Michelle Phan is proof that YouTubers are on the move to lucrative projects far beyond the realm of video.
The online beauty advice maven co-founded the subscription-based beauty company Ipsy.com in 2012. Now, Ipsy has hit a milestone of $150 million in revenue — and on top of that, Phan has launched Ipsy Open Studios, a new platform for aspiring beauty vloggers to create their content with access to studio space, equipment and mentorship opportunities.
The launch was announced May 31 on Phan’s official website.
Phan, 28, has been blogging since the age of 15 and uploaded her first beauty video (recorded on a webcam) to Xanga, before beginning to post to YouTube in 2007.
Ipsy Open Studios (IpsyOS) is, according to Phan, “everything I wish I had at my fingertips eight years ago.” The studio will provide creators with the resources Phan learned to use herself during her rise to online fame.
“I learned how to shoot, how to edit, how to light myself,” said Phan in an official video announcing the launch. “With all that knowledge and experience, I want to pass it on.”
Phan and Ipsy co-founder Marcelo Camberos(a former VP with FunnyOrDie) have both said that creator control is a big part of the IpsyOS brand. They have said that there will be no exclusivities or commissions from participating beauty brands and that creators can choose to work with whichever products they choose.
“It’s really just about giving them a platform,” said Camberos in a video statement. “The beauty industry’s changing to one where these are the beauty influencers. These are the people that have the power.”
The studio will also enable creators to operate across multiple platforms,creating content exclusively for Instagram, Vine or other social networks.
Phan has been expanding her brand globally for years, recently launching an online lifestyle network with Endemol Beyond.
She’s one of the most prolific “YouTube-preneurs,” using her digitally-powered star to expand not just her profile but her business beyond new media. Other YouTubers such as Smosh and Tyler Oakley have released books and graphic novels.
Ipsy Open Studios is now live at Ipsyos.com.