Since its launch in 2005, video site YouTube has provided a platform for people who have struggled to find representation elsewhere - more specifically, members of the LGBTQ+ community.
These are 10 of the best YouTubers from the LGBTQ+ community that you should be watching.
PhilosophyTube is a channel run by YouTuber Abigail Thorn. She started the channel back in 2013, when she decided to provide free philosophy lessons following the 2012 increase in tuition fees in Britain.
Since 2018, the channel has taken on a very theatrical identity, with Thorn utilising studio sets, costumes and dramatic lighting. Her channel covers a variety of topics, from antisemitism to video games, censorship to anime.
In 2019, Thorn also hosted a charity livestream in which she aimed to read the Complete Words of Shakespeare in order to raise money for the Samaritans, which is a UK charity focusing on helping people with their mental health.
She featured a number of other YouTubers to play roles during the livestream, and ended up raising £109,447.54 in total for the charity.
On her other channel, PhilosophyTube Live, she also posted another video titled Coming Out As Trans - A Little Public Statement.
Rose and Rosie
Rose Ellen Dix and Rosie Spaughton are two married English YouTubers.
Between the two of them, they run three YouTube accounts: Rose and Rosie Vlogs, which features day in the life and vlogging videos; Rose and Rosie which has more sit down and structured style videos, such as Q&A’s, storytimes, reaction videos and challenges; and Let's Play Games which is the duo’s gaming channel, and sees the two playing a number of popular video games, such as Until Dawn, Fortnite and Fall Guys.
Over the course of their career, they have documented their relationship on YouTube, from Rose proposing, the wedding, the two deciding to have a baby, Rosie getting pregnant and subsequently giving birth to their baby boy Ziggy Wilder.
They have written and released a book together in 2018, called Overshare: Love, Laughs, Sexuality and Secrets, and in August 2020 launched a podcast called Rose and Rosie: Parental Guidance, which follows the couple as they begin their journey to start a family.
Elle Mills, who runs the YouTube channel ElleOfTheMills, is a Canadian YouTuber who first started really gaining popularity in 2017, although by that point she had already amassed 15,000 subscribers.
Her videos are often described as short form John Hughes films, due to her style of editing, music choices and voiceovers. She posts a variety of content, and usually has huge productions, such as recreating her prom so she can win prom queen, or trying to transform her house into the one from Up by covering it in balloons.
In 2017, Mills posted a video titled Coming Out (Elle Mills Style) in which she came out to her audience, and her friends and family, as bisexual. The same year, Mills managed to surpass the million subscriber mark.
As well as her YouTube channel, Mills also recently launched a podcast with a friend called Crazy Stupid Fangirls.
Based in LA, Miles McKenna, who runs the channel MilesChronicles, is one of the biggest transgender voices on YouTube, with over one million subscribers. McKenna’s channel offers up more of a slice of life type of entertainment, like posting storytimes, Q&As and reading comments from his subscribers.
McKenna has also documented a number of milestones during his transition, including his one-year anniversary of being on testosterone, undergoing top surgery and why he’s decided to stop his testosterone injections.
Initially, McKenna came out as non-binary, but has since come out as a transgender man - he has a video on his YouTube channel reacting to his original coming out video titled I CAME OUT AND I WAS WRONG.
As well as YouTube, McKenna has a book published called Out!: How to Be Your Authentic Self, and also appeared in the 2018 comedy web series All Night as a character called Justin.
Jade Fox, whose YouTube channel is the same as her name, is a content creator and stand up comic who currently lives in Portland with her partner, Jayden.
For the past six years, Fox has been making videos on YouTube, and her motto is: “This is a safe space, but you can get roasted.”
Her videos cover a range of topics, from lifestyle vlogs to film reviews, advice to reaction videos.
Fox has also worked with a variety of brands to help create campaigns aimed at connecting with the LGBTQ+ audiences. In the past, she’s worked with the likes of Calvin Klein, Amazon, Bumble and Netflix.
