Dutch beauty YouTuber and makeup artist NikkieTutorials has come out as a transgender woman in a video posted on Monday to her 12 million-plus YouTube subscribers.
The YouTube star whose real name is Nikkie de Jager, is one of the most popular and prolific beauty YouTubers in the world and became well known online for her “power of makeup” videos. She has worked with celebrities like Jessie J and Lady Gaga during her 11-year-long career – which began at age 14.
The 25-year-old Netherlands-based beauty-guru shared her transition story in a video titled “I’m Coming Out“. In the 17-minute video, Nikki described her coming out process, from awareness to full acceptance.
“When I was younger, I was born in the wrong body, which means that I am transgender.
“I am NikkieTutorials, and I am Nikkie. I am me. We don’t need labels. But if we are going to put a label on it, yes, I am transgender. But at the end of the day, I am me.”
In her video, Nikkie documents her gender-journey from when she started wearing girls’ clothes at age seven or eight, began hormone therapy and used “growth stoppers” at age 14, and fully transitioned at age 19 after she started making YouTube videos.
She thanked her mother for her unwavering support during childhood.
“Growing up, I think the No. 1 thing I’m the most thankful for is my mom — love you, Mom — because she has been there for me since day one.”
Her experience with other people around her was mixed, but mostly positive.
“Some kids got it, and other kids in my class did not, which is fine,” she said.
“But I will always be so thankful for all the teachers at that school who supported my journey and supported me.”
Nikkie says the reason she came out now was to stand up for herself and the transgender community in the face of a blackmailer threatening to out her to the press and denying her the opportunity to come out in her own terms.
“At first it was frightening to know that there are people out there that are so evil that they can’t respect someone’s true identity,” Nikkie said.
“It is vile and it is gross … they said they wanted to leak it because I’m lying or that I don’t want to tell my truth or that I’m too scared to tell people who I truly am.”
Nikkie also summarised that her coming out as trans should not affect how she’s perceived in the beauty-community and drew parallels between the transformative elements of makeup, and the transformative aspects of her life.
“The reason why the trans part of me never got to the light, was because I wanted my channel to be about my art. I wanted my art to do the speaking for me,” Nikkie said.
“So, I hope you understand that after all these years, I’m sharing it with you now, but nothing changes because at the end of the day, on my channel, my number one passion is the power of makeup.
“My number one passion is makeup, the power of transforming myself – and boy I’ve had a transformation, huh!” she said while giving her iconic chuckle.