These days Internet celebrities are popping up left and right, rising to fame from behind their computer screens. One of the most noteworthy online stars is YouTube sensation Bethany Mota.
The 18-year-old video blogger got her start in 2009, when she created the YouTube channel Macbarbie07, showing fans her various fashion purchases. Now, she has more than 7 million subscribers, has partnered with Aeropostale, served as a guest judge on Project Runway, and was recently named as a contestant on season 19 of Dancing With the Stars. Mota also landed the cover of Seventeen’s first YouTube issue.
“You have to be your own motivator!” she told the mag. “A lot of teens say they’re bored. Before I got on YouTube, I’d say the same thing. But there is always something you can be doing. There’s always something you can be the best at – you just have to look for it.”
More than boredom, Mota was inspired to start her channel — which looks like a video Pinterest page, filled with her style tips, beauty tutorials, DIY projects, and lists of her favorite things — at age 13 after being bullied in school.
“At first, I made beauty videos that were like everyone else’s – I’d try to act perfect. But then I realized it might be more fun if I was just myself,” she recalled. “So I showed my silly side and kept in the bloopers. I liked those videos way more, and people appreciated that realness.”
In an Internet age, the online beauty and fashion star has learned a lot from growing up on YouTube.
“I think it’s taught me to be a lot more self-motivated and has taught me how to encourage myself and not rely on a teacher or a boss telling me what to do,” she added. “I’m my own boss. My biggest thing to overcome has been not being afraid to be different. It’s safer to do what everyone else is doing, but it pays off way more to be yourself.”