In March 2020, I was to arrive in Texas to film my Houston travel guide. I anticipated on attending The Makeup Show and conducting a few interviews.

Enter the plot twist that is COVID-19.

Although things took a hard left, something great blossomed out of it.. I present to you , Café Chat.. This interview is the first in a series of quick conversations where we will become better acquainted with a few of our favorites as well as some newcomers on a more amiable level..

Today we are showcasing the ever delightful, Kelsee Briana Jai. Better known as Kelsee Briana BAE to all of her “Kel-Belles” (as she fondly refers to her subscribers), she certainly makes you feel as if you’re kicking it with your homegirl on screen. See why below and make sure you subscribe to her YouTube channel.

Kelsee Briana Jai
Kelsee Briana Jai

TGL: I am a self proclaimed Pat McGrath Doll. In fact, that’s how I first discovered you. I was searching for YouTubers that were doing Pat McGrath Labs reviews, and I was just pleasantly blown away by your content so I became a subscriber back in 2016. Through your channel, I was exposed to KinkySweat, Mel Thompson and Morgan Turner. I feel that it is so awesome that all of you have developed such a strong and nurturing bond amongst yourselves. How important is it to maintain and cultivate civility amongst your fellow content creator peers? Any tips you can give?

KBJ: It is imperative that creators connect with likeminded individuals. Creating networks with other creators allows for the growth of the community. I feel that we all bring something different to the Beauty Community, and connecting with others allows us to build meaningful relationships with people who share our same passion. My number one tip that I can give to cultivate civility is to not be afraid to clap for other people’s accomplishments. Please give people their props when they reach amazing milestones, create dope ideas, or just make bomb content! Creatives thrive off of support, so supporting is vital to the growth of the culture!

TGL: One of your most endearing qualities which radiates from your content is your jovial & welcoming nature. When directing my friends to view your channel for tutorials, I often refer to you as, “a ray of sunshine” which is attributed to the light-hearted manner in which your videos are conducted. Being a content creator can take such a toll on someone at times… What do you do in your spare time to cultivate those positive traits of yours?

KBJ: Aww, thank you! Honestly, I believe that my positivity can be partly attributed to my family. I was raised by and around kind, loving people. This energy helped mold me into the person that I am today. I was taught to be nice to people, and to treat people how I would like to be treated. I keep this mantra in mind as I navigate through this thing called life. I try to stay as positive as possible even in the face of adversity. Positivity is a mindset, so it is important to adjust your thoughts to reflect optimistic affirmations no matter what you are up against.

TGL: I’m familiar with your YouTube channel, but during my research, I’ve learned you have quite a lot on your plate. In 2017, you went on tour with Miss Jill Scott as her MUA while completing your MBA in marketing then went on to get your Doctorate in Business; that’s quite a feat! Do you feel as if your YouTube career has impacted your other career aspirations in any way and how?

KBJ: I’m blushing! Thanks so much for the kind words! I absolutely feel that YouTube has impacted my career aspirations! YouTube has lead to the creation of so many new career paths/business ventures, and this has inspired me greatly. When I initially began my YouTube channel 10 years ago, being a full time YouTuber was unheard of. Fast forward to now, people have utilized this platform to launch mega careers, and I think it is a beautiful sight to see. I now have many life goals that are centered around YouTube, and the community that I have built on my platform. (Shoutout to the #KelBelles!) Stay tuned to see what I have up my sleeve! I’m definitely just getting started!

Kelsee Briana Jai
Kelsee Briana Jai

TGL: Almost 10 years on YouTube, that’s OG status! A few weeks ago, you uploaded a video about your experience as a Black Content Creator, and it was so refreshing to view. As a consumer, I can confidently say that we were right there with & frustrated for you. We are well aware of the lack of diversity in the brand deals, campaigns, trips and the oh so problematic YouTube trending page so I can only image how the creators feel. Have you and/or other creators ever thought about maybe approaching the brands & YouTube leadership as a coalition with a proposal to address these issues? If not, would that be something you would be interested in?

KBJ: HAHA! I agree, ten years is OG status for sure! Diversity on YouTube is a topic that needs to be brought to the forefront more, especially within the Beauty sector. There have been great advancements within the Beauty Community, and I feel that this needs to be better reflected on YouTube’s platform. I would definitely consider discussing this issues with YouTube to hopefully address the lack of diversity within the search results. It is imperative that creators are promoted equally to ensure that we all get the same level of exposure.

TGL: In the last few years, it seems like beauty brands were all on the same product train. In 2019, it was foundation, now this year it seems as if concealer is reigning. What are three beauty trends you would like to see in the upcoming year?

KBJ: This is true. Once one brand experiences success with a certain product type, other brands typically make their variations of the product. This year, I would like to see more innovative products such as:

Powder Foundations That Are Silky Smooth & Offer Excellent Shade Ranges

Bold & Colorful Mascara (Fun for a Pop of Color)

More Holographic Eyeshadow Formulas (Love it!)

TGL: We’re currently into the 3rd week of quarantine due to COVID-19, and I know everyone is itching to travel once things get back to normal.. Where would you want to go and what are 4 beauty items that you always travel with?

KBJ: I can not WAIT to be able to go out, and hang out with my people again! LOL! The first two places that I want to travel to once things go back to normal are Houston and Las Vegas. These are places that I had planned on traveling to in March and April this year. When I am finally able to go, the four beauty items that I am traveling with are:

Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation (It Lasts ALL day)

Estee Lauder Double Wear Foundation

Pat McGrath Subversive Palette (For Sexy Eyes That Hypnotize LOL)

Pat McGrath Subversive Eye Palette

Tom Ford Universal Appeal Lipstick (It Goes With Everything)

Tom Ford Universal Appeal Lipstick

Benefit Cheekleaders Palette: Bronze Squad (This Gives Me My Blush, Bronzer, & Highlight!)

Benefit Cheekleaders Palette: Bronze Squad

Much love to Kelsee for allowing me to have this opportunity to kick it with her.. Be sure to check all of her platforms; let her know that TGL sent you:)

  • Snap Chat x @KelseeBrianaJai