The Inside Scoop on the James Charles and Tati Westbrook Scandal


Source: E News

Jillian Thibodeau, Editor

Back in December I wrote an article about youtuber, James Charles, and how well he was doing in the beauty industry. However, about six months later, the nineteen year old isn’t doing so great. On Friday, May 10th, youtuber and close friend, Tati Westbrook, posted a video onto her youtube channel called ‘Bye Sister’. In this video, Westbrook told the internet all of the horrible things Charles had done to her and others, as well as why she would not continue to be his friend. Due to all of the things Westbrook exposed Charles for, he lost one million subscribers in one day and has lost more than three million in one week.

Tati’s Side of the Story:

The video that Westbrook posted was about forty-three minutes long and she explained the situation between the two. The two had met when Charles was seventeen years old and before he  became well-known in the beauty community. Westbrook was already making youtube videos at this point and she became a mentor figure to Charles. Before Charles’ channel blew up, she invited Charles to come on her Youtube channel to do her makeup. Not only did she give him a platform on her channel, but she even let him do her makeup on her wedding day. And since he was still a kid he didn’t have much money, so she even she paid for his flight and hotel (since he lived in New York at the time). Westbrook also claims that her and her husband have helped him out a since the start of his career. She says that her husband, James Westbrook, was the vice president of ‘Motion Pictures’ and he knows a lot about business. He would help Charles with anything business related and would always give him advice when he asked.

In the video, the repeatedly said that their relationship was not transactional and she would do things for him all the time, out of the kindness of her heart. An example of this happening is when Charles’ eyeshadow palette came out and she promoted it because she was so proud of him. Westbrook went on to explain that whenever she did something for him, she never asked him for anything in return. She did all the things that she did for him because she loved him and believed that he would become very successful in the future. She knew he would become big and she wanted to be there to experience it. Even with Charles’ success, he has done things more recently to make Westbrook and other people around him feel very uncomfortable.

Westbrook explained a situation that happened between Charles and a straight man at her birthday party in Seattle. She says that he “tried to trick a straight man into thinking he’s gay, yet again” and that he was acting as the victim when they were talking about it over the phone. She also mentioned how he made the same joke over and over again, saying how he loved straight boys. Not only did Westbrook repeatedly tell him that this wasn’t okay for him to joke about, but he didn’t listen to her. He kept making inappropriate comments about straight guys and he even made them one time when he was having dinner with Westbrook’s family and friends, along with his own family too. She talked about how she had to apologize for his behavior afterwards and it was just really embarrassing.

Aside from Westbrook talking about his boy problems, she said that the last straw that ruined their relationship was at Coachella this year. So, Westbrook and her husband own and run the company ‘Halo Beauty’ which is a company that sells vitamins for healthy hair, skin, and nails. Charles said that her company’s rival, Sugar Bear Hair, helped him get security at Coachella and he promoted their product as a thank you. Westbrook explains the issue by saying that “he somehow had a security issue and magically Sugar Bear Hair was there with a contract in hand to save the day for you and your friends.” She was pretty upset with his actions and she felt that he was being really fake about the whole thing. Westbrook mentioned that he said he didn’t like Sugar Bear Hair and that he didn’t want to promote Westbrook’s brand because he had a teenage audience. Yet he promoted Sugar Bear Hair to his audience when they have pretty similar products that help with the same things. Overall, she just thought that he was fake in the end and didn’t want to be friends with someone who would rather have a good time at Coachella than stick up for his friend and her brand.

James’ Side of the Story:

After seeing the ‘Bye Sister’ video, that same day (May 10th) Charles posted an eight minute video called ‘tati’. In this video he apologized for everything that he has done in the past and takes full responsibility. He doesn’t really go in detail about a lot of the things said in Westbrook’s video, but he talks about how much he loves Tati and wishes that he hadn’t treated her so horribly. He briefly states that he told his truth about the thing that happened with Sugar Bear Hair at Coachella. Also, he mentioned that he shouldn’t have talked about boys in the way that he has done so on his youtube channel and in real life. He says that Westbrook was actually one of the people that talked to him about this saying that “talking to these boys might get you in trouble some day.” He knows that Tati cares for him and appreciates everything that she has done for him, so he doesn’t go in detail about much in this video. However, this doesn’t last too long because he ended up posting another video on May 18th.

