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On Thursday, beauty YouTuber and makeup artist James Charles, who is 21, apologized in a video titled "holding myself able. The video was posted after weeks of online discussion around allegations that Charles sexted with minorswhich have been supplemented with several "expose" TikToks posted by accusers that purport to show sexual Snapchats and direct messages sent between Charles and the teens.
In his apology, Charles, who has more than 25 million YouTube subscribers, addressed some of the TikToks, suggesting that the messages shown in them were authentic. He said that at least two year-olds boys he exchanged sexual images and messages with had lied reddit sexting him about their ages and claimed to be A accuser named Isaiyah, who is 16, told Insider over direct messages that Charles never asked him how old he was and disputed Charles' claim that he misrepresented his age.
Before Charles' apology, online speculation has buzzed for years around his interactions with teenage boys, thanks to numerous scandals. In light of Charles' apology and the recent allegations against him, the online YouTube community is re-examining Charles' earlier controversies and accusers, some of whom were labeled "clout chasers" looking for attention, and re-evaluating reddit sexting those accusers were unfairly dismissed.
Both Charles and a representative for Charles didn't respond to Insider's request for comment about multiple allegations involving Charles and minors.
In AprilCharles attended both weekends of the Coachella music festival in California. The events during those weekends would spiral into the biggest scandal of his career — at least until now. The first weekend, fans spotted social media posts of Charles with model Gage Gomez, who has an online following of his own. After a fan tweeted at Charles asking if he was dating anyone, Charles responded in a now-deleted tweet with "nope unfortunately i am still very single. Following Charles' fan backlash against Gomez, the model created a YouTube channel and posted a video calling Charles out for "lies, false allegations," and "slander.
In another video, Gomez said he'd been in contact with Charles since January and accused Charles of "manipulating" him by trying to convince him he wasn't straight, despite Gomez saying he'd been clear reddit sexting his sexuality with Charles since the beginning. Following Gomez's second video, leaked text messages between the two appeared to show that Charles said, "You went for a free coachella ticket and did JUST enough to make me think you liked me," while Gomez said, "I went with an open mind and tried.
In a now-infamous video called "Bye Sister," Charles' former mentor and beauty guru Tati Westbrook accused Charles of disloyalty to her hair vitamins brand and of behavior that included pressuring straight and questioning teens into sexual scenarios. Westbrook specifically accused Charles of preying on a waiter from Seattle who Charles met during Westbrook's birthday dinner there.
At the same time, makeup mogul Jeffree Star tweeted that Charles was a "predator" who wasn't allowed in his home anymore. The accusations against Charles precipitated a loss of more than 4 million subscribers in one reddit sexting.
Charles responded in a well-received video titled "No More Lies," in which he attempted to disprove the allegations.
He said that Cooke manipulated the truth in his video, showing text messages between the two that seemingly showed a consensual encounter. Cooke later apologized to Charles and said he felt pressured by friends and family to gain "clout" from the controversy. In JuneWestbrook recanted her allegations against Charles and claimed that Star and YouTuber Shane Dawson pressured her into making her initial video. In "No More Lies," Charles showed text messages purported to be from Star that accused Charles of attempting to molest then-underage YouTuber Grayson Dolan, who Charles had a public friendship with before his scandal.
Charles denied the accusation, and Dolan has never addressed it publicly. In AprilStar said during an interview that he had a voice memo from "an alleged victim of James Charles" on his reddit sexting, which he offered to play for others.
YouTuber Blaire White made a video claiming she heard the voice memo from Star and believed it was legitimate. The voice memo is widely suspected to be about Dolan, who has also collaborated with Star since Star accused Charles of molesting him. At the same time Charles was losing millions of subscribers during his feud with Westbrook and Star, accusations were going viral against Charles all over social media. Some of them were later admitted to be fake. Others, like those made by two TikTokers who posted DMs purported to be Charles messaging them "you're very cute" and "you are incredibly good looking," were lumped into the category of people assumed to be capitalizing off the drama for "clout.
Direct messages Charles purportedly sent other internet stars and celebrities were also posted and discussed in May Jay Alvarezz, an Instagram reddit sexting who was l ater accused of disseminating revenge pornposted a screenshot of Charles direct messaging him reddit sexting Instagram. Charles was also criticized for leaving a flirty message on Shawn Mendes' Instagram Live, although Mendes personally told Charles he didn't mind. Then in Augusta TikToker claimed Charles sent him nude photos when he was The TikToker, Ethan Andrew, received massive backlash after being accused of faking the screenshots of his messages with Charles for "clout.
