Beauty Influencer James Charles Is Called Out After Referring To Chinese Makeup Styles As “Korean”

Controversial beauty influencer James Charles is catching heat for what many consider a racist “mix-up” in a new video.

James Charles | @jamescharles/Instagram

James Charles is an American make-up artist who rose to fame by posting beauty content on his YouTube. The 24-year-old has over 23 million subscribers on his YouTube account and is also active on many other platforms.

In some of the newest content shared on his channel, James Charles explains that he will be starting a series where he will try out makeup styles from different places worldwide. This first video, titled “Trying A Full Face Of Korean Makeup,” was intended to emulate the soft and distinct trends found in Korea.

James Charles mentions that he spent a lot of time researching products and Korean influencers to ensure he would do things respectfully and accurately. However, many became skeptical of this claim after reviewing the images he used in the video’s thumbnail image.

The two images are of “Douyin” (China’s version of TikTok) or Chinese makeup styles, which emphasize blush and create a more dramatic “natural” eye look.

| Jooschica/YouTube

One of the people listed as examples of “Korean style make-up” in the video is actually a popular Douyin user known for posting beauty content.

| @lafu911/Douyin

While some could confuse the different styles, many have criticized James Charles specifically because he claimed to have researched the topic. Using these different makeup styles attributed to other cultures can be viewed as seeing Asia as a monolith, something that is racist.

James Charles has not responded to the criticism over the video.

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