Welcome to Creators Going Pro, where in partnership with Semaphore — a creator-focused family of companies providing business and financial services to social media professionals — we profile professional YouTube stars who have hit it big by doing what they love. Each week, we’ll chat with a creator about the business side of their channel, including identifying their Semaphore Moment — the moment they truly went pro.
Adelaine Morin wants to do it all.
The fashion, beauty, and lifestyle YouTuber joined the platform in 2011, and since then has built out two successful channels: her eponymous core channel, which has 2.6 million subscribers and features a range of content across her interests, and her daily vlog channel, which has 1.1 million subscribers and gives viewers a look at “Adelaine’s cameral roll.”
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Morin updates both channels regularly (along with her Instagram — 1.1 million followers — and Twitter — 319,000 — accounts), focusing on beauty tutorials, haul videos, and glimpses of her everyday life. But she’s also set her sights — and her career goals — far beyond YouTube. For her, the platform is a launchpad, providing a solid foundation for the diverse career paths she has in mind. Paths like opening her own boutique, building an app startup, and creating bestselling lines of clothing and makeup.
And Morin doesn’t just want to walk one of these paths. She wants to walk all of them. At 21, she’s already graduated beauty school and put the skills she honed there to work, placing fifth in Seventeen Magazine’s Beauty Smartie Showdown and placing sixth in the NYX Face Awards. She’s also launched multiple clothing collections and lines, including her flagship Girls Supporting Girls merch.
2019 is shaping up to be Morin’s biggest year yet. She’s built out a team of “girlbosses” ahead of the April release of a major collaboration — the details of which are still under wraps. For now, Morin sat down to chat with Tubefilter about how and why she’s made it this far, and where she wants to go.
Tubefilter: Tell us a bit about your background. How did you get into fashion and beauty?
Adelaine Morin: I grew up in a half French-Canadian, half Filipino household, meaning my siblings and I were always loud, singing, and performing. I got my first foundation, blush, eyeliner, and lipstick for my school play of Hairspray! From productions like Beauty and the Beast, Alice in Wonderland, and Camp Rock, I know all the songs and played with makeup every single time we’d perform live. Playing with makeup and having my makeup done was my favourite part of performing.
I was introduced to makeup, I started watching beauty videos on YouTube from creators like like JuicyStar07, Michelle Phan, MeganHeartsMakeup, and MacBarbie07. I started learning online and grew a passion for makeup. Today, I am a certified makeup artist and pursuing what I love.
As for fashion, I’ve always collected magazines and tried to follow the trends (which was a HUGE MISTAKE now that I’m looking back at my ugly outfits!). I expressed myself with my colourful clothing and always had so much fun pairing outfits together, wearing what other people don’t normally wear and creating my own style. I took a fashion class, got educated, and now have a clothing line where I sell #GirlsSupportingGirls and #BeepBop apparel with comfortable fabrics, beautiful designs, and new products coming out almost every month. Makeup and fashion are what I’m TRULY passionate about, and my fans (my Adelangels) are able to see that so clearly. I put love into every makeup look and apparel piece I make.
Tubefilter: You were on HelloStyle, and you took part in the Seventeen Magazine Beauty Smartie Showdown and the NYX Face Awards. How did those experiences come about?
AM: I give experiences like Seventeen Beauty Smartie Showdown and NYX Face Awards a lot of credit for growing my channel. By entering these contests, I was collaborating with my competitors, sharing our audiences, and although we were competitors, we grew and helped each other in the end.
If I were to give any advice to new YouTubers or makeup artists, it would be to put yourself out there. You will never be 100% ready — enter contests, post that video that you kind of hate, just DO IT! You will never get anywhere overthinking.
Tubefilter: What led you to YouTube as the place to share your content? You started your YouTube channel when you were pretty young, so was it more of a fun hobby for you, or did you log on hoping to make it your career?
AM: I started my career as a fan and a viewer, as so many amazing YouTubers have. I had such a passion and such a love for YouTube, the community on YouTube, the feeling of having a friend or big sister to look up to. Life is hard, and some people may see YouTube as an escape or relaxation time. That’s what I love. Back then, I didn’t even know you were even able to get PAID doing YouTube videos! What?! Being paid for what you love to do? I remember I signed with my first MCN and got my first wire transfer and it was probably only a couple dollars, but I was the HAPPIEST girl in the world! $5 could buy me a new mascara for my videos!
Tubefilter: When was your first brand deal?
AM: My first brand deal, I did for a Chinese-based clothing company that I did for FREE! I was so excited to receive free product just because of my YouTube! I felt like Kylie Jenner getting that free ISH! I was a grateful queen!
Tubefilter: What about partnerships or sponsorships with brands since then?
