Ingrid Nilsen is a beauty blogger also known as missglamorazzi on YouTube. She posts everything from lifestyle videos on how to eat healthier, to home decor, to seasonal fashion, to nerdy talks about Game of Thrones, and even makeup tutorials! You name it, she’s got it. Recently, she posted a video on her main channel where she came out as a lesbian, and I commend her for it.
People in the comments were quick to support her, of course. However, there were also people who were very quick to try and tear her down.
“I don’t get why people are calling her brave,” one comment said, “soldiers are brave. All she did was come out. I don’t see why it’s a big deal.”
Well, dear YouTube user, it’s a big deal because society makes it a big deal. Should it be? Absolutely not. Everyone should feel free to express their sexuality however they so choose. Does that change the fact that society pressures people to stay in/come out of the closet? No.
And yes, soldiers are brave. I could never do what they do. My dad is an Air Force vet, and I commend him every day for putting his life on the line for the sake of my country.
But what Ingrid did is also brave, albeit for different reasons.
The Challenges of Coming Out
Coming out is hard as it is, even to one person. Ingrid came out to millions of people publicly on the internet. As a large YouTube personality, it was a huge risk for her to come out. She risks losing viewers, support, and even sponsors that keep her making a living on the internet. People can be cruel, and behind the shield of the internet, people lash out, saying things they would never have the courage to say if they were speaking to her face. Being in the public eye as much as she is, she risks receiving death threats among all of the other hate she may be subject to. And on top of all that, Ingrid is breaking new ground for queer women on YouTube.
Lately, more and more bigger YouTube stars are coming out, such as Connor Franta and Joey Graceffa. And congratulations to them! Like I said, coming out is never easy, and coming out on a platform like YouTube with audiences as large as their is even more difficult. However, what we see is a solid trend: most of these people are gay, white, males. A woman coming out is a big deal because it makes room for other women to do the same. And on top of that, Ingrid is an extremely feminine person, who takes an obvious interest in makeup.
When you think of a lesbian, it’s very easy for people to quickly jump to the stereotype of butch lesbians who don’t wear makeup and play softball or what have you. Many of the current lesbian YouTube personalities fit this stereotype in one way or another. Ingrid is breaking the mold. Feminine lesbians are very quick to be written off as “experimenting”, “bi-curious”, or “confused”, because people have this idea of what a lesbian is supposed to look like in their heads. Even the LGBT community is just as guilty as anyone else to do this.
Ingrid sharing her story with the world is a great step in the right direction for queer women hoping to make a name for themselves on YouTube, or in the media in general. She is being a leader for women who might be afraid to be their real selves for fear that they won’t be taken seriously as a queer woman because of their interests in makeup and other typically feminine things. There needed to be a trailblazer, and Ingrid has created one: herself. After all, she is one of the biggest names in YouTube, with over three million subscribers and over two hundred million views on her main channel alone.
Thanks to Ingrid, there is hope that femme lesbians in the media can feel more comfortable with who they are, as well as their expression. They are “gay enough” for the LGBT community, and can be taken seriously as entertainers. Ingrid shows that feminine presentation has nothing to do with one’s sexual or romantic orientations. She is making way for women everywhere, and I hope this means a trend of more women coming out on YouTube, as well as other media outlets.
Watch the completely moving video here:
Photo Credit: 1