Andrew's allegations were largely ignored, although he claimed he was talking to police and lawyers. In February, a TikTok user named Isaiyah claimed that Charles sent him nude images of himself, and he included censored screenshots purported to be nude images of Charles. On February 26, Charles posted his first response to allegations of "grooming" and "pedophilia.
Charles claimed Isaiyah misrepresented his age, which Isaiyah disputed in direct messages with Insider. Isaiyah told Insider that Charles never asked him how old he was and he provided screenshots that seemingly showed his age was in his Instagram bio at the time that Charles messaged him on the platform. He also posted saying he was filing a police report against Charles.
On February 27, a year-old tweeted out purported direct messages on Instagram with Charles and said Charles continued to "flirt" with him despite knowing how old he was. He said the conversation never turned sexual. The same day, another Twitter user posted a thread claiming Charles "used me for reddit sexting sexual pleasure. On March 30, another TikTok was posted purporting to show Charles sexting with a year-old. The TikTok user, who identifies himself as Jake Cherry, has since deleted the video and wrote in a comment that "parents made me take it down because they apparently got contacted by the police.
In the video, Cherry shows purported screenshots of Snapchats that Charles sent him with captions like "Aw okay goodnight cutie" and "That would be so cute. Cherry posted TikToks on his public identifying himself as reddit sexting before his birthday. In later direct messages, Charles appears to write "what the f is your problem" and "posting screenshots of my snaps to you on your private story?
I strongly recommend that you keep my name out of your mouth or we're going to have a major problem. Then, according to the screenshots, Charles wrote "Get your fing friend in line before I do," followed by "Lying about your age to bait someone is against the law by the way" and "The messages of you admitting you lied about your age I saved them and they're gone. The user's TikTok is deleted, although it's unclear whether it was removed by him or by Tiktok itself. In those purported Snapchats, Charles captioned images of himself with reddit sexting y have a nice body," "Do u shave ur body?
In a similar vein to Charles purportedly asking teens about their body hair, in a resurfaced tweet he asked thenyear-old Weston Koury if Koury shaved his legs. Charles was also a teenager at the time. An adult who said he "didn't rlly have a bad experience" with Charles also shared screenshots purported to be direct messages between the two to show, in his words, "the way he talks just proves other people's stories and how it's a constant recurring theme.
Following the February and March accusations against Charles, Variety reported that the YouTuber would not be returning for season 2 of "Instant Influencer," the YouTube Red production Charles was ly the face of. Before the Variety report, Charles indicated on Twitter that he would be involved in the show's renewal, but YouTube told Variety that the reality series would focus on an entirely different YouTube genre moving forward.
YouTube as a platform has yet to publicly address Charles' channel, while TikTok, which features Charles as a top creator, has also yet to respond to queries about its endorsement of the influencer.
He was also recently a recipient of a Morphe Cosmetics PR package and his Morphe "Artistry" palette was restocked just this week. At the time of writing, Charles' apology video, posted on April 1, was viewed more than 3 million times with a ificantly high like-to-dislike ratio. Nearlypeople "liked" the video, while 34, "disliked" it. The ratio would indicate that Charles' own fans approved of the apology, but his critics are still vocal about the reddit sexting. H3H3 Podcast's Ethan Klein, a YouTuber with over 9 million subscribers who has repeatedly criticized Charles in recent reddit sexting, tweeted "James Charles claims he's 'desperate' as an excuse for sexting with minors.
I think the truth is more insidious and something he could never admit publicly. In MayYouTuber Austin Jones was sentenced to ten years in prison after he pled guilty to one count of "receipt of child pornography. There has yet to be any confirmed investigation by law enforcement into Charles, but multiple accusers claimed in comments and tweets that they were either contacting police or had been contacted.
World globe An icon of the world globe, indicating different international options. Get the Insider App. A leading-edge research firm focused on digital transformation. Kat Tenbarge. Charles, who is 21, said he had exchanged sexual messages with boys who say they're under the age of Before his apology, accusations against Charles were widely shared and debated online.
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