6 YouTube Channels To Help You Level Up In 2021

During the pandemic, finding fun YouTube content to stay entertained at home has been a life saver. I’ve spent nearly a year sifting through dozens of channels and realized that many of my favorite creators’ videos are more than just entertaining: they’re using creative formats to help viewers grow and learn new skills. Here’s a curated list of six top-tier YouTubers whose videos will help you start off on the right foot this year:

  1. 1. Nail your skincare routine: Hyram

    Figuring out your perfect skincare routine can be a long, difficult and expensive process. Thankfully, this channel skyrocketed to fame last year and is providing advice on all of your skincare questions, from maskne to moisturizing. Hyram posts a combination of fun reactions to celebrity skincare routines, in-depth brand reviews and basic instructional videos regarding which products you should be using. His videos are super well researched and based on his scientific knowledge of skincare ingredients, but his content is still funny and nonintimidating. I’ve personally seen great results in my skin since I subscribed to his channel. He’s taught me important skincare lessons like avoiding products with heavy fragrances and double-cleansing on days when I wear makeup. If you’re ever wondering if a skincare product is worth the hype, check this channel out! 

  2. 2. Improve your activism: Jessica Kellgren-Fozard

    Two women hold hands with a rainbow painted on them

    Last year, Jessica taught me more about LGBTQ+ history and ableism than I ever learned in school. I initially fell in love with her channel due to its heartwarming mix of retro fashion, British charm and adorable vlogs with her wife and puppies, but I’ve come to appreciate her educational content more and more. She has fantastic series' like “Media Analysis” where she delves into issues like autism tropes and queer coding. Jessica also films insightful videos about her own genetic disorders and deafness, including how face masks are affecting the deaf community during the era of Covid-19. Her humor and eloquence make these kinds of topics easy to understand, and she’s helped me become more aware of my privileges and ways I can be a better ally. If you’re interested in activism and enjoy wholesome content, her channel is the place for you!

  3. 3. Up your makeup game: Jackie Aina

    Cosmetics and brushes rest on a table

    Jackie is a major figure among beauty influencers, and she really is in a class of her own. Her channel’s mantra is “changing the standard of beauty, one video at a time,” and she totally follows through on this message. She’s made hundreds of videos explaining how to improve your makeup artistry and which cosmetic products are the best, all marked by her signature editing and charisma. On top of these tutorials, she sets her channel apart by using her platform to speak on issues like cultural appropriation, colorism and black representation in the beauty world. She never shies away from addressing important topics, and she does a great job explaining how there are dimensions to the beauty community which aren’t just superficial. Jackie is a wonderful role model on YouTube (she’s even an Army veteran and a business owner!) and an absolute must-subscribe channel for any makeup wearers. If you are a fan of beauty vloggers and are not already watching her videos, don’t miss out!

  4. 4. Learn a new skill: Bernadette Banner

    Spools of thread and petals

    I originally found Bernadette’s channel through some of her viral videos reacting to historically incorrect movie costumes, and I’ve since fallen in love with her content. Bernadette is the embodiment of dark academia perfection, and she crafts wonderfully entertaining videos on historical fashion and how to sew. Her videos have taught me interesting historical facts like how corsets weren’t actually a form of female oppression and inspired me to focus on mending my clothes or buying second hand instead of supporting fast-fashion. Though I have no intention of embarking on intense sewing projects like Bernadette (she often completes challenges like recreating a 15th Century gown), she’s taught me practical sewing tips I can use day-to-day. Not to mention, her meticulous editing and the satisfying aesthetic of her videos make her channel a relaxing watch. If you're interested in history or just need to know how to refasten a button to one of your shirts, this channel is the first place to turn to!

  5. 5. Bust some taboos: Hannah Witton

    tampons with flowers

    Hannah is a British vlogger who provides judgment-free sex-ed videos. She tackles topics like contraception, relationships, body image, consent and sexuality, and her channel is a safe space for asking questions and breaking stereotypes. Her personal videos, such as her series “The Hormone Diaries” where she documents her experiences with birth control, periods and fertility, are super relatable and refreshing bursts of feminism on the YouTube landscape. I’ve found that watching her videos can be great conversation starters with people in my real life and helpful jumping-off points for unlearning sexist assumptions and traditions surrounding women’s bodies. When her videos pop up in my subscription feed, I often find myself thinking, “Wow, I’ve never heard anyone talk about that before!” and rushing to watch what she has to say. If you’re curious to learn more about being sex-positive and having healthy relationships, her channel is a great place to start!

  6. 6. Rock some new styles: bestdressed

    Garments hanging on a clothing rack with a plant

    Best Dressed is run by a recent college grad, Ashley, who dedicates her channel to providing fashion tips and interior design inspo. Having studied cinema at university, her videos are super well put together and almost feel like mini indie films. Her videos like “50 outfits for when you have nothing to wear” and “How to thrift like a pro” have taught me tons of useful tips on easy ways to put together outfits, and I constantly pull inspiration from how she mixes and matches pieces. While producing fashion videos, she manages to keep it real with her viewers about topics like insecurities and beauty standards and never makes having nice style feel intimidating or elitist. Ashley is also open about the ups and downs of her college experience and breaks up her fashion videos with Q&As about topics like mental health. I often enjoy these personal videos even more than her strictly fashion related content. If you’re feeling like you're stuck in a fashion rut or just looking for a relatable content creator to binge watch, I’d highly recommend her channel!

Make the most of your time watching YouTube videos at home and try out some of these channels. I hope you learn something new and form some positive viewing habits in 2021!