Makeup mogul James Charles made international headlines in early May, after fellow YouTuber Tati Westbrook “exposed” him for allegedly using his fame to manipulate men’s sexualities – and while he has since bounced back from the scandal, the drama still follows him to this day.
Charles spoke out on the incident during a joint video with YouTuber Joey Graceffa on September 8, where admitted that he’d wanted to discuss suicide and depression in his response to the issue.
However, the beauty guru refrained from doing so, explaining that he wanted to avoid appearing to ask for sympathy in light of Tati’s serious allegations by speaking on the toll that the widespread hate was taking on his own mental health.
“So many kids feel suicidal and deal with depression and feel anxiety,” Charles said of the issue. “And that’s something I wanted to talk about so badly, but I knew when I addressed everything and started to get back… I had to just say the facts… because if I brought any of that up, it would make it look like I was wanting sympathy.”
(Timestamp: 18:30 for mobile viewers)
The drama between Westbrook and Charles set YouTube’s beauty community on fire, with Charles losing millions of subscribers due to the debacle – an issue that even YouTube king Felix “PewDiePie” Kjellberg commented on, doubting that he would ever be able to “come back” from the scandal.
Despite names like Jeffree Star labeling Charles a “danger to society,” the YouTuber has managed to regain his 16 million subscribers in wake of the blowup, after releasing his video response to Tati’s claims that debunked nearly all of her allegations.
Since then, Charles has reclaim his status as one of YouTube’s most popular beauty gurus – but he knows the dangers of social media stardom firsthand, likewise commenting on the “bandwagon hate” that permeates online communities.
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“People will never be satisfied,” he continued. “There will always be people, no matter what, who have the mentality that like watching drama and like watching fights, who will never ever be able to have their minds changed.”
Between his feud with Tati, dealing with widespread Twitter hacks, and even having his eyeshadow palette allegedly copied by another brand, Charles has seen his fair share of drama – but it doesn’t look like these hurdles are stopping his success anytime soon.