Nina

5 Inspirational YouTubers Giving Voice to Overcoming Challenges

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On YouTube, there are more and more channels run by women bringing awareness to normative societal issues than ever before.  As a social media platform, Youtube has been used by men and women alike to voice their opinions about the world around them.

Recently, a lot of women have been using this opportunity to speak about matters and concerns that are relevant  to their life and/or lifestyle.  These women have become an inspiration to many others, and have expanded their reach by using other platforms as well.  Let’s look at the videos that defined them as Inspirational Women YouTubers.

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Zoë Sugg

Zoë Sugg

As a British lifestyle and beauty guru, YouTuber Zoë Sugg (handle: Zoella) started her channel in 2009 with fashion and makeup hauls.  Zoë opened up about her anxiety early on in her presence on YouTube, in the video ‘Draw My Life.’  Her first fully-dedicated video on the topic was titled ‘Dealing with Attacks & Anxiety’ and was uploaded in 2012.  As her popularity grew, more people were messaging and commenting on videos with questions and advice about living with anxiety, which lead to her second video ‘Anxiety Q&A.’  Now with more than ten million subscribers, Zoë’s channel mainly focuses on her life in fashion, beauty, and lifestyle.  

Off the computer screen, Zoë has used her fame from YouTube to speak on the topic on television, through a book she wrote called Girl Online.  Males and females suffering with anxiety look to Zoë as an inspiration  She has shared her advice with the entire world and in return people have been able to look to Zoë in the process of dealing with panic attacks and anxiety.  People look to Zoë as a woman who has dealt with so much by pushing herself to start the conversation about anxiety and how much of an impact it can have on someone’s life.  Zoë reminds people you can start the conversation about anxiety, because you never know who might be struggling with it too. 

Ingrid Nilson

Ingrid Nilson started her YouTube career by posting beauty videos in 2009.  In 2015, Ingrid posted her video ‘Something I Want You To Know (Coming Out)’ revealing her homosexuality to her YouTube audience.  In the video, she describes growing up in a family where not all members accepted homosexuals/ity, which caused her to previously suppress her feelings.  Seeking love and approval, Ingrid dated men, only to realize that she was neither fully in love with them, nor happy.  Ingrid’s choice to come out to her friends and people who’ve supported her throughout her life was her choice to bring happiness back into her life.  

Ingrid’s decision to stand up for herself makes her an inspiration to anyone who is currently dealing with identity issues, or on the path of self discovery.  As Ingrid says in her video: ‘I want to live my life unapologetically because I am proud of who I am, and I am not going to apologize for who I am anymore.’ This video has been viewed more than thirteen million times. Very recently, on June 9 of this year, she celebrated the anniversary of her coming out this past month in her video ‘ Coming Out: One Year Later.’

Gabriella Lindley

The British YouTuber, with a love of beauty and lifestyle products, started uploading makeup tutorials in 2013.  Since then her fan base has only grown.  Through her journey on YouTube, Gabriella Lindley selectively chose to speak very little about her public life.  Until July 2015, when Gabriella posted a heartbreaking twenty-eight minute long video titled ‘Honesty.’ which discusses the struggles in her life.  In the video Gabriella spoke about the hateful comments she was receiving for being herself ranging from being fake, and being a bully.  Even admitting to the internet these comments brought back her past, where she was bullied constantly, got severely depressed, and until now has been working hard to be the person she wanted to be.

Her subscribers were trying to understand, then in April 2016, Gabriella posted a video,’My Weight Loss Surgery.’  In the video, explaining her lifetime struggle with weight and the operations she underwent to lose excess weight that she couldn’t achieve from diet and exercise.  In Gabriella, we see a woman who has overcome a lot of struggles in her life to get where she is today.  Gabriella is an exceptional inspiration for her presence on YouTube has given hope to women and men alike who are dealing with depression and weight that there is hope. Gabriella has shown that courage and persistent to look towards the future is better than looking back on the past.  Now that inspirational.

Also, fun fact: she studied theatre in college.  So if you want to hear her beautiful singing voice, listen to her recent cover of Ariana Grande’s Leave Me Lonely.

Hannah Hart

This YouTuber (handle: MyHarto) started off by drinking a little bit too much while cooking up some meals which led toher cooking segment ‘My Drunk Kitchen’, first uploaded in 2011.  Hannah continued her drunk kitchen segments and then, in 2012, opened up about her sexuality in a two part segment titled Coming Out.  The video is about the story of her realization of  her sexuality and identity and how she came to terms with it, while also helping establish herself as a LGBT community member and advocate for gay rights.

Hannah Hart is a great example of personal growth, which can be seen from her early videos on YouTube to now.  Her videos have surpassed the five thousand view mark, and she continues to be an inspiration to all women and men who are members of the LGBT community.  Hannah is an excellent example of using YouTube to speak about the rights and struggles of people who have been a part of the LGBT community in this era. 

Arden Rose

The American based YouTuber started in 2009 with posting beauty, fashion haul, and outfit inspired videos.  In recent years, her videos have been more eclectic, as the Arkansas native has spoken openly about her life with trichotillomania.  Trichotillomania is a condition where individuals  have the impulse and compulsion to remove hair from one’s body, which is also linked to OCD [Obsessive Compulsive Disorder].  In 2012, Arden posted the video, ‘My Trich Story!’ where she opened up about how trichotillomania started affecting her life when she was thirteen due to stress, which is a trigger, and specifically mentioned how she pulled out the hairs out of her eyelashes and eyebrows, as people with trichotillomania usually have the compulsion to pull out all body hairs.

As the years have passed since the video and Arden has continued to be open about her trichotillomania through other videos.  She continues to be an inspiration to girls who deal with self-confidence issues.  In May 2016, she opened the conversation with her YouTube audience about body acceptance and her own personal journey, [Video], and starts the discussion of loving your body. Every women should, and sometimes it is harder than it looks.  Encouraging women to accept their flaws and love your body no matter what stage of life you are at, Arden reminds us that we’re all beautiful.  Imperfect is the new perfect!  

Once people start the conversation about sexuality, anxiety, and disorders, the more people become aware that not everyone is perfect.

These YouTubers all have one thing in common: they spoke up/out.  They projected their voices for the world to hear.  These women are inspiring for the courage to open their world to millions of people who currently face the same issues.  Everyone has imperfections,even people that we deem absolutely flawless.  With the power of YouTube, more women are enabled to speak up about issues that are currently shaking our society.  By putting in their two cents, more women can look up to these YouTubers as an inspiration to make their own voices heard.   

Part of being a celebrity is navigating public criticism, but I think insulting a woman’s choices, as a mother or female, is taking it too far.  So whether you like the Kardashians or not, it’s not up to you to decide how Kim should make herself feel confident.  Instead, choose to support a woman’s decision to express her confidence, regardless of whether it is the same way you express yourself to the world.

 

22 year old New York City native is currently attending Smith College to earn her bachelor's in English and Art History. Growing up in a household where creativity was applauded, Nina uses different modes of expression and description in her work. As bSmart’s Art Director and Editorial Intern she hopes to break new walls with the website.

 

 

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