I always say you can go through life being afraid of the I don’t knows, but what is life if you only travel safe?
When my mother asks me: “Roseanne, are you sure it’s going to work out?
And my reply is always, “Mom, I have no idea, but I have a good feeling about this and that’s all that really matters right now.”
When I’m out and about and I happen to tell someone about roseannetangrs, the blog and the youtube channel, probably the most common question I get asked is how I started this whole thing. I get it from friends, and fledgling bloggers who want to know how I got “big” or why I started what I do in the first place. So, I thought it would be almost necessary to blog about it.
roseannetangrs started on YouTube back in March 2009. I was 18 years old, about to finish my senior year in high school and with the onset of Senior prom around the corner and my parents believing I didn’t need a professional make-up artist to do my make-up, I thought I’d look online to see what I could conjure up for this seemingly special day. That day I logged onto youtube to find so many awesome videos was the day I got hooked. I got hooked bad. Make-up wasn’t superficial to me, it was my me-time in the morning getting ready and looking “pretty”, that gave me the confidence I needed to carry through with my responsibilities at school. Senior Year was tough – I was President of the Medical Club and President of the Community Service Council which overlooked all service clubs at school and I was taking primarily college level courses in..High School. I lead a team of 10 (executives and trainees) for a club of 150 for the Medical Club and had to lead multitudes for the community service council, leading and attending about 8 meetings a week. Make-up to me wasn’t about looking hot for that boy in my afternoon class, it was about looking hot for me.
That being said, I thought it would be fun one day to upload a video on YouTube about a haul of make-up palettes I bought from my blog shop. It really was one of my first major make-up purchases and I remember being throughly excited. This never was intentional, I have to say that I kind of stumbled onto it. I never intentionally had any inkling that this was going to be bigger than I thought it ever would. I thought maybe five or six views was impressive to know that people were actually watching me. So, I stacked a bunch of books ontop of a tissue box, and my sony camera that I hated ontop of that and pressed record. I wasn’t nervous, a little excited though, because I knew that I was just going to upload it and then go have dinner downstairs. I didn’t know or have any intentions that I was ever going to become what I am today. Here’s that very first video:
I can’t say I always wanted to attend makeup school, and be a makeup artist and be all make-up, make-up, make-up. When I tell a friend about what I do, sometimes the first question they ask me is “Did you go to makeup school?”. But honestly, to do what I do, you don’t need a formal institution because it’s possible to learn it yourself. I did.
It was a long journey, no doubt. I still remember the day when I knew I had to do my own prom make-up and I had no idea how. I looked it up on YouTube and one of the first gurus I laid eyes on was Panacea81, before she got really famous. She now has her own makeup line, By Lauren Luke, at department stores. It was the first time I ever saw a tutorial but that video led to a YouTube obsession. If you really like something, you won’t even realize how much time you spend watching makeup videos and I ‘m sure a load of you will agree. I took it to the next level though. Every night I would watch my fill on my macbook, set it down next to my bed, and sleep. The minute I wake up, I would reach out and feel around for my macbook and wham bham I’m back to watching videos for a few minutes before getting up. It was my morning coffee. Then, I would bring it to the bathroom and brush my teeth while I continue learning and watching and well…get ready for the day. I learned what I know from blogs, YouTube, and TV. Once you learn the basics, you can explore on your own and start to develop your own opinions about products and how you can deliver your opinions to your audiences better. If I can learn all of this myself, so can you and I don’t mean to sound like Yan Can Cook.
Then with all stories, more and more people watched it, and I started to get subscribers. People actually liked me. So, after one video, I started to upload more videos not to garner views or attract subscribers but because I loved filming and uploading. It was almost stress-relieving. As time went on, I wanted to make something a little more out of this and created a brand, a name and a story behind it. I wanted to make a difference. Most make-up gurus don’t apply the product on the camera from bare face to finished face and I often wanted to see products on real skin not just having the person “talk” about it. I wanted them to show me what they meant. My videos provide that and I wanted to display almost another realm of honesty. My Queen Helene Mint Julep mask, my second video, has nearly 60,000 views.