AM: After almost eight years on YouTube, I’ve done more brand deals than I could count. And I’m so proud of that! Nowadays I believe it’s not about WHAT you know, it’s about WHO you know. I’ve made so many new friends and contacts that support me, and I support them. Girls supporting girls! I actually have a HUGE COLLABORATION coming out April 2019, but it’s a secret, so keep it between us!
Tubefilter: How many people are on your team? Do you have a manager or network? How have they helped you grow your channel and career?
AM: As of January 2019, I’ve grown my team to help me with my huge collaboration coming up in April! I have my manager, publicist, editor, and assistant. I love them all to death, and they all help me in different ways. My manager manages my brand deals, my publicist gets me in articles/magazines/talk shows, my editor edits my daily vlogs and weekly beauty videos, and my assistant helps me organize events, shoots, respond to emails, and keep me organized! I never think of me as the boss of them or them as the boss of me. Together, we are a team, and we succeed when everyone on our team succeeds. Lots of girlboss action!
Tubefilter: You have a mix of content, but you do lots of beauty tutorials. What draws you to tutorials?
AM: I LOVE doing makeup tutorials because I love having meaning behind my content. I never want you to watch a video and feel like you wasted 10 minutes of your day. I want you to feel like you were talking with a friend, maybe learned something, and overall just feel positive and better than you were feeling before. Since graduating makeup school, I’ve become more confident in my skills and have started doing makeup on friends more, makeup on my Insta more, and practicing! I always remind myself, “You cannot use up creativity, the more you use the more you have.”
Tubefilter: What was that Semaphore Moment for you—the first time you realized you were a professional YouTuber?
AM: I still don’t feel like I’ve “made it” on YouTube. I’m never satisfied with where I am right now. I crave becoming a better version of myself, I crave better results, and I crave self-expression. I definitely have to work on this, and have been going to a life coach to improve my mood, work behaviours, and mental health, because I’m a workaholic and never stop.
I’m SO GRATEFUL and SO THANKFUL for the best job in the entire world. I’m so grateful for my amazing Adelangels that watch me every day, allow me to express myself, buy my apparel, hug me at meet-and-greets, and allow me to have this crazy job. I never want to stop working for my fans! I truly believe they are the most supportive, kind, understanding, genuine community on YouTube. I always see them lifting each other up in their posts. It makes me the happiest girl in the world.
Tubefilter: What’s your production schedule like? Do you have a set filming/uploading schedule?
AM: My goal production schedule is Monday to Friday daily vlogs on YouTube, weekly beauty videos on YouTube every Sunday, daily Instagram posts for my #100DaysOfMakeupChallenge, daily Snapchats, and daily tweets. I haven’t nailed the YouTube part yet, but we’re getting there!
Tubefilter: How long does it take you to film and edit, for example, a haul video? How does that compare to the time you have to put into a tutorial?
AM: On the average haul video, it takes me around an hour to prep (getting my supplies, setting up the background, setting up lighting, setting up my camera, and clearing a memory card), around one to three hours to film (which is crazy because we have to cut it down to around 10 minutes), and another hour cleaning (putting lighting away, camera equipment away, props away, etc.). Add another 30 minutes to gather my footage and transfer over to my editor, Rosie, who normally takes around two hours to an ENTIRE DAY to edit a video! Tutorial videos normally take double that time.
Tubefilter: When did you really feel like you’d found your audience? How did you grow that audience?
AM: I think people are obsessed with blowing up on YouTube overnight. It’s rare, it happens, but it’s not sustainable. I feel like you’ve found your audience after you’ve posted frequently, grew SLOWLY but consistently, and you start to see your community of people. You start recognizing people that keep coming back every video and you start to make friends! That’s how I feel like you’ve found your audience! I grew my audience exactly like that. Slow and steady wins the race!
Tubefilter: What’s next for you and your channel? What are you building toward?
AM: I want to be the Elon Musk of YouTube. Elon has Tesla and Space X. I not only want to have my YouTube poppin’, I want my clothing line to be sold in stores, my makeup to sell out because people trust my products, to start my hosting career on both YouTube and traditional media, maybe open up my own makeup boutique in Toronto or LA, and have my own apps that people who don’t even know me can use. I have big plans for the future! Grab your popcorn and watch!
And if you’re a young girl who has HUGE dreams, know that you can achieve anything you put your mind to. Never listen to people who laugh at your dreams. Figure out what you like/what makes you happy and become a BOSS at it. You don’t have to know how to do it, just focus on it, talk about it, do things related to what you like and it will come to you. If you feel like nobody around you believes in you, know that I believe in you! The future is female! #GirlsSupportingGirls 💛💛💛
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