Exactly one month — to the day — after James Charles announced a YouTube hiatus, the 20-year-old has returned to his channel with a Pride-themed makeup tutorial.
Charles embarked on his hiatus after an explosive friendship dissolution with fellow prominent beauty vloggers Tati Westbrook and Jeffree Star last month, amid accusations of fair-weather friendship and sexual misconduct. Charles fiercely denied the latter charge. At the time, Charles said he was stepping away from YouTube due to suicidal thoughts and following criticism that he had developed an outsized ego — a legitimate critique, he acknowledged.
That said, Charles never fully left social media, keeping his Instagram Stories and Snapchat updated regularly, and readying other projects on the back burner.
“I’ve worked on a lot of fun things,” Charles says, claiming that he has done “a lot of growing and thinking” over the past month. “Let’s be real, when I said that I was taking a social media break, I kind of just meant from like being so in it. For the past three years, I’ve been literally addicted to filming videos, and checking my social media. It was so much fun, but it got to a point where it was incredibly toxic for me and my mental health.”
Charles’ comeback video is titled Hi Sisters — perhaps a nod to Westbrook’s now-deleted Bye Sister video, which set the entire firestorm into motion — and comprises a rainbow-themed eyeshadow tutorial in honor of Pride Month. During the half-hour video, Charles also provides some updates on other goings-on during his break — including celebrating his 20th birthday on Catalina Island (which turned into a meet-and-greet of sorts), and working on music videos with Cimorelli.
Charles also shares that all of the AdSense money earned from the Hi Sisters video will be donated to The Trevor Project, a crisis intervention and suicide prevention organization for LGBTQ+ youth. Ingrid Nilsen and Eugene Lee Yang are also currently raising money for The Trevor Project in honor of Pride). Furthermore, Charles will seek to raise additional funds via his Sisters Apparel brand. (Sisters was previously affiliated with Star’s Killer Merch operation, but Charles ceased the partnership in the wake of their feud). Sisters Apparel will be re-launching soon, he says, with “a huge chunk of the proceeds” from a designated Pride collection going to the Trevor Project.
You can check out Charles’ comeback video below: