The first male CoverGirl just appeared on Ellen

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It is safe to say the last few months have been somewhat life-changing for James Charles.

Charles, a 17-year-old student and New York State native was historically named as the first male CoverGirl last month. It all began earlier this year when Charles posted a picture to his personal Instagram account relaying how he re-took his senior year photos so his highlights would ‘pop’. The image soon went viral and next thing he knew, Charles received a call from makeup giant, CoverGirl.

“I’ve been posting on my Instagram account for about a year now, posting makeup pictures every day,” Charles told fellow CoverGirl Ellen Degeneres on her namesake talk show. “After my pictures went viral, I guess CoverGirl saw them and here we are.”

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Charles said he only started wearing makeup a year ago, and said he came out as gay to his parents when he was 12.

“They were so incredibly accepting. It was a very positive community and school as well. It was easy for me, i know it’s definitely very challenging for a lot of people. I was very thankful to have a pretty easy situation,” Charles said.


“When I first told my parents I wanted to do makeup as well, that was a big thing. They were like, ‘Oh, you know we love you no matter what, if you’re trans you can tell us.’ And I was like, ‘It’s okay, I’m not.”

“It took a lot of explaining and a lot of understanding because men in makeup is obviously a new concept that has not been widely accepted in the past so it’s just a learning process. My parents understood what I wanted to do as a career and that I was expressing myself.”

A video posted by COVERGIRL (@covergirl) on

Charles will appear in campaigns for the brand’s newest mascara, ‘So Lashy’. In a statement released in October, a CoverGirl representative called Charles a ‘boundary breaker’.

“One year ago, he boldly chose to launch his Instagram to the world, using transformative, dynamic makeup looks to showcase the many facets of his personality, serving as an inspiration to anyone who might have been afraid to do the same.”

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