Coca-Cola HQ was treated to a guest talk by beauty vlogger Becky Sheeran from TalkBeckyTalk, who opened up about her YouTube channel and what it's like being part of StyleHaul, the largest original video destination for fashion, beauty and lifestyle content.
What do you enjoy most about being part of StyleHaul?
The great thing for me about being part of StyleHaul is the focus I get on growing and developing my channel. I can get so caught up in the day to day life of running a channel, but StyleHaul help me focus, they look at my audience, how I can grow it and they enable me to collaborate with brands, which for me is the most important thing. When I’m at home on my own I don’t often meet a lot of people so StyleHaul has been great for connecting me with these amazing brands who I get to make videos with. I wouldn’t have had these opportunities by just working alone at home.
How do you prepare for filming the tutorial and product review videos for TalkBeckyTalk?
When I’m planning a video firstly I look on social media and try to gauge from my audience what they want me to be making that week or that month. I then decide what I love and what I want to put in that video. If it’s a skincare video I might look at what I’m using at home and what is relevant to my subscribers. I try to include things that everyone can relate to, not just high end stuff and not just drug store stuff. I try to do a mix of everything. When I’m planning the videos I’ll need to decide if it’s going to be filmed in my bedroom, or outside. Am I going to do a ‘get ready with me’ video or is it better talking to the camera about the products? I’ve got my lights, camera, and tripod set up at home and I edit the film myself on my computer – as soon as it’s ready it goes up on my channel.
Why do you think beauty is a popular topic on YouTube?
I think beauty is so popular on YouTube because so many women have realised that advertising is just that and you are not necessarily going to look the way people do in ads. When you take the hair spray home your hair won’t look like the woman’s does in that advert; when you try the skin care that banishes spots your spots aren’t going to go away. Every woman that I know uses some form of beauty in her life, whether that’s hair care products only and no make-up or just a lip gloss and nothing else. I feel like beauty is an escape for a lot of people and so many beauty videos go beyond just the beauty. It’s also about getting to know that person in the video, they become your friend or the big sister you never had and I feel like that is what the beauty community is about. You can look up to people that are on YouTube and learn what is real about makeup.
As a presenter and YouTuber, you’re used to being in front of the camera. What advice do you have for vloggers just starting out?
I always advise people when they are starting out to just make a video and post it. I was terrified when I made my first video and to be honest now even when I speak in public I still get nervous and still get scared. The biggest part of it is to just keep doing videos. When I first made my video I filmed it ten times and re-edited it and deleted it but you just have to post that first video and once the first one is done your confidence starts to grow. I look back at my original videos and I was shaking in some of them and my voice was trembling and I wasn’t breathing properly and all of us start like that. You have to go months and months of just practicing and then slowly in time your confidence comes in front of the camera.
What advice do you have for vloggers looking to give their YouTube channel a makeover?
Firstly I would advise that you do your research. I get a lot of my ideas from looking at other peoples channels. I think a lot of us do. I look at someone’s blog or YouTube channel and if I like their style then I take a screen shot of it and try and do a pin board of colours and themes that I like. If I’m thinking of doing a revamp I just take inspiration from other people. Second thing is to ask for advice. StyleHaul were great for me in that they have linked me up with so many different people that could help me with banners or designs. Even if you’re not with a network you are bound to know someone who is a graphic designer or someone that did a course in design and so ask your friends to help. It’s nice to have a fresh set of eyes to ensure you don’t get stuck in a rut.
What does the future of vlogging look like?
I think it’s such an exciting space to be in. I always wonder in 10 years’ time where it will be and I’m hoping that as I grow older my audience and everyone online will grow older too. Lots of people think that YouTube will be gone in a few years but I don’t believe that at all. I think it’s just the start! So many people are going online now, my mum does all her stuff online and it’s becoming a destination more and more people are turning to. I think the quality of videos is becoming better too. If you look at videos from two or three years ago they were all shot on phones but now the quality of footage from phones is so much better. In years to come the content will be better, the visuals will be better and I think there will be so much more variety. I hope vlogging doesn’t go anywhere because I want to be an old lady of 90 still making videos. That’s my hope anyway!
You talk quite openly and confidently about treating bad skin. Has this helped your fans come to you with their own skincare problems?
I find that a lot of people come to me on social media now asking about skincare. When I was growing up I had really bad acne and it was so difficult to talk to anyone about it and I didn’t know how to get rid of it and I was so embarrassed that actually I didn’t want to talk about it. YouTube allows you to talk to someone without actually having to say the words. If there had been a place online for me I would have gone there to talk to someone.
I get lots of people that tweet me and they’re asking what skincare is best for combination skin or how they can get rid of their spots and let’s face it having spots is one of the worst things ever when you are growing up. Fact! There is nothing worse! For me as a girl it knocked my confidence so much so I understand how my audience feels and I think that’s quite a special relationship. We’re not just talking about looking nice with make up on we are talking about something that really affects confidence and it’s nice that people can come to my channel to talk about these kinds of issues.
What spring / summer trends should we look out for?
I’m the kind of person that feels a trend is what you love. This year I think people being confident in themselves is going to be big! More and more trends are being set by people that are confident and the friends around you that are confident. Actual catwalk trends in terms of make-up I definitely notice a lot more of the wet look so people are putting wet highlighter on and slicked back hair which is meant to look greasy - remember when greasy hair wasn’t cool?! It is now! In terms of fashion, denim is coming back which I love! Double denim is no longer a crime! I saw a lot of denim at London Fashion week as well as suede, textures, tribal, animal prints. So everything I love which is good. And denim! Did I mention denim?!
Diet Coke has had many fashion and beauty collaborations. Who would you love to collaborate with?
I love what Diet Coke did with the names on the bottles. It was so fun! I drink Diet Coke all the time; I’m not just saying that! I have a fridge full of the stuff. I’m also obsessed with tea. Any tea brand or teabag company, I would love to work with them and have my own tea. That would be the dream. It’s so great when you see the brands you love doing something with people you love.
You’ve teamed up with BeatBullying to help stop online bullying. What have you learnt from working with them?
I decided to team up with BeatBullying partly because of my experience online. I was finding that I had a lot of negative hurtful comments that weren’t really to do with me as a person but I was being targeted and I feel like that happens to so many people and it was very important for me to be able to help people. I also very openly talked about the fact that I lost my Dad and even when that happened I had so much negativity around that. People wanted to be horrible just for the sake of being horrible. I remember someone saying to me a long time ago that you are just an ant, you can’t make any difference in this world, you’re just one person. But you can!
Joining up with BeatBullying was incredible because thousands of people signed up, thousands then told their friends and we had this great movement, it was trending on Twitter and it was great because all of these young people that were struggling online were signing up and getting support. It was so important to know they had a place to go to. It really taught me a lot about how huge this problem is and I do think that people have a responsibility. Like diet Coke, creators or other brands, you have a responsibility to try to help a lot of these people as they watch you and read about you and look up to you. When you are able to tell them it’s going to be ok, there is a way forward. I learnt that you can make a difference and you can stand up all together as one and change things.