Even if you weren't aware of the YouTube beauty community before May 10, 2019, it's likely you've been sucked into the James Charles/Tati Westbrook ~drama~. Ever since Westbrook posted her "BYE SISTER..." video to her YouTube channel on Friday, May 10, YouTube stans have been weighing in on the troubles between the beauty gurus — and there's been no shortage of content to talk about. Westbrook and Charles have now each posted two videos about their troubles, and James Charles' new video about the Tati Westbrook drama will seriously leave your head spinning.
For a quick refresher, Westbrook and Charles have been friends since 2016, when Westbrook, a well-known YouTuber at the time, befriended Charles, a newcomer to the YT beauty scene. Fast-forward to May 2019, and things are not so peachy. In Westbrook's May 10 video, she shared that she was ending her friendship with Charles due to a series of incidents, with the most recent one being the circumstances surrounding a post about SugarBearHair vitamins that Charles put up in April 2019. Westbrook's vitamin company, Halo Beauty, is a direct competitor of SugarBearHair. The day after, on May 11, Charles posted an apology video entitled "tati." Five days later, after YouTube beauty fans weighed in (mainly taking Westbrook's side), Westbrook shared another video asking people to stop the hate in her "Why I Did It..." video that was posted on May 16. Two days after that, Charles posted what he calls his final video on the matter, and the 41-minute-long "No More Lies" video came in hot with apparent receipts.
To start, Charles thanked Westbrook for her plea to stop the internet hate that came as a result of the videos, but he said he doesn't agree with Westbrook still standing behind what she said in the videos. Westbrook claimed in her May 16 video that her public airing of their issues was a last-ditch effort to help him grow. In his May 18 video, Charles still takes issue with some of the other allegations thrown his way as a result of the video, including claims he tried to "manipulate someone's sexuality." Charles denies these claims in his new video, and his team did not respond to Elite Daily's previous inquiry on the matter. Charles did not leave a stone unturned in his 41-minute-long video, so let's take a look at what he had to say.
Sugar Bear Hair
Charles began by addressing Westbrook's claim that there was something more behind the SugarBearHair post. Per Charles, the post promoting the vitamins came as a result of a Coachella incident, where he had a VIP ticket, and he was in need of an Artist pass for more protection. (Yes, there's apparently something better than VIP.) In the video, he says his attendance at the second weekend of Coachella was spur of the moment, and the crowd was getting too scary in VIP, so he messaged fellow beauty YouTuber Nikita Dragun for some help getting an Artist pass, because he remembered she got one from SugarBearHair the weekend prior.
After securing the Artist pass from SugarBearHair, Charles says he was legally bound to post for them, due to the contract he signed. He posted the video for the SugarBearHair vitamins on Monday, April 22.
Attempting to dispute Westbrook's claim that it was planned before the weekend and that he didn't reach out to her about it, Charles shared messages he claims are from him to Westbrook on April 22, ahead of post. In the messages, Charles appears to have told Westbrook the SugarBearHair passes were spur of the moment due to security issues, and he signed the contract to get the security he needed at Coachella. Westbrook appears to have responded in the messages that she was upset about the situation, saying it broke her heart he supported her competitor.
Charles claims Westbrook and her husband ignored his attempts at communication after that. On April 24, Charles issued a public apology for the post, after Westbrook posted to Instagram two days prior, crying about the beauty community and how people use each other in it.
In the video, Charles also denies Westbrook's claim he told her he couldn't promote her Halo Beauty because he has a teenage audience, saying that "conversation never happened." Westbrook responded to the video on Twitter, saying:
My family made me aware of what was just posted & I'm disappointed to see it littered with so many lies & half truths. I stand by my videos - do not twist my words into what they are not, hear the message.
"Manipulating Someone's Sexuality"
The next issue Charles brought up apparently stems from an trip during Westbrook's surprise birthday party in Seattle in February 2019. Westbrook claimed in her video that Charles attempted to "manipulate" a waiter's sexuality at the restaurant they were at for her birthday. Charles denies the claim in his video, saying Sam, the boy from the restaurant, apparently DMed him on Instagram and told Charles he was flattered by his flirting and was "bicurious." Charles then shared more DMs that appeared to show the two planning to hang out at Charles' hotel room. Then, Charles claimed they apparently watched a movie and kissed. Charles also claimed Sam left to go home after Charles had apparently asked him to stay, which Sam also shared in a video he posted about that night. Charles also shared apparent messages he had with Westbrook about Sam, and he claims she talked with him about the relationship. Westbrook's Twitter response to the video is that she stands by her claims and that Charles' video is "littered with so many lies [and] half truths."
Charles also addressed claims he made advances to men via DMs, and he said in his video that he apologized to individuals he reached out to and that he would stop sending those types of messages.
Sister Squad Unfollows
Finally, Charles addressed why the Dolan twins, part of the "Sister Squad," unfollowed him (Emma Chamberlain, the fourth squad member, also unfollowed Charles), claiming they didn't want to be associated with the drama. Charles also said Jeffree Starr, a fellow beauty YouTuber, messaged Charles following Westbrook's video, accusing Charles of (among other things) trying to be inappropriate with Grayson Dolan, one of the twins. Elite Daily reached out to Dolan's representation for comment, but did not hear back at the time of publication. Charles denies this in his video, and he claims the Dolan twins were two of the first people to reach out to him following Westbrook's initial video on May 10. The Dolan twins haven't publicly commented on the matter, and Starr said on Twitter, "Before you believe anything that was said today, remember there are two sides to every story."
Is your head spinning yet? Beyond these main points, Charles also addressed questions about why his brother moved back home to New York, saying he was diagnosed with depression, and he shot back at Westbrook for commenting in her initial video on his mother's parenting skills, saying how proud he is of his mom. Charles closed out his video saying he had turned down invitations to meet with both Westbrook and Starr at a neutral location, and he shared that the week following the "BYE SISTER..." video was the darkest time in his life. On May 18, he also tweeted a plea for followers to not react to his video with hate.
You can watch his full video here.
Some fans seem to be coming back to Charles' defense, but there are also still people who don't know what to believe.
Westbrook hasn't replied beyond the tweets from May 18, where she explained she's on a "digital break." In addition to sticking by her original message and discounting Charles' video as "littered with so many lies," she said she's trying not to react "out of anger."
Charles said this video would be his last commentary on the subject, so you'll have to wait and see what comes next. Whatever it is, I'm sure there will be plenty of receipts to go along with it.