By Emma Sánchez
It’s Black History Month, and also the month of love. So why not give some love to Black content creators this month by adding a new YouTuber to your watch list? Most of the channels I’ve listed down below are commentary channels — my favorite thing to watch — but there are so many Black content creators out there covering topics ranging from art, music, fashion and so much more. There is something for everyone.
Tee Noir’s videos are for the times you just want to sit and think about society. Whether it’s her movie and TV show reviews or her commentary on social trends or her amazing eyeshadow looks, you can always expect content that will leave you wanting to learn more.
Harriyanna is one of my go-to YouTubers, because I relate to her content a lot. We are both from the same weird gap in between millennials and Gen-Zers, and so we grew up on the same content. Harriyanna taps into this shared “Zillenial” nostalgia and centers her videos around family entertainment of the time. She invites us to look back on shows and movies through a critical lens, especially in terms of how they portray characters of color.
While the YouTube beauty guru community is known for its controversy — especially when it comes to colorism and blatant racist remarks — some gems are still in it for the original reward of it all: the art. Shalom Blac is a Los Angeles-based Nigerian beauty guru who creates videos about makeup, hair, fashion and beauty tips. You can see Blac’s talent shine through her makeup and hair transformations and her step-by-step tutorials. She is also an advocate for welcoming all types of people into the beauty community, as she adds “Burn Survivor” to her Instagram biography, wearing the fact she is a burn survivor with pride.
After posting his videos calling out Shane Dawson and Jeffree Star, D’Angelo Wallace has quickly become one of the most trending drama YouTubers. His videos are so well-structured and edited, it’s like you’re watching a full-length documentary about these problematic YouTubers. That, combined with his dry sense of humor, leaves you constantly on the edge of your seat.
Comedian EJ has been on YouTube since its heyday in 2011. She’s posted numerous skits since then, my personal favorite being her recent video, “Types of single friends: On Valentine’s Day.” Other videos on her channel feature storytimes and important discussions with her husband, sports YouTuber FJ 3000. She recently gained a large viewership from her video “Can we normalize regular faces?!” which discusses the pressure women on YouTube, not just beauty gurus, get for always having to look their best.
Al-Tariq Harris prefaces his channel with the following mantra: “The mission is to make every Black kid who grew up loving cartoons feel normal.” He does so through merging his love for cartoons, hip-hop and Black culture in his video essays, as well as through his artwork on his Instagram page. To get a feel for what his channel is about, watch his long-term video analysis project: “How To BLACK.”
Given that I have a word limit, here are some more great content creators to check out: I Am Eloho, Kennie J.D., ItzKeisha, Khadija Mbowe, Kat Blaque, T1J, MissDarcei and so many more!
We need to look at who we’re following on YouTube and ask ourselves if we’re getting diverse perspectives. Ask yourself: are the Black people I see on social media only through memes and reaction videos? Or am I taking the time to look for Black content creators that cover topics I’m interested in? While these content creators aren’t new in any shape or form to the YouTube platform, some are only now starting to blow up. If anyone on this list interests you, please take a look at some of their videos, check out some of their merch, makeup lines and other projects outside of YouTube!