- Skin-care expert Caroline Hirons announced via Instagram on Tuesday that she’s leaving YouTube.
- She cited ageism, sexism, and the rise of “unqualified experts” in the industry as factors.
- Speaking with Insider, Hirons said stepping away from the platform is a decision she’s proud of.
- Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.
If you’ve ever turned to the internet for skin-care advice, you’ve probably stumbled upon Caroline Hirons, an advanced aesthetician and brand consultant with hundreds of thousands of followers.
But soon, you won’t find her on YouTube. On Tuesday, Hirons announced in an Instagram live video that she’d be deleting most of her videos, much to the surprise of some fans.
She cited the rise of unqualified skin-care “experts” as one reason she’s leaving the platform, as well as YouTube comments being “horrific.”
Still, Hirons made it clear that she’s not “running away” from anything while speaking with Insider on Wednesday. Instead, she says she’s taking control.
Caroline Hirons announced she’d be leaving YouTube in an Instagram live video
While chatting with her fans about beauty products on Tuesday, Instagram viewers asked Hirons about the status of her upcoming YouTube videos. When Hirons replied that she was actually in the process of deleting “anything that isn’t informative or expertise” from her channel, fans were quick to ask why.
“There is a certain demographic that does very, very well on YouTube — and it’s not a 51-year-old grandmother who happens to be extremely qualified,” Hirons said.
The skin-care expert said she feels the beauty industry is attempting to “tick their inclusivity box” by mainly supporting young men who are white and gay. She also said she wasn’t calling out any particular influencer.
“It’s like, everyone’s an expert — but they’re not,” she said. “Do we have any qualifications, or are we just calling everyone an expert these days? Because I went to school for years. I trained for like 1,000 and something hours to get my qualifications.”
Hirons went on to say that her decision was also impacted by sexism and ageism in the skin-care industry, and the “horrific” comments people face on YouTube. She specifically cited beauty videos from Harper’s Bazaar, and argued that underneath the clips are “a cesspit of mainly women attacking women” while “the boys get a free pass.”
And when it comes to her own videos, Hirons said she’s had to block phrases like “old,” “haggard,” “aging,” “saggy,” and “bad skin,” otherwise she’d be “bombarded” by comments that compare her to younger, unqualified influencers. Those same commenters, according to Hirons, also argue that she’s “not as experienced as a dermatologist.”
“When I was completely open with having a bit of Botox and some filler — because your face naturally drops when you’re menopausal, as I am — I got, ‘I can’t believe you’re having stuff done. So skin care doesn’t work. It’s all a con.’ Right,” she said. “But if I don’t get it done, I’m letting myself go and looking haggard, but if I do have it done, I’m a con.”
Hirons says she’s now ready to focus on her other ventures
Speaking with Insider over Zoom on Wednesday, Hirons reiterated that she’s not leaving YouTube as a result of one thing. Instead, she described “the perfect storm of everything” that inspired her to step away.
“I’m not leaving because of negative comments,” Hirons said. “I’m not that delicate.”
She also said she’s not concerned about unqualified influencers specifically, but with their fans.
According to Hirons, fans of some beauty influencers “think they’re championing” their favorite creators by “going into other people’s comments” and criticizing them. But Hirons said doing so is “actually a disservice” to the creators because their fans are “bringing them into something” she knows they “wouldn’t want to be a part of.”
In fact, Hirons says that young creators inspiring people to purchase skin-care products can only be a good thing. Still, she feels that at some point, their advice “has to come back to science and qualifications.”
According to Hirons, she still gets the most internet traffic from her blog. YouTube, on the other hand, was something she says she did “almost under duress,” with it being something she “enjoyed for a while” before it “became a chore.”
Overall, leaving YouTube is not something Hirons is feeling sad over.
“I’m not running away,” she said. “I’m just taking control, and removing myself from a party that I didn’t really want an invite to in the first place.”