How I made beauty my career: Shani Grimmond

More than just a snap-happy influencer, Brisbane-based Shani Grimmond has become a digital icon for the beauty-obsessed gen Z—the generation who managed to bypass the excruciatingly awkward phase of crocheted ponchos and blue-tinted waterlines we all endured thanks to an endless stream of beauty tutorials, hauls and get-ready videos by the likes of Grimmond and her peers.

Publishing her first video in December of 2012—and having amassed 1.58 million followers since—22-year old Grimmond’s rise to success is not a coincidence nor a secret, but rather a testament to her passion, creativity and consistency. We tapped the beauty-guru-turned-swimwear-designer on the essence of her success, and the evolution of her relationship with beauty and skincare.


“My inspiration has always been Shannon Harris,” shares Grimmond on her love for the New Zealand-based beauty guru you may know better as ‘Shaaanxo’. “She has always been so consistent with her uploads which means I got to watch her almost every day when I was still learning about makeup. She’s incredibly talented and has such a beautiful soul.”

“I also remember watching Lauren Curtis on repeat and wanting to make videos just like hers, so now I just feel so lucky,” the beauty-buff reminisced. Now, in a place in her career not too dissimilar to that of Curtis, Grimmond shares; “being able to work so closely with brands that I absolutely love and use on a daily basis—and meeting the people behind them—is so inspiring and rewarding.”

Sparked by the idea of being able to create and promote her very own brand (as well as her penchant for travelling to tropical destinations), Grimmond gushes about her “greatest achievement yet”, the 2018 launch of Sylk Swim, her Australian-born swimwear brand. Offering a slew of deliciously bold, high-cut one and two-piece swim sets, the collection is fearlessly true to the YouTuber’s bold, risk-taking style.


“I always wanted to be a model when I was a young girl,” confessed the beauty guru. “My mum set up photoshoots for me and I remember having so much fun, but I soon came to find out it just wasn't what I was passionate about—makeup always made me feel so confident, powerful and creative, so I stuck with that.”

“When I was in grade eight I started to absolutely LOVE beauty, so I got into YouTube as a little hobby. I wanted to share my passion.” Grimmond—who has previously voiced her struggles with anxiety and self-esteem, “didn't like to get out of the house a whole lot” when she was younger, instead creating YouTube videos as a creative and social outlet. “Soon after I started posting, my channel just started growing… I genuinely had no idea I could make a career out of it, I just did it for fun!”


“It's so important to give your skin what it needs because that is the base to your makeup,” says Grimmond on her skin learnings over the years; “I never understood how important skincare was when I was younger—back then it wasn't really a topic of conversation either, so I genuinely had no idea about it. Then my skin began to change and mature and I started learning more about what it needed.”

Having tried the full encyclopedia of brands, Grimmond shares her appreciation for one of our favourite results-based skincare brands, Dermalogica (she loves it so much, the brand even let her hand-pick her favourite products in a limited-edition kit). “My skin went from being extremely dehydrated to the best it's ever been within a couple of months of using Dermalogica. I swear by the Clear Start Breakout Clearing Foaming Wash to remove my makeup, because it helps fight breakouts without drying the skin.”

Living by the words “makeup washes off at the end of the day—you don't need to take it so seriously,” Grimmond is one to practice what she preaches, harnessing the powers of seriously good skincare in order to get the most out of her makeup. “Go wild! Your face is a canvas.” Her vlogs cover everything from a Bronze Goddess Makeup tutorial to an “Extra AF Festival” look, and suitably, Morphe’s 35B Colour Burst Artistry Palette is on high rotation as one of her “can’t live without products ” of 2019. And as she says in the aforementioned video, “I feel like everyone needs a colourful eyeshadow palette in their life. Always bronzed and glowy (favourites to achieve this include MAC’s Give Me Sun, NARS Natural Radiant Longwear Foundation and Jouer Blush Bouquet Dual Blush Palette in Rose Gold—with lashes to boot—her signature look is one to be admired, recreated and heartbreakingly cleansed away before going to bed.


Ask an early teen what they want to be when they grow up, and more often than not you’ll hear the terms ‘influencer’ and ‘YouTuber’ thrown around. Albeit professions still untapped by schools and universities, Grimmond believes that there is space for a new wave of creators to come through. “It’s never too late for anything—I do feel lucky that I started early because it wasn't as saturated then, but as long as you put your personality and talent out there, you'll do just fine!”

The secret to her success? Not such a secret; “the most important thing to succeed in this industry is to be consistent.”


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