A Global Guide to Beauty Influencers

By Ava Reilly

True confession: I’m a makeup addict, and my obsession is watching tutorials on YouTube and Instagram. There is so much content from all over the world thanks to influencers sharing the latest trends — and creative feats of imagination (highlighters can do what?)— with their millions of fans. And since likes and follows translate to mega-popularity, even the biggest beauty brands are clamoring to collaborate with these makeup mavens. (If you’re Rihanna, however, you can simply create your own company.) So, how do you sift through the noise to find the best international gurus to emulate? I’ve gone down the rabbit hole and emerged, doused in glitter, to present my picks.

Gina Shkeda


Celebrity makeup artist.

Signature look: Natural, minimalist

Key quotes: “I love flushy, blushy vibes,” “So far so bronzy!”

Collaborations: Glasses USA, Vichy Canada, Glamglow

YouTube subscribers: 723,000

Instagram followers: 912,000

Evelina Forsell


Cruelty-free makeup artist and winner of 2017’s Nordic Face Awards.

Signature look: Extravagant makeup looks with fun, vibrant eyes.

Key quote: “Highlight, hello!”

Collaborations: Mulac Cosmetics, No Society, Wet n Wild

YouTube subscribers: 453,000

Instagram followers: 211,000

Karolina Griciute


Makeup artist with a touch of the avant-garde.

Signature look: Dreamy, ethereal contouring and other special effects that mostly convey “woodland nymph”

Collaborations: GlamGlow, LovingTan, Iconic London

YouTube subscribers: 207,000

Instagram followers: 566,000

Nikkie De Jager


Marc Jacobs Beauty’s global artistry adviser. Also well-known for starting the “Power of Makeup” trend on YouTube.

Signature look: Full coverage, daring eyeshadow, shiny highlighter on cheeks

Key quote: “Oh my God, look at that: It’s pink, its gold, its beautiful!”

Collaborations: Ofra Cosmetics, Marc Jacobs, Too Faced

YouTube subscribers: 12 million

Jackie Aina

Los Angeles

Advocates for people of color in the makeup industry. Recently partnered with makeup brand Too Faced to expand its foundation range to accommodate darker skin types.

Signature look: Bold, colorful eyes

Key quote: “Now I’m going to take my TooFaced Hangover RX Spray and finish the deal. This. Has. Power. You know it. You feel it.”

Collaborations: Anastasia Beverly Hills, e.l.f cosmetics, Sigma Beauty

YouTube subscribers: 3 million

Instagram followers: 1.2 million

Mari Maria


Cosmetics creator and YouTuber.

Signature look: Big eyelashes and flawless skin

Key quote: “Hola princesas!”

Collaborations: Baw Clothing, Desinchá beauty, Óculos Menina Flor

YouTube subscribers: 7.3 million

Instagram followers: 10 million

Nam Vo

New York City

Skin care specialist and celebrity makeup artist for Kylie Jenner, Rosie Huntington-Whiteley and Chrissy Teigen.

Signature look: A “dewy dumpling”

Key quote: “Looking fresh, plump, and delicious — just like a dumpling.”

Collaborations: Bobbi Brown, Peach and Lily, K-Beauty

Instagram followers: 238,00



Chart-topping recording artist, founder of Fenty Beauty and advocate for people of color in the makeup industry. Unveiled 50 shades of foundation in her first launch.

Signature look: Sultry eyes, a statement lip

Key quote: “This highlight is giving me life right now.”

Collaborations: MAC cosmetics, Sephora, Boots

Instagram followers: 8 million

Huda Kattan


Makeup artist and founder of Huda Beauty.

Signature look: Classic glam

Key quote: “Messy lashes are sexy lashes!”

Collaborations: MAC cosmetics, L’Oreal, Tweezerman

YouTube subscribers: 3 million

Instagram followers: 1.2 million

Lauren Curtis


A multitasking beauty influencer who also does hair tutorials and product reviews.

Signature look: The fresh-faced girl nextdoor

Key quote: “Make up your own rules.”

Collaborations: LovingTan, Universal Pictures, Boost Juice

YouTube subscribers: 3 million

Instagram followers: 1.4 million

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