Additionally, Fox also runs a fashion YouTube channel called MadeYouLooks. She explains on her website that she has always been interested in fashion, but felt that there were no platforms that masculine presenting women like her could turn to so instead, she decided to make her own.
A Wylde, whose YouTube channel is also simply called A Wylde, is a 28-year-old writer, artist and content creator currently living in Colorado.
Wylde began creating YouTube videos in 2010, and posts educational videos about gender, sexuality and self exploration.
Wylde is non-binary, and many of their videos shares their experiences as a non-binary adult, and is aimed at helping those who may be questioning their own gender, with videos like How I knew I was different, Tips for picking cute non-binary names and Talking to kids about being non-binary.
Alongside YouTube, Wylde has also published an art concept book called BLANK, given Ted Talks and runs their own blog which features personal essays, anecdotes and resources.
ThePlasticBoy is a YouTube channel run by Gary Thompson, and is focused on all things beauty and makeup. He has been posting since 2010, and since then has garnered 37.3k subscribers.
In an interview with Glamour Magazine, Thompson explained that he started his channel because he wanted to “showcase being a black boy, doing skin care and beauty reviews for deep skin tones”.
As well as makeup reviews and tutorials, Thompson also posts other content as well, such as vlogs, Q&As and cooking videos as well.
In 2016, L’Oréal Paris UK launched its #YoursTruly campaign, which focused on diversity, and Thompson became the first male model to work with the brand.
As well as L’Oreal, Thompson has also worked with brands such as Anastasia Beverley Hills, Boots, Avon, Estee Lauder, MAC Cosmetics, Primark and Garnier.
ContraPoints is a YouTube channel run by Natalie Wynn, an American YouTube who makes videos across a whole range of topics, including politics, gender, race, social issues and philosophy.
Her videos are structured like long form video essays, ranging from 30 minutes to over an hour in length. She has covered topics like incels, the JK Rowling transphobic controversy and internet cringe culture.
Many of Wynn’s videos feature herself playing different characters, different sets and scenes, elaborate costumes and dramatic aesthetics. Her videos often contain dark humour and verge on the surreal at times.
In 2002, Wynn was nominated for, and won, a Steamy Award for the category of Best Commentary.
Wynn is an openly trangender woman, something which is discussed a lot in her videos. In 2020, she also came out a lesbian in her video titled Shame.
Alayna Joy, who has a YouTube channel under the same name, is a 29-year-old Canadian YouTuber who mainly posts vlogs and discussion type videos.
Previously, a lot of Joy’s videos centred around being bisexual and in a straight relationship with her long term male partner. The two were set to get married, however in 2020, in a video titled The Wedding Is Off: Coming Out Again, Joy revealed that the wedding was cancelled and came out as a lesbian.
Moving forward, Joy’s videos then focused more on navigating life as a lesbian, coming out a bit later in life in her late 20s and finding herself.
Over the course of the UK lockdown, Joy has spent a large amount of time living in the UK, in Sheffield.
California native Kat Blaque, whose YouTube channel is the same as her name, started posting videos back in 2010. Her videos range anywhere from 15 minutes to well over an hour, and cover a range of topics and issues, from culture, race, sexuality and the media.
In 2017, Blaque started a series on her channel called True Tea, where she answers questions from her viewers about topics like racism, transphobia, black culture and more.
Blaque is a transgender woman, and many of her videos discuss what it’s like being a trans woman. When she was younger, Blaque originally identified as genderqueer, but as she got older, she realised that wasn’t the case.
Speaking to Advocate, Blaque said: “When I went to college, I realised I wasn’t genderqueer. I was a very binary, straight trans woman.”
Blaque has also contributed to the Huffington Post’s Black Voices section, has appeared on a Comic-Con panel speaking about writing transgender characters, and was a keynote speaker at the University of Toledo’s LGBTQ+ History month celebration.