Emma Chamberlain, YouTuber and Gen Z influencer, says the term ‘influencer’ is ‘disgusting’ in cover story for Cosmopolitan

Emma Chamberlain.

caption
Emma Chamberlain.
source
Eric Ray Davidson for Cosmopolitan

Emma Chamberlain, one of the internet’s most influential stars among Gen Z, doesn’t want to be known as an “influencer.” Instead, the 18-year-old YouTuber says she wants her fans to see her as a friend and entertainer.

Chamberlain called the term “disgusting” in a recent interview with Dana Schwartz for Cosmopolitan. Chamberlain is featured on the cover of the magazine’s February issue, her first time appearing on the front of a major US magazine.

“If someone is calling me an influencer, they’re saying that my job is to influence, and I don’t think that’s true,” Chamberlain told Cosmopolitan. “I prefer to entertain and be a friend. I don’t want to influence.”

Even if Chamberlain doesn’t want to be called an “influencer,” she is undoubtedly one. Chamberlain is known for her goofy vlogs and candid videos, which are shared with her more than 8.5 million YouTube subscribers and amassed nearly 1 billion views. And she makes money in part by using her popularity to market products and brands.

The 18-year-old’s quirky and lively personality has turned her into someone teens follow in droves because they see her as someone relatable and just like them.

“I make fun of YouTubers and I am one. I think of it as, ‘Why not play into it? If you can’t beat them, join them,'” Chamberlain told Cosmopolitan. “Watch my videos-if you hate it, go watch the news or something, I don’t know. Like, have fun, but I don’t care.”

Chamberlain’s influence has also been recognized by, and integrated into, mainstream culture and fame. She attended Paris Fashion Week twice in 2019, and hung out with supermodel Karli Kloss at a Parisian bakery during one of the trips. She’s been credited with boosting the popularity of the VSCO girl aesthetic that took over Generation Z and TikTok during the summer of 2019. She now hosts a podcast called “Stupid Genius,” and she was named to Time Magazine’s 100 Next list, showcasing rising stars shaping the future.

Most recently, Chamberlain launched her own coffee company called Chamberlain Coffee, which sells bags filled with coffee grounds, similar to those used for making tea. At $10 a bag, Chamberlain’s coffee isn’t cheap.