbreak, etc.
When I was in university, I had severe acne and saw a Dermatologist that prescribed me potent medication that made my skin flared up and had redness to the extent that it looked like rosacea. As you probably had guessed, I didn’t go out much, and when I had to, I was uncomfortable in my own skin, and I had to put up a front that’s just not me.
At that time, I began to surf on YouTube a lot more since I stayed in my dormitory and I would shy away from social interaction. I eventually stumbled across ‘Estee Lalonde’ back then ‘Essie Button‘ channel. For some reason, she inspired me to make content like hers. I could relate to her older content, and I was inspired to do the same.
So I started off by learning more about makeup and skincare, practising on myself, learning techniques that enhanced the way I looked, and eventually began doing makeup tutorials on Vimeo before moving over to YouTube.
Has it opened doors for you?
I must say that it did not open doors for me for the majority of the time when I was doing it. Practising makeup techniques on myself and collecting makeup was a hobby and it still is. Only when I came back to Singapore after graduating, I got to know about the influencer scene, which was booming in Singapore. Like what an acquaintance told me, “Just throw a stone to the nearest person, and that person will likely be an influencer.”
I continued to create my content based on what I was interested in and the content I was inspired to make through the recommended videos from my friends, family and subscribers.
As most things go, with more views, more subscribers and follower count, companies of various beauty brands started to contact me for collaboration. Most of the time, I still reach out to brands and to propose content that I am passionate to make to them. The brands do not always accept my proposal. They do reject me at times. At the end of the day, it still feels like the ‘opening of doors’ is through my effort and the people who follow me on the various platforms. So it’s sort of like “multiple people pushing the door open.”
What was it like when you first started?
When I first started, I honestly had no clue about other people who were doing beauty-related content in Singapore or internationally, other than the YouTubers I follow.
It’s hard to describe how it was like when I first started but I can say that the person I was had no clue about the influencer scene and I just churned content that I wanted to do for myself (and no one else) with no expectation or worry of viewers not wanting to come back again.
What was your family or your loved ones’ reaction to you doing YouTube?
Haha! I laugh because my family reaction was pretty much true to what I had expected, which was full of worries, concern and anxiousness, but in a loving way, of course!
Perhaps it’s just the Asian mentality of in a cyber generation. I do not get many compliments from my family over the content I produce. But when I do get them, I’m often caught off guard because I am usually surrounded by their concerns.
Does viewership bother you?
Yes and no. I mean it is disheartening when the content I feel is really good doesn’t get many views. However, I find enjoyment in doing up my storyboards or seeing my ideas actualised. At the end of the day, I take my beauty content creating as a hobby. My real passion is in social advocacy in Singapore, which I hope to explore on creating media content in the near future.
What are the pros and cons of being a YouTuber?
- There’s a monetary incentive.
- I prefer the medium of videos rather than blogging.
- It’s an exciting platform that’s constantly evolving in the way stories are being told.
- Sometimes, Youtube feels almost otherworldly to me with the large content types it has to offer.
- If you find a YouTuber you trust and has the same struggles you have, more often than not the YouTube channel transforms itself into a confidant or at the other end would be like a TV series that you regularly go back to.
- Constant change in algorithm annoys me, especially in the beauty review content segment of YouTube.
- The content found on YouTube can be deceiving. Majority of the time, the reviews are not honest as some content-makers don’t care about what they are promoting.
- Many people on YouTube get started with the intent to make it big and want to be the next big thing, which makes them susceptible to do or say anything, which is not true and it can be pretty toxic on YouTube.
What is the no. 1 myth about being a YouTuber?
That is all YouTubers make content that’s authentic to what they stand for!
Many people out there dream about being an influencer, do you see yourself as one and why?
I can quite confidently say NO. I have always grown up in a religious household and I believe that the concept/culture surrounding influencer is pretty much grounded in greed, lust, envy and otherworldly perspectives, which I do not subscribe to. I try to put out content that I would give back to people who are in my position a couple of years back where I kept myself from the world due to skin issues I had. I try to have a simple perspective on it (1) do content I love based on what inspires me/ do content surrounding products I love (2) what would I want to know about beauty products as a beginner (3) where to start if I’m starting out with makeup/skincare.
Who are your favourite YouTubers? Name one that you wish to collaborate with?
- Lisa Eldrige
- Estee Lalonde
- Joanday/ Joan Kim
- Anna Edit
For now, my favourites surround beauty content. I would love to collaborate with Estee Lalonde since she probably was the biggest influence going into YouTube.
Can one survive on just making YouTube videos?
Probably not. Never say never, but for me, it’s unlikely unless the traction is there but even then there’s no guarantee that it’ll only go up.
What is the equipment you need to make videos? What are yours?
For YouTube, a decent camera, a mic, laptop for editing and video editing software.
I use a Canon 80D with a rode mic and a ring light. My editing software is Adobe Premiere Pro and Movie Maker.
What’s next for you?
I wish to explore curate content in the area of Social Advocacy (preliminary phase is now on my current channel) in the future probably on a channel of its own.
What advice would you give to aspiring YouTubers?
Ask yourself why you are doing it. And if it’s not authentic to your personal story or if it’s not to give back to others then take time to find the real reason. Use them as the cornerstone of your YouTube journey.