What happened between James Charles and Tati Westbrook?

Anyone who follows makeup YouTube will know that it has already been a pretty spicy weekend of drama.

After a scathing video where Tati Westbrook aired her grievances against ex-friend James Charles, James has lost over a million subscribers, breaking records (and not in a good way).

James also issued a video, but this one was an apology to Tati and her husband – also named James. Bare-faced and clearly teary, his eight-minute response had nearly two minutes of dead air where he was trying to compose himself.

The level of interest in the whole thing has sparked videos and commentary from the likes of KeemStar, and even some thinly-veiled tweets from guru Jeffree Star.

But what actually went down between the two YouTubers? Tati’s video is below, but if you don’t have an hour to spare, we have the lowdown.

The current beef between James and Tati started in April, when James promoted Sugar Bear Hair vitamins.

Tati has her own vitamin company – Halo Beauty – and felt that he had betrayed her by working with her biggest competitor without telling her.

The pair met years ago, before James got his coveted CoverGirl ambassadorship, and it’s widely known that Tati helped mentor him to become to well-known face he is today.

Upon seeing James’ promotional posts, Tati shared Instagram stories saying how she had felt ‘betrayed’ and ‘used’.

James then apologised, claiming that he’d only worked with Sugar Bear Hair because they had helped him with security when he was at Coachella and the crowd became unsafe.

Vlogger Gabriel Zamora then got involved too, saying in a video titled Makeup and Opinions that he didn’t get where the betrayal was. James’ mum also got involved in the Instagram comments.

This was when Tati released her video (which at the time of writing has X views) expressing her hurt at what had happened, and also claiming that some of James’ behaviour throughout their friendship had been inappropriate.

She claimed that there had been tension brewing in their friendship due to numerous things, including James allegedly talking about sex at her birthday dinner, ‘manipulating people’s sexuality’, and trying to make a documentary about the dark side of the beauty YouTube world (which she felt was not respectful to the industry).

Tati also stated that she didn’t believe James’ Coachella story, as well as saying she had ‘had enough’ with his ‘over-sexualised’ online presence despite his young following.

James’ most recent apology addressed many of these concerns, and he once again apologised to his former friend, saying ‘there’s nothing I can say or do to ever earn that friendship or trust bad but I don’t blame them for it’.

It’s certainly a sad situation, especially given the fact 19-year-old James was so close to Tati that he even did her wedding makeup. Whether they’ll be able to make up, however, is yet to be seen.

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