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The untold truth of Carli Bybel

Since launching her YouTube channel and publishing her first-ever beauty tutorial in 2011, New Jersey native Carli Sue Bybel has risen to online superstardom. In addition to regularly filming makeup and hair how-tos for her millions of fans, she also uploads extremely popular Q&A clips with her boyfriend, fellow YouTube star Brett Cap, runs a successful fashion blog called The Beauty Bybel and has even found time to launch a secondary YouTube channel dubbed Inner Beauty Bybel. Despite the fact that she lives in the public eye, the beauty guru still has some surprises up her sleeve. Here are nine interesting facts you likely never knew about this talented influencer.

She laughs at her first-ever YouTube video

Bybel sure has come a long way since her very first video and she’s the first one to admit it. Uploaded on August 25, 2011 and titled “Curl Hair with Straightener Tutorial,” the superstar’s debut tutorial may have garnered over 319,000 views as of August 2017, but it still makes her laugh.

Asked by Sanders Kennedy in 2014 if she ever revisits her first foray into the world of YouTube tutorials, Bybel admitted that she does “all the time! Me and Brett will go watch it and we’ll literally pee our pants because it’s so funny,” she admitted. “I remember editing it for the first time and being like, ‘Oh my god, this is so good! This is the perfect video!’ Meanwhile, it’s just horrible quality, no lighting — it’s funny.”

She now earns over $16,000 a month from YouTube

Bybel no longer needs to hold down a day job, as she’s able to make a living exclusively off of her YouTube videos. As she told Fox 5 New York in 2015, “I’m signed with a network called StyleHaul, so they’re the ones who will pay me for the ads on the views.” Described on their website as a “contemporary marketing services and media company with a flair for storytelling,” StyleHaul reportedly helps over 6,000 influencers earn money through advertising.

The revenue is nothing to scoff at. Looking at the top 20 beauty and style YouTube channels ranked by income, subscribers, and more, Adage found that Bybel came in fifth in 2015, earning a whopping $16,644.60 per month from her exploding viewership (her tutorials garner over 11 million views each month!) and close to 3 million devoted subscribers, which jumped to over 5 million by 2017.

Her success totally shocked her mom

In a hometown interview with Fox 5 New York in 2015, during which the channel visited Bybel’s New Jersey home to see where she shoots her uber popular videos, the celebrity vlogger recalled how her mother didn’t exactly believe in her mission to become Internet famous. Not at the start, at least.

“My mom, in the beginning, she was just like, ‘What are you doing? This isn’t going to take off!’ It wasn’t until I had a meet-up at Macy’s in Herald Square” that she changed her mind after getting quite the surprise.

“She came to it and there was like a six-hour line and she was like, ‘Ohhh, so you are doing something with your life!'” Bybel recalled of the meet-and-greet during which she chatted, shopped, and took photos with fans “in her very own Macy’s closet.”

She’s been using a single mascara brand for close to a decade

You may think that someone who has access to all of the best beauty products in the world would constantly be discovering new must-haves and changing her essentials, but as Bybel revealed in 2015, she actually has one beauty product she always uses. In fact, she’s been relying on it for nearly a decade and, what’s more, it’s surprisingly affordable.

Asked to pick one go-to product she couldn’t live without, Bybel revealed it’s her “L’Oreal Telescopic Mascara because it’s been my one staple piece for like eight years.” According to L’Oreal, it gives “dramatically longer lashes with two times the intensity” and retails for $10 and under at retailers like Walmart, making it accessible to everyone!

She’s absolutely obsessed with penguins

Bybel may be totally obsessed with all things makeup, but few know about her second biggest love. No, not her boyfriend Brett, but penguins! During a 2014 interview with Sanders Kennedy, the influencer was asked what she’d be doing if she had never gone viral. Pointing out that she used to work as a freelance makeup artist, the beauty junkie revealed that she’d likely be pursuing that profession, but that her real dream would be to work at “the penguin exhibit at SeaWorld because I’m obsessed with penguins. It’s a problem,” she laughed.

She confirmed said love on Facebook in 2014 when she posted a snap of herself kneeling next to a penguin wall decal and writing, “Found a baby penguin on the wall randomly in the Mall of America. Cute widddddle baby!” and again in 2015 when she posed alongside a real penguin and her boyfriend on her 25th birthday, gushing, “Thanks baby for the best surprise birthday gift EVER! I got to feed and play with widdle precious penguins yesterday! An amazing memory I will never forget.”