YouTube’s thriving beauty community just gained another LGBTQ guru.
Beloved Dutch beauty expert and veteran YouTuber Nikkie De Jager—a.k.a. @NikkieTutorials—has come out as transgender. On Monday, De Jager uploaded a video to her YouTube channel opening up about her gender identity to her 12.4 million subscribers for the first time ever.
I’m coming out. https://t.co/chLHURZKk4
— NikkieTutorials (@NikkieTutorials) January 13, 2020
“Filming this video is scary, but it feel so liberating and freeing,” De Jager said in the video. “I’ve wanted to share this side of me with you for so long, but I never could figure out the timing. There was always going to be the day where I would tell you. I did not expect that day to be today, but here I am.”
The 25-year-old makeup artist goes on to explain how she was blackmailed by someone who’d learned about her life pre-transition and threatened to leak her story to the press.
De Jager always planned to tell her story one day, but she elected to keep her transition private so that viewers would focus on her work and technical skills as a makeup artist rather than her gender identity. With the threat on the table, she decided to give her blackmailer the middle finger—literally.
The YouTuber touched on knowing she was a girl since as early as she can remember and thanked her mother for a lifetime of support, tears welling in her eyes. She added that she has lived her life as a girl since the age of 6, began hormone replacement therapy at age 14, and completed her medical transition by age 19.
“If you want to put a label on it, yes, I am transgender,” she said, “but at the end of the day, I am me.”
At the time of this writing, De Jager’s video has amassed more than 455,000 views as well as shout-outs on social media from celebrities like RuPaul’s Drag Race queen Aquaria and fellow beauty YouTuber Desi Perkins, among others. She joins a small crew of LGBTQ influencers in YouTube’s beauty space, including Gigi Gorgeous and Ingrid Nilsen.
— Desi Perkins (@DesiPerkins) January 13, 2020
i am promise I'm not crying and it's just early seasonal allergies but i am so unbelievably excited and happy and proud and definitely not crying over @NikkieTutorials today. congratulations angel. thank you always for ur support and bravery
— Aquaria (@aquariaofficial) January 13, 2020
SO PROUD OF YOU NIKKIE❤️
— Gigi Gorgeous Getty (@TheGigiGorgeous) January 13, 2020
LOVE U SO MUCH NIKKIE ❤️ https://t.co/S1qCKlqTgY
— Shane Dawson (@shanedawson) January 13, 2020
whoever blackmailed nikkie made the fatal error of underestimating the power of a fearless, proud, unapologetic female. can’t prey on shame if it doesn’t exist. we got your back ma https://t.co/ERI9QSPFbV
— gh (@GabbieHanna) January 13, 2020
Watch De Jager’s coming-out video below—though fair warning, you might want to grab some tissues.