I started blogging to create another platform for my videos. Back then, I would just embed the video in the post and click publish. But then, I started to make awesome friends from blogging. I remember going on my first outing with Diana (adorebeauty), Julaiha (fiestyskies), Joyce (forensia330), Sarah Chaudry (facesbysarah) and Maddy (madcancer7) – my first blogger meet-up. Soon, blogging became a place where I shared my make-up finds with my blogger friends and everyone else who wanted to see what I had to offer too. I took YouTube much more seriously then but I decided to up my game in blogging by providing something different. I rarely ever read blogs that actually showed their naked face from start to finish online. Most of them would just upload press pictures of the product and then talk about it. I wanted in-depth reviews, I wanted cool pictures that showed those points, I wanted it fun and then roseannebeauty came along.
From the pictures, to the swatches, to the little humor I added in the text – roseannebeauty became my vision of what a beauty blog should be. It became a place where I could talk to viewers, say what I wanted to say and most of all keep it real. None of that glitter shimmer, finger kawaii peace sign stuff. Just down to earth how-to’s and reviews in a detailed but easy to understand light.
Roseannebeauty is my old blog now and I can’t believe I’m finally moving to greener pastures. I guess in a sense, I became what I am today because of my relentless passion to keep improving myself and to really never be complacent with what I offered. Blogging and social media really started to grow with me and I guess I came in at the right time, of course unintentionally though.
Beauty to me isn’t just a past time, hobby or interest. It means much more. It is an outlet, an expression and most of all a tribute to yourself. I wanted to help, inspire and empower the the everyday woman. Cliché as it sounds, makeup to me was the only time I had time for myself. That ten or fifteen minutes in front of my vanity, making myself pretty for no one else but me helped at least probably one of the hardest times I had through a breakup. I do what I do to help. To give that big bear hug, a tissue or even a little added fun to learning something new. I say, never do something without a passion or a mission, and with roseannetangrs, I hope that it’s clear.
The best thing about it though is that you can relate and you become a friend who’s there for your viewers and readers when they need help with not only beauty issues, but personal ones as well. I have wonderful people emailing me about school or life problems and I’m glad that they chose me to give them advice. It’s hard work that gives passion a backbone. I’m a 20 year old girl running her own show, and trust me it’s a one-man show that’s not easy. I make it a point to reply to as many people as I can, if not all because I know that if I was a viewer, I’d like to be treated the same way. And that’s the exact mentality that you should have.
You get to make friends with viewers you haven’t met before. Ok, you’re probably thinking “roseanne, that’s how cyber stalking works,” No No. The beauty of it all is meeting people, caring about them, knowing them, and then when you finally meet, it’s like the coolest thing ever. I get spotted on the streets in Melbourne and Singapore and I apologize to people who spotted me at the start because boy was I awkward turtle. When someone comes up to you, you’re lost for words really because wow. I was that girl no one knew and wow, you know me. It’s sort of a surreal experience because you’re meeting people who appreciate you and your work.
Blogging and YouTube helped me with my personal growth. It made me really re-think what I valued most and to be able to not only practice it but preach it. To be outspoken for what I believed in and to encourage others to do the same. To come out of my shell and say hello – to be bold, to be kind, to know when to take things lightly and to be open to both sides of the story. I became generally a better, friendly and more confidant woman – which is exactly what I wanted for all my viewers and readers.
For press, I still remember when I discovered that I was mentioned on Yahoo Singapore’s Weekend Edition thanks to I-S Magazine. I was studying for my statistics final so I was muddled doing Wilcoxon rank sum tests, trying to understand the whole thing and quite depressed. A friend suddenly What’s App-ed me saying, Roseanne, I saw your blog on Yahoo! Immediately I stood up, ran to the nearest computer I could find and logged on. And there it was. I was…kind of speechless really, but more so extremely happy. It’s that sort of thing where all you can say is “Wow”. I shared it with friends on facebook and for the rest of the night, let’s say I couldn’t exactly concentrate on statistics anymore. Since then, I’ve been featured in The Straits Times, Singapore’s National Newspaper, The Straits Times Urban and even LianHe Wanbao. You really don’t know where your life will take you.
And that’s how it started. I had zero followers, no one knew what roseannetangrs was and then one day they did. Of course the journey there wasn’t that simple but it was doable. And honestly, you never realize what you’ve accomplished until you look back and say “wow”.
I have to say that this whole blogging and youtubing has given me such an enriching experience. From the friends you make, to the people and the companies you meet, I have to say that this experience gives you lessons you would have never learnt otherwise. It has given me a whole other dimension and it all started one fine day when I decided to plop my camera on a box of tissues and start filming.
Of course, if you have any questions at all, feel free to comment below!
“Just try your best, try everything you can” – The Middle, Jimmy Eat World