I can spend hours getting lost on YouTube or Instagram. The ‘recommended videos’ section is never ending, as is the ‘Explore’ page, and I love finding little gems of accounts whose videos I find myself binge-watching and the photos that give my thumb some serious double-tapping exercise.
However, especially with YouTube, I often catch myself feeling flat afterwards. Empty. Unhappy, discontent and feeling less about my own life. Whilst I’m sure there are many aspects that influence this stale feeling, I think the major point is one thing only: Consumerism.
Properties in the world’s most expensive cities, interior that costs more than I earn in a year, designer bags and monthly clothing hauls worth hundreds of pounds. It plants thoughts in my head like, “Why do I not have this in my life?”, “Am I failing in life because these people have more and are younger?” or simply “I wish I could afford this.”
But then I realised: This is not the norm. It’s like watching Queen B and Kim K’s children hanging out and wondering why you can’t have that. Except that with them, you wouldn’t even wonder because in our minds, the concept of being a superstar is clear and concise, whereas YouTubers seem so normal. They are like you and me, they just happen to film their lives – and make hundreds of thousands of pounds with it.
The other day, I tweeted saying that most of my all-time favourite YouTube videos were from 2013. And then I realised that that’s because they’re more relatable. I prefer someone sitting in their bedroom in a flatshare or in their parents’ house because it’s more relevant to me. I prefer someone sitting in their own flat chatting about drugstore makeup because it conveys a humble personality.
But there’s a point where it gets too much. A point where to me, as the viewer, it seems as if the creator has been consumed by money and success. A new purchase every day, and every time, it’s the most expensive you could’ve got of that specific product. Just because you’ve got the money doesn’t mean you have to subtly show it off like this.
And that’s why I find myself gravitating to new YouTubers, mostly younger than me, admittedly. I crave authenticity, relatable content and humble personailities; not 20-somethings who show me that, at age 26 going on 27, I really should be ready to buy my own property, furnish it with designer furniture and sit on it to film high end hauls every day.
’til next time x