This video was titled ‘No More Lies’ and he starts off by saying that everything in his last video was true. He still stands behind his apology to Tati and still loves her. But this video is mostly him just explaining his side of the story with screenshots and receipts. The first thing from Westbrook’s video that Charles brought up, was the Coachella situation with Sugar Bear Hair. He explained that for the second weekend of Coachella, he had a VIP pass instead of an artist pass like he did the first weekend. At the VIP area, he immediately got mobbed at an “unsafe capacity”. This is when he remembered that his friend, Nikita Dragun, was sent to Coachella by Sugar Bear Hair and was very taken care of. The company provided Dragun with artist passes, personal security, and backstage passes. Charles texted Dragun and asked her if she had a connection to the company and explained his situation. She asked the company to help him out and they did, they contacted Charles and provided him with the extra security and passes. After the festival, Charles posted a video on his instagram story promoting Sugar Bear hair, because he was grateful for what they did for him. In the video he states that “This whole situation was definitely not a big scheme that was orchestrated beforehand. It really did happen on the spot. The Sugar Bear Hair team texted me the proposal right away, no money was involved, and with no time to negotiate in a panic, I signed.”

In Westbrook’s video, she said that he never contacted her to tell her about the Sugar Bear Hair situation, but Charles showed their text messages that were sent the day after he got back from Coachella. The texts explained his situation and how he signed a contract, therefore forcing him to promote the company on his story. In addition to an explanation, he apologized for everything, but he also said that he had to post the instagram story because of the contract that he signed with them.

Another thing that Westbrook mentioned in her video that Charles explained in his video was the situation that he had with a boy at Tati’s birthday party in Seattle. Charles explained that he never said anything inappropriate to or about the boy, whose name was Sam. He explained that later that day Sam slid into his DMs on instagram and they talked for a while. James asked him about his sexuality and he said that he was bisexual, and they hung out soon after. The two watched a movie together and even kissed afterwards, which Charles said was “100% consensual”. To confirm that all of this was true, Sam had actually posted a video on youtube explaining the same exact situation in the same way that James did. This just goes to show how much Westbrook twisted Charles’ words when he told her about the situation. Charles states that he would never try to change someone’s sexuality and he says that he will change the way he talks about boys on social media and in person.

Overall, no one really knows who is telling the truth or not, as they both have valid explanations for what has happened. But many fans have their own opinions on the matter. For example, junior, Destini Troiano believes that “the whole situation is dumb. I understand that Tati wanted to let everyone know who he really is, but I believe that she should have said it in a different way… So many people looked up to him as their role model and although it was uncool on Tati’s part to share all that, it is a good thing that the truth came out.” To add on, freshman, Rally Bryan said that “I think that it was immature of her to post a video, she could have handled it differently.”

With the differing opinions of subscribers to Charles and Westbrook, the two have had dramatic changes in subscriber counts and followers. Since Westbrook’s video was posted, she has gained over five million subscribers on youtube and Charles has lost over three million. However, after Charles posted his video explaining his side of the story, he has gained almost all of those subscribers back.

Although both of their careers have been wavering around lately because of the drama, the two seem to be doing alright as of recently. Their careers and subscriber counts are doing okay, however their relationship is still on the rocks. They still have not come out publicly about being friends again and seem to stand by what they said in their videos. As unfortunate as the whole situation is, many think that it is just best that the two stay separate for even longer. So, who knows what will happen next between the two and if they will even become friends again. You’ll have to stick around and watch their youtube videos or follow their social media if you want to find out what happens.