A popular YouTuber who has been sharing beauty tutorials for the last 11 years has come out as transgender.
Nikkie de Jager, known as NikkieTutorials to her over 25 million combined followers on YouTube and Instagram, posted a video on Monday revealing that she began her transition with hormones at 14 – around the same time as she began filming makeup tutorials in her bedroom and posting them online. She had been identifying as a girl as early as age 6.
“When I was younger, I was born in the wrong body,” de Jager says in the video, “which means that I am transgender,” later adding, “I transitioned while on YouTube. I have literally grown up and transformed into me in front of all of you.”
The YouTube star goes on to explain that her beauty channel had been an outlet for her as she went through the process of transitioning as a young person. “I’ve always wanted to live in a world where I saw myself as me, as Nikkie, as a woman, as a girl, as a boss lady,” she says. “I started my channel back in the days where I still got really, really bullied for all of this, and this was my way out. This was my free world where I could truly be me, and you guys didn’t judge me for anything.”
Now 25, the Netherlands native first received international notice with a video called “The Power of Makeup,” which aggregated 40 million views in 2015, according to Yahoo! Lifestyle. The attention has given her the opportunity to show off her transformative beauty skills on the faces of such famous figures as Kim Kardashian, Drew Barrymore, and Lady Gaga.
De Jager also revealed that her decision to come out was partly due to blackmail attempts from individuals who threatened to out her in the press.
She concludes the video, titled “I Am Coming Out,” by saying “Today’s the day. I am free, and I get to be me, finally.”
Subscribers to her YouTube channel were quick to comment with their support, such as one who said, “I can’t imagine how scary this must have been and I’m sorry that circumstances forced this upon you, but your community has your back.” She also received positive messages from followers and fellow influencers on Instagram, such as @davidlopezzz, who wrote, “As if I didn’t already love you enough. Unbelievably happy and proud of you. Forever my makeup queen!”
You can watch the video below.
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