10 Females to Follow on YouTube

By Josie Ahlquist

Recently an article from the dailydot.com called How YouTube is Failing Women, reported that only 17 of the top 100 YouTube channels were presented by women.  Currently, the highest-ranking woman on YouTube is Rihanna at #7, followed directly behind her by Jenna Marbles at #8.  But from there few female YouTubers are anywhere to be found in the top subscriber tiers.

Today, I am choosing to feature a number of YouTubers who are women.  Their channels showcase many vantage points including pure entertainment, lifestyle, gaming, how-to’s, sketch comedy, music, education and more.  While a couple of them are very popular, they all create quality content and deserve many more subscribers.

YouTube is a relevant choice for both personal and professional development in the Student Affairs profession.  It’s not just for cat videos or rap battles!  From inspirational speeches, to how-to tutorials, this video platform has something for everyone.  Videos are quickly digestible, sharable, and usually lead viewers to other related content.

There are a number of very successful channels (83 in fact in the top 100) on YouTube that are created/fronted by men.  These channels work extremely hard and I applaud them.  But the fact remains, more of these need to be women.

So, as promised I offer you 10 female fronted YouTube channels to follow.  There are many more I would love to include, but I tried to offer a comprehensive and diverse collection of women who entertain, empower, educate and/or all the above.  In no particular order, I’ve included their YouTube link, as well as their ‘about’ information which is their brief bio written by each YouTuber herself.  I also gave you a sentence or two of my take on their channel so you can get an idea of what they are like.

Happy Subscribing!!  

1.  MaryDoodles

“Just drawing stuff. And Things.”

Mary makes time-lapse art videos of her whimsical watercolor paintings. The videos are set to music and often finished off with a word from Mary herself showcasing her strong, quirky personality. I love watching her videos when I’m just looking to relax and take a break from writing.  She also is a great example of a woman being her authentic self, pursuing what she loves to do.

2.  Michelle Phan 

“Just another old soul dreamer with childlike faith. Teaching and inspiring everyone to become their own best makeup artist :) So sit back, enjoy and let’s play with makeup!”

With over 5 million subscribers, Michelle has proven her relevancy online.  Her approach covers how-to beauty and lifestyle videos, applicable for all ages.  I appreciate her angle of education, using fashion and make-up to teach others to ‘feel fabulous in their own skin.’

3.  Grace Helbig 

“Yes. You’re right.” 

Formally known as Daily Grace, Grace Helbig uploads videos nearly every day.  As her former name suggests, this channel showcases the hilarious daily life, opinions and reflections of the one and only Grace.  Viewers are drawn in masses to her straightforward humor and continual insight into her very own life.  In March she will be starring in a featured film called Camp Takota.

4.  Emily Graslie 

“I’m Emily, the Chief Curiosity Correspondent of The Field Museum in Chicago, former volunteer of the University of Montana Zoological Museum, and I’d like to share some of the amazing things we have in the collection with the Internet!”

Like a professor of YouTube, Emily provides educational related videos mostly about animals.  You will not only be educated by her videos, but also entertained and fall in love with her witty personality.  I appreciate the type of content she produces, serving as a fabulous role model for young girls looking to go into sciences.  While she has only been on YouTube one year, she is gaining subscribers and views at a cheetah-like pace.

5.  Lindsey Stirling

“I love to play the violin, dance, write music, edit videos, play dress up, and perform.  So, I combined it all together and this is what happened.” 

Lindsey is a prime example of how YouTube can help get you discovered.  She began in 2007, choreographing and performing violin performances of cover songs.  It is unlike anything you have seen.  Not only are the videos captivating to watch, but also you will want to purchase her original music to rock out even when afk. (away from the keyboard).

6.  Lizzie Bennet Diaries 

“My year long video diary of my sisters, my best friend Charlotte, and eventually a guy named Darcy.”

Technically Lizzie Bennet is a fictional character on YouTube, just like the web series she stars in, adapted from Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice story.  In the form of vlogs, Lizzie and a cast of characters are set to have you entertained. Student Affairs professionals may also find it interesting that Lizzie is a Communication Graduate Student.

7.  Christina Grimmie 

“As you can probably tell I love singing, writing songs, writing music and I play piano and a little drums & guitar!”

Her voice will have you hooked.  Young, extremely talented and sticking to her values, Christina is on her way to world tours and gold albums.  Popularized by cover songs, she is making her own now with solid original music.  She reminds me of the musically talented students I have worked with over the years, providing a positive example of how hard work will pays off over time.

8.  Brittani Louise Taylor 

“My name is Brittani, and I am an actress/artist/super nerd!”

The quirky, hilarious and all out there Brittani Louise Taylor is pure fun.  If you can keep up with her quick humor, you’ll quickly forget about the worries of the day.  I find that she is extremely connected with her subscribers, building a community of engaged fans.  She openly talks about how she was bullied growing up and works to empower her viewers.

9.  Katilette 

“Please keep the video comments clean or I will block you….Thanks” 

Colette Butler, commenly known by her YouTube persona Katilette, is the wife of popular YouTuber Shaycarl.  Their family composed of five children are part of a daily vlogging series called ‘Shaytards’.  While Colette uses another name online, who she is both in person and online are extremely congruent.  She is genuinely caring, authentic and inspiring.  Just like her channel description reads, she challenges viewers to be appropriate and positive community members.  She is a wonderful example for both young girls, as well as moms.

10. Louise Watson

“Aloha! I love beauty, babies (particularly mine) and shopping. Come on in, the water’s fine!”

Get ready for some serious sparkle; Louise calls her subscribers ‘Sprinklerinos’!  Who says lifestyle and beauty vlogs can’t come with a pack of personality?  Even further, Louise delves into deep topics like self-harm, body issues and self-esteem.  I recently sought out this channel after meeting Louise at a YouTube event, she is just as lovely in person as seen online.

Interested in an entire collection of female content on one channel?  Check out these two:

What other female YouTube channels are on your must-subscribe list?  Please include them in the comments below!

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